We’re T-Minus 23 Days Until Our World Changes Forever!

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down syndrome second child new baby

It’s hard to believe we’re only three weeks(!) away from meeting our second child, Jaxten Carl Smith! It seems like only yesterday Noah learned he was a big brother, and we learned we were having another boy.

But it wasn’t! It was months ago and we’re in the home stretch now!

Because my wife ended up having a surprise C section when Noah was born, she’ll be having another one this time around, February 24th 2014, at 12 pm, to be exact. :)

It’s sort of funny picking your child’s birthday, and even  funnier scheduling the exact date and time of their birth, like you’re scheduling a haircut appointment or work meeting. Modern medicine is awesome!

c section appointment down syndrome second baby

I still need to clear my schedule that day! :)

It goes without saying that our entire house is super excited to have a new baby in the house! Noah for sure is pumped to be a big brother, and can’t wait to show Jaxten some of his awesome dance moves!

It’s going to be interesting being a father to two children. (Both of whom you can find on Twitter!)  I love being a father and spending time with my child (children) and I’m trying to understand how I’m ever going to get anything done. Not because I’m afraid of all the extra work of having a second child, but because I know I’m going to want to play with them all the time and there just isn’t enough hours in the day as it is. But such is life. :)
I think it’s safe to say our world, and especially Noah’s, is about to change…for the better!
T-minus 23 days…

To the parents of two or more children out there: What do you remember being different once you had your second child that you weren’t expecting? I want to hear about your multi-child parenting experience in the comments below (bonus points for sharing a picture of your family / children!)

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About Rick Smith

Hi, I'm Noah's Dad and I'm passionate about giving the world a window into our life as we raise our son who was born with Down syndrome. I also enjoy connecting with other families, so let's stay connected.

Comments

  1. Soooo happy for your family! What an exciting time. Noah will be an amazing big brother.

  2. I think having two children or more is different because you have to give time and attention to both or all of your children and not just one. Where as you had two hands to give to one child before now you have one hand to give to each. If you get more than two then you have more kids than hands. Multi tasking is your friend. Also being careful not to treat them the same because they will both have differences unique to them. It’s easy to get into treating them the same because it is what you are used to. We have 3 girls and they couldn’t be more different from each other. And we are due to have our little boy Ben who will have T21 in late April early May and he will be completely different too from his sister’s.

    • Thanks for your comment. This is a very wise statement that I’ve never heard before, :Also being careful not to treat them the same because they will both have differences unique to them.” What a great observation!

      By the way, your family is beautiful, thanks for sharing the picture. I can’t wait to hear about Ben when he is born. How are things going thus far? How are you guys doing? Do you have a good support network and friends/family where you guys are from?

      • So far so good. We had a rough adjustment to the news at first. After talking to our therapist and having a wonderful group of church friends, and family to encourage us, we are doing a lot better and we’re getting to the excited phase now. We have always, even when it is hard, been willing to say, “Yes, Lord!”. God planned this whole pregnancy. Apparently he wants Ben in our lives. We were done having children. We were moving on to a whole other phase of our lives. Everything about Ben’s pregnancy has been a surprise. A true act of faith and reliance on Him. We’re just walking the path and moving forward. Your page has really been quite an encouragement to me. He does at this point have an AV Canal defect and a possible stomach blockage. We’ll know more when we go to the Cardiologist apt in Plano on the 10th. Prayers are always welcome. :)

        • Oh and also: One of the most wonderful things our pastor’s wife did for my oldest when my 2nd was born (that was when we lived in CA we are in TX now) was, that when we walked into the choir room at our church to introduce the new “baby Jesus” for the Christmas Concert, she made sure several people talked to my oldest first, asked her to introduce her sister, to help with the sibling jealousy. It really helped. She felt so proud to introduce her sister and tell everyone all about her.

