As of late, I've been wishing for some way to understand just how science and nature, or spirit, work together, or not. What's causing all the philosophical rumination? A baby, of course!
We can finally announce here on the blog that our family of three is expecting another baby in mid-August. It feels good to be able to write about it. It is, after all, a big part of what's happening in our lives, and it's been noticeably absent from this record for the last thirteen weeks.
We shared the news with Anna this weekend, which was, for us, so very exciting and special. I'd prepared myself for some very tough questions, but I think those will be coming later. Throughout the day, after we told her, we could literally see questions forming on her face. They were all about the baby, though. She was so focused on having a REAL baby in the house, one that can REALLY have his or her diaper changed, one that will cry, eat, sleep, poop, and drink milk. She is so excited to be a big sister. We are so excited for her. Of course, we're excited for us, too.
As far as the pregnancy goes, I've been so fortunate NOT to have morning sickness. I have been extremely and typically exhausted, moreso than last time. I've also been having more cravings than I did with Anna...pickles (cliche, I know), mustard, carbs carbs carbs, ice cream, chocolate please. Forget the veggies I usually love.
This pregnancy has it's own challenges, though. I feel like this one's been all about statistics...three percent, four percent, five percent. Our baby has a three percent chance of developing heart block due to an antibody I have in my blood. We have already made agonizing decisions about treatment if this were to develop, decisions which, to me, seem out the realm of any parents decision-making ability. Due to my "advanced maternal age," or as I like to call it, the geriatric pregnancy, we were offered a First Trimester Screening to assess our baby's risk chromosomal abnormalities. This revealed the baby has a four percent chance of having Down's Syndrome. And, after two days of spotting this week, we were told we still have a five percent chance of having a miscarriage. While the odds seem to be in our favor, the risks for heart block and DS are much higher than in the average population. And as our high-risk doctor pointed out, the only numbers that make a parent feel any relief are 0 percent and 100 percent. Needless to say, Blake and I have struggled to find peace and calm these last few weeks.
A conversation with a dear friend this weekend helped me to remember some things, things that we can easily lose sight of in our medicalized society: 1) While there is so much we know about pregnancy and keeping mom and baby healthy, there's a lot that cannot be explained. It is, after all, a miraculous process unfolding inside; 2) We have very little control. We can do a lot to ensure a healthy pregnancy, but there are some things we can do absolutely nothing about. What will be, will be; 3) Trust the process. Trust that we will be able to handle whatever comes. I've been reminding myself to trust myself, too.
I'm hopeful that the next six months will be full of anticipation, joy, nesting, and peace. The time has already been passing quickly. August will be here soon. For now, I'm asking myself, "How do I want to use my energy?" This is my mantra for this pregnancy.