Sunday, November 02, 2008

This Mother-to-Be's Heart

On Friday morning, I got to see amazingly vivid pictures of my son, who I will get to meet in only a few weeks. I got to see 4-D pictures of his sweet little face, and it was breathtaking to realize that this little boy is growing inside of me. Life is a miracle. I was looking in the face of a miracle.
I remember when I first learned I was pregnant. Or, I should say, I first learned of the possibility. My oncologist had ordered a ct scan, which I have about every six months (when I'm not pregnant...). My surgeon also wanted to see the ct scan, as we were wondering about the extent of an umbilical hernia that had developed and would need repair. The nurse from my surgeon's office called me and said that the hernia was not acute, but there did appear to be something in my uterus.

Having had cancer, I was scared. I realized it was possible that the "mass in my uterus" was, in fact, a pregnancy. But, I wanted to know for sure. My (soon to be ex) husband told me we didn't have money for a pregnancy test, as he headed out he door for whisky. It would be three days before I would be able to buy a test. It was three days of wondering, worry, and tension.

I took the test. It was positive. I immediately scheduled an ob-gyn appointment. At my appointment, I was given a few magazines, pamphlets, etc. I eagerly opened them to see exactly what was going on in my uterus, wanting to see this miracle of life and what it looked like. What did it look like at that time? Well....a mass, in my uterus. Tiny. Round. No arms or legs yet. A mass of cells and potential.

I remember seeing my very first ultrasound, which I had at 7 weeks. The doctor wanted to be sure my growing baby was healthy, in light of my health problems in the last year, and the fact that I had been taking pain management medication early on in my pregnancy. By this time, this mass of cells and potential had grown arms and legs, and had a heartbeat that I could see on the ultrasound. This baby was healthy. Miraculously, this baby was healthy.

As the pregnancy progressed, I eagerly awaited the 20th week, when I would get to see another ultrasound. Once again, I was amazed. I was told I was having a boy. For the briefest of moments, I felt somewhat disappointed. I had been hoping for a girl. My disappointment lasted about five seconds, and then I beheld the miracle growing inside of me. The picture I was looking at...this was my son! He had grown so much, and I could begin to imagine what he might look like when I was finally able to meet him. His nose was upturned like mine, and that made me smile. He already had a chubby little belly, and round little cheeks. I watched in amazement as he turned and squirmed and kicked during the ultrasound. Hearing his heartbeat was the most amazing experience I'd had up to that time.

Throughout all of this, I began to make adjustments in my life to prepare for single motherhood. I realized very quickly that, while I did not have a partner for my pregnancy, I was by no means alone. My friends and my family expressed nothing but the most sincere blessings for both me and my son. I knew he was not being born into the greatest of circumstances, but it became very clear, very quickly, that he was being born into a community in which he would be deeply loved and cared for. His arrival is greatly anticipated, and I am confident that he will never know a day without the loving guidance and acceptance of this community that is already so supportive and welcoming.

In 6-8 weeks (depending on who you ask), I will get to meet him, finally. I have been writing him letters for the last few months, telling him a bit about things that have happened along the way as I've waited for his arrival. Tough choices had to be made in order to keep him safe. I have experienced blessings beyond measure in all areas of my life as I've done all I can to prepare a peaceful and safe life for my son. I have had the prayer, encouragement, support, and financial blessings from friends and strangers alike. God has paved the way for my son and me to be protected and provided for, and this has come to us in ways that nearly everyone had told me would most likely never happen...yet, here we are.

I can't wait to meet my son, to hold him, to finally be able to kiss that face, those fingers, those toes, and to tell him the story of how God has truly done exceedingly and abundantly far above all I could ever ask or think, and our life together is a testimony to His goodness.

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