Tuesday, September 27, 2011

35 weeks

Watch out. I'm getting soapboxy and heavy this week.
Read on if you dare.

I came across an article recently that lists and explains things you should never say to a preg. The first forbidden line given was, "Was it planned?"

Only twice was I asked if my pregnancy with Julia was, "intended" (cue baffled, awkward, furrowed brow stammered answer) but unfortunately the question has come up with more frequency and more fervor this time around (one curious george asking, "was it on purpose!?").  I'm going to assume the questioning parties' assume that an age gap of ~13 months would/could/should never be intentional and I tried not to fault them for their noisy and voiced curiosity (but I'm sensitive and was internally very taken aback...to be perfectly honest).  I'll try and make my answer brief, to the point, not in your face, not preachy or stale and basically perfect. Mission oh so possible of course.

Was this pregnancy planned? I think a fitting and common answer would be, "by God!" which is of course the absolute truth. Simon and I aren't idiots. We know how babies are made but we also very much know that a baby most certainly is never guaranteed upon demand.  Many couples are able to plan a pregnancy - a healthy pregnancy that leads to a safe labor and delivery and a thriving child. However, I don't need to write and tell you that there are so many couples that do not have this luxury. Whether they experience temporary or permanent infertility issues, they will be the first to tell you how little control they have over the planning and demanding of a pregnancy. Despite my numerous trivial complaints about life with a baby/toddler and pregnancy annoyances I think its important to say how incredibly blessed Simon and I know we are to have one healthy child and another (hopefully healthy!) on the way. We would love to have many more children but will not take our fertility for granted and assume that we will be able to 'plan' and successfully execute more pregnancies....even one more. We were beyond ecstatic when we found out I was pregnant with this baby because we know what a tremendous gift it is to be a parent. We know having two kids under the age of two will come with its fair share of challenges and I would be lying if I didn't admit that I'm a little bit petrified of the night that Simon is at the hospital, Julia's date with the teething fairy goes sour and she requires a lengthy coddle and the new baby simply must be fed at the very same moment. But far outweighing these apprehensions and fears is my love and appreciation for Julia and her central role in our lives. 
 Our little need factory has taught me more about love, selflessness and fragile reliance in the past year than I could've ever imagined.  We so hope we are fortunate enough to be blessed with many more little Pattons but we most certainly do not have any planned expectations about number and/or timing of children in the near or distant future because we know they are most certainly not ours to plan. We will happily take each child as they come...whether that be close together or spaced very much apart.

 onto the fluffy photos

 and bonus(!)
if you dare to care and have a look at last year and 35 weeks pregnant with Julia


Have a wonderful Tuesday.

29 comments:

  1. Beautiful and such a great reminder, Grace. Thank you!!

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  2. I am soooo very guilty of asking that question regularly and also to you. I'm not sure why I'm quite so curious about that but I always wonder. Maybe because my sister was a surprise baby (we're 14 months apart).

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  3. I too, like Kayla, am always guiltily curious about intentional vs unintentional pregnancies. However, I never ask because I think it's much too personal. If the person happens to answer without me having to ask, then great. If not, who cares.

    Personally, I think this was a great response to all those nosey people :)

    p.s. I think you're smaller with baby #2, if that's possible.

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  4. That is beautifully written. I never thought how offensive the question could be, so thank you for sharing that!

    And about your fluffy photos, 35 weeks and you're still looking beautiful! I wish I had thought to incorporate belts into my preggo wardrobe back in the day. You look so cute!

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  5. Such a good answer. I was actually asked "you know what makes that happen, right?" I didn't have the guts to say "No, please enlighten me with what I must be doing wrong." but simply laughed it off.

    You look great!!

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  6. My top 2 so far have been:

    #1 - Boy you didn't waste any time, did you! (with Baby Bean)

    #2 - You were HUGE!! (referring to when I was preggo with H)

    The last one was said pretty much the day after I gave birth so my already fragile self body image was pretty much beaten to a pulp like the printer on Office Space. What's worse is that it came from a friend. She didn't intend to be inhumanely cruel and I think she was trying to say I looked good post partum considering how I looked just days before but it still cut pretty deep.

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  7. P.S. You look amazing. You can take that basketball out from under your shirt now and quit frontin'.

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  8. Oh so beautifully true. Paul is 4 months old, and how I would love another precious child - even if it made life harder at times, I beg God that we will be able to have more children, because it would be more blessings to go with the hardship. You and Simon were such a beautiful example when you brought us dinner - just living "Yes, that they'll be close together!" and "No, that doesn't mean we don't want them both!"

    Keep on being you Grace! You're doing a great job!

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  9. Wonderful post! I remember going to the OB at some point after my first was born and after replying 'no' to the 'are you on birth control?' question the nurse looked at me like I was a small child and asked, 'So, you know you can get pregnant?' I may look like a 12-year-old but I sure as heck don't think like one! (Heck, even a 12-year-old knows that!) I always want to laugh at the thought of planning a pregnancy. Except that's not nice. I completely agree with all of your points and I know way to many people that haven't made it work their way no matter which way we're talking about here. I won't get all preachy here but, sometimes our plans just don't work out! As for having babies that close together, psh, I know more people that I could list that have gone through that! You just figure it out one day at a time. :)

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  10. I've done it three ways- Tried to get pregnant and did so almost immediately, tried to get pregnant and failed for over a year, and whoops, that's a surprise! People ask no matter what.

