Silence filled the room. We sat waiting, wondering. The doctor who delivered my last son arrived to perform the ultrasound. Within seconds, she found it. A tiny little blob on the monitor. A tiny little blob that would rock our world.
“It looks like you are about 5 and a half weeks along”, she said. “And see, there’s your IUD, still in place.” We barely acknowledged her, or the ultrasound images. We were in shock and disbelief.
Over the next few days, we did not talk much about the elephant in the room. What do you say when you are unhappy with the two pink lines? The two pink lines that you coveted for so long with your first child, the two pink lines that you were ecstatic to see with your second are now making you cringe with terror. Terrified of the possibility of uterine perforation, terrified of the possibility of three kids in four years, and terrified of yet another pregnancy loss.
Just a few hours before, I was telling my friend I was late this month, and I would take a pregnancy test, since testing always made my period appear. Not this time though. This time, I sat alone in my bathroom, crying and shaking, hoping the test was somehow wrong. The thought of telling my husband, who originally wanted only one child, was making me nauseous. Or maybe the nausea was from the pregnancy itself. I had to tell him though. Not telling him would not make this less real.
“I took a pregnancy test….and it’s…..positive.” I cried like a 15 year old telling their mother. Only I was 31 telling my husband.
He had both our two and one year olds sleeping on his lap, so he couldn’t exactly yell or cry, but I’m pretty sure he wanted to do both.
“WHAT? Are you serious?” He quietly exclaimed.
Shaking, I could only bring myself to nod.
With my other children, it took a combined 18 months to get pregnant. How could this happen to me? How could I of all people end up with an unexpected pregnancy? I had to see a specialist before conceiving my first born for crying out loud! Fertile Myrtle, I am not.
We had no idea how we were going to do this, again. Our house was too small, our kids were too young, money was extra tight … these and other concerns were our main focus for quite a while. We were so fixated on the negative aspects of bringing another child into the world that we were unable to focus on the positive, which of course brought a hefty dose of guilt. I was overwhelmed with guilt for not being excited. Didn’t I know how many people would give anything to be pregnant right now? How could I not appreciate this? I remember sitting and rocking my son, crying and telling him I loved him and would not replace him, all the while being excited about giving him the opportunity to be a big brother. The emotional roller coaster was making me sick…or again, that could have been the pregnancy.
Thankfully, I have some incredibly supportive friends who assured me that my reaction was normal. They reminded me that just because some people had trouble getting pregnant did not mean I had to jump for joy when faced with an unintended pregnancy.
From Disbelief to Acceptance
I cannot pinpoint the day I became excited about the baby. Maybe it was the day of the gender reveal party, or the day we settled on a name? All I know is slowly but surely, the fears were replaced with acceptance, the dread was overtaken by joy, and the guilt was all but gone. Though it has been over two years since I saw those two pink lines, I still sometimes feel guilty about my reaction to the pregnancy. I have to remind myself that it was okay to feel less than thrilled. It was okay to be scared. It was okay to react the way I did given the circumstances.
Nine months later, when this little guy arrived, I felt nothing but joy and gratitude for his presence. He was perfect.
Our little surprise is now nearly 20 months old, and I could not imagine life without him. He is so sweet and happy and funny. He fit right into his role as baby brother, and he loves playing with (and fighting with) his siblings. Though we thought our family was complete with two children, Dylan came along and filled a void we did not know existed.