Now that the baby news has settled in (for me, not you) I thought I would share the story in which this whole pregnancy thing became our reality. I mostly wish to write about it because it's real. Romantic, it is not. At times I look back and cringe and wish I could change a few parts. And, I secretly hope that our first born never asks about it. But alas, it is our story.
It's kind of similar to when Chris asked me to marry him in the thunder and lightening halfway up a mountain (because we did not make it to the top) on bended knee (I told him to stand back up) as he dug out the ring (which was wrapped in a ripped piece of paper towel) and said some very sweet words (to which I was tearing up and telling him to stop. No really, stop.). Similar to when I said "No" and then "Yes" and then "Well, at least let me try it on" and finally, "Are you sure you really want to do this? Oh my god. Okay, then Yes!" Record for the longest answer ever I think.
The baby story is kind of like that. A whole lot of mixed emotions.
A little bit of background: Due to a previous emergency surgery in college and a recent doctors visit to confirm the "prognosis", the forecast for getting pregnant seemed possible yet not without a struggle. A struggle that would take some time, patience, possible surgeries, definite heartaches and several tears. I had already started feeling sorry for us and began to dive into the "what ifs" and "we cants". Chris, who heard the same news from the same doctor at the same appointment, remained positive. He always does. He reminded me that we had not even tried yet and that I was getting worked up over potentially nothing. He also had no problem reminding me that I tend to be a glass half empty kind of person. I hate when I am told what is true. Knowing that we definitely wanted kids in our not too distant future, our decision became the following: We would "not not try" to get pregnant by pulling the goalie now and again in the next year or so and see how things went. Seemed mature and rational to us. You?
Fast forward to three months after our doctor's appointment, only having pulled said goalie maybe once or twice and there I sat in Mexico on a work program wondering why I was a couple of days late. After some serious conversations over some serious glasses of wine (no judging) my coworker and I concluded that, clearly I had not started because I was nervous about my full service incentive trip for 60+ people, I was in a different country, my sleeping and eating patterns were all array and my body was in fact just stressed. This was completely logical to me. I was so sure that I was not pregnant that I even felt confident enough to throw Chris for a loop by telling him that I may be coming back with an "extra passenger" - just for a good laugh.
The days passed after I returned home with still no sign of 'Not Pregnant'. I started to wonder more and more just how stressed my body could be. I didn't take a test even though there was one staring me in the face every time I opened our bathroom cabinet.
A few days later, we were celebrating at my friend's engagement party (now 8 days past due and clearly in denial). I had a beer in hand the whole party but could barely sip on it. The whole night felt as if it were in slow motion as I watched the carefree atmosphere of the party. The toasting, the hugging, the talk of the bachelorette party, the details about the wedding plans. I kind of just knew in those moments that I was pregnant and that our lives would never be the same again. It's sounds so dramatic, I know, but I felt our world changing. And I was scared.
That night I could not sleep. I tossed and turned. Finally, at 1:45 am, I was brave enough to get out of bed and head into the bathroom. Chris slept soundly and I had a fleeting moment of prayer that I would re-enter the bed "pregnant -free" without a worry. After reading the first paragraphs, you are probably equally as confused as how I felt. I wanted to be pregnant. But I didn't. All at once. The excitment of talking about a baby and even trying for one suddenly seemed so much easier than the reality of actually having a baby. I could not believe I was already here, to this point, taking a test. I took the pregnancy test out of the package. My hands were shaking uncontrollably as I did the deed. Two blue lines showed up faster then I could get the thing out of my hands to rest on the counter top. 2 clear blue lines. No doubt. I was pregnant. Cue flood of emotions. I just tried typing several of them out, and it really could not do that moment justice. I will just say this: I was crying and shaking and smiling and laughing. I felt each and every one of the emotions that coincides with those actions so vividly and so clearly. I was an emotional mess.
