Bradley and I learned we were expecting our first child early in the morning on January 1, 2016. What a way to start the new year!
When we married on April 18, 2014, my husband Bradley and I agreed that we wanted to wait to have children for about two years. Before adding a new addition to our brand new family, we wanted to take the time to get to known each other first as husband and wife. During the dating and engagement phases of a relationship, you become familiar and learn a great deal, but it is not quite the same as that precious time after the marriage vows when you fall asleep and wake up beside one another every day.
You get to discover little things about the other person — and yourself! — that you had not known before. Transitioning from a single adult into a married couple is an exciting time, and we wanted to create a baseline of what will be our own normal in the years ahead before adding variables to it. We have seen each other overjoyed and upset, tired and energetic, serious and silly. We have truly become each other’s best friend.
Before we married, we looked into various forms of birth control and, for one reason or another, we decided against pills, patches, condoms and the like. Since I had already been tracking my monthly cycles carefully and was very familiar with the different phases of my cycle, we decided to try a natural family planning method. I would like to write an entirely separate post explaining this method of birth control, but suffice to say that this method does not harm the woman, the man, or any potential babies. It is not 100% affective, but what birth control is? If the Lord laughed at our little plans and decided to change things up on us by giving us a precious little one earlier than we planned, we would have been just as happy.
This may not be the ideal for every couple, but this is what we mutually agreed on before we married. It has worked very well for us.
Then last autumn, we decided that we were both ready to begin trying for a child. When using a natural family planning method, it is more like you stop actively avoiding conception and allow nature to happen in God’s time.
The last week of December 2015, I knew something was different with my body. When you are very familiar with your body and your monthly cycle, you can pick up on little changes. Though my cycle is fairly regular, every now and then something throws it slightly out of whack and I had two false alarms previously due to just a late period, so we waited a few days passed when my period was due before even taking a home pregnancy test.
Those few days were agonizingly long, but I forced myself to be patient and wait. The whole time, I suspected that this time was different. This was not just a late period. I dared to let myself hope that perhaps, just perhaps, this time was the real deal.
About 7am on New Years morning, the pregnancy test came back a strong positive. I got a little chalkboard and wrote a message to Bradley on it, taped the test to it, and placed it where I knew he would see it when he woke up. Then I climbed back into bed, but I had accidentally woken Bradley up. He casually asked: “So? Are you pregnant?” And I told him.
I think that day we were both extremely excited but also completely overwhelmed. We spent most of the day at my parents’ house with my side of the family, and we did not say anything because what if it was a false positive? It was so early on, what if the egg did not implant or something? So as much as I wanted to shout it from the rooftops, we did not say anything that day. We waited and prayed.
We did take a picture two days later to commemorate the news!