articles / Family life / Pregnancy

Do I want to do this again?

It’s 4:30 a.m. and I’m awake. Why? Because I went to bed at 7:45 p.m. and that’s what happens. And the problem with being pregnant is that as soon as my brain slightly wakes up it starts going 100 miles an hour. More specifically, as I struggle to get out of bed and pee (complete with round ligament pains in the process) I think, “Do I want to do this again?”

It has always been interesting to me, but since I was about 14 weeks pregnant I’ve had different people (some who know me and some who don’t), “So are you planning on having another baby after this one?” My first thought is, “Are you freaking kidding me? This one isn’t even here and you’re asking me about the next one?”

Josiah while we were still in the hospital. Can't wait to see what Samuel will look like!

Josiah while we were still in the hospital. Can’t wait to see what Samuel will look like!

Honestly until that 10 week ultrasound I was feeling positive about the pregnancy, but I wasn’t sure. By that 14 week appointment I was feeling awesome about it, but there has always been that slight fear in the back of my mind after my other losses.

It’s hard to believe but this time last year I had told Jimmi I was done. I had found out right before our Dec. 14 anniversary that I’d miscarried again — more specifically I’d had a blighted ovum that didn’t show anything was wrong until the unsuspecting 10 week ultrasound. I was devastated. I thought that since we’d gotten to the 10 week mark without any bleeding that everything would be OK, but it wasn’t. Instead of just announcing that it was over, the doctor did another ultrasound a week later and drew blood three times that week to be sure. Sure enough, the baby that I thought was “the one” after three other miscarriages, was not.

Because I’d been on progesterone and because it was a blighted ovum (the body still thinks it’s pregnant when it’s not — the sac and placenta keep growing with no baby), it took my body an extra few weeks to recognize what was going it. It was about this time that I finally started miscarrying. I cried to Jimmi for days and told him that I was done. There was no way I could go through this loss and pain again. Physically the pain of going through a miscarriage takes a huge toll on your body — your body is going through labor, but it’s trying to get rid of the baby way too early because it didn’t survive. It screws up your future cycles just like having a baby does, which is painful enough because the woman just wants a baby and her body waits 1-6 months before even giving her a chance.

The emotional pain is even worse than the physical.  You’re expect that in nine months you’re going to have a baby when you get that little plus sign (or double line or digital “pregnant” reading) and here you are literally empty inside several months too early. I had my first miscarriage in August 2010 and my fourth in December 2012. Within two years I’d lost four babies after having ZERO problems having Josiah.

When I saw that surprise plus sign on June 9, almost a week before my period was supposed to come, I sat there shaking and cried. Not that a part of me wasn’t happy, but because an even bigger part of me was saying, “Do I want to do this again?” Everything inside of me wanted this to work, wanted to give Josiah a younger sibling and add another baby to the family, but I was afraid.

This is a smile that I can't wait to see again. The bonus is this time Josiah will be there holding his little brother with the same smile.

This is a smile that I can’t wait to see again. The bonus is this time Josiah will be there holding his little brother with the same smile. It’s hard to believe that this was 4 1/2 years ago!

So when people ask me if I want to do this again, I want to tell them that I wasn’t sure I could do it this time. I definitely wanted another baby, but I didn’t know if my body or emotions could take it again. God has carried me and my family through these past few years of losses because I’d have never survived otherwise.

Now that I’m six weeks away from delivering Samuel and I’m sitting here awake with pregnancy insomnia at 5 a.m. I wonder, “Do I want to do this again?”

The answers, “I don’t know” and “I don’t know if I can” come to mind. For the first three months after Josiah was born I thought to myself that I’d never have another baby — babies are hard. Of course after those first few months I changed my mind. There are several factors to whether we’d want to do this again and the big one is the physical aspect. Was there something going on with my body that the birth control I took after my fourth miscarriage fix something that went wrong after Josiah was born? Did God ultimately heal my body like I spent nearly three years praying for? Could I go on to get pregnant again in a few years and everything be OK just like with Josiah and Samuel?

I believe the answer to the first question is maybe. The answer to the second question is definitely — whether it was the birth control or a miracle, God is the one in control and He ultimately chose for me to have another baby. The answer to the third question is that only God knows.

The other thoughts going through my mind are that I’m 24 now. I’ll be 25 this summer. My body won’t be ready for another baby until I’m at least 26. Honestly, if we decided to have another I’d probably wait until at least 27 when Samuel is 2 years old. Do I really want to start this process all over again right before I turn 30? If Josiah and Samuel were my two miracles, do I want to go through more miscarriages to get to a third miracle? Do I even want to test out my theory of my body being completely healed from what was wrong before?

The problem would be that if I miscarried after Samuel, would I have the strength to say no more or would I be filled with that urge that says I have to have a baby because I’d lost another one?

I don’t know. Honestly, I don’t know.

What I do know is that when the nurse asked me if I was having my tubes tied during my c-section I said a very firm no, but I was very clear about what I wanted when the doctor asked me about my birth control choice for after delivery.

This is the wrong time to be pondering such things. I don’t know what’s going to happen in the next few months or next few years. I definitely don’t want to make ANY permanent decisions right now with hormones so high because I guarantee after my c-section in six weeks, I’ll probably say I don’t know if I want to do this again, but like all women who say that during and right after delivery, I’ll probably change my mind when I hold that precious baby that I’ve been waiting so long for.

 

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