My husband and I had been married for eleven years and already had four children. After our fourth child, we opted for a vasectomy as we were sure that we were done having children. We had a change of heart and on May 11th, 1998, my husband had a vasectomy reversal. On September 16th, 1998, I found out that I was pregnant with our fifth child. The whole family was so excited!
On October 15th, I started spotting and was so afraid that I was losing our precious little baby. I immediately called the doctor and he sent me in for an ultrasound to make sure everything was okay. I was so relieved to see that tiny little heart beating on the screen. For several days after that I just sat in the recliner, too afraid to move. Of course with four other children who needed me, I just trusted God to protect the baby that I was carrying inside me and got up out of the chair.
On December 17th, 1998, I had a second ultrasound done. My husband, four kids and mother got to be present this time. At one point during the ultrasound I asked the technician if she would tell me if she saw any little boy parts. She said "Well, it looks to me like you're going to have a little girl person." Not that I didn't trust the technician, but I bought a few little boy person outfits as well as pink dresses. I also made sure to have a boy name picked out - just in case.
I had a wonderful pregnancy. Only during the last month or so did I get a little uncomfortable. I had trouble sleeping from the 8th month on and none of the medicine they prescribed helped me sleep much. I spent a lot of time on the internet looking up everything I could find on labor and delivery (it had been seven years since my last baby) and everything in the nursery was clean and ready to for the baby. Since my other kids were all in school, I had plenty of time to shop for baby supplies. In fact, I wanted this baby so bad, I had even started buying maternity clothes and baby clothes BEFORE I had actually found out I was pregnant.
On April 19th, 1999 I had my third ultrasound. Apparently I was smaller than I maybe should have been and the doctor wanted to check the baby's size just to be on the safe side. Again I was able to look up at the screen and actually see that tiny little person who was living inside me. As long as I live I will never be able to get over the thrill of seeing that. I had the same ultrasound technician and she said that the baby should weigh around 7-1/2 pounds, have lots of hair and be a girl. "She" was also sucking on her thumb in the ultrasound pictures. I went home and packed my hospital bag. Inside I packed a girl outfit AND a boy outfit.
My due date was May 20th and since my other babies were born very near their due dates, I was sure this one would too. My nephew was born on May 21st and I was secretly hoping to have our baby on that day also. Imagine my surprise when I woke up on May 21st with contractions! We woke the kids up and piled into the car. We had called my mom who met us at the hospital. I was so excited! They hooked me up the the monitor to time the contractions. They started out at 4-5 minutes apart but eventually got to something like 20 minutes apart and not strong. It was so depressing having to be sent home.
That Sunday, May 23rd, I went shopping to try and pass some time. It was a hot day and I was having some contractions in the store. I wasn't sure if my water had started leaking or I was just sweating so I swung by the hospital to be checked. They said that I was having contractions but my water hadn't broken yet. I decided to go home and wait it out there.
I had a doctor's appointment on Monday, May 24th, and the doctor discussed inducing. I was hoping that he meant we could go to the hospital that evening but he said that the only opening they had was on Thursday - three days away! I broke down in his office and started bawling. I was so tired from lack of sleep and just wanted to hold that little person in my arms.
I woke up about 1:00 on the morning of May 25th with contractions and my water had broken. Again we called my mom, woke up the kids and piled into the car. The contractions weren't real strong yet and about 10:00am my doctor told the nurse we could start on a pitocin drip. At 11:00am I was starting to feel uncomfortable and told my husband to go get the nurse. Apparently he couldn't find her so he came in dragging another nurse behind him. I said that I wanted my epidural - NOW! I had never had one before but I wanted something, anything, to take away the pain right then. The anesthesiologist rushed in and told me to sit up on the side of the bed while he administered the epidural. As soon as I sat up I said "The baby's coming!" The nurse checked and said "Yes, it sure is!" I was screaming that it still hurt and "when is the epidural going to kick in?" As it turned out, it didn't kick in until after the baby was born and my episiotomy was stitched. The nurses were scrambling to get the delivery cart near my bed but everyone's hands were full. As soon as the doctor showed up, the baby was making it's arrival. The cord was wrapped around it's neck twice but that didn't prove to be a problem at all. Reilly Anne was born at 11:21am, May 25th, 1999. She weighed 7 lbs. 7 ozs. and had lots of caramel colored hair. She was immediately joined by her sisters, Lindsey (15) and Carli (8), and her brothers, Josh (13) and Zack (10). Josh got the privilege of deciding on her name as he went to most all of my doctor's appointments and ultrasounds.
Reilly is nearly 8 months old now and a source of constant joy for the entire family. I watched her playing on the floor tonight with the other kids and she would reach out to them and them smile and start shrieking with laughter. I know that they enjoy it as much as she does. They are thrilled with every one of her milestones and often say that they can't wait until she gets older. Believe it or not, they've even asked if we can have another one. I've pondered that idea but must admit that I'm getting tired as I get older. But if God should wish me to have another, then we will all be waiting here with open arms to love it!
Thank you, God, for the blessing of five healthy children. And for the baby that is in Your midst in Heaven, I thank You for that one also. I look forward to holding it in my arms someday as I have been able to with the five here on Earth.