Saturday, January 2, 2010

In Case You Were Wondering

We are still here. . . just now slowing down and catching up on many things. Since the laundry is caught up, the Christmas stuff is (almost) put away and our family newsletter is now sent, I thought it only right that I post a little something to the blog to assure anyone who may still read it that I do not intend to abandon updates quite as badly as I have these past few months.

Not sure of a creative way to say this, so I'm just going to post it without fanfare: we are expecting baby number four in July! I'm finishing the 12th week and hoping, hoping, hoping that things will start looking up soon. (They already are: Case has been home with us all week and it has been fabulous to both take it easy and get things done around here.)

There are many things I could/should post, but I'm losing creativity and thought I'd just stick to the subject at hand, so here's a little recap of our pregnancy discovery.

In October, when I began my first Bradley series, "busy" described our life, and I started to think that I'd need to check the calendar soon, so I could be prepared for my usual reminder of God's providence. One day, supposing I was indeed "overdue," I actually had this thought as I was near the calendar, and took a gander. . .

Casey was discussing business matters with a friend up in an ABQ restaurant. They invited the girls and me to join them and have dinner, and I took them up on it, pausing long enough to toss a pregnancy test in my purse.

Case's friend left fairly soon after our arrival, and we settled in for a pancake dinner. I mentioned casually that I was on day 39 of my 28-day cycle (which we both were aware never happens unless I'm prego), and that this could mean a couple things, but it probably meant the most obvious thing. Doubtingly, he asked what else it could mean, and I told him that since Haley had upped her nursings from about one a day to 3 or 4, she could have suppressed ovulation, but that wouldn't explain my exhaustion and nausea quite as well as the other reason would.

I then told him of the P.T. in my purse, and he laughed and asked if I brought it because he'd be less likely to freak out in a public place. No, but that is a good thought. . . Actually, I had brought it because I have distinct memories of each time we've discovered we were pregnant, and thought that this would also make a distinct memory.

So, as Casey took the girls to the car to get them buckled in, I took a pregnancy test which immediately showed what we already "knew."

It was a little strange, since neither Case or I felt as if we could handle something that, by now, we were well aware meant a ton of resources that we do not have (I'm speaking in the character and stamina sense, not a physical need sense), but there were no tears on my part or freaking out on Casey's; it was just some information that had to sink in for awhile--a long while. We accepted it and wondered how God would see us through. We really wondered.

Not as though we doubted God in a cognitive way, but it was a process (still ongoing) of knowing in our hearts what we readily acknowledge in our heads--that God is good and gracious, and that He gives the grace to handle what else He gives. I couldn't quite figure out what it was that I doubted, but it was probably God's goodness and His wisdom. Especially the latter. "Really?! But You've seen what kind of a mom I am with the other three You gave me. . . I'm not faithful or glorifying to You in that. . . and I feel overwhelmed almost daily with the demands of life as it is. . . Really?!?" was the conversation that went on inside me without my knowledge.

But it wasn't until Casey was out of town (at about 9 weeks) and I had several evenings to myself and my thoughts that I cried about it. It had finally hit me that I absolutely could not do this. I cried many times in those few evenings, and it was good to hash out my feelings and thoughts on the matter and ask God to give me some perspective. I reminded myself that I felt physically terrible, and that always affects how I assess situations and how I feel emotionally. Of course I was overwhelmed: that's how the first trimester is: my midwife with Ruby called it the "What have we done?!?" phase of pregnancy. And yes, I am not exactly a fun or energetic mom or a great "help-meet" right now, but this too, shall pass. And no, I am not, nor will I ever be the mom I should be to my sweet blessings--no matter if I were to have one or 10 of them. But God is gracious, and part of His grace is pinning me to Him, where I can see very clearly that He is my only strength.

So, though this has been and continues to be a difficult process in several ways, I can see God's goodness in drawing me closer to Himself through the difficulty. I have certainly not arrived in trusting God--I write the above as a reminder to myself.

It is strange to write all this, since of course I want to be giddy and gleeful about such a wonderful miracle from God, but it's important to be real, too. Casey and I acknowledge this baby as a blessing, and though they are not there yet, our feelings will follow. And I think in some ways, it would be irresponsible and short-sighted of us to "just be happy" about it, because we know very well what another little one means. It is part of taking our job as parents seriously to look at all the aspects of what it means to be pregnant again. It is not just "having another baby" (if it were, we'd be in better shape, since I enjoy giving birth so much). It is loving and raising and training a person for a couple decades, and if that weren't enough, it is teaching them God's Word, pointing them to Christ at every opportunity and leading by example and. . . well, that's where it gets to feel overwhelming.

Practically speaking, we've just started to announce to the general public, as we've done in the past around 12 weeks. There are so many things we like about waiting to announce. Maybe I'll post about it sometime. But this time especially, it has been great for Case and I to have our little secret for awhile before sharing it.


cowartclan said...

We can't wait to meet HIM!!! ;)

Wells Family said...

Congratulations!May the Lord bless you all,including, of course,baby Cowart:)

ann said...

Congratulations, Sarah!! I always think a new baby is so fun and exciting when it is someone else that has to carry that baby. Thanks for your honesty about your fears and struggles. I'm glad you're through your first trimester. Now you should get a nice little break before the last trimester gets here. I will look forward to hearing how things are going when you have any time or energy to post.

One major question when I think about a fourth: How will homeschool work with your exhaustion and then when the new baby gets here? Any thoughts?