When I discovered I was pregnant with our daughter, the Sweet Pea, I was shocked and excited all at the same time. I had lost an ovary 7 months before that moment and wasn't sure if I'd ever be able to easily conceive again. Apparently it wasn't an issue...cause there she was...
During my recovery from my brain surgery earlier that year I was on some pretty heavy duty meds for pain. Percocet and codeine...oy! After the first surgery was when I was given the Percocet. Within the first couple of days being home I started to hear a little voice speaking to me...a little boy. Our Sprout was in full day, full week daycare while I recovered, so I knew it wasn't him. The voice sounded happy, kept calling me "mother" (our son calls me Momma and nothing else), and was telling me how excited he was to be a part of our family. Say huh???? I immediately stopped taking my Percocet that evening figuring I HAD to be hallucinating, and badly. I'd only been home for 2 days and I was still in incredible pain but...who needs to feel crazy AND be in pain. Right...not me either.
Fast forward to the Sweet Pea being sexed at my anatomical ultrasound. Color me surprised when they told me it was female... I KNEW what I heard and he spoke to me more than once, even after I stopped the Percocet. How many ultrasounds do you think I had before I accepted that the Sweet Pea had a vagina?? I'll tell you...5. The last one was 3D. Yes...no mistakes, she was female. As my pregnancy progressed I allowed myself to forget his voice and instead faced my deep rooted fear of being a mother of a female. I don't typically get on well with females. I'm not a fusser, I don't wear make-up; I love fishing, hiking, action movies, computer games, working on vehicles... Sometimes I wasn't sure that *I* was meant to be female lol, ha! So...what was I going to do with a little GIRL? Love her...that's what! (There is a story behind this little girl as well...I knew she was coming for YEARS. I dreamt of her often. She aged as our marriage aged. I was prepared in EVERY way to know she was coming, that she was a SHE and that she WANTED to be my daughter. But I was terrified to be a mother of a girl so I pushed her out of my mind as often as she appeared. Poor little lamb! Now she is one of the few joys of my life! Imagine that! Do I HAVE to tell you that the Lord KNOWS what He is doing? Do I have to tell you that His plan for you is most likely going to prove to be the BEST life you could have hoped for? I hope you already know...)
The third trimester with Sweet Pea ate me alive in every way possible; extremely quick weight gain (partially due to the poly), no sleep, polyhydramnios (higher than normal amniotic fluid level), extreme pain in my head post brain surgery due to widespread fluid retention from pregnancy... I was a mess. Because the syrinx hadn't dissolved from my spinal cord either, my Mister and I made the last minute decision to have the Sweet Pea via c-section. And that was the last straw... I didn't want to have any more children, ever. One of each...that's a good place to stop, right? Of course right.
After my full recovery from the c-section my husband went about his business to do what needed to be done to get "fixed". They weren't going to make it easy on him though. Apparently there is a rule...no vasectomies before your last child is at least 6 months. I've never heard of this "rule" in the United States. Turns out, not many people HAD heard of it. It was THIS Canadian doctor's personal rule. He didn't want patients making the decision based on sleep deprivation or stress. Fair enough... Sweet Pea was only 5.5 months old at the time. We could wait another half month to make the appointment. Besides, family planning (AKA "the rhythm method") had never failed us in 8 years of marriage. It wasn't going to now. There are 3 or 4 tell tail signs when a woman is ovulating. If you skip "activity" for a span of about 8-10 days beginning and ending on the correct days, you're golden. NO babies. Unless.... *sigh*
Unless you knew better.
If you knew you were supposed to have another baby, and even your husband had gleaned that from various experiences and whisperings of the Spirit (some people call it intuition...) and you had discussed this together...it was common knowledge between you and your spouse. You indeed were supposed to have another child, but you just "didn't wanna". What do you think happens? I can tell you what happens...it happened to us.
Me & My Family...three weeks before finding out
Aren't they sweet together? I've never seen the need to "add to" perfection... One boy, one girl; fast friends.
Where the Lord has a plan...you cannot override Him, and somehow you're going to have to learn to accept it, understand it, and live with it (move on). At least two of those things I struggle with on even everyday matters, something as large as another life is infinitely difficult to accept when it wasn't a choice I would have made nor the timing of it all. My whole life I had always been taught that the Lord gives us our agency and that, for better or for worse, the choices you make are up to you and the consequences (good or bad) that come are also upon your head.
So I did the only thing I could do. I cried. Tears of utter sadness, desperation, and defeat. I sobbed while my Mister held me. He held me like I was about to fall into a million pieces. This time, this pregnancy...he didn't look happy about the blessed event either.
For the first time ever, when finding out I was pregnant, I cried tears that weren't from a place of joy. Then I lived in fear of anyone ever finding out that I did that. Yes. I have friends and family that canNOT conceive without assistance...some that tried for over a decade and finally adopted. HOW?! How could I ever tell them that I didn't want this? Would my reasons be enough for them to accept my reaction? Probably not, to both of the above questions. Would the danger it places my body in, the way that it messes with my overall health and the impact my death could have on my family...would that be enough for people to understand? Sound dramatic? It wasn't. I had only had a c-section 7 months ago to the DAY we found out...not safe for another pregnancy. Not yet. All of the sudden I was listening to OBs list off all of the risks to my baby and to me including the baby's failure to thrive in utero, preterm labor, uterine rupture, and my death from the rupture. My frustration level over the whole situation only got worse. Add to it knowing the military is moving us this summer, I need to find a pediatrician who will work with us on our alternate vaccination schedule for the Sprout and the Sweet Pea, a new neurologist for me, internal medicine doc for me... Aaaaaaaaaa! WHY?! Why now? I never would have willingly gotten myself pregnant NOW!
