Back when I was in K-12, my parents, sister and I regularly went to our cabin to celebrate the New Year. Some years our aunt, uncle and cousins came with. Some years we asked a friend from school to come with instead. Every year there was some junk food and snacks, card games, cold weather, and some possibly illegal sparklers and/or fireworks. The cabin was heated by a old Ben Franklin wood burning stove and often in the evenings we would sit around it for awhile, being cozy and warm. I remember being at the cabin for New Year's Eve, 1989, and saying aloud, "1990 doesn't even sound like a year." It was strange to my ear, "The 1990s." This is probably because my entire conscious life had been in the 1980s. The recognition of the changing of a decade was new to me. There have been a few decades that have passed since 1989 - heck, we even moved into a new century - but I feel like this New Year will be a bigger change than most that have come before. My due date is in about two weeks. Babies tend to show up when they're good and ready, but in the end there is no way we're completing first month of 2014 without becoming parents. It is hard to wrap my mind around.
As I put together our Christmas Cards this year I spent time going through our photos and our calendar, reminding myself of what all we did these past 12 months. Of course, just like the last three years, the wall calendar in the kitchen reflected the voluminous medical appointments associated with our journey towards parenthood. We had done an IUI in January 2013. It wasn't successful. We spent the first part of the year trying to figure out when we were going to stop trying, how many more IUIs we were willing to attempt. I started acupuncture around that time, my Hail Mary, my "at least I tried just about everything." In April, Megan and Paul came to visit. Right after they left, we tried another IUI. This one seemed to work. We waited, not trying to spend too much time wondering if we'd make it past the six-week mark. Well, we're past the 36-week mark at this point.
On one hand I feel like I've been pregnant forever. I remember those first weeks and months:
The first few ultrasounds, and steeling myself for potentially bad news each time but trying to be hopeful.
Going camping, laying in a tent in the woods, wondering when (if?) the morning sickness would kick in.
One of my girlfriends figuring it out early on when I waived off a glass of wine, and my inability (or desire) to lie to her.
Zac coming home and telling me that he had told his boss about the pregnancy in order to make sure he was available as possible for doctor's appointments.
Attending a family wedding over Memorial Day weekend, wondering if we'd be able to keep our secret - not wanting to distract from the focus of the wedding and not wanting to tell our families just yet.
The first few months were spent slowly disseminating the information about the pregnancy to maybe one or two people at a time, depending on the circumstance. Finally we were able to tell our families, and announce it on Facebook. The flood of love and support was overwhelming and I settled into being pregnant. Weeks pass. Months. A full three-quarters of a year. And now here we are, really any day from bringing this baby into the world. A lot of life happens in nine (really 10) months - Zac and I went places and did things all while my body changed and the baby grew. At this point I feel I have forgotten what is like to NOT be pregnant.
On the other hand, how can it be that it's already time to have the baby? It went so quickly. All of those events that happened on the calendar are still fresh in my mind. Why does time seem to elapse more rapidly with each year? That seems to be my adult life in a nutshell - I blink and months go by. I can only imagine that will continue once the baby arrives, when every day brings something new and amazing.
I wish everyone a happy and healthy 2014. May you know prosperity and peace in your lives and, most importantly, joy. I wish you all the most joy that your hearts can hold and then some.