My first pregnancy.
But I don't think I am a horrible person for it. My entire heart is full of love for my son now. But when he was first born, I did not know him. I mean, I had felt him kicking the last half of my pregnancy, but I didn't know him. I didn't really enjoy my pregnant days. Nothing really went wrong; my doctor said it was a textbook perfect pregnancy. No swollen ankles. No going to the bathroom every ten minutes. No gestational diabetes or high blood pressure. Really, I felt like everything was normal, except I was 50 pounds heavier.
Those extra 50 pounds made me so miserable, though.
I'm not sure we had really prayed hard about it. It wasn't something that we had slaved in prayer over and finally had been granted peace about not having any more children. It was more of a, is this an option? Could we look into this, maybe? The doctor said no, well, that was that.
The love that grew.
Every time I told him I loved him, it felt weird. I told him "I love you" every night when I put him in his crib. I knew the feelings would come, but for just then, I loved him with my head. I remember the night I told him I loved him and I felt it in my heart. He was about four months old. I laid him in his crib, and he was sleeping so softly. I rubbed his head, patted his back, whispered my love. His hand reached out and brushed mine. He grunted in his sleep, like he was saying "I love you" back. My heart squeezed a little, and I realized that this precious baby was all mine, a sweet part of me that was completely different. I did love him. I felt it deep down.
As he grew older, I only loved him more. Every day, every hour, my heart got bigger as my love expanded. He is six now, and I just can't imagine loving him any more.
Not another baby.
For the first couple years, I was fine with that. I was enjoying having a baby, and I loved him so much. When EJ was about 2 and a half, we looked into foster care. Because I knew that I wasn't really a baby person, we didn't want to adopt a baby. We moved shortly after finishing foster care classes, so we couldn't foster right away. After the move, life was not perfect. We had issues related to moving. We decided to wait until life got better before taking foster care classes again.
During the weeks we took foster care classes in NC, we discussed at length the age of the child we wanted to add to our family. In the end, we realized that any age God wanted to bless us with would be fine, but still I leaned heavily toward toddler or older. I just couldn't see myself with a baby!
A stepping stone named Faith.
For the past three years, I've been in the baby nursery once a month. After reading all about how I'm not a baby person, that might seem ironic. I didn't choose the baby nursery, but I serve happily. In the past three years, I have seen quite a few babies pass through the nursery gates. Every one of them was cute. But they were just babies.
Then this particular baby was born several months ago. Faith. From the first month she was in the nursery, I just loved her. Every month I look forward to nursery because I know Faith will be there. We cuddle. We talk. We play. For the first time since my own son, I love a baby. Like, with my heart, not just my head. Don't get me wrong; I love every baby in the nursery, but with my head.
I have no idea why Faith is different. She is no cuter than any other baby. She is no less of a baby than the others. But I love her so much! And I found out last month that her family is moving away this summer.
What!? I love this baby; why would God let her move away? As I wrote my 750 words the other day, I realized that she was a stepping stone in my life. It is not my place to love her with all my heart, because she is not my baby. But loving her has made me realize that I can love a baby that is not biologically mine. Faith's job in my life was to get me to that point. Her job is now done. She doesn't need to stay here anymore. God used her, and now He is moving her family because maybe another lady in another nursery needs her heart softened toward babies and God can use Faith again.
I still want EJ to have a sibling. I know he will be a good big brother, but I'm no longer freaked out by the possibility that that sibling might be a baby. We still have life issues to deal with, and I don't honestly know if those will be resolved before we're 50. EJ has 5 cousins with the 6th coming in November. I am more ready now than I was four years ago. I don't cry myself to sleep every night because of it, and I'm hoping we can expand our family before that happens. I just keep remembering that my aim right now is to be content, no matter how many children I have, but just because I'm content doesn't mean I can't bang on Heaven's doors.
This closing paragraph needs to be about the future, what I anticipate happening. The problem is, I don't know what that is. I pray that God gives us another kid, another baby even. I pray that He gives us a little girl (EJ told me today that he hopes for a boy, but in his words, "I guess a girl would be fine too" as he ran his fingers through my hair). I pray that He gives her to us soon. But I will accept His answer of "wait" right now. Because no matter what His final answer is, God used Faith to help me become a little more like Him. And isn't that the most important thing in life?