  3. Cheryl Lund says:

    I am so glad you are having a 2nd child. Noah will be a great big brother:) I don’t have a child with Down Syndrome but my 1st born,a son, was born with another rare syndrome,Rubinstein/Taybi Syndrome and Peters’ Syndrome(cloud over left eye,legally blind). I have been following your story and think it’s great. I don’t know anyone who deals with my sons syndrome. His name is AJ and was a perfect pregnancy. Until he was born. he had several deformaties-club feet,broad thumbs that curved,xrtra toes,undescended testacles.I love my son and wouldn’t change him. he is 25 now and can’t talk,he’s in a wheelchair ,not potty trained, he does sign language and understands alot. I had a 2nd child to give him a sibling and it was a girl. She is real smart. She started to walk at 9 months and AJ didn’t walk until 2 years,when he saw his sister doing things he wanted to copy her. She became his advocate from kindergarten up. They are best friends. She is wonderful with him and she would do anything for her brother. She is my angel sent to me in disguise!!! Just watch your kids. They will become best friends. My son is living in a group home now because I was alone and could not care for him that well,but he is very happy and my daughter is his legal guardian and advocate because I remarried and live in another state. God bless you,see you on facebook!:)

  4. Joseph Ryan says:

    I wanted to wait until I had some experience, before weighing in, so ahem, here comes what I’ve learned so. I was where you are 19 years ago.
    1) nothing prepares for being a dad. Everybody says of “course, that’s true”, but until it happens to you, it’s just words, and you really, really truly have NO idea, and then you do.
    You are past that, since unborn children are children, so you are en route to…
    2) having one does NOT BEGIN to prepare you for two. Sorry.
    3) at three, you are outnumbered. Your perfect man to man offense/defense now reverts to a zone. Good luck.
    NB we stopped here, so the rest is hearsay. The best nugget I heated on this topic, from a dad of seven, is:
    “After four, you don’t really notice the extra ones so much. It doesn’t make much difference”

  5. Cheryl Lund says:

    You just need to be there. Sure it’s hard at first with more than one child but it gets easier as time goes on. With my son AJ we had to spend extra time with him because he needed more help but we also tried to give our daughter some equal time. Something i didn’t mention before about my son ,was we spent hundreds of hours in the hospital with him due to several surgeries and procedures,some critical and some not so critical. You will be a great dad I am sure. Just make sure ylou and your wife get the rest and time together that you need.

  6. Hi Rick! I have no insight on transitioning from one child to two children, but I did want to tell you and Abbie “congratulations!”. I know that Noah is going to be an awesome big brother. Oh and you might want to cancel, that Art Team Meeting that is scheduled for 1 hour after Jaxten’s delivery :-)

  7. We have two children. 3 years old and 10 months. Boy and a girl. A few things about #2.
    We were much more relaxed.
    Our daughter is nothing like our son was. Things that were easy with him are difficult with her. Ways he was challenging, she’s a breeze.
    When you hold your second for the first time your heart grows three sizes. And you understand how you can love more than you’ve already been doing.
    You’ll love love LOVE saying ‘my children’. (It feels like a different club almost).
    Watching them interact is amazing!!
    Divide and conquer will be your mantra.
    Congratulations. There really is nothing like it.

  8. Silvia Davis says:

    I just neet to tell you congratulationsfor the amazing job with Noah and special for your second child .I found you as soon the doc told i will have a baby with DS. Was very hard for the few months after the news and i have to tell you thank you!! thank you !!! for the good inspiration , you dont know but you help me go truw the terrible time and help me to make my decicion to keep the baby. Happy to see Noah dancing !!! he is very sweet …God bless you keep inspiring :)

  9. You and your wife will begin to develop an even deeper understanding of teamwork by having a second child. Make sure (if your hospital has it) to order the big brother cake!! We also had our daughter wearing scrubs that had big sister written on them. She felt like one of the nurses/doctors that were there to care for me and my son.

    (My daughter turned 3 shortly after my son was born. We did not know he had DS until after his birth.)

