A pregnancy is nine months. But our wait for Baby Barton has been a little longer than that.
While trying to fall pregnant (which we kept private) I was asked by a friend whether I thought I was born to be a mother. My answer was unequivocally “No. No I don’t.”
I always presumed I would be someday. But I never thought that being a parent would be the one thing that defined who I am or brought purpose to my life. I believe that all my roles in life are important; wife, big sister, daughter, friend, they all help shape the woman I am and are becoming.
Around this same time I read an interview with Kate Ritchie in Who Magazine. She was expecting her first child and her words really summed up exactly how I felt then and still feel now.
“The gift of being able to carry a child is beautiful. It’s happened at the right time. Becoming a mother will be a wonderful bonus to who I already am.”
This may sound selfish to some. But, after experiencing the thought that I may not be able to have a baby, I would hate for any woman to feel that she is less worthy or valuable if she doesn’t have children. Whether that be by choice or a twist of fate from nature.
Our Journey to Conception
Starting a family was not something we ever saw as a ‘logical next step’ or ‘just what married people do’. For us it was always carefully considered.
Once we had made the decision we were so excited. We quickly started dreaming up ways we would tell our loved ones once we were pregnant, discussing our values and thoughts on the kind of parents we wanted to be. But as time went on the conversation died down. And, while I am absolutely aware that our story doesn’t compare in the slightest to some people’s struggles, it was still hard at times.
How can you mourn the loss of something you never had? Something that never even existed except in the quiet depths of your hopeful imagination. How can you want something so much but have so little control over whether or not you get it? How can your life feel so full yet so empty at the same time?
And so the roller coaster ride continues. The hopeful highs, the disappointing lows and the loops and twists in between. The “I think this is our month!” followed by the “I’ll give it one more shot and then I’m out!”
And amongst all of that the doubt starts to creep in. Is this even what I want? Or am I now just consumed with the goal?
Feeling like slapping every woman that says “oh and we weren’t even trying” whilst filling my Facebook newsfeed with bump shots.
And then we saw it. Two lines. Two lovely pink lines. And we are in a daze of happiness, relief and freak out all at the same time.
A Rocky Start
Heartbeat. A beautiful flicker on the screen confirms that this is real. You are real.
Heartbreak. Uncontrollable sobs as I discover there could be complications. We wait. A different kind of two week wait.
And then we see it again, that beautiful little flicker.
Here we go….
After 3 months of uncertainty it is finally feeling real. And we were delighted to spread the news. I heard your heartbeat yesterday and it was one of the sweetest sounds my ears have heard.
After a few weeks of wondering if this was actually happening, if you are really in there; it’s finally dawning on me that it is, you are.
Arrival is Immanent
And so now we are only weeks away from meeting our little one. The one that will take our twosome and make us a family of three.
I have loved being pregnant and am not quite ready for it to be over just yet so I am savouring every delicious moment of the coming weeks.
But as the arrival looms my thoughts turn to this new little human and the next chapter of our lives.
What will our baby look like? Will it be a boy or a girl? How and when will I go into labour? Will the hypnobirthing album I bought off iTunes be of any help at all? Will I be a good mum?
I am nervous I guess but mostly I just feel calm and ready.
I know that no matter what challenges come our way, we will face them together and delight in them.
Count it all joy.
So Baby Barton, thank you for choosing us to be your Mummy and Daddy. We look forward to seeing you soon.