Life is Hard; But Thats Not Why I’m Crying

I haven’t written in a while. I feel a little overwhelmed with my life at the moment. But there is so much that I want to say today that I just hope I can find the words to say it adequately.

When I was single I wrote more than one post about how hard it is to be single; how hard it is to feel like you have some how come to a dead end and don’t know what to do to change it. I wrote about feeling hopeless in my desire for children and family. I wrote about how lonely it feels to go to bed by myself every night, to go to church alone every Sunday. And it was hard, it was terribly hard and it was a burden I could never have carried on my own.

Last night as I put Preston down for the night I felt such relief to know that it would be hours before he would need me again. I closed his door so softly so that I wouldn’t wake him because  I didn’t feel like I could handle his squirming, crying, needyness one more minute. And then I sighed and went to bed. As I crawled in next to my husband too tired to even turn over and give him a proper goodnight, I pushed that body pillow between my legs to ease my aching hips and propped my ever growing pregnant belly on top so that it wouldn’t strain my back. I felt my husband’s warm body next to me and when he rubbed my feet with his and whispered goodnight, I just wanted to cry because I have so much and yet life is still hard.

I woke in the middle of the night because the pain in my throat and my ears was becoming too much to sleep through. Preston and I have both been sick with a bad cold, cough, fever and just feeling pretty plain miserable. I took a sip of water from the glass that Joseph always makes sure is on the nightstand next to my bed and I tried to sleep. It wasn’t long before Joseph started to stir. I didn’t feel like I could handle another day so soon. “We need to get going” he told me. we had a big day planned. “I know” I said although I couldn’t make it come out more than a whisper because my voice was so raspy. “I feel terrible” I com10417689_1577899402431029_5100755972080308831_nplained. Joseph leaned over and gently pushed the hair off my forehead. “Do you want to just rest this morning? I can go to work and come home early so that we can still get everything done that we have to do today” he told me. I gladly agreed and layed back down. He kissed me gently, not even worried about catching my germs and then left to go to one of his two jobs that he works so hard at to support us.

It was 9am when Preston woke up, I was glad he had let me sleep so long. We cuddled in bed and gazed in each others eyes for awhile before he insisted it was time for breakfast. I was preoccupied with something else and Preston was trying hard to get my attention. He was leaning forward in his highchair, a huge smile on his food covered face. He was giggling at nothing just to get me to look at him. I couldn’t help but smile back and that smile was followed by a flood of tears. Partially because I am pregnant and tears flow all too easily these days but also because I HAVE EVERYTHING I HAVE EVER WANTED. And life is still hard. Joseph and I have disagreements sometimes and I am here to tell you that the more you love someone the more mad you get at them. I am pregnant with another special blessing that I know will bring as much joy as Preston has. But between the intense morning sickness, and blinding headaches I haven’t really enjoyed this pregnancy much.

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Don’t worry those spots all over him are just lipstick kisses!

I don’t know wether this post is about complaining or about feeling blessed because I feel overwhelmed with both right now. All I know is that all morning I have felt like my old self, the one that ached after years and years of wondering if this time of life would ever come for me, has been looking over my shoulder smiling at all the things that I am enjoying and not enjoying so much about this time and she is pleased beyond words.

I am so lucky to have found someone that I love so deeply and intensely and who feels the same way about me. I am so lucky that two amazing spirits have chosen ME to be their mother! I get to be a stay at home mom. That doesn’t happen without a husband who is willing to work twice as hard and sacrifice to get by with less. I have laundry up to my eyeballs and dirty dishes enough to keep me occupied all day. And I have a silly giggling boy who inspite of being sick himself gently caresses my check and showers me with wet, (we hope its just slobbery) kisses.

Yes life is hard, incredibly so. But its so good that sometimes the only way to soak it all in is to just allow the tears to flow.

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I’m a Mom! Preston turned 6 weeks old yesterday and I am still wrapping my head around the fact that I am a mom. This isn’t just a temporary experience that will one day go away this is the real deal. The truth is that I have mixed emotions about that.

