If the truth be told ... I am in complete disbelief that we are expecting a baby.
After all that we've been through, the fact that I am pregnant - without even trying, or realizing it for several days, seems impossible to me. And I'm not the only one.
When I called Charlie on October 27th to tell him that I was late, he was completely befuddled. "Late for what?" After I told him that I had a strange suspicion and I needed for him to pick up a pregnancy test, he challenged "Jen, that's impossible. We haven't even done anything."
To which I replied, "Oh yeah? What about your back?"
Since the time that I received a positive result on an expired test ... and the read-out "pregnant" result on the new fancy version test ... I have remained wary of my diagnosis. Of course, my apprehension that we will truly be growing by another two feet in less than a year, has not curbed my excitement and enthusiasm for telling anyone and everyone that we meet.
What I find to be humorous is the response that we receive when we inform people (mostly fellow passengers that we met during our recent travels or anyone who is standing near me in the grocery line) that we have another child on the way. Three years ago, we were about to attempt, and subsequently fail, at our second IVF cycle. I was at the lowest point of our infertility struggles, convinced that we would never become parents.
Three years later, we are the parents of two-year old triplets and I am spontaneously pregnant.
Never in a million years did I believe that this would ever happen.
When I tell people "It was a shock, definitely not something we had planned!" They will initially roll their eyes and give me a look like I am an irresponsible "breeder", a person who is popping out more children than they know what to do with - or could ever possibly care for.
Then, I'll tell them our story about ten years of marriage and monthly heartbreak.
On Thursday morning, the day after we returned from South Carolina, I had the first visit with my OB/GYN. Because I've been a patient at this practice for a long time - and have been their only triplet pregnancy in recent years - every single medical personnel in the doctor's office knew who I was and why I was there, the moment I walked in the door. They all gave me big smiles and asked how many beans I thought were in the oven this time. I told them that if it was any more than one ... they'd hear me screaming from the back.
The potential of four children in less than three years is crazy enough.
I was quickly ushered to an examination room where my doctor asked a series of questions and performed an ultrasound. While I lay on the table, I was voicing my doubt. "This can't be real. Really, there has to be a mistake. Perhaps it's early menopause?"
My doctor smiled and said "Doubtful. The high levels of HCG that you have are indicative of one thing ... and one thing only." Just then, I saw on the ultrasound monitor a little sack. Moments later, our baby came in to view. With it's little heartbeat flashing like a strobe light and a clearly visible head and limbs moving around, I incredulously asked if this was a video - or live footage.
Surely it couldn't be real.
When my doctor confirmed that this was live footage of the occupant within my uterus at that very moment in time ... I stuttered, "I don't understand. We weren't even trying. I didn't have a single shot of Gonal-F. I haven't done a single suppository of progesterone. I wasn't charting the dates or creating spreadsheets in Excel of my basal body temperature. For heaven's sake, I drank WINE up until the day I took my first pregnancy test. I honestly don't understand how this could have happened!"
My doctor sat up and with a very serious expression said "Well ... Jennifer .... when a boy and a girl fall in love..."
Yeah, yeah. He's a real funny guy.
Still, I'm in disbelief. But mostly, I'm in awe.
When you consider all the things that have to go "right" for conception to occur, it's mind-boggling. During the height of our struggles, I memorized Dr. Lennart Nilsson's book "A Child Is Born." I would study the pictures of the egg being released to the fallopian tube ... the sperm migrating to the egg and penetrating the zona pellucida.
Development of the heart, brain, lungs, kidneys, bones, limbs ... tiny fingers and tiny toes.
Umbilical cord, blood, amniotic fluid.
Hair and skin.
Labor, delivery, birth.
When I would read the text and look at all the pictures in Dr. Nilsson's book of conception and childbirth, it was difficult to get my mind around how life exists at all. There is no doubt ... life is nothing short of God's greatest miracle. There are so many things that have to happen, at the right time and under the right conditions.
I proudly present the first picture of our fourth miracle baby, due to arrive on July 4, 2007. Let Freedom Ring!
If the truth be told ... we couldn't be happier or feel more blessed.