  10. Sharon Galea says:

    Hi, I have 3 kids, 11, 8 and 6. My worst fear was always how to give them equal time but kids teach you themselves, tbey have different characters so we getting along. I try to have individual time with each of them as life permits, like going shopping with one, a walk with the other, even a good conversation while hanging the laundry :)
    Wish you and your family all the very best.
    Sharon

  11. Just stopping by to wish congratulations to you, Abbie & Noah to your new addition to your family. You are the most prepared parents I know. ;-). We have 7, all 3 years apart except for the last 2. They are 15 months apart, tag team..lol. Our oldest has blessed us with two beautiful grandchildren in 24 months, she’s a busy mama!
    So looking forward to your sharing your new experiences with all of us. :-). Be well. Pax & Hugs, Gracie

  12. One thing I was very surprised by is how accommodating the second kid has to be. With my first, I was diligent in keeping her schedule and routines. The second kid didn’t get that luxury, but also doesn’t seem to mind the way my daughter did to distruption. Her busy schedule of school, ballet, piano, Girl Scouts, drama, cooking classes, and endless birthday parties means that my son often has to take his nap in the stroller or car. Having a second baby meant I needed to be creative in our scheduling and let go of some of my type A personality. I really don’t know how moms of many kids do it all.

    Another big surprise is that my daughter has never shown jealousy toward the baby, like so many parents told me to be prepared for. Our biggest challenge dealing with the sibling relationship is that she smothers him with too many kisses and cuddles, wants to play with him rather than attend to her own responsibilities, and keeps sneaking another book to read to him even when it’s well past his bedtime. It’s hard to limit good behavior.

    And just a sweet brag about sibling love… My daughter has entered a writing contest the past two years and both times wrote about her little brother. She won first place in her school and the entire city two years in a row, and even brought home second place in Southern California for one of them. She wrote these as a 6 and 7 year old! Sibling love is unbelievably beautiful!

  13. All our family is looking forward to when Noah would be an elder brother!!! How to be a big brother and sister of a special kid, we already know!!! Perhaps we will learn from you how to behave properly when our special boy, too, will be the older brother!!! God bless you!!!

  14. I can’t give much advice on going from 1 to 2 kids…we went from 1 to 3! :) You may feel like you won’t have time for everyone but somehow it all works out. I remember stressing out about not having the money or time for one more baby and we were having twins. We did have some hard times and stressful times but God does provide. We had another shock when we found out we were pregnant with Logan (11 years after baby #1 and almost 7yrs after babies #2 & #3), He turned our world upside down and again we worried and stressed about how we were going to have the time and money to raise another child. My advice is to relax and embrace the chaos. It will all come together as it is meant to be. After a few kids, little things don’t matter anymore. Logan didn’t have the matching crib set, he doesn’t have half the gear the others did. If he dumps his bowl of snacks on the floor he and the dog have a great time! :) Germs and dirt don’t bother you as much and when you get a moment of peace and quiet, you quickly begin to miss the chaos.

  15. I posted the wrong picture (due to one of my distractions). One more thing to add. Don’t ever expect another “perfect” picture. Each additional child compounds the difficulty of getting everyone to smile and look at the camera. My daughter has mastered smiling and holding still so she is always ready for when the boys might cooperate!

  16. Congratulation on your new blessing! How exciting for you and your dear family! I am expecting number ten in August and to tell you the truth, I can’t remember the transition from one to two. For us it wasn’t to traumatic I guess. I do remember going from two to three though. That was a game changer for me and caused me to have to adjust in a lot of ways. It was all good though and we are so much better for it now. You really have to trust in God in all things and being “overwhelmed” can force you to lean on Him all the more. They are all blessings. Each so very different from the others. Once they are born it is hard to imagine your family without them. Because they are all meant to be. I love reading about Noah and your family. Keep up the awesome work!

    Good luck to you and God bless your family. Here is a pic of my family when I was prego with number nine.

