My Husband and I recently announced our second pregnancy. You can read more about our first daughter here, but long story short, she died two days after birth. It has taken us twenty (20) months to get pregnant again and we are over the moon. So too, it would seem, is everyone who hears our happy news! It has been a struggle since losing Rita and there were many days where getting out of bed was an accomplishment.
From the moment I saw the two lines on the test (more in that in a moment) I’ve felt as though the sun has come out again. Joy has returned to my life. A close friend of mine spent 6+ years dealing with secondary infertility after the birth of her daughter and is now due in April. Back in August when she found out she was expecting she informed me that she was offering up her joy for me. That has really stuck with me and it has given me strength on dark days. I’ve been trying to do the same for others now that my joy has returned.
A few months after Rita came and left us so quickly, I began to wonder why my cycles hadn’t returned. I went to a Creighton Instructor and learned the nitty gritty of that particular charting method. I was always aware of my cycles but my husband and I are of the belief that unless we have a very grave, life shattering reason to abstain, we will be open to life so I never charted. Besides, you could’ve set a clock by my 30.5 day cycle. Seriously!
As such, it became more and more of a concern as six, ten, fourteen months passed with no cycle and no help from the Creighton Instructor beyond: “You’re stressed.” In cooperation with my family doctor (I was so sad to leave her behind when we moved across country!) we realized that as I’d believed all along: I was not under too much stress, I was on too much thyroid medicine. I came off the medicine for a month and at that point (when the shakes and heart palpitations had all but disappeared) I started taking half the dose I’d been on previously.
Within two weeks my cycle had returned but the first few were anovulatory. I was using both the Creighton model and a Clear Blue Fertility Monitor and soon things seemed to become regular. Of course, that happened just as my husband left for a four-month long Air National Guard School way down in Mississippi. Life continued on. I was working full-time and we were saving all our pennies to be able to pay of his student loans, as he had just finished grad school before heading to MS. He came home, got a job in Massachusetts and we headed east.
I started a new cycle just days before we moved. (Fun times eh?) A little over a month later, I was in a MOOD! My husband finally asked if it was PMS that was causing me to be *Oh-so-nice* to him. I snapped out a maybe which got his attention…
“What do you mean ‘maybe?’ When are you due?”
“ Could’ve been last Friday, might not be for another week I don’t know!”
“Are you going to take a pregnancy test?”
“NO! I’m not pregnant! I’m sure I didn’t ovulate last month! All signs point to crazy!”
*End of discussion – lights out – I went to bed*
The next afternoon, I found out from a wonderful friend that she had organized several ladies to say a 54-day Rosary Novena for me to conceive. As I read the little email from her a voice in the back of my head – you may have heard from Him at various points in your life – whispered that I should take a pregnancy test. My first thought was “Yeah, Right!” (That’s the only double positive that makes a negative!) And then I heard the whisper again. “Take a pregnancy test.”
So I trotted myself upstairs and decided that since I was pretty sure that this too would be a negative result I was going to use one of the internet cheapies I’d been going through like candy the past few months. I wasn’t going to waste the last expensive brand name one from the package I’d bought the month before. So I did my duty and dunked the little stick. The positive line showed up right away but no control line…great…a dud! So I decide to whip out the big guns and grab the Brand name test. By the time I’d dunked it and counted to fifteen the control line had shown up on the original test. Not a dud. Positive! Within seconds the Brand name test showed the same result. Positive!
I still don’t know why it took so long and I won’t know until the day I face my Maker. I do know that it is much easier to trust that rain is good when you are standing under a rainbow.
I hope to hold on to this joy.
The joy of those in our life who’ve heard has been, at times, tangible. More than one person has said that they could not be happier if it were they who were pregnant or their grandchild on the way. It is my hope that the people who are so happy for us now will remember that joy years from now when, God willing, we announce a fourth, fifth or sixth pregnancy. It is my hope, but I’m not holding my breath! I have always believed that a baby is a blessing no matter the circumstance surrounding their birth, but I see that in such a clearer light now. My prayer now is that all eyes be opened to the truth of that statement. Babies are a blessing, no matter the circumstances surrounding their birth.
Hannah is a cradle Catholic who happens to be most at home in the kitchen. She’s been married three years, but has only just started her job as a stay-at-home-wife and is investing her time in learning to sew and improving her housekeeping skills. She is the mother of two, Rita in Heaven and Edmund on Earth. She’s also an import to the States – originally from Canada – and she doesn’t miss the snow.