Yikes! Last post was September?! Until just a few weeks ago, my excuse was pregnancy and two kids so don't ask how I'm able to sit down and write a coherent thought with three. Let's just call it a miracle...all three are napping so what better way to write about the greatest news of our year? There were so many things different about this pregnancy and one day I'll write a detailed entry about my struggles through the first and second trimester but TODAY, I want to remember how Tucker Jack made his entry into this world.
According to my calculations, our second boy was due to arrive around February 1st. It was confirmed with multiple sonograms and my midwife's date showed February 3rd so when 2011 knocked at our door, we had at least a month to prepare. I had a "Pre-Baby Checklist" of items that needed purchasing and projects around the house. Brad and I talked about what needed to happen with Zoe (5) and Colby (newly 3) before the baby's arrival. Words like "gentle" and "please be patient" and "quiet please" needed to make their way to the forefront of our vocabulary. But most of all, we were still working on naming the little boy - I needed more time!!
My favorite part of Tucker's early arrival is that I cannot take an ounce of credit. God made Himself known as my Good and Sovereign King throughout every step. I had learned so much humility through Colby's labor & delivery that I was pushed to my knees from the moment we had a positive pregnancy test. I prayed. I asked God for really big miracles. I struggled with the balance of having faith for the "unseen and yet to come" and yet guarding my heart against human expectations. I prayed and prayed and then I prayed some more.
Tuesday night, January 4th
We took the kids to Chick-Fil-A for family night (free kids meals!) and came home for a dance party. (We have these a lot at our place right before bedtime.) While the kids shook their hips and laughed with Brad, I sat in the rocking chair and made a point to remember the moment. Knowing we'd soon have a little newborn and grow to a family of five, this stage of life was coming to a close so I wanted to embrace the image. I made another mental note to plan a "just the four of us" party before the end of the month. We all went to bed at our normal times; Brad took a double dose of melatonin.
Wee hours of January 5th (apologies if this is TMI...)
The sensation of gushing water between my legs woke me up at 1:45am and I rushed into our bathroom. I sat there and yelled to Brad (deep in a mela-coma): "I think my water broke." I was barely 36 weeks along and couldn't believe this was happening. I called my sweet midwife, Donna, who was in deep sleep and not expecting a call from me for another month! She instructed us to call when contractions got close together. I changed into my birthing gown & robe and donned a lovely pair of Depends. We started washing clothes (no newborn stuff was ready) and packed an overnight bag, in case we had to go to the hospital.
Around 6am, I had a few contractions that were just a few minutes apart so we called and asked Donna to come. My labors with Zoe and Colby were 3.5 hours and 4.5 hours so I expected similar results and didn't want my husband delivering our premie baby. Donna arrived but my contractions disappeared. The kids went to my parents but labor came to a standstill. All. Day. I would go over an hour without a contraction and started wondering how soon I'd have to go to the hospital. I was so thankful for a husband who was peaceful and prayerful and a midwife that exudes authority and peace and wisdom. I was never fearful just perplexed and trusting that we had heard the Lord about a third home birth.
Donna left early afternoon and we tried to rest. I ate Mexican food, hoping to "spice up" my labor. I tried to sleep but mostly rested until we crawled into bed at 9pm. I laid there for an hour and finally moved to Zoe's empty bed to elude my husband's snoring. (Sorry, babe.)
Thursday, January 6th
Labor finally began just after midnight with contractions intensifying and regulating. At that point, I was JOYFUL to have a painful contraction and relieved to be in labor. God knew what I needed. The birth team arrived (midwife, assistant, and student) and I was hurting and serious. Unlike previous labors, I found that focusing on random objects (the door hinge or screw head) helped me breathe. I talked out loud to myself, like my own personal coach. I could feel the transition and knew our baby boy was making his way to our arms.
Just before 6am, I could feel the little boy moving down to make his arrival. I had forgotten the pain of the last few moments of labor. Donna later compared it to a freight train and she was right: I lost it. Donna's voice calmed me down and I pushed with eager desperation. Whew, he was OUT! He was sticky and crying and beautiful and perfect.
He was on me within seconds and I just kept calling him my "sweet boy" and Brad's voice filled his ears. And though we didn't give him a name for another, we know that God established his identity before time and calls him by name. And we like to call him Tucker. Tucker Jack Thompson. Who weighed exactly seven and a half pounds - can he still be called a premie?!?!
As I finish this entry and remember back to the moment God told me that this baby boy was for me - for my heart and for my joy - I am overwhelmed with love for a child I had often wished away and second-guessed. Thanks be to God for his indescribable gift!