  17. Hans was 2 and a half years old when Sophie was born and the day we brought her home he led us to his room and he sat down on the carpet arms out stretched for her. We placed her carefully across his lap and he looked at her lovingly, looked up and said simply “Wow!” He then gently moved her off of his lap and onto the carpet and started playing with his books and toys. It was beautiful. Hans has Down Syndrome, but that didn’t stop him from being a typical brother. From the moment that Sophie could crawl, he would wait until she was watching and then steal her toy and make a run for it. One day when she was not even 2 months old we found him lying in her cot watching over her as she slept, he had placed his favourite car right next to her. Whenever we went out and someone wanted to pull back the blanket to take a peek at Sophie, he would stand in the way , replace the blanket and say “shh” with his stubby little finger plastered to his lips. I walked into the lounge when Sophie was about 10 months old to see what the fuss was about, to find her screaming at him because he had stood in front of the plug point, which she was desperately trying to reach, he knew it was dangerous and stood his ground. Hans used sign language a lot until he became more vocal around 4 years old and Sophie would come to me using signs I had never taught her, I soon realised that she was learning so much from him. We included Hans as much as possible, carrying bottles and passing nappies and baby products. He would want to help carry the nappy bag and push the pram, we helped him to help Sophie and he always felt special being able to do so. Downs kids are easy going, she has been my highly strung child and taken on a typical “first child” roll and Hans has been happy to let her. He is now 7 and she is 4, and they are as thick as thieves. They have each others backs. So great to watch. Enjoy every second of this new adventure, it goes by so quickly.

  18. Congratulations for the fun and adventures ahead. I remember going from 1 to 2, it was great fun because we had one each :) then for us number 3 and 4 came along as quick little surprises, we had 3 under 3 years and our youngest was blessed with Downs. We had the girls first, then 2 boys and as of a week ago we have taken the next big step with all 4 of them at the same school. Yes it’s hard work, your house never looks perfect, but life doesn’t get any better than when the house is filled with laughter. Funnily enough sometimes you want some peace and quiet, but when one of them is away you miss them like crazy :) Our cherubs are now 11, 8, 7 and 5y 9 months

  19. Donna Hernandez says:

    I am very excited for your family. Every day I look forward to read your post. I’m the mother who has 9 wonderful children with one special need. Can’t wait to see pics of Noah and his baby brother. Here is a family photo project from my sons class. With some of my babies. One has my oldest daughter and her husband.

  20. i have four kids that get my attention when ever im able to. it does mean alot of work and what not but to me I found it a blessing as well as exciting because not only did I have one bundle of but I have fou to spoil. my oldest has a disability but I look at him as being just as normal as my other three and love them equally

  21. Hi Noah’s Dad,
    All of these comments about people preparing their oldest for the new baby reminds me of the “tactics” I thought I would use when we had our third baby. I would ask my son, who was then three years old, to help Mommy.

    He did it willingly, until one day I asked him to get a diaper for the baby. I said ,”Brother, would you do me a favor?” He stopped in his tracks and said, “Okay, but I’m NOT your brother.”‘

  22. RayLene Logan says:

    I have nine children ages 20 down to 18 months. My eight child, who is now 3 years old, has Down Syndrome.
    First, of all, I found the second child the hardest one to add to the mix….I think that’s where there was the biggest adjustment. After that, it was a lot easier. So don’t let that scare you off from having more. :)
    Second, I think that one-on-one time that is so important for each child is now something you will consciously have to think about and plan for. I never go anywhere alone. I always take a child with me, and I rotate them. That is our time together to talk, have fun, and have the focus be only on that one child. I try to have “dates” with my kids, as well as rotating different nights where I let each one have some alone, cuddle time with me before they go to bed…and it usually involves popcorn! :)
    So glad it’s he’s almost here….I know you can’t wait to hold him!

  23. You are so blessed! Noah will be the greatest big brother ever!

  24. We have 8 children 19yo down to 21 mos and I totally agree with the post above. I never go anywhere alone and hubby doesn’t very often. #2 was definitely the hardest. He had colic and big sis was not very understanding of that. My biggest mistake was not buying a good sling so I could hold baby and take care of the 3yo too. Well, maybe my biggest mistake was reading that Mr. Rogers book that was supposed to prepare my oldest for being a big sister (mommy and daddy might be busy, you might feel angry, etc.). I had no idea how negatively that would affect their relationship. With the others we prepared the toddler by getting them very excited about this amazing blessing they have been given. Sounds like you’re doing a great job at that! Can’t wait to see Jaxten and I love the name!

