Well it sure has been some time, huh? My last post was made just a few days before our son was born a little over 6 months ago and boy does it resonate now. I am so glad I got to savor the last few moments of pregnancy because it really was so sweet and sacred and over before I knew it.
So here I am 6 months into motherhood and I have to say that it is equally as beautiful- both everything I was hoping for and also so much more than what I was expecting.
But before I dive into where I am now- wrestling a squirmy, silly, smart little chunk while I try to multi-task nursing and writing a blog post- I want to turn back the clock a bit and share how this little guy got here.
Yesterday I had the pleasure of sharing my birth story with a mama-to-be. She is hoping for a natural birth and wanted to hear a positive natural birth story since there’s a lot of negative stuff out there surrounding labor and most people think you’re nuts if you decline drugs.
Ever since Alden was born and I got to experience birth firsthand I’ve been so passionate about sharing the positive, empowering parts of pregnancy, labor, and delivery because if birthing a baby taught me anything… it’s that women are powerful as hell – no matter what your labor looks like.
So let me rewind things a bit and share a little more about my pregnancy and birth story that I started writing shortly after Alden was born – I fully realize that not everyone wants to know this stuff… so no worries if you bypass this and the next blog post – I promise I’ll get back to other topics soon!
Sept 8th 2018
Our little blessing is finally here, all nuzzled up on my chest, nursing in his cozy little sling, leaving my hands free for the first time in a week since his arrival to reflect on how he entered this world. It’s hard to believe now, with this warm little bundle of love on the outside of my belly that I was ever pregnant to begin with- how has he not always been a part of my life?
My pregnancy was lovely.
There, I said it.
I am grateful for all of its loveliness because I know that not everyone is quite so lucky. There are enough horror stories out there that talk up the miseries of pregnancy but I want to focus on the mystery.
Being pregnant is at once the most human and most spiritual experience. In the earliest days it is a sweet secret between your baby and your body. I found out I was pregnant at about 6 weeks, from that point on it was news my husband and I didn’t share publicly for a while as we excitedly anticipated all that was to come.
The day before we got our “big fat positive” we were having breakfast at our favorite cafe in a small town an hour from our home. It was New Year’s Eve… the last day of 2017 and we had had a busy year full of growth in his business, our marriage, and more. As we reflected on what the year had brought we began to look ahead and “make plans” for 2018- what was it that we wanted to accomplish in our next orbit around the sun?
Over our eggs and toast and coffee we joked, “Buy a house. Make a baby”. It was the next morning that as I was using the bathroom I thought “What if?”and took a pregnancy test out of the bathroom drawer.
Every pregnancy test I’d ever taken had been under much different circumstances- fear, regret, anxiety. As I read through and followed the instructions I thought to myself “you know, I’d be a little sad if it was negative”. The thought and feeling shocked me – I knew that even if we weren’t pregnant this time, (we hadn’t officially started trying but were leaving it up to fate) I was ready.
I sat and patiently waited as the test processed, Seth was in the kitchen cooking breakfast. When I saw the pink line I was both surprised and comforted. With my heart racing from excitement I went into the kitchen.””Seth” I said to him “”come here, I want to show you something”” he later told me he thought I had broken something in the bathroom. I walked him down the hall and into our tiny bathroom pointing at the test sitting on the counter. He looked down at it, looked up at me and said what we were both thinking, “No fucking way”.
The next weeks were full of excitement as we looked for a house. We found the perfect home quickly and closed by the end of February, moving in and making it our own in the late winter and early spring. We shared our plans and dreams for our baby and what we wanted his or her life to look like all while picking out paint colors and light fixtures and working on weekend projects- it sounds pretty cheesy because it kinda was.
My body was taking to pregnancy so beautifully that even I was shocked. I had never gotten sick and only struggled with extreme fatigue for a week or two in the first trimester. Early on I decided my mantra for this pregnancy would be “I trust my body”. I told myself this daily and believed it – how could I not trust my body? Here it was doing exactly what it was supposed to with little or no help from me. All I had to do was eat well, get my rest, get some light exercise and my body would build a whole new human. It was humbling to watch my belly grow as we approached the halfway mark.
At 22 weeks we had our “big” ultrasound, the one that can tell the sex of the baby and checks on important developments, measurements, and more. We were nervous, excited, and still hadn’t decided if we were going to find out if this babe was a boy or girl. I had already been feeling little flutters since early on and defined movements by week 18 but seeing the shape of this perfect little being in black and white on that screen changed everything.
As they checked for all of his parts and got all of his measurements the tech turned on 3D imaging and we were able to see the most beautiful photos of this baby’s face. The tech asked if we wanted to know the sex and we both looked at each other unsure until Seth finally said yes.
It’s a boy.