At church the last week, there was a guest speaker and he was speaking on how there are moments in your life that are true "God moments" where you feel him actually touching your life and putting miracles in place. And then other times, looking BACK at your life, it's a slowing growing miracle. Based on your circumstances at the time, the fact that you made it and are ok is a miracle. There are so many people who are disappointed with the path their life has taken, or their job, or their finances, or whatever. But then, when you look back at where you are now and where you came from, you can see that although it may not have been a "God moment" of epic proportions, your LIFE is a miracle and God has been there through every step.
On the way home, Troy asked me what my "big God moments" were in my life and I just sat there. "Uhhh, you go first." Troy said, "well the biggest one was the day Avery was born. I just felt so overwhelmed and overcome with joy. We wanted her for so long." And I just sat there in the car twiddling my thumbs. And then I said it. "The day Avery was born, I felt nothing."
Troy has known for a while, but I'm going to confess to all of you.
It's no secret that Troy and I have had fertility issues. Miscarriages, medications, doctor visits. At one point in our journey to children, having a family seemed like an achievable dream for other people, but not for me. I have always always wanted to be a mom. Ask my siblings or my parents. "What do you want to be when you grow up?" I said "a mom."
The whole time I was pregnant with Avery, I just basked in BEING pregnant. I did it. I was growing a human. I felt amazing. And blessed. And beautiful. And like I was fulfilling my purpose as a woman.
But after a miscarriage and multiple rounds of medications and finally getting pregnant, in the back of my mind, SOMETHING was going to go wrong. My mind was in a downward spiral. It was like, "yay! we're pregnant." And my mind would say, "I'm just going to miscarry." Then, "yay! She's here!" And mind would say, "she's just going to die of SIDS." My mind was desperately trying to protect my heart and make sure I didn't get attached to her because I was so convinced that I wasn't worthy of such a gift.
The day Avery was born was a total blur. They broke my water and started my pitocin drip at 9am. No epidural and at 11:07 (that's right, 2cm to 10cm in less than 2 hours...I almost died) Avery was born. Troy immediately started bawling. My mom immediately started bawling. And all I could think was, "dude, where's lunch? This is serious. Get a menu." I was starving. Isn't that awful?
I said all the right things and posed for all the pictures, but in my mind, I kept thinking, this can't be my life. I can't believe we finally did this. It was surreal. We had a baby. What's going to go wrong now? For 6 months, I waited. I waited for something to go wrong. I waited for her to die. I waited for Troy to be paralyzed in a horrible car accident. I kept anticipating something bad. And living on the edge of my seat.
But everything was fine. She was perfect.
Now I don't want anyone to think I had postpartum depression. I definitely did not. I think I was traumatized from such a deep desire for having children and then miscarrying while Troy was deployed. I just kept thinking that it was never going to happen, and then when it did, all my body wanted to do was protect itself from feeling that pain ever again. If I felt that bad from losing a pregnancy, how much worse would it be when I lost an ACTUAL baby? So instead, I built a wall around myself from Avery, so she couldn't hurt me when she died. Maybe I wasn't supposed to be a Mom. Maybe we were too aggressive with fertility medications. If God wanted me to be a mom, wouldn't he have given me the ability to do it naturally? Is he going to take her from me?
I look at her now and I cannot believe how many snuggles and late night feedings I spent just looking at her feeling detached and not letting myself love her. She is such a joy and so smart. I look at her face and I cannot believe the little parts of Troy or myself that I see in her. It's SUCH a miracle. My love for her was a slow growing miracle. I didn't have a "God moment" when she was born. I hate that I missed out on 6 months of love, but the feeling of it slowly washing over me has been more than I could have hoped for. It snuck up on me with no loud announcement or warning. God made no mistake. Troy and I are the perfect parents for Avery and we had to do the sowing before the harvest. Put in the work to get the prize.
I say this now because so many horrible things have happened this pregnancy. And now it seems that everything might actually be okay. I really hope that I feel that "instant love" and connection that so many people talk about. Cause I totally missed out the first time around. Knowing that this is MOST LIKELY my last pregnancy, I don't want to miss out on baby snuggles or take them for granted. I want to be excited to get up and nurse in the middle of the night because I'll know it's just mommy/baby time. I just want to feel SOMETHING other than pure fear and impending doom.
With Avery's sweet personality and attitude, it's so easy to love her. To think that I am growing 2 MORE people who will have different personalities and attitudes, it's a miracle. To think that one day, not too long from now, Troy and I will start nurturing 2 more little miracles that will one day talk to us, and have opinions, and give us hugs and butterfly kisses fills my heart with so much joy. I just hope that my mind and fear don't try and rob me of the joy of their infancy.