Recently I attended a “female sterilization” class at my doctor’s office. While the plan is for me to deliver our baby vaginally, in the event that I have to have a cesarean, immediately after having my baby I will be “sterilized.”
At 19 going on 20 pregnancy was tough. I was attending school full time, working part time and in an unhealthy relationship. I was sick all the time and spent many lunch breaks in tears on the phone with my mom worried about how I was going to survive pregnancy. After having a very scary delivery, which resulted in my daughter, I was so thankful but at the same time certain that pregnancy was not for me.
Years later I found myself hovering over the bathroom sink my eyes fixated on what appeared to be two pink lines. Two. I was pregnant. And while my husband and I had both suffered from bouts of baby fever, we had managed to make the decision that things were just fine the way they were and that we would enjoy life with our “one and only.”
This time around despite being married to a loving supportive man and perhaps me being a little wiser, too. I still call my mother asking her how I’m going to make it. Carrying our littlest has been so hard on my body and while each day I thank God that she is well and that we’ve made it this far, a part of me can’t wait to have my body back and my baby girl in my arms.
During the course of this pregnancy, my husband and I made the decision that for us this little one will be the last baby I birth. It was a decision that I didn’t take lightly as for my husband having just met me when my daughter (now and forever our daughter) was one, this was his first time experiencing the wonders of pregnancy (I’m convinced I’ve traumatized him!). Plus there was another little girl in my belly and while the idea of a second round of tutus made me want to do a happy dance, for a while I wondered if he felt like he was missing out because he wasn’t having a son.
Turns out he was happy just to know that we were being blessed to have a baby and therefore eager and ready to receive our gift in the form of whatever God saw fit– in our case, a little lady. So we are counting all two of our blessings. Everyone says we should try for a boy but 1) There are no guarantees in life and 2) I don’t think he or I could make it through a subsequent pregnancy.
The questions they asked during the sterilization class were real. If you were to lose your child, would you want to have one? Is your marriage stable and do you have any doubts? Fortunately, these are things that the two of us had already given a lot thought. Not long ago I had emergency surgery to remove an ovarian cyst. It was explained that depending on how bad things were, the doctor might not be able to save my ovary. I’d still have one but there was also the possibility of subsequent cysts. I struggled with that greatly and cried for days when I misunderstood and thought that one of my ovaries was gone. Sure, they said a woman could get pregnant with just one ovary, but what if for some reason I couldn’t?
For me there was a difference between not choosing to have children and not being able to. My husband and I realize that you can never truly know what life will hold and that a decision for one of us to be “sterilized” is a forever decision. We are fairly young, me in my late twenties and he in his early thirties, and are no strangers to regret. We know there are other non-permanent options, but for us this is right.
I’m thankful that my body has allowed me to carry two precious angels and am praying that in a matter of weeks (maybe even days!), I get to come face-to-face and breath-to-breath with the one I currently carry inside of me. So what’s next? My husband is attending a class on male sterilization and we prepare ourselves for the wave of comments we will receive from loved ones as we continue to declare that for us, two is the magic number. The funny thing, is once you are pregnant or deliver a baby, people can’t stop asking when the next one is coming.
The saying is the third time is a charm. We aren’t closed off to the idea of our family growing down the road and have always shared a dream of adopting so you never know, perhaps we will one day get to add some testosterone to the mix. But just in case we don’t, that’s okay, too. We aren’t just content we are overjoyed and thankful for our family, a family we believe was placed together as a part of God’s perfect plan.
Currently on our agenda – to stay focused on enjoying the gifts we have already been given. The decision to be sterilized may not be right for everyone but it’s all ours and just right for us and our family of four consisting of three lovely ladies (five if you count our pup Stella) and one handsome gentleman.
And so we wait for what I lovingly refer to as my grand finale! Estimated arrival date of our Littlest Miss – 8.29.12! We’re almost there!!
Featured image by roxeteer on Flickr