Monday, July 20, 2009

Keeping the faith

Faith is believing in things when common sense tells you not to.


If life is a long distance road trip, I'm currently sailing through Nebraska (on my way to Las Vegas..ha ha)...ok, that might be a bit of a stretch...but at least you get the point. Don't get me wrong...we're playing by the "no news is good news" rule in our house. A boring pregnancy is the best kind to have, so I'll take it. But with that comes zero inspiration for my "adventures" to report. Do you really care that I actually made dinner tonight or that I'm directing all my obsessive tendencies towards Corbin's big kid room at the moment? Yeah I didn't think so....

I'm sure we can all agree that if you've read one of my pregnancy posts, you've read them all and this one won't be much different. I've craved everything from sweet tea (which I usually hate) to pepperoni and cheese on crackers (which I find quite random). I've done my fair share of yelling at Richard, Corbin, and the occasional four year old at the playground...even though I have no regrets for that last one...snotty lil' girl made Corbin cry after smacking him in the face for no apparent reason. I should have knocked her block off ;) All in all, I am pretty typical...pretty hormonal...and pretty ready to never be pregnant again..ha ha!!

So I recently asked our pediatrician if the chances of the next baby having the same tummy issues that Corbin had were high. His response was vague, of course. Basically just confirming what I already knew...that since it's genetic, probably in combination with the fact that he was early, that there is always a chance. Thanks...that was helpful...so with that, all the fun of our first year came flooding back. Only the next time around...I'll be screaming.."NO TOUCH" from the dark bathroom or be wearing a backpack complete with a Corbin as I circle our downstairs..bouncing and buzzing. Oh joy, why haven't I done this sooner ;) It seems like such a small issue now...one that left as soon as it came.. but I can't deny that it definitely felt like the end of the world at the time. Looking back on it..I actually feel lucky that it happened to us. I know, I know..it sounds ridiculous..but hear me out. I like who I am WAY more today than I did two years ago. As any Type A bloggy friend will agree, I needed to have my arms wrapped around every detail of my life to feel like I had some sort of say in how it all went down. To feel like I wasn't spiraling out of control. I learned the hard way. I spent every waking moment, well not every waking moment, but more time than I should have....researching what could be wrong with him. What foods I should avoid...what diseases he could have...what I was doing wrong. I was on an island...just me and Corbs...desperately searching for sticks to make my S.O.S sign. I felt like no one would explain to me why he was reacting this way...he fell into a grey area. No one understood. Everyone looked at us as a reason to be thankful for their own lives. I hate that! I hated my doctors for being so nonchalant about what was my life. The only doctor I liked turned out to be looking for his next big case and convinced us that Corbin had this lifelong illness, which only led to one of the worst days of my life. And at the end of it, I felt like I had just put my child through all of this for my own peace of mind. Was it all necessary? Was it worth it? In the end, the doctors were right and Corbin woke up one day..completely fine. Off the meds at 13 months and off the Neocate at 16 months. It seemed like an eternity, but it wasn't. With all that behind us, it is now clear that the best part of the whole situation was that I am a better mother for it. A more calm mother. A less controlling mother. Hopefully a less smothering mother. And above all, a happier mother.  

I'm hoping this lesson changes the way I deal with our next baby...I was convinced it was a girl...possibly because I thought if I said it out loud enough times (how Richard cannot produce "X" chromosomes) that somehow the universe would prove me wrong. Put me in my place. This idea seemed to hold true for the past 18 weeks. We went in to our first ultrasound at 8 weeks singing that same song to the OB..her response..."how many times have you tried?" ;) She's awesome! So we play the guessing game with her and according to her predicting method...she said girl. Something to do with the yolk sac (sorry sounds gross) touching the baby or not touching the baby. At the next appt, we heard the heartbeat. (So awesome) According to Dr. Morris...160 bpm equals girl. This had me convinced. It was in my head that it was a girl, but how in the hell is that possible?!?!? Richard's father produced 3 boys who have 4 boys between them. I was fully prepared to get peed on multiple times a day again. But it didn't seem like I was going to have to deal with it. So we picked out names... Jillian Greer or Hudson Pierce. Needless to say, my belly was called Jilly, sometimes Chilly Jilly, sometimes Jilly bean all the time. And one day it hit me. If this is a girl, I know that Karen (my good friend who passed in Feb) had something to do with it. There was no other way in my mind. I know it sounds romantic, but if you haven't figured it out yet....that would be me. I got pregnant less than a month after she passed away. This is what helped me sleep at night. I hung my hat on it. 

So last Thursday...I dressed Corbin in his "Big Brother" shirt and we headed to see the baby. I feel like you know way too much the second time around, so I really didn't care the gender. A girl would be nice since we have 3 boys between myself and my sister, but a boy would nice because I love watching Corbin and Emmett play together. So sweet! Corbin was all excited and on the way there we practiced what he was going to say to the baby..."hi". So we get there, they call my name, and she rubs that nasty jelly all over my belly....there it was....the face of our next  lil' one. Perfect...you could see every detail. Corbin immediately blurted out..."hi"! "Baby"...and finally the best of all..."COOL"! He loved it...even started singing "You are my sunshine" What a good big brother :) Unfortunately, the baby was lazy...which I am not going to cry about in about 20 weeks...so they couldn't see everything they needed to on the heart. It took forever and Richard kept saying...can you tell, can you tell? All of a sudden , she tried to move him and swept across his lap. There was no denying what this baby was....you guessed it...no "X"s coming from my husband....a sweet baby boy :) Here comes Hudson!! 

I had a dream the night before the ultrasound that we were having a boy. In my dream, I felt disappointed. I want to state very clearly that from the beginning, we really wanted another boy. Not only because we know how to deal with and love having a little boy, but also for Corbin's sake. Don't get me wrong, we would have been thrilled with a girl too, but I think I had connected having a girl with something it wasn't. An idea that I get proof that the people we love never leave us. A hope that a baby girl would be confirm what I really already know. But isn't that why they call it faith? Who do I think I am? And how unfair would it have been to Corbin and "Jilly". To have these unreasonable expectations. I found myself falling back into the same thinking I had when Corbin's belly hated us...that I could control it. I got to know things that aren't meant to be known. I realize that letting go of this way of thinking..of letting go of the need...of having faith in myself as a parent, our doctors, and in fate, itself...will always be a struggle for me. But isn't that what being a good parent is? Consciously letting go of your own needs and feelings to focus fully on what is best for your child. Everything will always work out the way it should...sometimes in my favor and sometimes not, but the only thing I can really control is my reaction. I can't always wait for the other shoe to drop because I feel so lucky to have certain people in my life, so lucky to have lived the experiences I have, and so excited for what is to come next. What will be will be. I can't change it. I have faith my life isn't my own to shape, faith in the idea that in the end it all works out, faith that Karen is still here. I don't want to know anything else. Don't need to know anything else. And if sweet Hudson comes out kicking and screaming like the last one...make sure someone sends me a backpack for the baby shower ;)

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