Monday, December 30, 2013

2013 In Review: Surprise, Surprise

Today at the grocery store, the youngish guy who was checking out my groceries casually asked, "So are you ready for the New Year?"  My response was a slow, calm, "sure....?"  I am a person who likes to really reflect and prepare for transitions.  2013 has given me no chance for that.

I began this blog one year ago.  In the beginning, it was titled "Life Less Ordinary", in reference to a song I love by the band Carbon Leaf.  I wrote a little about our desire to live a life that was extraordinary in a mundane world.  And then this year happened...suffice it to say, I changed the title because I am actually ready for a little LESS excitement!!!

One thing I've come to realize about myself is that I both love and hate surprises.  I am generally a planner.  I don't like things sprung on me last minute.  However, if someone has a gift or a fun activity planned, it is all the more sweet when it is given as a surprise to me.  But since I am a planner (read: control freak), I am all that much harder to give even pleasant surprises to.

So after all our struggles with Mr. Boo, I said over and over that we wouldn't have any more children.  In 2012, I ate my words when I was made aware of my husband's deep desire for more kids.  I prayed it through and felt a peace about trusting God and moving forward.  We tried and tried to get pregnant. It just wasn't happening. At the end of 2012, we decided we'd give it one more month.  As January of 2013 hit, we were waiting to see if our last try worked.
The boys at the end of 2012

A few weeks in, the thing that happens to tell you that you aren't pregnant began to happen to me.  I broke the news to my hubby. That day, we sent an email to our adoption agency and inquired about beginning the process to adopt. We were a little sad, but both sort of ok with finally closing that door.

But a few days later, that *thing* wasn't really continuing.  I decided to take a pregnancy test just in case (I had several, why not waste one?).  I sneaked into the bathroom while my husband was getting ready for work, and took it to the other bathroom to take it.  I went to my bedroom to wait, with the test in hand.  I sat down alone on my bed, and glanced at the test.  Two lines.  TWO LINES.  Two lines means yes, I'm pregnant, right? I looked at it a hundred times and then I started laughing. Out loud.  Not just chuckling to myself- actually belly laughing.

God found a way to give me a good surprise.  Me, with my charts and dates and times and plans. I was reminded of Sarah in the Bible, laughing about getting pregnant with Isaac. I was tickled pink that God had not only blessed me with a baby, but had surprised me in the process.

So we made plans to announce our new addition, and we took this picture.  We delivered it to family and friends.
photos by the lovely and talented Dansare Marks

But then, the very next week, I had signs I was losing the pregnancy.  I had to wait one whole night to go to the doctor, by which time I was convinced I wasn't going to have a baby anymore.  My husband and Boo came too, and we went in for the sonogram. I was wondering why God would go to the trouble to give me this awesome surprise only for it not to work out.  But I was also resigned to whatever was supposed to happen.  I felt in my heart that there would not be a heartbeat on the screen when I got in there.

The technician put the sonogram thing on my belly and I was right.  There wasn't *A* heartbeat.  There were two.

I saw it right away. Two black circles.  Two embryonic sacs.  I shot a look up to the tech and she read my mind and confirmed it. "Yes, there's two."  I said, with tears starting, "Are they alive?"  She found two strong heartbeats right away. She explained the bleeding I was having was most likely from the "overcrowding" in my uterus.

Another HUGE surprise.  A huge shock.  Biggest surprise of my life.  I actually cussed  (sorry, babies).  I grew up in a family of four kids, and the thing I have said most in my life in reference to that is "I will never have 4 kids."  My mom thinks this is hilarious.

Two huge surprises, right off the bat. And our announcement picture had to be edited!

The final surprise was when we went to our 20 week sonogram. I had studied up and prepared so I would know what I was looking for.  The tech began the sonogram, and right away, I saw it-  two legs, and the classic look between them that meant one more desire of my heart was coming true. One that I really hadn't even had to courage to hope for. I said, "Oh! That's a GIRL!" And the tech confirmed it.  I asked if that was baby A or baby B.  She said it was B.  I also saw Baby A and knew he was a boy, which was exactly what I wanted..  So Baby B- my one and only girl- most likely wouldn't be here if God hadn't arranged for those two eggs- instead of one- to be released and to give us two babies at once.

Maternity photos by the also lovely and talented Ally Browning

So we began 2013 with two kids- now we have four.  We began with a house full of boys- and now we have, well, a house still full of boys, but I did get one girl for my team.  My husband says now it's close to even- with the girls still holding the advantage!

Many other changes happened this year- but they mostly revolved around a twin pregnancy, two babies being born, and all the other medical stuff I detailed in other posts. Son 1 is in First Grade now, Mr. Boo started preschool and is (*gasp*) riding the preschool bus there.  I quit my two part-time jobs to stay home with these babies.

34 weeks pregnant with twins.  Bigger than a house. 

I delivered the twins via C-Section at 37 weeks in September.  Thankfully, there were no medical surprises or complications.  It went well.

So here we are.  I have no idea how it happened, but I have 4 kids.  I don't think I'm exaggerating when I say this was the most crazy, surprising, amazing, change-filled year of my life. And to be honest- I am still totally overwhelmed with the idea of being a mom to four kids.  I know it's only by God's grace that any of us will survive.

So as 2014 starts, I am done with the idea of our life getting "Less Ordinary."  I am ready for some mundane.  I am ready to get into a routine and not have any major shocks.  I know that's not guaranteed and that's not how life works. I am just saying I am not particularly asking for it this year!

Holy moly, I love my Fantastic Four!!!
So Welcome, 2014.  Let's make this the most boring year yet!!! :-)


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