As I have seen so many others have babies i mostly saw just the good parts. The blissful mother sitting quietly rocking her sleeping baby wrapped sweetly in a blanket. My experience has been a bit different or at least there were things about being a mom that I never saw with other people.

I never saw…

how sometimes you don’t realize until the end of the day that you never combed your hair. And then when you do realize it you also realize that you really don’t care.

how many times I would find myself racing to the bathroom because since the birth I literally have seconds before its too late; and I never knew how many times I would have a nursing baby in my arms at the same time because he would scream if I tried to put him down.

those moments at 3 am when the baby hasn’t slept all night and just won’t stop screaming and you feel like challenging him to a match to see who can cry harder.

I never knew the “joy” of nursing a baby while milk from the other side drips down your belly and onto your baby.

But there was no way that anyone could have prepared me for the feeling that I would get when my finally satisfied baby looked up at me with milk dripping from his chin, opened one eye and grinned.

I couldn’t have foreseen how much joy I would get from hearing him finally poop after it has been a few days and I am worried.

And nothing compares with laying in the bath tub with my baby laying next to me, his arms and legs wrapped around me like a little monkey and his little face propped up so that I can see his wide open eyes, his fat chin and pink lips propped up on my chest looking as content and happy as I have ever seen him.10564793_10154365362515344_1384080184_n

I lay awake at night marveling at the tiny pink balls that are the undersides of his perfect little toes, the tiny dimples on his little manly hands and his funny elf shaped ears.

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His one little curl that WILL stand up in the center of his head and the little muscles of his arms make me just want to squeeze him.

He loves to cuddle and he sighs in contentment when I am close to him. Its so amazing to know that he loves me so completely and that I am the one he wants above all others. I never new I would sit and cry just because I don’t know what else to do with all the love I feel.

It scares me a little to love someone so much. Especially someone so vulnerable. Before I had a baby, I was never really afraid of much because the worst thing that could happen was that I would die… and that didn’t seem so horrible. Now there are dozens of worse things that could happen and all of them make my blood run cold with fear.

What if he gets sick and I don’t know how to make him feel better?

What if He gets hurt? I could get in a car accident, I could drop him, he could fall off the bed, he could choke, he could just stop breathing in the night for no reason, he could have any number of complications that would be outside of my control and the thought is horrifying. Nothing is worse than the thought of losing my baby or of seeing him suffer.

I have always heard stories of soldiers laying dying and calling for their mothers with their last breaths. Now I have a little son and suddenly that becomes the most heart breaking thing I have ever heard. I pray every day with all of my heart that the Lord keeps my little one safe. 10551783_10154365363500344_372717421_n

Grandma is worried about how empty the house is going to feel when this little one goes home.

And I am worried about what I am going to do without all the help taking care of him.

Being a mother is scary, difficult, exhausting, wonderful exhilarating, fulfilling and indescribable…

So I guess I better stop trying. Besides I think I hear him stirring…

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Yep! I’m A Mom. You Can Tell From The Stale Milk On My Shoulder

My Year of Miracles: A review of my tenth year as a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints

10 years! I remember it like it was yesterday; the day I got baptised into the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. I felt so lost and out-of-place I wondered if I would make it through the week. I felt strongly that I had made the right decision…but boy was it going to mean big changes for me; many of which there was no way to be prepared for.

Since that day each year on the anniversary of that day I spend some time alone, thinking, pondering and reviewing my choice, my commitment, and the consequences of that choice, be they good or bad. Every year I look back filled with gratitude, sometimes sadness, but always in awe of what has transpired since that time and most especially in the most recent year.

This year more than any other year I see so clearly how that choice I made ten years ago continues to grow in its impact in my life. Almost every single decision I made this year…and I made some big ones, was in a large way influenced by my decision to join this church.

So here is a year in review:

May 2013

I arrived in Uganda just 1 day before my 9th anniversary as a member of the LDS church. That first week was hard. Really hard. It took some getting used to, it was fun, it was an adventure, it was eye-opening to see a way of life so different from my own. That month I learned to live without so many things. I ate strange foods and even insects (check out the video!)

