parenting

The journey to baby #3!!

Since we announced Baby #3 was on the way this past July (arrival expected around New Years!!!), we have been asked so many questions regarding this pregnancy and whether it was an accident, planned or if we had to use fertility treatments again… I have answered these questions for so many people, I thought maybe it would be useful to write a blog post and share what this journey has consisted of!

When Ben and I first started talking about starting our family, we both agreed we wanted a big family 4-6 kids (I know, what a blessing right??) and that spacing them out by a few years would be ideal.  After several years of trying to conceive and suffering disappointment & heartache, we were finally blessed with our amazing twins (after a year of fertility testing/treatments, etc).  At that point we decided that should God choose to bless us with more children (without medical intervention), we would happily take them whenever he chose to send them our way. 

A couple weeks before the twins first birthday, Ben found out that he was going to be leaving in April for 6 months.  We didn’t want to wait to pursue future children after his trip was over so we went ahead and scheduled an appointment to see a fertility specialist in Nashville.  I went to the first appointment alone while he was out of the country in January and was told that the earliest we could get in for treatment was the middle of April.  When he got home, we talked and prayed about it and decided that God knew what he was doing and we knew that things would align for him to still be home at the middle of April. 

Many of you know that when Ben returned home he had a series of seizures that led to us finding out he had a massive cancerous brain tumor.  Even with surgery, the doctors were not very encouraging about the future.  Ben was told he would not be allowed to take the trip in April and again we prayed about whether to move forward with the scheduled treatments.  I have been questioned several times on the fact that Ben and I chose to go ahead with the treatments despite his diagnosis, even without any follow up scans to determine whether the tumor had returned.  It boils down to the fact that we had FAITH that he was going to be fine and despite our moments of weakness, there was absolutely no way we were going to allow this to halt our plans for a bigger family!  Our God is bigger than any cancer and we both knew that we were meant to have more children together!

We started our treatment cycle at the end of March and even before our “two week wait” was up, we knew we were expecting.  I happily went into the doctor’s office for the official confirmation.  Anyone who has had trouble conceiving or who has gone through fertility treatments knows that for the first few weeks it is a numbers game.  They have you come back several times to confirm that your numbers are rising appropriately and eventually allow you to see that first heartbeat on ultrasound.  My numbers rose the first two visits, but after the third visit, they dropped dramatically.  The nurses who called told me to prepare for a miscarriage, but that they would check my numbers again in a week.  Ben and I prayed unceasingly for the following week… and I truly believe it was his FAITH that caused those numbers to continue going up. After the following appointment the nurses told me that they thought the drop in numbers was due to what could have been another multiple pregnancy, but that everything seemed to look good now and they scheduled us for our first ultrasound! 

The first ultrasound showed a strong heartbeat and so did the following several.  The specialist we saw in Nashville wanted to keep me on the hormone supplements through the first trimester in order to make sure everything was off to the best start and at 12 weeks they scheduled me to see a perinatologist for some further testing because of how the pregnancy started and our previous history (preterm labor, pre-eclampsia, etc).  It was at this appointment that the specialist told me we would be having another little girl.  I was not convinced that she could possibly be accurate at 12 weeks, so when we announced we were expecting the following week, we refrained from sharing that part of our news :-).

We were also excited to share the news of this pregnancy with both of our parents in person this time around.  We traveled through Ohio on the way to spend the 4th of July in Maine with my family and told Ben’s parents and then mine!  After contacting all our brothers and sisters (we have a lot you know)… we let our news seep out into the FB world!

Since then it has pretty much been “smooth sailing” as far as pregnancy goes.  There have been no complications to date & several subsequent ultrasounds have confirmed that we are indeed having a girl!  We are currently 33 weeks along and unlike last pregnancy I haven’t spent the last seven weeks on bedrest!  We are looking forward to meeting this sweet baby girl in about 7 weeks!

Some other questions I have been asked but haven’t answered above:
**What would you have done if it was multiples again?  We would have rejoiced!! Ben and I both prayed for a healthy pregnancy, the opportunity for a natural childbirth experience, and no need to supplement with formula this time around.  God saw fit to give us 1 child this time around; maybe we will get more next time 😉

**Do you plan to have more children?  YES, Definitely… whether by birth or adoption, we definitely plan to have more.  We both believe that God has called us to have a houseful! 

**Would you do further fertility treatments?  Yes, if necessary.  God has provided the funds for the previous treatments and while we hope and pray that further treatments won’t be necessary, we are willing to go through this process again if necessary!

God has been so FAITHFUL this year and Ben and I have been tremendously blessed by the outpouring of love, support and prayers that we have received from all of our friends and family!  Thank you so much & we look forward to introducing you to our next addition!!

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