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Wednesday, April 17, 2013

How I told Sam about #5

I was just reading someone else's blog about how they found out they were pregnant.  And since I've had five experiences of this sort I thought I should make a record of them.

So it was January of 2011.  Andrew was just shy of 2 years old and we were feeling the exhaustion of being parents of 4.  Sam and I were just beginning to discuss if we were a) believers in birth control b) willing to act on that belief c) ready to act immediately and declare ourselves through with childbearing.  We were unsettled on all three.  But we prayed...and discussed.

Did we want another baby?

Well, I secretly did.  But I couldn't say that directly.  I really wanted another girl.  I'd look at other families and if there were just two kids - two girls, I'd think, 'She has something I don't have!'  Is that coveting?  I didn't feel it was.  It was a matter of laying my heart bare before God and letting Him know my longing and trusting Him with that.

I do know that you can get pregnant with umpteen babies and they all turn out boys.  I am also well aware that my heavenly Father knows my heart and desires and chooses what is best for us.

Though I did want another baby, I wasn't sure my body could take it.  Gestational diabetes was worsening with each pregnancy.  I wasn't sure it was wise to embark on another pregnancy.  So I wasn't sure we would have anymore.  I knew I could be content with the children God had already blessed us with.

Sam and I discussed in bed many evenings - should we?  Shouldn't we?  Why?  Why not?  Sam would talk of being old and frail when going to our kids high school graduations.  He talked of them shooting hoops and us having arthritic knees.  I talked of never regretting it.  I talked of the benefits of large families.  We gently laid out the pros and cons carefully.

I had some mild bleeding which I chalked up to a regular cycle.  But it stopped short - only a day or two.  A week later I got a bad headache.  An ice-cream headache, very reminiscent of pregnancy for me.  I thought, 'I just had a period.  There's no way...'

But the headache didn't let up.  'I know, I'll just grab one of those dollar store pregnancy tests out of the back of the closet from three years ago.  Then at least I'll have peace of mind.'

Well, what was supposed to give me peace of mind - it didn't.

I really only took the test to make sure life was still on the 'normal chaotic' setting.  Though we were discussing the matter, we had not come to any decision and we weren't in the market for an immediate answer to our debate.

The two lines appeared almost immediately.  My thoughts whirled.  This is crazy.  Who has five kids?  People who don't know any better, right?  Four is scary, five would be overwhelming.  What will we do now?  How will I ever tell Sam?  Andrew was a surprise too - do you get to have two surprises?!
Guess it's too late now.  But wait, I had bleeding.  Maybe something is up.  I don't know how to tell him...  I'll wait and pray.

And wait I did.

Two.

Whole.

WEEKS.

Yup, I kept it a secret that long - longest time I've ever kept a secret.  (I'm terrible at secrets, just so you know).

But the two weeks were well spent.  Knowing what I knew I was able to carry on in the discussion throwing in my nonchalant two-cents in favor of more babies.

Yes, this is manipulative.  This is not what I would recommend.  It's better to be open and honest always.  It is probably terribly mean of me to have kept it from him.  But I was just more than a little freaked out.  I hate being pregnant (other than when people ask when the baby is due, there really is a baby due - that part I don't mind).

I get sick.  Tired.  Irritable.  Temporarily and dangerously diabetic.  I have to diet.  Scrupulous carb counting.  Stair running after meals to keep sugars in check.  Oodles of Dr. visits.

I finally couldn't hold out any longer.  I was gaining a very guilty conscience about my deception (my omission of telling Sam the reality of the situation).  I thought I should figure some special way to tell him or who knows... but the urgency was building.  The longer I kept the secret, the more urgent it became.  Then, how would I tell him how long I'd known?  This is why it's a bad idea.  It just was not good.  Don't do it if you're in this situation!

We were again talking about, 'should we have more?' and we had always talked about what God might want for us.  Would God have anything to say on the matter?  And that night, two weeks after I found out I said, 'Sam, I think God has given us His answer.'

And that was all it took for me to tell Sam that baby #5 was on the way.

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