Finally! We might as well insert a thousand dancing/heart eye/crying your face off emojis. Because the impossible is possible with Jesus. Because He hears us. Because He walks with us and cries with us in loss. Because He isn't short a miracle with any of my babies. Whatever is lost here is given permanent victory in heaven and my heart is comforted in that truth.
Friend, we are finally pregnant and expecting our next little miracle in 2018! Loads of stories and details throughout this post.
Before I share anymore, I really want to talk to those who have lost children. Especially the ones who have lost children sometime in the last 8 months. I remember feeling left behind when everyone was announcing their pregnancies. How can they possibly be due after me? How can they be further along than I was? I felt completely left behind - and worse, I felt like everyone was leaving behind my baby. My heart is with you and for you, friend. I know that I don't know all the ins and outs of your story, but I know that you don't really ever forget the littles who have been lost. So this is me remembering you and your baby. You did not fail your child. You are a good momma. And I'm asking that the Lord would meet you, speak to you, and heal the parts of your heart that feel un-healable.
I asked Isaac to buy another pregnancy test and I tried to fix my eyes on the promise instead of the reality: God had promised a second son vs. I can't have children.
I sat on the bed and wrote something or other for the blog. I looked over to our closet with heaps of clothes sitting in baskets (and some spilling out) just waiting to be folded. I couldn't help but let my mind to wander to the promise of a second son. Maybe it will be 10 years. Maybe I'll have to wait 10 years, I thought. I know God will give another child to us because He said He would give us a second son. But maybe it will be 10 years.
I felt the Holy Spirit stir my heart and caution me against such thinking. But why, God? Isn't this what you want? Me to believe you no matter how long it takes?
There was a deeper issue He was pulling to the surface - a core belief that He needed me to have suffering and pain in order for Him to have glory. That's always how I've felt: work really hard and suffer lots and eventually God will decide that enough is enough. Then, at the end of all that suffering, pain, heartache, and loss, He'll have his glory and I'll have something "good."
Oh, I was so wrong. When crap happens, He is big enough, creative enough, and loving enough to make something good out of it. Life with Jesus is like inserting the most powerful person in the world into your story and watching it change and change and change until all the broken pieces, all the burned up no-good stuff, all the times that your heart has felt beat up and dried up turn into something actually good. You get more than a bandaid on the most fragile part of your heart that reads "This is good now, be joyful." You get someone who can fully heal the broken pieces and breathe life into the places burned up by the fire. You get someone who can restore your heart so that you can finally breathe again, sing again, and have actual joy again.
Back to baby. :)
I was 100% sure I wasn't pregnant. I didn't have any pregnancy symptoms. I didn't have much hope that it would be now, but my birthday was just a few days away and I didn't want to discover that I wasn't pregnant on my birthday. I've done that before and it's a bummer (read: crushing).
I turned on the music in our room while Isaac took a shower and sat down to wait for the heartbreaking not pregnant result. But I didn't even have a chance to listen to the music because there it was staring back at me: "PREGNANT."
I am not a cryer, or at least I wasn't before this year, but I started sobbing. I couldn't breathe. It felt like I was having an asthma attack, but it was good. And I know you're wondering how losing your breath and equating it to an asthma attack could be good, but hang with me because it was so good. I didn't have any other words to say besides "Thank you, thank you, thank you" over and over again. Isaac was still in the shower and I didn't want to worry him with my crying, so I tried to keep my sobs really quiet.
He came out of the bathroom and straight to me to hug me. I knew that he must be thinking that we weren't pregnant because I can't tell you how many times he's found me crying because of a negative pregnancy test. I tried to quickly get the words out, which is super slow when you can't breathe well and you're sobbing. Finally, "No, babe, I'm pregnant."
You know what this means? God answered OUR prayers - as in all of Instagram and everyone who reads this blog - that I would get pregnant before Victory's due date! So here's the thing I've been wanting to say ever since we lost Victory: the child growing in me is not a replacement for our Victory Anastasia. Praise the Lord! So maybe it's less about saying that I wouldn't have this child if Victory had lived and more about the Lord being merciful and giving this child to us sooner because of losing Victory. How beautiful is that? He is quick to show mercy.
At our 12 week ultrasound, the tech printed off an extra ultrasound pic for Daniel and he keeps it on our entryway table. It's all wrinkled from being wadded up over and over again. So basically, very well loved. A couple months ago, I was trying to explain to him what a baby was and how he was going to be a big brother. So I pulled out my phone and showed him photos of little babies.
"Daniel, the baby is growing right here in my tummy right now. Mommy's tummy will get very, very big because the baby is growing and one day the baby will come out. You'll hold him, mommy will hold him, Daddy will hold him..."
I really went on and on. :) As soon as I was done talking he goes, "Okay Daniel! Baby come out and be a person and ride in back seat of grey car with Daniel!"
He's been kissing on that ultrasound picture and putting his hand on my bump every day since.
1) When are you due?
January 10, 2018
2) How far along are you?
20 weeks today! I really enjoyed keeping this a secret and I'm overjoyed to finally share it with you!!
3) Are you going to find out the gender?
With one baby, I really, really don't want to find out until delivery, but Isaac wants to know this time, so we're going with it! We don't have a promise of a 3rd child, but I'm not worried about that honestly. We find out boy or girl tomorrow! Although, because of God's promise, we would be really surprised if this little one wasn't a boy.
4) Morning sickness?
Oh, yes. It's pretty hit and miss at this point and my nausea definitely doesn't last through the whole day anymore. But the whole 2 month away from work? This was why!
5) Maternity leave?
Yes, yes, yes!! You probably already know the answer to this one because I have talked about it so many times on Instagram and on here. I'll be taking 12-16 weeks for sure. I haven't totally decided, but I'm excited to finalize those details. I've blocked off speaking & photo commitments through the end of May so I have some wiggle room. ;)
6) What made you wait to share!?
I don't know that anyone would ask this question, but I really wanted to share my heart. I had always planned to tell the whole world right from the beginning. Isaac was okay with whatever I wanted because... he's Isaac. :) I thought I would want to share right away, but as soon as I got pregnant with this little babe, I realized that I still had grief to work through about Victory. Once I worked through that, we had 3 threatened abortions with this little one. It's when you are miscarrying the baby and then for some miraculous reason, you don't. I'm so grateful for the life of this little one and everyone who prayed with us through those weeks.
Friend, thank you for sharing in our joy!
I'm so excited to be part of the real world again! The world where I'm not sick 100% of the time and I get to write again. I'm excited to blog, write to our email friends, and be consistent on insta again!
Thank you for celebrating with us, friend! I'm so grateful for how you all have prayed for us and with us. Last night I fell asleep to the kicks of our precious little babe and I couldn't help but tear up just a bit. I can't wait to share this pregnancy journey with you - oils, routines, and the becoming a momma of two little babes.