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This was my bed.

I went way to long without showers because of a lack of water, met so many new friends, learned to sleep in spite of the lizards crawling on the walls, and the mice and rats fighting over food remnants in our kitchen. I used pit latrines, carried water in a jerry can, was smothered in love and dirty hand prints by dozens of children who all wanted to hold my hand and have a piece of my attention. I felt completely overwhelmed by all of it. Especially the stifling heat. Oh and I didn’t know it then but I met someone who would change my life forever. It was a good month!

After adding a few of my things and scrubbing vigorously!

After adding a few of my things and scrubbing vigorously!

June 2013

I agreed to go on a date with Joseph Ssempala. That date colored the rest of my month. I saw him or talked to him every day after that. When he told me he loved me after just a few weeks I responded by teaching him a new phraze…”take a chill pill.” fortunately he isn’t one to give up easily and while he did give me the little space that I needed, he continued to make me feel like the most amazing woman alive. He showed me so many things and we had some amazing adventures that month. I realized I was falling in love in a strange country with a strange and wonderful man who took my breath away. It was a great month!!

Joseph and I on our first date.

Joseph and I on our first date.

July 2013

After traveling to Rwanda and having some crazy adventures there. I accepted a proposal of marriage from the man of my dreams and after only dating just two days shy of a month. Joseph and I began planning our wedding. At first we planned for the wedding to take place in October. But it wasn’t long before we realized that, that plan wasn’t going to work and we moved the date up to the 27th of July. It gave us two crazy weeks to plan for the day I had waited my whole life for. It was nothing like I had imagined but all the important elements where there with the exception of the attendance of family and friends. I was head over heels in love with the man I was marrying, I wore a beautiful white dress, and the end result was that I found myself a married woman and so blissfully content that nothing else mattered. What can I say, it was a phenomenal month!!!DSCF1436

August 2013

As July turned to August I learned many new skills. Like how to shower outside with a bucket of cold water, how to cook on a charcoal stove, and how to have an argument and still stay friends with your new husband. I planted a garden, created a home, met some wonderful new neighbors and took a pregnancy test that turned out to be positive! What more can I say…My joy was complete and it was the month of my dreams.

September 2013

September came with its own challenges and joys. I learned that morning sickness is NOTHING like being car sick but just in the mornings like I used to think it would be. I ate less and threw up more than I would have dreamed was possible. I spent most of my day resting and trying to help my body create another human being! I started teaching piano lessons, getting more involved at church, and just tried to survive being really sick. I also got to travel to South Africa where my new husband and I went through a very special ceremony where we were sealed together for time and all eternity in the house of the Lord. One of the most sacred and special moments of my life was when this man who I love so much took my hand and led me through this process that would bind us together for eternity. Eternity wouldn’t be long enough for me. It was a legion…wait for it….dary month!  (a little How I Met Your Mother reference for those of you that love Neil Patrick Harris).

October 2013

With the blush of spring and the warmth of summer past, October saw me traveling home alone. I needed to eat and rest and get strong for the baby growing inside me. I needed my family and I needed to be back in America. I would come, work on getting Joseph a visa, finish up my last two semesters of school and prepare for our coming baby. It was a long and lonely month.

November 2013

I turned 32 this month and being married took the sting out of being another year older, the day passed and aside from having a wonderful Skype session with my husband I hardly noticed. I prayed for a mild winter, worked and waited and waited some more. I found an apartment for us to start our lives together in and my mother graciously helped me to furnish and make our little two bedroom apartment feel like a home.

December 2013

Began to realize that Joseph wouldn’t be coming as soon as we had imagined and tried to adjust to a new kind of loneliness. With Morning sickness easing up significantly and the second trimester under way I felt like a new woman and I couldn’t believe my growing body. We had an ultra sound and discovered that our baby was a boy. We agreed to name him Preston Joseph.

January 2014

Started my final semester of school!! A degree 8 years in the making finally looking like it was coming to an end. Began a new job at Cedar Fort planning events. Life began to settle into a routine.

