Parenting is the toughest job we’ll ever have. Sometimes though, the circumstances that come our way make it even more challenging than we first thought says Nicola Woods

We start the journey with excited dreams, unspoken fears and our own vision of family life; perhaps echoing that of our parents before us, perhaps a very different path. On that Sunday morning in January 2012 when we found out we were going to have a baby, all those thoughts flooded into my head. I insisted that right that minute we had to go to a bookshop and buy some books about babies. I knew nothing about them!

Sure, I was excited for family life and those ideals I had in my head, but the fears? Wow, so many I even wrote a list on my phone. It included thoughts such as, would I be able to cope with the sleep deprivation? What about birth? Would we be able to do all the renovation work to our house that we wanted to in time? And very oddly, I felt drawn to write as one of my worries ‘the child having a disorder’. I wonder if maybe this was on my heart as I already instinctively knew that this baby was going to be born with that extra chromosome.