I thought about waiting until the morning to tell Chris. My sweet husband who was so not prepared for what I was about to share. I thought that pancakes in a baby shape or perhaps coffee and fresh doughnuts or even blueberry muffins were the least I could do to inform this man that his responsibilities in life were just about to grow exponentially. I thought a walk hand in hand would be nice, a poem at his desk, a little video of me on the camera. I wanted to tell him sweetly, subtly, romantically. I really did. But then, out of nowhere, came this:
"Chris! Wake up NOW. We're having a baby." I didn't even whisper it into his ear. I stood at the doorway and like a command, I just blurted it out.
Looking back, I think I was just trying to have someone save me from myself. I really needed him to hold me and to be excited and to tell me things were going to be okay. And he did. For about 30 seconds until he dosed back to sleep. Apparently, 2:30am after a night out is not the best time to tell someone such news.
Morning came slower than a kid waiting for Christmas, but unlike Christmas, my present had already been unwrapped and I wasn't really sure it was what I had asked for. I wanted to stay in bed forever the next morning. I didn't want to face Chris, our new lives, the reality of the situation. I feel completely horrible for writing such things, but honestly, I felt paralized by the emotions that were overwhelming me. I was fearful of them and wondered if they would ever leave. Suddenly everything that I thought we wanted and prayed for seemed very distant and estranged. Chris tried to be excited for us, but I don't think I made it easy. How could he be excited when his wife who wanted a baby SO BADLY, could now not stop crying. He could not understand (nor could I) why I was not elated by the fact that we did not have a struggle - at all. There were not months of failed tries or disappointing doctors visits. We should feel so blessed. And I knew all of that, but I guess I didn't really feel it. I was getting so caught up in the millions of questions regarding our future and I wanted answers to all of them right then. The million questions about 'how' do not get to Chris. He knows things will work out just the way they are supposed to. And that's why I love him. I still spent the entire weekend curled up on the couch, however, and fielded enough questions for the both of us. I really wondered if we had done the right thing but knew that there was no turning back now regardless of the answer.
Because I was considered high risk by my doctor, I had a doctor's appointment first thing that Monday afternoon for blood work. It came back normal. On Wednesday more blood was drawn. This time, a call that it was not normal and that I needed to come in right away for an ultrasound. Faster than I could realize, my outlook started to change. I suddenly had this fear that this baby I was not so sure I was ready for could be taken from me. It was a feeling I was not prepared for, but one in which I know happend for a reason. I called Chris and told him that he needed to meet me at the doctors.
They put me into an ultrasound room right away and 2 minutes later, I was looking at our baby on a fuzzy black and white screen in front of me. A little ball of cells, but a baby nonetheless. At that point I was only 5 weeks. The tech said things looked great and that there was really no cause for alarm, it must have been a fluke in the bloodwork. She let me hear the heartbeat for several minutes and that's when I finally felt a tinge of attachment to the little bean inside of me.
It was rapid and strong and I knew in that instant that I wanted it to stay.
Chris arrived too late to hear the first heartbeat, but I am okay with that. I knew that I was the one who needed that moment the most.
The next evening, we went out to celebrate our news - a few days over due. I think Chris was celebrating the fact that I was finally showing some excitement and I was celebrating the fact that indeed this was right and things would work out.
I still feel badly about how I felt those first couple of days. And even worse that I kept Chris's excitement from him, because in all honesty, he has been excited from the moment I told him.
We told our parents on Christmas day and our friends shortly thereafter. The responses we have received has been so overwhelmingly positive. We will be so supported during this pregnancy and with this baby, it's amazing. Chris bought a calender that shows daily progress of the little ones development and he has been so in tune to what I need. Things have really been progressing quite wonderfully.
I wanted to share the reality of our 'baby story' before it got lost in the shuffle and excitement of finding out the babies gender / the shower / first clothing purchases / nursery decor / the birth story / etc. etc. I also wanted to share it because I think so often we expect to react a certain way. This is certainly not the way I (as a 'forever have wanted to be a mom') expected to react. And it's probably not the way I would have chosen to embrace the new life that is about to become ours. But it is the real story. I am just thankful that I am finally able to realize the gift we have been given and just how lucky we are. Thanks for reading.
I would love to hear your stories!