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Wednesday, October 29, 2014

I've been waiting, but it hasn't happened!

I’m waiting.
I’ve got my emotional boxing gloves on.
Who wants a shot at me!

When we were in Durango, the counselor and I along with the kids took some time to ride the free trolley.  It takes you through downtown, then up the hill towards Purgatory, than loops back to town.  Days earlier we’d spent 8 hours in the car driving from Phoenix to Durango so why an hour long excursion in a non-air-conditioning trolley was fun only a kid would be able to answer that one.  At one point, we were the only passengers until the trolley stopped and picked up a woman.  She walked onto the trolley, looking for a place to sit.  I could see her taking inventory on the kid to parent ratio when she looked at the counselor and I and said “Are all these yours?”
Here it comes.
Prepare yourself, Laura.  Emotional boxing gloves in place. 
“They sure are, plus one on the way,” the counselor said patting my tummy. 
That man has a way with words.
She did a head count and watched for a moment as Mayer and Reef wrestled over a seat.
Those boys were not helping.
She walked down the isle, and sat right behind me. 
“Oh my gosh,” she said.
I might need an emotional crash helmet for this one, I thought.  Ready for impact!
“I would love to have another baby,” she said.
Wait, what!
I turned in my seat and comfortably faced her.  Did this woman really just say what I think she did.
“I have three daughters and would love to try for another, but I’m too old.  You’re so lucky.”
I’m not sure if she saw my face light up or not, but I was beyond touched.
“Thank you,” I said.  “It’s a lot of work, but worth it.”
“Do you know what you’re having yet?” she asked.
I explained to her we are going to wait a while, I wasn’t that far along yet.
“I can tell you’re having a girl by the wrinkles on your face,” she said and leaned into my ear.  “I had the same wrinkles.”
Compliment or insult, I decided it was pretty cool to be told I was having a girl by a stranger.  What a cool lady.

But, really where are the people waiting to tell me I’m in over my head?
The world’s overpopulated?
But you've already got your girl!
We don’t have enough resources?
Children are a nuisance?
It's too difficult in this day and age to raise children.

Or the dreaded sexually explicit comment -
 "You do know what causes that, don't you?"

Really, I’ve got this.  
I’m prepared – as soon as I find someone who wants to take me on.

Right after I found out I was pregnant, I went to the vitamin store in search of the best prenatal.  I asked an assistant for help and she started asking all sorts of questions. 
How many children I already had? 
How old was I? 
Was this baby a surprise?
Finally!  Somebody ready to fight me on this when she started “compliment gushing” all over me.  It was really quite disgusting; praising me, telling me how gorgeous I am, what a blessing this was and she felt a beautiful female spirit near me. 
“You’re having a daughter,” she said.
Then she had the nerve to sing “Happy Birthday” to me (I told her I’d just turned 42) in the middle of the store in the most angelic voice I’ve ever heard.  Where are these nice people coming from?  I’m just not ready for all this!

My neighbor the caterer brought me this beautiful ”BLESSING” banner after she found out then news.  
It’s made with pages from an old Bible that was beyond saving.  She even used pages from the book of Psalms.  PSALMS!

I’ve had meals brought in by family and friends.  My mom made me acorn squash and organic chicken.  I thought I'd died and gone to heaven.

When I was really discouraged one day, my sister-in-law Heather spent some time with me talking about the blessing of babies; how once all this passed I would have a little treasure to hold and I really felt it.  She was so sincere.  It's helped me keep perspective ever since.

My friend Melanie gave me all her maternity clothes and let me tell you, they are cute. 
Not one shirt in strawberry or sailboat print, nothing pastel pink; nothing polyester either. Just cute 100% cotton maxi dresses, skirts and ruffle shirts.  Things I would really where even if I wasn’t pregnant. 

Nothing but love.

You people out there are all just too nice. 
What is this world coming too!

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Pregnancy over 40

So, here I am – unable to drive by a Pizza Hut without throwing up. 
I can’t stand the taste of the filtered water that pours out of my faucet.
Once I wash and cut an apple up, I can no longer eat it.
Don’t even get me started about sweet potato fries.  I didn’t see that one coming.

On my 42nd birthday, I stared at myself in the mirror doing that self-inventory we all do on birthdays. 

“Do I look old?”
“Anymore wrinkles this year?”
“I have got to get my roots done?”

And then we’re reminded how blessed we are to have another year and that we really have no control over if we get older or not.

I noticed a few gray hairs and plucked them out of existence.  That will teach them! when something inside felt different.  Maybe I should take a pregnancy test?

It read negative.  Ok, so everything is normal.  Everything goes back to normal when  few days later that voice came back.  “Maybe you should take another pregnancy test,” it said. 

Positive again.

Two pregnancy tests couldn’t lie simultaneously.  Oh my goodness.  Another self-inventory while staring in the same mirror. 

“Can I do this?”
“Am I strong enough?”
“Oh my gosh!”

At 42, I will say this baby was a planned surprise

Planned: because the counselor and I have been wanting another child for several years now,
blame it on these precious people,

particularly this little one.

So, we’ve wanted another baby.  I just have been unable to get pregnant.

Surprised:  because after all this time I didn’t think it would ever happen!  Oh my!

I did great the first few weeks – good attitude, stayed busy, wasn’t too sick and then WHAM!
I’m in bed and the room’s spinning.  The counselor, bless his heart wants to make a grocery list and I can’t even mention the foods we need.  He throws out ideas for quick and easy dinners and I ask him to stop.  It makes me too sick.  He’s on his own at the grocery store.  Hopefully no one will starve.

I have my moments and those moments sometimes can to turn into entire days were I don’t move, but I’ve found if I have the strength walks around the neighborhood, bike rides and cuddle-a-thons in the bed with the kids are getting me through.

And of course the idea of a baby!  Wow!  I am so blessed.

As I get older, I marvel at the joy my children bring me.

I never considered myself a sentimental person, but my oh my – count me into that club. 

Dandelion bouquets, lullabies, teaching a child how to swim, family prayer – the good times can be really special.

(Yes, those are wild horses.)

I can share this because with five somewhat older children, I’m on the other side of exhaustion.  

No longer am I in the really hard physically demanding days of child-rearing.  The diaper bags, nursing blankets and the dreaded car seat transfers; the lifting from tub to changing table to crib, sleepless nights and broken nap schedules.  I survived. Now my oldest is my best baby sitter and my youngest is so capable, she can practically run things around here.  I won’t have to chase a toddler with the pregnancy.  Do I dare say I'll have a lot of help with this next baby?  I think so.

My children are so excited.  We’re looking though names, they’re going the extra mile to keep the house clean while I spend the day eating bon bons and taking bubble baths (ha ha) and they don’t seem to mind another night of waffles for dinner (that seems to be something I can make without hesitation)!  I should probably mention my neighbor the caterer I’m stalking.  Kristin’s the best cook; everything's homemade. I’m just going to sit outside her house with an empty dinner plate and beg for scraps.  If I don’t have to prepare the food, I can usually eat it.

Before the morning sickness turned wicked, the family and I spent a week in Telluride; hence all the gorgeous fall photos.  Considering my on-going pregnancy hot flash, the cool 50 degree days of Telluride left me sporting a permanent smile.  

That place was the perfect start of what may not be the easiest pregnancy.  I could reflect, share and embrace the joy and chaos of my family, so here we go again!  I know what I'm in for.  I may have an uphill battle to climb, but I put my trust in God because at the top of that hill is one of His precious children waiting to call me "Mommy."