  25. susan lowrie says:

    the time has gone so quick since you 1st posted “Noah’s big brother” pic, i can’t wait to see Jaxten too, even though i don’t have anybody with ds in my family i know a few people with it and i think your family is such an inspiration to all. i usually share your posts to try and get people to understand ds is not a disease. good luck to you all on the 24th. x

  26. Having our second girl was the second best day of my life.( sorry to my husband the girls override him:) my second girl also has red hair and DS. Nothing is different except I laugh more cry more, want more kids and want time to slow down. Our second is now 16 months and time is flying by. The starting of walking. She says 5 clear words. Crawls with speed. Blows a kiss with meaning. Both girls were Scheduled C sections and they both came early anyways. They Both are independent and do things when they want. I would never change anything. I am blessed . Good luck and ENJOY. You will never sleep again,:)

  27. Crystal Maxine Hurd says:

    I love love love love love! Being a mother of two though my first born went to be with the lord almost 3 yrs ago she also had down syndrome. I find with patience and nurturing love? Anything is possible with two children. My Arya is 1 1/2 months old and she’s my little rain of fun and excitement. Being a parent alone is an honor by god and a gift! He blesses every one with beautiful babies and some more blessed :) being a parent of two is a struggle but its always an adventure you have two hands one for your oldest to hold onto and your second to hold onto. You as a parent guide your second child as you have the first born you have equal love for both and shower them with love and kisses! Plus story time at bed time is even better because you have another one to read to! :) I wish you guys luck and Noah a happy day!!!!

  28. Ana Davila says:

    Hola muchas Felicidades x su nuevo baby y Noah estara super happy x su new brother.! !!!!!!!!

  29. Ana Davila says:

    Hola noah

  30. That’s so awesome, congrats to you and your family!!

    Having 2 kids is awesome. The sibling bond is just the cutest thing! Probably my favorite part of being a parent. :)

  31. Congrats, I am so happy for you guys. I have been reading your posts since Noah was few months old. Always encourging. I have a 20 months old with DS. 4 years old and 9 months old. Its overwheming but amazing feelings. My mother is helping us otherwise it would have been really hard for us.

  32. Congratulations on the new upcoming baby Jaxton! I follow your blog regularly and would like to thank you for having the courage on sharing something so personal and beautiful as Noah is.

    • Thanks for the kind words! But honestly it doesn’t take any courage to share and write about our son. He’s a part of our life and it’s just as natural to talk about him as every other part of our life. :)

  33. I had to have an emergency C-section with my first child; he breathed in too deep when they took him out and punctured a hole in each lung. His head had to be kept under an oxygen dome and he had to be under heat lamps. I was not allowed to hold him for the first three days of his life. I could only hold his little hand and talk to him. He would look and me and listen to every word. It was hard seeing him hooked up to all of the wires and everything else. My son is older now and is going to be 5 this March and he has a learning disability; he has traits of autism and Asperger’s, just not enough of them to diagnose him; a lot of his traits overlap. I tried to have my second child naturally; I was a week and five days late when I decided to have a C-section. I can honestly say a planned C-section is much easier than an emergency one; my youngest turned three last November.. My oldest loves his little brother; nobody can get mad at his brother but him. His little brother has helped him in many ways. He was having a hard time with speech, potty training, playing with others, and understanding things that are said to him. His little brother repeats words back to him; he has encouraged him to potty train, get him to play with others and shows him what to do when he doesn’t understand the question. They keep me on my toes. I would not trade them for anything; I love my two little angles.

  34. Danielle says:

    that was my son’s duedate :) he decided to come on the thirteenth though and found out at two weeks old he had down syndrome. how did you cope with the diagnose? I love Braxton to death, but it hurts so much to know he has downs

  35. happy for you and Noah. we had our first one after years of trying and he has DS but we had our second one a year later also with DS. so we have two with DS and I thought I might die with grief but they are the joy of our lives. God has reasons for everything. we tested ourselves and genetic test results were negative so there’s nothing in me or my husband that caused it.. it’s God’s will and we have to surrender to that :)

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