What to expect when you’re not expecting

Photo taken by me in the Tyler Rose Garden two years ago. 

Photo taken by me in the Tyler Rose Garden two years ago. 

I spent most of my adult life not wanting to be a mom. Sure, I figured the older I got, the less likely I was going to find a partner who didn’t already have children. I was open to this but I never had that inkling that I wanted a child of my own. This feeling wasn’t officially solidified until I fell in love with my husband, David. He has two kids and that is yet another reason I felt that I was changing my mind about having one of my own. I am 38.  I’m 38 and only just now saying, “Yes” to the idea of having a baby. Talk about ridiculous timing.

What I didn’t expect was how much I was going to want a child. I never was THAT girl – the one who longed to be a mommy early in her life. I never longed to be a mom. Kids were cute when they were someone else’s to gush over then leave to go home to my childless abode. I even found it selfish at some point if folks couldn’t come up with a reason other than seeing what their offspring would look like or having someone to love or wanting to pass down a legacy. I personally felt that I needed a better reason other than “I want to see what kind of child I could bring into this world and what his or her impact would be.” Those are some of my reasons and I too find it a bit self-serving! However I don’t care. And I can judge me all I’d like and I can choose not to listen to myself!

What I also didn’t expect was all the little things your body wants to go through when you’ve made this decision and you are trying to make this big deal happen. Along the way, everyone you love is getting knocked up. You are thrilled for them and you are even more hopeful because they, too, have been trying and have succeeded. Then your body continues this weird dance of all I can assume is a kind of “getting ready for the big show” ritual. Every month you have every symptom under the sun but you always end up having your period anyway. You start to look up all the symptoms, wondering if THIS is it. You know, maybe it’s not a period! It’s implantation bleeding. But alas that is not it. Aunt Flo is taunting you yet again.

You go to the doctor more than once and she doesn’t find anything wrong with the plumbing. They start talking about your husband testing his swimmers before moving forward to whatever the next step is in this dance.

Then you may even have one of those periods that’s so wonky, painful and jolting that you are sure you are possibly miscarrying a very early pregnancy but the ER doc tells you there is fluid in your pelvic region due to possible cysts that burst. Nothing serious but seriously nothing that makes you feel at ease.

This is hard. I tend to be a transparent person. But this I’ve kept pretty quiet to only close friends and family. I’m sharing because there may be other women in my circle, maybe even beyond, who read this and may be going through this too.

I’m the once very boisterously alone woman who lied to herself about not ever needing a partnership that finally got one and now longs to be a mommy but never wanted to be one in the first place.  I’m moody. I’m tired. And I’m trying to remain hopeful. I’m in the TTC camp and have to look up all those acronyms I read in all the TTC and pregnancy forums.. TTC by the way is “trying to conceive.”

My spirit is still the same. Striving for the goals I’ve set out to accomplish. But now I want to do it with a baby on my hip – to watch her (or him, though people who know me well all see a girl in my future) grow along side art and exploration of the world around her (or him). I’ve transitioned to this understanding – the person that I thought I never wanted to be. A mom.