February 2014

As I moved into the third trimester, things began to get a bit more difficult. Preston became heavier, my belly got tighter and I felt sure my skin was going to pop! The miracle that takes place in a pregnant woman’s body on a daily basis never ceases to amaze me! Our baby was moving and growing and I was experiencing sweet moments that I had only ever dreamed about. I never dreamed that I would feel them alone, and experience my first pregnancy in such a way but I learned some good lessons about love, communication, patience and not taking things for granted. I learned about disappointment as Joseph’s application for a visitors visa was denied and we continued to wait for his immigrant visa.

March 2014

After passing out at work, and showing significant signs of impending labor I went on bedrest to keep from having our baby prematurely. This month I learned about accepting help even when you want to do things yourself, about exchanging independence for kindness, about learning to let go of expectations and about trust as I had to realize that this baby was going to be born without Joseph being here. My entire pregnancy was going to come and go without Joseph getting to be a part of any of it. On the other hand my exhausted body was grateful for the rest and the time spent with family. It was a very long month.

And Finally April 2014

And now we have come full circle. With my baby 13 days over due I find myself sitting down to write this review of what might possibly be the most eventful year of my life so far. April was long and exhausting, Big changes in our family. Joseph still unsure of when he will be able to join me and the anticipation of the nearness of a new life have left me a bit of an emotional basket case. I cry almost daily for no good reason. I sit, I stand, I walk, and I lay down in an effort to find a position where something doesn’t hurt. Then I give up until 5 minutes later when I will try it all again.

I am eternally grateful for the child growing within me, for the husband that I trust, love, and adore with every part of my being, for a family who has carried me through this incredibly difficult time. But more than anything else I am grateful that I followed my heart, the direction that I felt from the spirit that day ten years ago. I am so grateful that because of what I know and love about the gospel of Jesus Christ, this year and everything I have experienced in it has been worth it. It has been so wonderful, hard and overwhelming. But I have grown and never once have I doubted that my Father has a plan for our little family, that he brought us together and he can keep us together if we draw close to him. I haven’t doubted that he loves us, that i am exactly where he wants me to be and that I can approach him in peace knowing that in spite of my imperfections he is proud of me and so willing to help me. I love my Lord, I love his church, I love my husband, my baby my family and my life. Every year so far has seen blessings and adventures. But this year, this year that marks a full decade in the church…This year was big…

this year was beyond description!!!

 

 

My fears of Childbirth

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Fear. It’s something I’ve been thinking about a lot today. I didn’t think I was afraid of childbirth. And I guess I’m not in the traditional sense of what one might think about in terms of fearing the pain of giving birth. I don’t fear the pain.

I am actually looking forward to the sensations that my body will experience during this incredible process. I look forward to feeling the surges roll through my body and I look forward to using the skills I have been practicing for months to help me breathe through those surges in a way that embraces their coming instead of fighting against it. I look forward to the sensation of the baby moving further down in the birth canal and that pathway opening up to accommodate him. I look forward to breathing my baby down, feeling his head, knowing that any moment a new life will begin, a new person will enter this world.

I look forward to those moments when the sensations, the adrenaline, the oxytocin and all the other hormones that my body will be producing will overwhelm my senses and leave me with no other option than to completely surrender to the experience. I look forward to feeling the baby pass from my body into this world.

I can’t wait to hold him, to cuddle him in my arms, to see Joseph in him and a bit of myself as well. I can’t wait to see his skin color, his eyes, his fat little legs, his fingers and toes. I look forward to so much!

So why do I feel fear as this time approaches? I’ve been thinking through this a lot today because I feel that my fear can keep my body from functioning in the best, most effective way. Those things that i am holding on to can potentially keep me holding on to this baby longer than I need to. Tomorrow marks 40 weeks and my body is aching and tired and heavy. It’s time Preston joined the rest of the outside world.

I have a very strong belief in my body. I believe that it knows how to birth this baby. It was designed and prepared to birth this baby. But there is always the what if. What if my body fails me. What if when I depend on it the most it doesn’t function as it should. What if the dreams, beliefs and anticipations that I have looked forward to in regards to birth don’t happen for me?

