When your baby is a miracle you were not expecting….
“Come in here with me while I pee on this stick,” I said to Sean. “You’re taking a pregnancy test?” He said with a “you’re crazier than I thought” look on his face. “Yeah. I know it seems silly, but I’m 6 days late and I’m never that late, so I just need to rule it out for my sanity.” He shrugged and followed me into the bathroom, sitting on the counter and skimming Instagram on his phone while I took a pregnancy test. It immediately showed the tell-tale plus sign. “I’m pregnant.” I said, feeling like I had known all along, but just couldn’t believe it could be possible. “What!?” Sean looked up quickly, “How do you know?!” I showed him the test and we proceeded to stare at each other in shock and disbelief and, well, we really didn’t know how to feel. I took 4 more tests. They were all quick positives. There was excitement, and a fear to let ourselves be excited, and just complete surprise.
Sean was diagnosed with leukemia before I met him, he had a stem cell transplant and tons of chemo and was told he would most likely not be able to have children. I had recently been told I had cysts on my ovaries and that I would need to go on fertility meds if I wanted to get pregnant. We had talked about our options in the past from adoption to sperm donor to seeing a specialist to talk about our options. Many times we had said we wanted to have a baby together, we wished we could, but we just weren’t sure it was in the cards for us. Sean was tested in January and found out that he had a low sperm count with only 5% motility, meaning 95% of his swimmers don’t swim upstream. With stats like that, he was considered infertile. He started taking some herbs that he had read could increase his count. We talked about seeing a specialist in a few months to see if we had any options we could afford, but life got busy and the baby talk was set to the side to be revisited later on. After my doctor’s appointment about my cysts, I started taking tons of herbs to try to re-balance my hormones, even though my provider looked me square in the eye, said I needed to go on birth control and said, “Your herbs won’t work for this.” Yet, 2 months after both of us started taking herbs, here I was, pregnant. There was also one wild midwife birth circle 2 months before I got pregnant where some midwives danced around me singing a fertility song after I mentioned our wish to have a baby. These beautiful women sang, held my hands, and howled at the moon. So who knows what worked, but Sean and I had never done anything to avoid pregnancy during our relationship and now here we were.
It seemed completely unreal and I spent much of my first trimester worrying that there was no way this could be a viable pregnancy, that there was no way this baby could really be a real live growing baby. But my increasing level of nausea and vomiting said otherwise. This was for real.
Sean and I just kept looking at each other for days, unsure what to think or say or do. Afraid that we might unravel this event if we shared our news or got too excited. I said over and over, “I can’t believe I’m pregnant! What are the chances?!” Sean kept saying, “I feel like this is a dream, it can’t be real.” He had accepted the fact that he would never father a child of his own, that any child he raised wouldn’t be his biologically.
When we did begin telling our friends, they all said, “What? How?! Is it Sean’s?” The old fashioned way, people, just the regular old fashioned way. And yes, it’s Sean’s, thanks guys. And now at 14 weeks of pregnancy, we are through the window where our risk for miscarriage is highest. We have seen our baby wave its tiny little hands on ultrasound. We have seen and heard its heart beat. I have seen the enormous, unstoppable smile on Sean’s face as he watched his baby wiggle on the ultrasound machine and as he goes to every appointment with me. It’s starting to feel a little more real. Even now though, we still say pretty often, “I can’t believe we are having a baby.” This little baby is a miracle we will never stop saying “thank you” for.