Children are little treasures from God that He entrusts to us for a while. They are exhausting, exasperating, and require that we die to ourselves over and over in order to shepherd and love them well. They are also bundles of joy, sunlight, and jellybeans that make our hearts ache with euphoric love.
The question of whether or not we should add a 4th child to our family (if God would be so gracious) was an on-going discussion that we had tabled for a while. To me, 4 just seemed like the number of children to have. It was an even number, so no one would be left out when we visited amusement parks (since theme parks are such a common occurrence for us….jk!). My mom came from a family of 4, my dad came from a family of 4, two of my aunts had 4 children each. 4 was THE number.
But, in our immediate context, 4 kids seemed like a leap up to an unknown tier of parenting. Most families in our age bracket here in Oregon have 3 kids or fewer. With 3 kids, I could still kind of pretend we were a small family who just needed an extra high chair, or I could just hold Brynn on my lap.
When I discovered the two pink lines on the pregnancy test, I was a little stunned. I took it downstairs to show Stephen. Without saying a word, we both looked at each other in speechless shock. It took several months for the reality of this pregnancy to sink in. Yes, I had thought I wanted 4, but the permanence and reality of it kind of took me aback.
Because we wanted to tell my family in person at Christmas, this was the first baby that we didn’t announce until the first trimester was over. That gave us some time to sort through our range of confusing emotions. The nausea and fatigue hit me pretty hard, and I can definitely tell that I’m older this time around. There have been some evenings that I’ve gone to bed for the night at 6:30pm! Stephen’s assumed the role Father-of-the-Year as he’s been cooking, cleaning, doing dishes and laundry, and solo parenting a lot. I’m so thankful he works from home now.
God is the giver of life, and we are thankful for this 4th little blessing of another baby boy. We had hoped to give Brynn a little sister, so we were a bit disappointed at first that he’s a boy. But God decided a boy is best for our clan, so all of us–including Brynn–can’t wait to meet our Little Oregonian in June. If things go according to plan, we’ll have two November birthdays and two June birthdays.
Baby’s anatomy scan was perfect and beautiful! The images were so clear, and I loved seeing him wiggle around and suck his little fingers. My heart swelled with love and excitement as I watched him on the screen.
The kids have been super helpful in coming up with names for the baby. So far, our choices are Dr. Bonkers (courtesy of Silas), Bup (from Coop), and Troy (Brynn’s contribution). I’m 21 weeks along and very happy to be more than halfway there! Thankfully, I’ve been feeling better and have a little more energy now. It’s fascinating to watch the kids process the pregnancy and the idea of a new baby. They’re so aware, and Brynn is already mothering her baby brother.
Little O, we love you already and can’t wait to squish your little cheeks!