The answer to that question is that it might. And I might go to a hospital and have interventions, perhaps even a C-section like thousands and perhaps even millions of other women have had. And the world won’t end. Those things that I believe will still be true it just will have not worked out that way for me…this time. And I will be ok. The only way to ever know is to try.

Another fear, and perhaps my biggest is Joseph. I know he won’t be here for the birth. Even if I could wait several more weeks, he still wouldn’t make it in time for the birth of our baby, and it wouldn’t be healthy or a good thing for any of us to try to wait. I thought I had resigned myself to that reality. We have plans to Skype him in for the birth, plans for how he can help and be a part of the process. But by having this baby now I have to give up on hope. As irrational as I know it is I was hoping that miracles would come through and that Joseph would be here to give me a hug, to comfort me when things get hard and to remind me of what I know when I am tempted to forget. I had hoped that he would surround me and our baby in his arms when Preston was born and our little family would experience that joy together in those precious first moments of life. I had hoped to see the tears in his eyes when he first became a father, to see his trembling hands as he cut the cord. 10168927_10153984629515344_1116563071_n

I wanted to watch him hold our baby and marvel at his perfect features I wanted to watch him fall asleep with the baby on his chest. I wanted him to be here for all of those first moments. The moment I give in to birth the hope of all those things is gone. How will I look him in the face so far away with no way to change his circumstances and know that he has been robbed of those precious moments that will never come again? How can I enjoy them knowing he is in Uganda alone? How can I be ok with that?

I guess its important to know that fear or not, losing hope or not, it’s still going to happen. Sooner or later, it’s going to happen. This baby is going to be born, Joseph still won’t be here no matter how long I try to wait. False hope is no better than no hope. It’s also important to know (and I do) that Heavenly Father has a plan, he hasn’t forgotten us, he knows what we are facing and he doesn’t feel that this is too much or too hard for us. He will be here with us as he has been all along. I know that’s true.

And that’s all there is to say about that one.

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One final fear that I sense in myself is a fear of how this baby will change my life. Because I know it will. I will be a mother and with that title comes an eternity of overwhelming love and responsibility like I have never known. I think I am ready for it but how does when ever REALLY get ready for that.

I guess this is just another moment in life when you step over an edge, and trust that the Father who brought you this far will finish what he started. I’ve been strong, I’ve been patient, I have been faithful. I have also cried, and questioned, doubted and worried. I guess all that is left is to move forward one step in front of the other and see what this grand adventure we call life has in store for me and for my family.

I love you Joseph, I love you Preston, soon both of the important men in my life will be together in the same room and I will be able to put my arms around them both and introduce them to each other. It will be a great day.10168382_10153984682860344_1292442757_n

 

Preparing for Baby

When I got pregnant it seemed so unreal to me. It seemed that nine months would take forever. Now, here I am at 35 weeks with just five more to go! I am more excited than ever about my baby boy. And now the preparations for him to join us have begun in earnest. I’ve been washing baby clothes and blankets and putting them in the drawer. I’ve been gathering diapers and all the other things that I will need to care for him.

Mom wearing Daddy's BYU shirt at 35 weeks.

Mom wearing Daddy’s BYU shirt at 35 weeks.

I’ve been preparing myself mentally and physically for the birth. And I’ve got to admit…I am almost as excited about the experience of birth as I am for the experience of having a baby. Call me crazy but I have been reading, watching videos and learning about everything childbirth related for a very long time. It’s made actually getting to experience pregnancy so much fun.

So here are a few things that surprised me.

1.) The term carrying a baby is a bit misleading. I kind of always imagined carrying a little baby around in my belly for nine months waiting for the day it would be born….NOT THE CASE. Your body is working hard, and you feel it! It’s not “carrying a baby” It’s creating a human. Its growing organs, bones, skin, developing brains, lungs and all kinds of abilities. It’s sustaining a heart beat, a digestive system, its providing blood, regulating temperature and a million other things. Your body literally becomes a factory! And its the most amazing thing ever!

