Friday, August 12, 2011

Grow Your Family: Our Unplanned Plan

Hi. I’m Sarah. Otherwise known as, Leah’s sister.

On the first day of my freshman year in college, I met the man who would one day become my husband.

Yeah…we were one of those rare couples who made it all the way through.

And three weeks after I graduated, we were married.

About two years after that we decided we wanted a baby. So we tried. And tried. And tried.

For about a year and a half.

No luck.

I had test after test. Until the next step was to get him tested. Of course, the price for that was a little higher than what we expected and we decided we weren’t quite ready to spend that kind of money. It was at that point that we decided to give up for a while. I had just gotten a really good job, we’d bought a new house. We were just going to live it up for a while. Do some travelling. You know, enjoy life.

But of course, I was pregnant by the time our first trip rolled around and I didn’t even know it.

So much for giving up.

We welcomed our son, Elijah, in September 2007.

I remember watching him breathe for close to 48 hours straight until I finally collapsed with exhaustion.

We knew we wanted kids close together so when Eli was 9 months old and we learned that I was pregnant with #2, we were ecstatic.

Morgan, our baby girl, was born on April 2, 2009.

We were the picture perfect Christmas card family. Little boy, little girl. Done.

Close up shop. We were pretty darn happy with life.

Secretly, though, I was pretty overwhelmed. 2 Kids under 2 will do that to you.

But on top of that, we were living our lives around my husband’s rotating shift work, which meant I was a single parent – A LOT.

And our finances were shot - we were paying through the nose for day care.

We were broke.

December rolled around. I had a two year old and an 8 month old. Working full time. And we were ridiculously busy. My plate was FULL!

About three days after Christmas, I mentioned to my husband that I was late. Like 5 days late.

You should know, I’m never late.

Like never.

And bless his heart, he freaked out.

But that night, we stopped at CVS and bought a pregnancy test.

I knew that couldn’t be pregnant because neither of us could remember… I’m not sure we had even slept in the same bed since before Thanksgiving. There was NO SCIENTIFIC WAY I could be pregnant.

I took the test in the bathroom of a Taco Bell across the street.  Class-Y!

You know how the test says to wait like 5 minutes? No need here. I had barely unwrapped the test when I saw the plus sign staring at me:

I was pregnant. That was not possible. I mean, I know how it happens, but I didn’t know how it happened.

And then the crying began. Hysterical crying. Worse than my first break up in high school crying.

As I climbed back into our tiny – fits us 4, no more – car I shoved the test at my husband. Who stared at it blankly and said, “What does that mean?”

I tried to be calm, but seriously, how could he not understand what a plus sign meant?

“I’m Pregnant!” I growled.

I’m ashamed to say it, but my instinctive thought was “This will ruin everything!”

My husband tried to be rational, though, reminding me that obviously God wanted this baby here for a specific reason. That it would be fine…no matter what.

But I was pretty inconsolable.

I cried the entire trip home. Then, I got in my car and drove to my mom’s.

When I walked through their front door, I was sobbing.

I was so…just…angry….

I kept thinking of all the friends & family who were desperate for children.

When I already had a baby. 2 of them.

And I had no idea how I was going to handle a 3rd one.

And instinctually, I knew nothing was going to happen to this baby. She wasn’t supposed to be here in the first place. God had His hand on this baby for a reason.

Eventually, the shock wore off. I accepted the fact that we were having another baby. We picked out names. But I’m not sure I ever really got excited over her.

Unsurprisingly, the pregnancy was completely complication free.

The doctors even decided to induce me early in order to attempt to prevent a really big baby. (She was already measuring around 9 – 10 pounds.)

And the night before, I was scheduled for induction, I kissed everyone goodnight and drove myself to the hospital.

(This is just how you work it the 3rd time around…)

My husband was going to take care of the other 2 and meet me at the hospital around 8 a.m.

When he arrived, we were all settled in with everything going smoothly when my nurse noticed that the baby didn’t have a heartbeat during any of my contractions.

She quickly diagnosed a prolapsed cord, and I was rushed to the operating room for an emergency c-section before any of us had time to even sneeze.

Hannah Grace was born by 10:00 a.m.

My husband wasn’t even allowed in the room.

After her birth, the doctor informed us that the prolapsed cord was actually what saved her life.

Prolapsed cords are rare…extremely rare. Our doctor had only seen 2 in 10 years.

But because of the prolapse, we were rushed for the emergency c-section completely unaware of the fact that the cord was not only wrapped around Hannah’s neck, but tied in a knot.

A natural birth would have likely taken my baby girl.

It was in those moments, that I realized how very special this little girl was.

Not only was she the “impossible” baby, but she already had God’s personal protecting hand on her.

And clearly, He would be working out the details.

I’ve never questioned it since.

The day after Hannah was born, I got a raise.

A year to the day after I found out I was pregnant with Hannah, we paid off all our debt.

We’re getting ready to celebrate her first birthday. And I don’t even want to imagine life without her.

I’ve learned that God gives us our children, in all kinds of ways, for a very specific purpose. We may not know exactly what that is, but I’m going to do my best to make sure they fulfill it.

People ask if we’re done having kids. We always say, “Yes!”

But clearly that decision isn’t ours to make.

Because we thought we were done after the 2nd one!

*Sarah is a tax accountant and mom of 3 who blogs over at Debt Dumpers Anonymous where you can keep up with her crazy battle between love of shoes versus the necessities of life, not to mention the occasional tax tip.  Check her out today!


tasmiley said...

wow....what a roller coaster ride!! must admit i laughed out loud when i read she took her test @ a taco bell!!! hahaha!!
& i understand goin to the hospital alone...its just what you do...even with 2!!
congrats!! :)

Sarah said...

Leah! It sounds so much better over here than on a Word document! Thanks!

Bumber's Bumblings said...

Beautiful, I cried! What a precious story of God's perfect plan!