I should back up a bit though...
When Gavin was born, I was almost immediately mentally ready to have another baby. I loved every ounce of him even more than I ever thought I could. Everyone says that, and I think I had a pretty good idea of what it was like to love a child. I have nieces and nephews that I love almost as much as if they were my own children. But this WAS different. What I felt for this tiny person in my arms completely consumed me. My thoughts and my heart were brimming over with love for him. He took over my life and I haven't seen the old one since he was born. I was so smitten with the miracle of this thing called parenting and the miraculous baby that God blessed us with that I wanted to experience it all over again, just days after he was born. It must have been the adrenaline and hormones, because Cliff was very clear that he was not yet ready for another baby. We were pretty sure we wanted two kids... I actually wanted more. I used to want to have more kids than my Mom had, and she had 10 kids, so I thought I'd have at least 12. And then as I grew up I realized a little more what having that many kids might be like and I was more and more sure that I wasn't the right person to raise that many children. Since I came from a family of 10 kids and Cliff was an only child, my ideal family size was four kids and his was one, so we are happy to settle on two for now.
When Gavin was around 2 and a half, we decided that we were ready for another child. We knew that God had a plan for our family and at the same time, we wanted to feel ready and be secure in our life when baby # 2 came. We went on with our lives as a family of three, hoping that we'd be blessed with another baby soon! It took a little longer than we had initially anticipated, and we started to wonder if it was ever going to happen. After several months, we actually started "trying" by tracking my cycle and this too proved unsuccessful. We mentioned to our doctor that we'd been trying and that so far we hadn't been successful. She had two recommendations - one was to use an ovulation predictor and the other was to start taking a baby aspirin daily. She suggested we do those two things for two months and if we weren't pregnant in two months, she'd refer us to the OB at our clinic and we'd do some testing to see if we could pinpoint any reasons why we weren't successful in getting pregnant. We never got that far though, two months later, we were pregnant.
I almost couldn't believe it. Actually I really couldn't believe it. I have been in denial quite a bit over the last few months. When we went in for that very first ultrasound at just over 8 weeks of pregnancy, we were thrilled to see a real baby in there. Well, an lima-bean shaped critter that was identified as a baby by our doctor. She pointed out the baby's head and back and the yolk sac. At this point in the pregnancy, there isn't much to tell. We got a "yes, you're pregnant and there is only one baby in there." and that's about it! But it sure was exciting! and nerve-wracking! and exciting! and scary! and exciting!
We were so, so excited just to hear that there really was a baby in there and it wasn't just a faulty home pregancy test! I was tired, nauseated, had no appetite, and was basically just ishy feeling for almost two months, but by week 13, I was suddenly feeling better. I was still sleepy, but food sounded good again and I could actually brush my teeth without gagging! I'm now 18 weeks pregnant and I feel really, really good.
We have heard the baby's heart beat at our doctor appointments every four weeks. Every time I hear that wssshh-wssshh-wssshh-wssshh, I get butterflies in my stomach and my eyes get a bit teary.
My belly has started growing more significantly just in the last couple of weeks, so I'm starting to look more pregant and less like I've been eating too much ice cream. Although it's possible that I've been eating more than the recommended daily allowance of ice cream. Wait, ice cream is dairy... nope, I'm good! In fact, I should eat MORE ice cream!
(Gavin is "tickling the baby" in this picture!)
This is the first week that I can say without a doubt that I feel the baby moving. This is right about the same time in the pregancy that I first started really feeling Gavin move too. I feel like I have been less aware of those subtle early movements that feel more like butterflies (or gas as one friend refers to them) than I was with Gavin, but I think that's just because I have less quiet time to myself to just sit and notice what's happening in my belly. I did feel a few flutters in the last few weeks, but I couldn't be sure it was baby. I wondered if it was just digestion. Now, I'm sure it was baby. The little peanut has been moving around quite a bit in there this week. Seems like I went from worrying that I was still feeling no movement a week ago to feeling the baby roll around from the outside - not just internally! Cliff can even feel the baby kick and push if he waits long enough. Seems like it's each time I lay back and sit still for a bit, which of course is pretty much only at night when I crawl into bed! It's somehow so reassuring to feel that movement. It's like the baby is in there saying "Don't worry about me Mom, I'm here and doing just fine. Feel me?"
We'll have another doctor appointment in about a week and a half and will get to have another ultrasound then. This is the fun one where the baby actually looks like a baby, not a lima bean. We're thinking of having Gavin come along to this appointment so he can see the baby via the 3-D ultrasound too. He's pretty excited about the baby and asks about it several times a day.
We're all excited!