It was just me and my five day old son in the hospital room, when the paediatrician came to give him the last check over before the “all clear” to go home. The room was packed up and my husband was en route home with the flowers and other bits and pieces that we had accumulated since Zigi had decided to surprise by coming early. I was happy and content in that “this is my second kid, I’ve got this” kind of way. I had just had a five day “holiday” from the madness that life was with a Miss 2 in the mix. Despite dealing with the 2 hourly merry go round that is a new baby, Zigi was doing all the right things at all the right times so I was relaxed at the thought of bringing him home. Little did I know my world was about to be rocked with news that would ultimately change its course forever.
People speak of things going still and silent in the moment they receive unexpected news. That was how it was for me as the paediatrician told me he wanted to do a blood test for Down Syndrome. I saw his lips move as the words were delivered and in slow motion I looked down at my son, so perfect, so happy, wriggling around unaware of the impact the words were having on me. My thoughts swirled with questions and then instantly to how my husband and I would cope. The curveball was coming at me and all I could think was how I was going to catch it.
That moment in my life was defining but it does not define me. It was the moment I can pin point as the beginning of my family’s new adventure that has brought us inexplicable joy. It was the instant in which my perspective changed, my ignorance was challenged and my grit was tested.
We have all had these moments. Some more dramatic, some less so. I could list others that have happened in my life before this and some that have happened since. In every case “what happened” is less important than our response.
This blog is my rumination about how we respond when curveballs come our way.
I am Zinta Harris. I live in Brisbane, Australia with my husband of 20 plus years, Craig (known by most as Harry) and our two children Teja and Zigi. At the moment we share our 100 year old weatherboard home with an ancient cat Kahlua, two guinea pigs – Caramel Fudge and Fluffy Diamond, two snails named Woody and Branch and a praying mantis called Snappy.
I am a specialist estates and business succession lawyer by day and inspiration seeker by night. I help everyday Australian families manage the fallout after the loss of a loved one and help business owners set up right to minimise fallout if a curveball comes their way.
My mood is better after a daily double shot coffee and a glass or two of vino and I am ok with that. I love to dance to vinyl records and live bands. I get my energy from people. I am big on entertaining at home and if I ever get the chance, I indulge in the type of cooking that takes a day. I don’t have it all together, but I am surrounded by an amazing village of grandparents, my church family, friends and neighbours who help me keep sane.
My superpower is encouraging others. I get the pom poms out and pop the champagne cork to celebrate when others have wins big or small. It is my sincere hope that this blog will encourage you. I hope it gives you a chance to chime in with your experience or to feel part of a community that has walked through a valley and made it through.
So here goes! I am (with some nerves and a fair chunk of excitement) stepping up to the plate! Yet I know you will each have your own “curveball experiences” so please do jump in with your comments and tips on how you dealt with yours!