If you think I didn't go over every detail of my "activities" with my doctor leading up to my THREE positive at home pregnancy tests, you're dreaming. I all but brought in my calendar to show him our "schedule" of love making and how we safely and (usually) easily avoided pregnancy every single month. I didn't bring my calendar...I did the next best thing and just showed him on his calendar. He looked confused as to why it it happened as well... "We all know the "how", don't we? But WHY did it happen?" Not even he could tell me.
I still can't either.
My mother and mother-in-law BOTH laughed at me, when three months before I found out I was pregnant again, I told them that we knew we were supposed to have another baby but we had decided together NOT to have that baby boy. They giggled quite a bit during those two conversations, and politely as could be, let me know "that isn't how it works" with bringing spirits into this world. You can NOT supersede the Lord with His plan for you OR anyone else in this world. If He needs it to happen...get ready. (The problem with me thinking that the LORD imposed Himself is backwards. Entirely. For...we KNEW we were meant to be the parents of another child. Therefore, trying to prevent it was changing HIS plan, and not the other way 'round. Let me tell you, living your OWN plan never turns out as awesome as living His. I learned that LONG ago, but somehow that realization and that truth was completely OUT the window the first 4 months of this pregnancy.) I, politely as *I* could, let them know I'd just deal with my eternal consequences on the back end for not having this baby. I just knew I couldn't handle another child physically or emotionally. I was sure of that and because of that, I wasn't going to let it happen.
I suppose the joke is on me then, cause here it comes.
This was the 3rd and final test I took at home before getting the blood work...
July 20th is the due date...but we'll have to deliver by c-section before labor begins to avoid the risk of uterine rupture from contractions. This doesn't seem like a situation I would have signed up for, even in the preexistence but here I am, hip deep in it. Every morning I go through the same thought process while I am climbing out of bed and getting ready to care for my children who are waiting for me downstairs with my Mister...
"I'm so tired. This baby is literally sucking the life out of me. I'm not going to be able to take care of the Sprout and the Sweet Pea properly. Her teething is taking a huge toll on the 3 of us while the Mister is gone all day. I feel crazy by the time he walks in the door. I have nothing left for him...I have nothing left for ME. I hope we can all handle this. This just isn't fair for the Sprout, and the Sweet Pea ESPECIALLY. The Sprout had me competition FREE for 3 years before Sweet Pea joined the family... She has always had competition and NOW...now she'll only be 15 months when this baby comes along. How unfair for her! We won't have had enough time to bond; just her and me. We're going to be emotional enemies her whole life because we didn't get the time we needed to bond properly. How did *I* let this happen? This is all my fault." Then I quickly think through my ovulation schedule for the month that I conceived and still...know that we did everything we could to avoid another pregnancy, short of being completely celibate. Which we have mostly now become for a number of reasons, but unplanned pregnancy kind of lands at number one on the list of reasons and everything else pales in comparison.
I distinctly remember a phone call with my little sister in January, wherein, she laid into me about hoping that I wouldn't make this child feel unwanted because it wasn't a planned pregnancy and so forth. I kept my cool while I was talking to her but afterwards I came UNGLUED. Of course I would never make the child out to be a burden! I couldn't dream of doing such a thing to any child. Even so, I haven't been able to come to terms with this situation. But here it is, in black and white. Some day my children may or may not see this WHOLE thing and think what a total basket case I am and wonder how they survived to become adults with such a person as their mother. Believe me...I'll wonder the same thing multiple times before *I* leave this world. But, no matter what...one thing will remain true. This child...the accident...the unexpected; it was meant to be. There is nothing to change, nothing to be done...nothing else to say. Except, here it comes. Get ready. Again...but for the LAST time, my life is never going to be the same. I just have to hope and pray that the never "the same" is better rather than worse. Hopefully the Sprout, the Sweet Pea, and the Meant to Be will be a strong trio that can make it through what this world has to throw at them. I have to believe they will; I have to believe that the Lord has a purpose for this little one to come now at such a time, in such an unwelcome...unforgiving chain of events. There have already been fearful moments in this pregnancy that have made me wonder why I am being tested in such a way. You can't imagine my confusion when, on the day my second trimester began, a doctor couldn't find the Meant to Be's heart rate. Then, because of the magic and irresponsibility of the way some people practice medicine in Canada, I wasn't able to truly KNOW if the Meant to Be was alive or had died for THREE whole weeks. For three weeks I sat and wondered what was going on in there. Emotional upheaval to the MAXIMUM during an already dangerous, high risk pregnancy. Thanks Lord! I finally took myself to an ER because of symptoms I was experiencing so I could find out once and for all if I had a live Meant to Be in there or not. Turns out, it was alive and its heart was strong as ever. Seems to me this little one is going to soldier on no matter what. No matter what.
Someday I may look back and laugh at this whole situation, I eventually do that quite a bit in my life. Most often since I became a mother. Whether I do or not I will have to remember to give myself SOME credit. I don't know many women who in a 2 year span lost a pregnancy, lost an ovary, had brain surgery twice, got pregnant again, delivered by c-section and had another baby 15 months later and lived to tell about it and...still smiled occasionally. I have always been hard on myself; expected the unattainable at times. Funny thing is, this time I HAVE to attain and I HAVE to handle...I HAVE to deal. So...I suppose I can. I suppose I MUST. So, I will. After all, this WAS meant to be.