His child is now in good hands.
The arrival of his son Misha into the world was the happiest day of Evgeny Anisimov’s life.
The doctor then broke the news to him, right after those first moments of wonder and euphoria.
“I fear your baby has Down Syndrome.”
Evgeny was yanked from the mile-high cloud he was riding on and thrown into an unexpected ocean of uncertainty and fear.
What could all of this mean?
When Evgeny learned that his baby might have Down Syndrome, he was devastated.
The 33-year-old father recalled leaving the hospital in tears after the doctors broke the news to him.
The tears quickly dried up, and he was embarrassed by his initial reaction.
“In my life, after all, nothing had changed, in general. I was still with two arms, with two legs. My professional knowledge had gone nowhere,” he said.
“My determination, activity, curiosity, and so on—everything was with me. Everything happened as I planned, my son was born. But the child is special, his life and future destiny are already very significant.”
His sadness was transformed into determination.
Evgeny realized he was being self-centered and that he should be capable of caring for the child, no matter how difficult that may be.
When he got home that evening, he turned on his computer and began researching Down syndrome.
He devoured every bit of information he could find on the subject. Fortunately, what he discovered was mostly positive.
“I learned that in Europe, people with Down Syndrome are well-socialized, can live and work independently. But the decision I had already made was not influenced by that,” he recalled.
He had never considered abandoning his son, but it appears that his wife had other ideas.
She desired that he be placed in foster care.
Evgeny and his wife have always had a “good and trusting” relationship. After hearing about her plan, he assured her that they would get through it together.
Unfortunately, she was not persuaded.
Their disagreement eventually drove them apart.
“Now I understand that she was just scared at the time, she started to act according to the wrong scenario, and by then, the rubicon was already crossed and it was too late to retreat from the scenario,” he remarked.
Evgeny has since raised Mishka on his own.
He tucks him in, bathes him, and prepares dinner for him every night.
Although each chore is simple, the single father admits that doing it every day is difficult. He is fortunate that his mother assists him so that he can spend some time alone.
Evgeny also plans a variety of activities for Misha to help him grow physically and mentally. Since he was five months old, the child has attended weekly swimming lessons.
In addition, he has begun speech therapy.
Evgeny is grateful that many people have contributed to his ability to pay for these expensive activities.
“I understand that the future might bring more issues, but I hope that we will be able to overcome everything,” the loving father said.
Evgeny’s goal is to disseminate knowledge.
He wants to raise awareness about Down syndrome and help families who are experiencing the same difficulties as parents of special needs children.
“I want all the articles about Mishka and me that are being published now to convey that idea to society and instill it. And I also want to support, inspire with my example those people who are or will be in the same situation as me,” he shared.
“I try to communicate with those who are within reach. I correspond with those who are far away. I hope that those who have difficulties now, as it was for us, read about us: Have no fear! Everything will be fine!”