I have to make a confession.
You know that reality TV couple, Tristan and Ryan?
Well. I have to give them credit for making me finally.... actually.... excited to be pregnant.
Strange, I know. It happened a week or so ago when I was flipping channels. I wound up on some Bachelor reunion show despite the fact that I have never really been a fan of the Bachelor nor do I really care what has happened to any of those people since their 15 minutes ran out. (In full disclosure, I will admit I did watch the last four or five episodes of the last season, when the guy didn't pick either girl. Very annoying). Anyway, there was the happy couple talking about their fabulous lives since meeting on a TV show, getting married on another TV show and then having a child, thankfully behind closed doors. Their little son sat on Tristan's lap, and they cooed over him and talked about the "amazing journey" of being a parent. (Aren't people on reality TV always using the phrase "amazing journey?")
There was nothing about the moment that rose above the typical banal reality TV barometer. So I don't know what it was that got me. The cute baby? The sweet look in his father's eyes? Pregnancy hormones? The bond the three seemed to share? For whatever reason, 30 seconds after flipping to that channel, I felt my eyes welling up with tears. Kind of embarrassing, but true. I felt suddenly overwhelmed with the knowledge that soon enough, I'll have my own little guy to hold and stare at blissfully, that soon enough Jimmy and I will be more than just a couple, that we'll be a family. For the first time since I found out the unexpected news, I felt it -- true excitement. True anticipation and hopefulness.
I always knew I'd get here, and I knew it would take me some time. I think that's OK. Every new mother is different, and I believe that taking time to let real emotions run their course is a natural and important thing. My initial emotions were not the storybook kind everyone seems to expect a woman to feel, and answering questions like, "Are you excited?" over and over was so hard. The person asking typically posed the question in a squealing voice with an ear-to-ear grin and gleaming eyes, just waiting to share in my joy. And I have a very hard time faking it -- people almost always know exactly how I'm feeling. I wear it all out on my three-quarter length sleeves. So when I slapped on a fake smile and answered, "Sure!" I could always see their faces drop, their eyebrows curl and concern creep into their smiles. I'm glad those moments are behind me, but I'm also glad I was honest with myself and didn't sugarcoat my feelings.
And so. I admit it. I'm excited. I'm still worried, in the way way back of my head, about all sorts of things -- work, mostly, and money -- but I'm also so excited to see what this little guy looks like, to grow to know him, to study him, to hold him and to care for him. I can't wait to kiss his tiny forehead and see his itty-bitty little hands. I can't wait until years from now when he's storming around with all the other toddlers making mischief before church services. I can't wait to read him stories and answer his questions.
I see other babies now and think, 'Aw, I really want a baby." Then I look down at my expanding waist line -- yes, I finally look the part -- and think, well, isn't that handy? Suddenly, it feels right. I always trusted that it must be right, knowing who God is and all. But I certainly didn't understand or feel it myself. This just seems to be another case of Him starting someone on a path they can't quite understand only to come to learn eventually that all along, He was there with their best interests at heart.
If I was on reality TV, this is where I would say what an "amazing journey" it has been. But I can't write that without wanting to punch myself in the face, so I'll just say this -- you can go ahead and ask me now if I'm excited. I promise when I say, "Sure," this time, I'll mean it.