2.) I had no idea how much work there was in preparing the body for delivery. I kind of thought that when it came time to have the baby that’s when the work began. I had no idea that bones are softening and moving, that ligaments are stretching, squeezing and accommodating, Every part of your body begins preparing for the delivery almost as soon as you get pregnant and you feel that too!

3.) I knew I would be excited and happy to be pregnant. I had no idea it would be so fulfilling, bring so much peace and contentment, that love would grow so quickly and not just for my baby. That the spirit of the baby would be so present and so real and that nothing in this world would be as important to me as he is.

Another thing I have been doing to prepare for this baby is baby showers! I honestly didn’t expect them to be this much fun. I’ve always felt a bit awkward and uncomfortable receiving gifts and having a party specifically for me. But this was actually kind of fun. One of the things that I enjoyed the most was a little activity that my sister Hannah put together for the shower.

Each person was given a piece of paper shaped like a onesie to write some advice for me as the mom. Everyone wrote wonderful things, but here are a few of my favorites.

From my sister Hannah here are just five of her ten pieces of really good advice. 1.) Don’t make me change his dirty diapers. I offer 3 times a week, that’s all. 2.) Keep some spare diapers, not for him, but for you because after kids, bladders just aren’t the same. 3.) stock up on chocolate 4.) Raise him with a musical background 5.) Don’t worry. He’ll be an awesome kid.

From a dear friend…When you want to cry, do it. remember you were meant to do this, so when you don’t know what to do, pray. It is His child too and He wants you to succeed.

From a sister that I have always looked up to…See the world through your child’s eyes, don’t expect to be a perfect parent.

From a loving mother, Always be a friend to Preston and listen to what he has to say, most of all enjoy him and give him lots of love.

From a sister with a 2 year old…If you don’t have a lot of patience you will learn to have it.

From a sister without any children, but who still gives really good advice. Remember Netflix can wait.

From Preston’s (biological grandma, not that it matters) Love Preston enough to have the courage to do what is best for him instead of what is easiest for you.

and last but not least from a niece whom I love like a daughter…Remember to do the same things you did with me. So pretty much love that baby as much as you love me!

They also were given a list to complete of hopes for Preston. People hoped many beautiful things for him such as…

I hope you love: hugs, your parents, your life, music, sleep, God above all else, safari animals, deeply, and unconditionally.

I hope you become: A strong man, a dreamer, confident and successful, a handsome dude, firm in your faith, and a big brother.

I hope you don’t: keep your mom awake all night (keeping my fingers crossed for this one!), give up when trials come, ever forget that I love you, forget to pray, run from failure, experience prejudice, feel hopeless, get left at the store, cry a lot, sell yourself short.

The list goes on with many beautiful and sometimes funny sentiments. It will be something fun to leave for Preston when he grows up.

And now, just got to keep this kid happy and relaxed until its time to be born. At this point we both feel like he is “running out of womb!”

 

I am going to be Someone’s Mother!

I woke up early this morning. (Not something that happens to me, hardly ever!) And I couldn’t go back to sleep so I decided to write a few of my feelings about being a mother. Today makes 31 weeks for me and I find myself counting down and thinking in terms of how many weeks I have left instead of far I am. 9 weeks left and its starting to feel so real.

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30 weeks!

I’ve wanted a baby almost for as long as I can remember. I was 9 when my first baby sister was born. I was so excited. They brought her home from the hospital and my mom let me give her her first bath. She showed me how to steam the bathroom so that it was nice and warm, to check the bath water so that it was just the right temperature for her little body. she showed me how to hold her so that she would be comfortable during the experience. When I was finished I rubbed her little body down with lotion and dressed her in a little pink nightgown. And then I had to hand her off to Mother to be fed and put to bed.

I remember walking down the stairs that day and out to the yard. It was October and my sisters where out playing in a huge pile of leaves. I felt larger than life and overwhelmed by love. I decided right then in that moment that the greatest thing a woman could ever experience was to have a baby and I couldn’t wait to have mine. I sank down into the pile of leaves with my sisters and I told them that I would get married when i was 16 years old. (I knew that, was the earliest possible time that it was legal to be married) and that, I still had 7 years to wait and I didn’t know how I would make it.

