In case you didn’t notice, Jace’s shirt says, “Hello, my name is Big Brother.” That’s right, I’m about six weeks into a project that should take about nine months to complete. I’m so excited to know our little family is expanding. In some ways it feels unreal. I’ve been hoping to get pregnant since last February. So when I took the test and a few days later the only things happening in my body seemed pregnancy related, I excitedly made a shirt for Jace to wear announcing our big news. The timing was amazing—my mom was flying in from Maryland for Jace’s birthday and we were able to see Nolan’s parents on our way to pick her up at the airport. The shirt was simple—I just used a fabric pen to draw the name tag design on an iron on patch.
Part of why this pregnancy seems unreal is that I made another announcement shirt back in August. We were six months into being hopeful about pregnancy, so when I took the test I was so excited to make a shirt for Jace. I cut out the “Big Brother” from some blue fabric and then used my free motion foot to roughly stitch it down in red, yellow and dark blue thread. The “I’m going to be a” part was made from patch material and a fabric pen then ironed and sewed on.
Jace and I had a blast doing a photo shoot in a nearby field, and then after Nolan came home we Skyped with our parents to share the news. That evening, though, I started spotting. After three days it was confirmed that I was no longer pregnant. While the news of the miscarriage/chemical pregnancy was sad, it wasn’t devastating to me. Aside from the fact that the possibility of it not lasting was evident so early on, there was some apprehension connected to it. I had shingles just two weeks before I took the positive test. And, according to the doctor I saw at the time, shingles can cause some pretty major birth defects if a baby is exposed to it in the first trimester of pregnancy. So while I would have loved for that baby to have developed and grown in me, I also saw it as a blessing to not have to worry about whether or not the shingles had affected things.
I didn’t tell many people about the miscarriage because I honestly didn’t need sympathy. I was sad over the loss, but I already had one very healthy baby. Some of my friends had recently gone through miscarriages and scares in their pregnancies, so I knew the reality of not every pregnancy resulting in a little one in your arms. I did, however, enjoy some sewing therapy and Dressin’ Up Week was born.
As the next five months progressed, though, I did start getting discouraged about whether we would ever get pregnant again. It’s amazing how quickly we can build up stories in our minds. Maybe Jace was a miracle pregnancy and having more children just wouldn’t be an option for me… or maybe his birth was too traumatic for my body… or what if we can’t get pregnant again… or if we do get pregnant and it miscarries as well?
I’m going through Beth Moore’s “Mercy Triumphs” Bible study at church right now and have been loving this time of study for myself. A few weeks ago we were looking at James 1 and the trials we’re facing and she asked, “So what are you going to do with all you’re going through?” Not being pregnant was my trial. Beth’s challenge was to obey James 1:2 and consider it joy as I persevere through this trial. Doing this section of the study felt like the last step of a turning in my heart to truly let go of my desire to be pregnant and trust God’s timing. I was honestly able to tell Him that as much as I desire to have another baby and see our family grow, I could trust that if we were to have one naturally—He would cause the right timing. And if a baby joining our family through adoption was His will, that child would be provided for us.
As I shared this with the ladies at my table a week and a half ago, part of me was hopeful I was pregnant, while the other part of me knew I shouldn’t get my hopes up. This month would be like every other month—more money wasted on negative pregnancy tests. But that afternoon, I couldn’t resist. And when I saw the “Pregnant” on the screen, I almost couldn’t believe it. After all, I had made up my mind that I just couldn’t get pregnant. And as the next few days passed, I kept expecting the spotting. After all, I had made up my mind that I couldn’t stay pregnant.
But here I am, at just about six weeks, and things are looking good. I know that pregnancy can change at any moment, but for now I’m going to celebrate this little life growing in me. And hopefully I’ll be able to just keep on celebrating this little life for eight more months and then years and years and years after that.
And there you have my fertility story. I’ve found that all of us women have one—some more difficult and exhausting than others. But whether it’s a story of being overly fertile and having babies at times you wouldn’t have described as perfect, going through years of testing and hoping only to have a monthly disappointment, or carrying a child only to loose it after it enters the world, your story is important. I can’t wait to find out if we’re having a boy or girl (I’m hoping for girl!) and when we do, I will love finding a name that gives meaning to the journey of welcoming this baby into our family. (You can read about how we chose Jace’s name HERE.)
I will still continue doing my Top It Off posts on Thursdays as I’m able and everything else crafty or creative I can think of in between, and then I’ll be throwing some maternity and baby posts in there as we go! I’m figuring that if this pregnancy goes at all like it did with Jace, I have two more good weeks and then life will get nasty. But at least this time around I’m not working and know what to expect.
Thanks so much for letting me share my story with you!