“I took a pregnancy test and it came out positive, but it’s really faint.”
“Wait until I get home.”
I wouldn’t be able to see my doctor for a few days, so we waited. At this point in our relationship, we had experienced three miscarriages. We wanted to be excited and hopeful, but we knew how our story usually ended.
The day after I took that first pregnancy, I had a women’s ministry outreach event at my church. We had to be up at the break of dawn and I was all smiles. I was busting to tell these ladies what may be happening in my body, but I didn’t. I know for a fact that those women would have placed their hands on my tummy and prayed for this little one with all of their faith. I was still nervous that they would pray and they would be left unanswered. So, I stayed quiet.
On the way home after that I event, I opened up Spotify and his shuffle on my favorite playlist. The song that came on was by We Are The Messengers.
“I’ve been trying to make sense
of the sorrow that I feel
Holding on for life to the
only thing that’s real”
That song became our song. On the way to appointments and any time I sat in my car crying, I played that song. I sang that song. I sang to her.
During the first few doctors appointments, everything was a blur.
I had a cyst. The cyst needed to disappear.
I had placenta previa. The placenta needed to correct itself.
The placenta caused her to have an intrauterine growth restriction. The stress tests began.
At 37 weeks we knew we were going to induce. The horror stories surrounding inductions were shared by one and all. I was somehow ready to face it, with an epidural if necessary, of course. But, then things changed.
At my final appointment before my induction, the doctor left me with the “Welcome to Holland” story. She walked out of the room and then came back, which was completely unlike her.
“We’re going to go ahead and get you admitted tonight.”
What? I was ready for tomorrow morning. I needed one more night of relaxing. I did not plan for this. I mean I planned, but mentally I was ready for tomorrow. Not tonight.
I called my parents as soon as we headed home. I called my best friend. I texted my mentor since I knew she would be at church.
It was go-time and it was all happening too fast.
That night was terribly boring. No fun details, I promise. Well, my mentor showed up to the hospital before us and she prayed, and all was calm.
The next day…that’s where it gets fun.
I always thought that I was strong enough for a completely natural, non-medicated birth. Even with pitocin I thought I was strong enough to handle it. My pain tolerance is fairly high and my yearning to be a mom was even greater, so I could do this.
Well, I thought all of that until the pitocin kicked in and they broke my water.
It was at 3 p.m. on June 22, 2017 that I asked for the epidural. It was at 5 p.m. that I was told an epidural was out of the question because of a neurological condition that cursed me (that sounds pretty dramatic, huh?). So, at 5:01 p.m. I thought back to all of the yoga breathing and stretching that I firmly believed would get me through this labor and delivery.
It did. And, so did bouncing on a ball. And, calling out to God to make the contraction end a bit more quickly. And, telling my husband and the adorable nurse to back off because they were idiots. And, trying to affirm to everyone that I wanted to go home and this was the time to go home. And, the idea that soon I would be a mommy.
At 2:19 a.m. on June 23, 2017, Aria Beth Ariñez graced us with her presence. She had dark brown hair and brilliant blue eyes (that are even lighter now). She had all ten toes and a belly button. She had a tiny nose and beautiful plump lips. She had the most gorgeous cheeks and smallest hands. She was perfect.
On June 23, 2017 I became a mommy. On June 23, I held my heart in my arms.