Mika Dzidziguri, 43, Tbilisi

„This is my story – When Lile was born I had already had one child and I knew what it was like to have a baby. I thought I would experience everything afresh and be doubly happy, I did not have any other expectations. At the eight month of my pregnancy we learnt that the baby had a cardiac anomaly but according to the doctor’s opinion, her life was not in danger, maybe the baby just would not be able to become an athlete. It was for the first time then when it emerged from my subconscious mind “what if my kid wants to become an athlete? So this means that she would not be able to?!” This information proved unacceptable to me.

When my baby was born and I saw her on the third day there was something I did not like. I asked for a genetic test for Down syndrome. They gave some vague explanations that at that moment this was not necessary. After I insisted, I found out that the test had been already made. I appreciate their efforts not to make me worry until they knew a test result, but this was not a right decision. This is not a right approach to informing a parent.

Probably this was the most difficult day in my life. I could not stay alone neither during the day nor at night. I was shaking in fear. My subconscious thoughts came up to the conscious level – “so, my child will not be able to study at Harvard or get married if she wants to?!” I wondered where these thoughts had come from. I had never thought before about wedding, studying and any planned future, which seemed funny to me. I had always thought that I did not belong to the category of people, especially parents, who force their children to live in their imaginary world. I was a good mother to my first child and was absolutely aware of the best approach to upbringing a child. I was a rather caring, loving and happy mother. And I would be the same for my second and third child. I would have always thought of myself as a rather clever and honest mother, who brings up children not for herself but for society and their own selves, more exactly does not interfere in their life. But after Lile was born myths about my being a perfect mother were dispelled.

Lile amazed me first when we stayed for 2 weeks in the intensive care unit after she was born. I was rather scared and anxious because I came face to face with the reality I had not planned. Lile was the only person who could calm me down. Everything seemed simple and natural when I was with her. There was no fear, I mean no fear at all, not only the fear related to Lile. This feeling has never deserted me. I always have warm feelings whenever I remember being with Lile for the first several days, which were supposed to be the most difficult.

Lile has always exceeded my expectations and proved that she is a strong person, full of infinite love and possibilities. Every day I face a new reality, which is interesting. We just look in other direction, which is why we do not see things that are more important and valued than Harvard, or any other things planned by our subconscious. We do not understand that we should not jump ahead of developments, rather we should wait and accept things as they are.

I know that my life has changed, I have changed and the people around me have also changed. I know that I am a better person now than I was before. But I needed to get a genuine, not stereotyped answer to the question “why”? Why Lile’s birth proved so special in my life? I have a whole life ahead to spend with Lile. I know that she will make me marvel at her many more times and make me a better person.

I know that I should never plan her future. I should be happy with what I have today. If we face some obstacles tomorrow we will handle them by all means. I know that the world is diverse, not only in terms of colors and seasons. I know that stereotypes should be broken not only at the level of our speech but also in our subconscious mind. I know that love is greater than we ourselves can ever express. I see every day how much emotions she puts into love and sharing this love with others (not always though, she is not that generous; sometimes she is rather shrewish). I know that there is a talent, which can make any person feel that s/he is special and deserves a special love. Lile demonstrates this every day.

There is a whole army of special people around her. I know that life gives us a chance to make a fresh start (to be born as a human being). I could have never imagined that the day which I thought was most difficult in my life was in fact the day of my birth with a new status – Lile’s mother – people know me with this status”.