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  11. what a lovely post, thanks for sharing. family really is what its all about anyways, right?

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  12. this was lovely. i like roxy's response....and yeah, this was lovely....fertility is indeed a blessing, a gifto from god. too many people don't realize it. woop woop!

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  13. Love this post! Agree 100% with everything. Now I keep getting asked if were done. I guess people assume we only went for a 3rd to have a girl and now that we do why would we want more. Maybe because we love kids and view them as blessings? :)

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  14. Excellent answer Grace! And I hope I look like you at 35 weeks!

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  15. Hahaha "By God!" best answer ever. This was a good post.. people are so funny and nosy. Myself included... loooove the self timer pic with you saving Julia from the nail. Classic. Did you wear boots on purpose for wear*it this week because you know I have to ask if I can thieve a pic!? haha

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  16. I love this. I read your blog every day and always forget to comment. you never cease to make me laugh. thanks for making my mornings at work just a little bit better!
    xo,
    Haley

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  17. Grace! I really appreciated reading this. I would classify myself as sensitive...actually sensitive sounds too kind for what I mean. I mean downright self-conscious and insecure. On several occasions since Jake was born I've thought with excitement about another child, but I immediately start getting nervous about what people will think. I'm not proud of it...but I'm proud of you and your soapbox!
    And goodness! I thought women were supposed to be bigger in their second pregnancies, but you're just trim and tummy!

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  18. Hi, I stumbled upon your blog when I was blog-hopping one day, and I love it! I can relate so much. My husband is a resident (intern year), we have a toddler (17mos), and I am 25 weeks preg with baby #2. I LOVED your thoughts and answer to this subject. I feel exactly the same way. Children are a gift from the Lord and every baby He puts in a womb is a gift no matter when it happens. I can't wait to read your experience with two little bitties plus busy husband. Just know there is another medical wife/mom in Baltimore who is in the same boat :)

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  19. I really appreciate posts like this one. My husband and I are struggling to get pregnant and have a baby. In a world where it seems like everyone and their dog can get pregnant and have a baby, infertility issues can be extremely hard. Especially when all those pregnant people seem to take their own fertility for granted.

    The ability to have babies is truly a gift from God. A gift I hope to experience. As someone struggling with infertility, I really appreciate you outlook on "planning" a pregnancy. Believe me... there is no such thing. If I could "plan" a pregnancy, I would have a baby by now.

    Love the blog, Grace!

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  20. Minus the fact that your dog and my daughter have the same name, your blog is great. I read it all of the time. Found it thru my cousin's blog, Going Natural Women. Love this post!

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  21. so, you're much smaller with this one (not that you didn't look great w/ J). maybe it's a boy? who knows. i'm excited to seeeeee!

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  22. OK, I stumbled across this blog through DIY Maternity, but I love it! Except... I hate the fact that I think you and I are about 2 days apart for our due dates, and I'm much bigger. My defense is that 1) this is my 4th, and 2) my 20-week sonogram measured baby a week ahead of my due date (but I still don't think I look just a week bigger than you).
    But as to the whole "planned/ unplanned question"... grrr... does any question irk me more??? I couldn't say that any of my pregnancies have been truly "planned." (it's just kinda like we stop "not trying".)
    You have a great answer. I will definitely borrow it. :-)

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  23. Wonderful post! Most people a) have no filter and b) can not think beyond themselves, so ridiculous comments abound. People who have never experienced the absolute stress and hopelessness that those who face infertility do generally do not understand that getting pregnant is not always a decision that they can control and make for themselves.

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  24. Perfect, beautiful answer. In the end, only God decides if a new life is created. Our 'want' or 'not want' is totally secondary. Love ya!

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  25. LOVED this post! All the anon's should read this one, if they question anything, as they clearly don't understand humor!

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  26. SO glad you linked this one today (if only for the pic!) - it is the post I came across that *sold* me on your blog - my favorite one. I have never read one that expressed this thought so honestly and succinctly without ranting or coming off as self-righteous. (And I love how you let your super-dedicated-mommy-heart sing out loud and clear - we know its there between your usual one-liners and hilarity, but it was surprising and refreshing to have you be so plain!) You look great right now and I pray you enjoy the next 2, 5, or 7 weeks of pregnancy! God bless Grace!

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  27. I am totally creeping your archives...but this post shows me that we have boys who are only...what, 4 months apart? Also, with both #4 and #5, every time I heard the "did you do that on purpose?" or "was this pregnancy planned?" I would reply with the whole, "Someone planned it -- and I don't argue with Him." I just don't get where people are ocming from with that. I had 3 years between my 3rd and my 4th and so when #4 was announced to be on the way, I got a lot of that and it really drove me nuts. Thankfully with #5 (and later with our dear little Saint #6) no one did that. I think losing my Gregory would have been way harder if I had had to defend his conception at every turn early on (lost him at 20 weeks).

    okay, sorry to be leaving this crazy comment so late on this post, but just had to. :)

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  28. Sorry, slow afternoon....reading the NFP stuff archives....this is one of the most beautifulest posts ever!

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