When I turned 16, marriage was no where in sight but I did get another little blessing. My niece came into my life and gave me a taste of what it might feel like to be a mom. As I cared for her, got up with her during the night and rocked her until I felt my arms would fall off trying to get her to sleep I felt a swelling within me and a longing like I had never known before. I also felt a sense of peace and satisfaction that I had never known before and I believed that the most meaningful thing that I could ever do in my life would be to be a mother, to care for children, whether I had given birth to them myself or not.

My niece and I

My niece and I

The years continued to go by with marriage never presenting itself as a viable option. I got caught up in school and work and I loved what I was doing. I had great room mates, I was dating, I was having fun. Children started to annoy me a little. They were noisy, often smelly, and they NEVER seemed to stop moving. I loved the easy flow of work in the office, I loved the challenges and the deadlines. It wasn’t messy and chaotic like raising children. It was structured and fulfilling. I felt like a success. I worried that all those years of longing for children were gone and now  by the time I actually had them I wouldn’t want them anymore.

I went to visit an older sister one day. She had 10 children. Before I left her house all of her children got together and sang for me. They had beautiful voices, beautiful faces, but more than anything as I sat watching them, their voices melting perfectly together, the oldest looking somewhat bored and detached and the youngest, her face animated and alive with every word that she sang, I realized that these were human beings, 645 2these were people, lives that my sister had created! They would go on, they had their futures ahead of them! 794she was teaching them, raising them to be good upstanding people. Because of her they would experience all that life had to offer. I saw her love for them reflected in her eyes and I saw an unspeakable bond between mother and child and I KNEW that there was nothing, no work, no experience that I would ever have that would be more fulfilling than that of being a mother.800

But I worried it would never happen for me. That baby sister that I had bathed so carefully had grown up and was a woman now looking to get married herself.

Me with my two grown up, baby sisters.

Me with my two grown up, baby sisters.

I felt old and hopeless. My boyfriend had just broken up with me, and marriage seemed so far away. I went to bed one night sobbing and aching for what I thought I might never have. It wasn’t a new experience. I had done that many times over the 15 years I had been waiting for this blessing.

This night however, I dreamed a dream. It shook me, it was more real than anything. It was so special. I dreamed that my son came to me as a strapping young man. He held me while I cried, and encouraged me to hold on, to be patient. He promised he was coming and that it would all be worth the wait. He brought two others with him, but he was the one that really affected me. Whenever I had thought about being a mom I had imagined having a baby. I never imagined a boy taller than I am, handsome and strong. I never imagined him comforting me assuring me that all would be well. He was my hero and Oh I loved him like nothing I had ever experienced. When it came time for him to leave I begged him to stay, but he couldn’t. He promised that it was just around the corner and that I needed to hang on and be patient a little longer.

I woke aching to hold him.

Now, just about two years later I lay here in bed feeling a little body squirming and kicking inside. I feel love so real and tangible for the baby inside of me that I hold my belly loving the feel of having him so close and I cry with happiness. This boy and I who have faced this lonely pregnancy together will soon be going through the birth experience together as well. He has been my rock, my hero. His presence has brought so much peace. My son already feels to me somewhat like the man that I hope he will be one day.

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He is a human being. In about 9 more weeks, he will start his life. He will start his one chance at mortality. He will start making the decisions that will shape his eternity! Nine weeks! I feel overwhelmed that I am his mother. That I am responsible to give him everything he needs to be successful. That I am being entrusted with the fragileness of his new life, of his soul, fresh from heaven.

I feel overwhelmed with Joy that my time has finally come. That one day soon a little person will call me mom. He is the best reason for living that I have ever had, and for the first time in my life I feel that there is someone else that I could live for. That no matter what happened in my own life there was someone else who is more important than anyone or anything in this world. I would live for him, I would die for him. My little Preston has become the center of my universe and my heart is as full as my belly!