Chris and I were dating and as we discussed our future together, we came to an agreement. If we didn't have more children by the age of 32 then we were done. Several months later we were getting married and expecting Elizabeth at the ripe old ages of 26 and 27 years old.
My pregnancy with Elizabeth was not a smooth one. I had a gall bladder that had begun going out and as luck would have it, pregnancy often makes the gall bladder worse or causes it to go out all together. Lucky me, so I spent from mid-January until I gave birth living on the couch or in my bed. I did finally have a few months where the nausea subsided while Sarah was visiting, but it all came roaring back to life shortly after she left. Actually, I think it might be a miracle that I gained any weight while pregnant - between a bad gall bladder and nausea, I didn't eat a whole lot. We were at the hospital at least once ever two weeks because the gall bladder would flare up and the contractions would start up and I'd feel like I was dying. So I was not overly enthusiastic about the idea of getting pregnant at first.
However, as time went by we decided that Lizzie really needed a sibling who was closer to her age. Sarah was not living with us at the time and so when shortly after Elizabeth hit one year old, we began trying to have another baby. What we thought would be an easy process turned into a four year ordeal of negative pregnancy tests and lots of tears until we finally gave up.
When facing gastric bypass, they offer to tie your tubes for you. At first, I thought this was a good idea, I was 32 years old and we had said, if we didn't have any more children by that age, we would be done. But as the surgery drew closer, I realized I wasn't quite ready to kiss that dream goodbye. And now soon to be five years later, we have a beautiful Rebekah who is all smiles and sunshine and who can light up your day by snuggling you any time.
But after Beka was born we knew that this was it. Getting up ever couple of hours was taking a toll on us and rather insanely we both had opted to go to college full time while Chris worked full time AND we had a baby at home! I can't believe we survived that year. But we made it and around Christmas time Chris went and had that special surgery men have to stop them from having children and our fertility came to an end.
I still love to look at babies, and there is a small insane part of me that wishes for another baby. We enjoyed each pregnancy for it's own reasons - Chris loved talking to the girls while they swam safely around in my tummy. And after a smooth and with minimal hospital visits during my second pregnancy, I know I could do it again. However, common sense overrules me more often than my desire to have more children. I know that I have high blood pressure, I also know that while we could adopt, that three children is a good number and it works for us. We are getting close to one child leaving home and then our family size will go down to four while Sarah starts her own adult life. So while there is a small part of me that sees babies and smiles and thinks, "Gosh, I'd like another one of those." the other part of me smiles and says, "Thank goodness they aren't coming home with me". I love children, I also love giving them back.
So as I kiss my fertility goodbye it is with a little sadness but also with a bit of excitement for the future.
Have a good rest of the week.
Love in Christ,