Since this is my first blog in a while, I’m just going to write it. I fully expect it to be jumbled and I just want to get it out. It just feels good to write something. I’m sorry if it hurts to read it, but welcome to my head!
If you haven’t read Hannah’s Birth Story, click here!
For years my answer to the question “do you want more kids” was “nope, I’m all done, we’re almost home free!” Even before marrying Big Daddy I had resolved (and was quite happy) to be done and to having nothing but grandkids running underfoot. During my previous marriage, there was a time that I was willing and wanting more kids. I’m thankful that, for whatever reason, I did not have any. I believe God truly protected me from that situation and knew way better than I ever could. I thought, for a long time, that my childbearing days were over, because I had not been on BC for over 10 years and not conceived in my previous marriage or with my marriage to D. Fast forward to the day we found out that we were pregnant with Hannah and the words “shock and awe” come to mind. It’s easy now to (and I often do) look down at this angel sleeping on me and think “how did we ever live life without her?!” That day, not so much.
Pregnancy has never been a favorite thing for me. With C, I was so young I didn’t really have anything going on and it seemed very quick and not really painful at all to be pregnant, and let’s face it, I was in much better physical shape. Labor was a major pain (for 37 hours) and the C-section at the end was not fun. We planned J’s pregnancy and the second I got pregnant I thought “what the hell was I thinking?!” Every moment of it sucked. The knee pain, the extra weight, which really wasn’t bad at about 31 pounds, the all over uncomfortable-ness is just for the birds. I had an easy labor and birth with her and was just thankful not to be pregnant any longer. When it just didn’t work out that I had another pregnancy, it really wasn’t a big issue because I had no problems not being pregnant. D had gotten a vasectomy after his first child was born, and during his previous marriage had it reversed to try for another child. They never conceived, and a few months before we married, he was checked (by our family doctor) and told that he had a zero count…not. So, we entered our marriage both thinking that our baby days were over, and just enjoying the occasional grandbaby coming over. Just short of our 3 year anniversary we had been through some really trying months dealing with ex’s and court for both of us. I was stressed, he was stressed, life was not smooth sailing, but we were both happy, healthy and our marriage was better than ever. We both got sick with a cold and were down for about 1 week, but I never quite recovered. I remained tired, exhausted to the point that I was falling asleep sitting up! I couldn’t eat much, my stomach was in knots and I was pretty pitiful. After about 2 weeks of this we were sure I was just still sick with a cold and run down from the court deal and stress. We spent a Sunday afternoon at his parent’s house, as we often do on the weekends, and while in the sunroom with 3 other people talking to me, I laid down and fell asleep…right there, mid conversation. You remember how in school you just got that “I must close my eyes NOW” feeling? That one. I woke up to go to the restroom, and went and laid down on his mom’s bed! Still tired, something was way off. He decided to take me home, and on the way he stopped to get some things from the drug store to help me feel better. We got home, I got changed and settled to lay down and he pulls out a pregnancy test. He said “either your pregnant, or your going to the doctor because something is WRONG with you!” I blew it off and said that there was no way I was pregnant and I didn’t have to pee. Two hours later, I had to pee, and he came in to get me some more drinks and help me up to the bathroom. I peed on the stick, he covered it and set it on the counter, and he turned around from it to get a washcloth. By the time I could say to him “how long do we wait” – about 10 seconds had passed, and I looked down and it said “pregnant.” My exact words were “you have GOT to be freaking kidding me.” I’m not sure what his reaction was…because I was so shocked and freaking out. I think he did the “I told you” laugh a few times, and he was smiling the entire time, while trying to calm me down and pull me back from tears and the edge. Now that I think about it, I don’t think he had a clue how much I didn’t want to be pregnant again, ever. He was thrilled:)
Since I don’t want Hannah growing up to think that I didn’t want her, let me make this clear. I still stand by that reaction. However, it is NOT the baby that was shocking or what I was reacting to, or that she was unwanted. It was the realization that I was PREGNANT and would have to carry and birth a child again! When I say “I hate being pregnant” it is a true and honest statement. I had zero desire to be pregnant, at 37, my thoughts were not about the adorable baby we would have, but about the painful back, hips, morning sickness (all day, and carsickness I still have 9 months after her birth), leg pain, knee pain, anxiety, and the worst part…LABOR AND BIRTH! I’m thankful that I’ve had 3 healthy pregnancies, and I’m even thankful that I had a miscarriage and was healthy through that, but pregnancy just isn’t for me. D can attest to that, I am not a happy pregnant woman. I’m not mean…but I’m certainly not happy. Let’s move on, you get the point.
We were about 2 weeks out of a long court battle when we found out, the emotions were high still. I was right at 9 weeks pregnant when we found out (we thought I was late due to stress). After the first week of knowing we were pregnant, the shock had worn off, and excitement was setting in and offsetting the nausea! Babies, cute clothes, names, a child that was part of both of us and did I say, a BABY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Big sis was grossed out, shocked, weird-ed out, proud and so excited. I’ll throw in here, that there is no better birth control for your teenager than to see you going through all the crap of pregnancy. Food aversions, back pain, sleepless nights, utter fatigue, reading your online timeline of what a baby looks like (that’s kinda freaky), reading “what to expect when you’re expecting,” going to all your doctor visits, and seeing the list of all the things that can go wrong, yeah, that’s great BC. It seals the deal when they are standing next to your head while you push the baby out. Back in pregnancy land, we were pretty excited, and life was great. This pregnancy turned out to suck as far as being uncomfortable goes…just like I thought it would, but those things that sucked were balanced out by all the great things that make people have more than one child. What didn’t suck, what turned out to be the best part, was that I grew our baby girl, and during that time, I learned that I can do lots of things I didn’t think I could, or that I didn’t want to, and I can be happy through them, enjoy them, find the good, and it actually turns out to be pretty awesome. I needed that for my own good, and we needed that as a couple. It was a rough decade before Hannah for us mentally and emotionally.
Here’s a quick trip down pregnancy memory lane…in pictures. I didn’t think it then, but now I think I was adorable, as did D. I looked great for feeling so crappy!
Not knowing that J was my last baby, at the time she was my baby, didn’t afford me the ohhh and ahhh moments when she did EVERYTHING. Don’t hear that wrong, she was adorable, loved, she was “spoiled” with attention and everything she did was the most adorable thing you ever saw. I remember and recall her walking, or videos and pictures of her firsts, and her big moments, same with my son, C. It’s different with Hannah though, those moments are still adorable, but because I KNOW she is my last baby that I will birth they seem to have an ability to make me stop and actually note them and enjoy them more/longer. Until I had her and had all those moments over again, I didn’t know I missed them, or that I longed for them and to enjoy them. It’s different now than it was when either of my other kids were little, we have cameras and videos of everything now, not just Hannah, but everything. I honestly think I have (more than) one pic for every day of her life so far. I’m not sure if that’s last baby syndrome or just a sign of the technological times. What I do know is that I want to remember, and I am happy and sad each time she hits a new “thing” and it reminds me of both of my older kids and how fast time flies. I’m thankful that the season of pregnancy and birth is done, and I look forward to more babies one day, whether that is foster/adopted or more grandkids. I’d have a million kids if I don’t have to be pregnant with them!
Our children have been a blessing to both of us. We are proud of each of them, and in the ways they learn and grow daily. D has taken on a huge role for C and J by being their dad in every way, and that’s something he and both kids needed and deserved. While she is no more “special” than any of our children, and there was no void to fill, Hannah is everything we never knew we needed, wanted and were lacking in our lives as a family. She has truly blended our family into a whole unit. God really does know what he’s doing!