I’ve always known I wanted to be a mom. I am the oldest of three kids and I’ve always been the bossy, mothering big sister. My personality isn’t particularly warm and fuzzy, but I remember nurturing baby dolls and playing house from some of my earliest memories. I’ve never doubted that my future would hold kids. But as many of you who are engaged or newly married know, the path to a family is often more winding and confusing (and sometimes pressure-ridden) than you originally expected it to be.
First, let me say that God’s timing is always perfect. I certainly didn’t know or think that at the time we found out we were pregnant, but looking back, I couldn’t have planned it better myself. God always has this way of teaching us the lessons we need to learn most. And for that I am forever grateful. I am grateful for his love, grace, mercy and perfect timing.
Devin and I got married while I was still in college. I was young, but I knew more than anything that I was supposed to be married to this man, so we went for it. I enjoyed just about every moment of planning our deeply meaningful wedding celebration; piecing together details to tell our story and commemorate our commitment to one another. At that point I fell in love with weddings. Then we transitioned to the newlywed phase – and I fell in love with marriage. We had so much fun together – learning about one another, serving one another, discovering the others quirks. It was just like dating, only better, because we didn’t have to say goodbye at the end of each night. It was bliss. We knew we wanted kids, but there was no rush. We were on the five year plan – minimum.
So I graduated from college (go blue!) and took an engineering job close to home. My mom bought me a camera as a graduation present and it was at this point that I started photographing life. Devin made me a website to display my new found passion. And because he was so great at supporting me, he bought a camera and started photographing life as well. Together we discovered something special and our business was born. We were in the hustle phase – working full time, photographing and business building in every spare moment. It was busy, but it was great and fulfilling and we felt like we were doing what we were called to be doing. It was invigorating and I hadn’t felt so full of life in a long time. Fast forward a couple years and our business is still relatively new, but things are moving along swimmingly. We’ve got weddings booked and life is going great. I was still balancing my full time engineering job with photography, but I knew that I was onto something. I felt like our business was on the cusp of greatness – I just needed more time.
And that’s when it hit. The sickness. The overwhelming urge to toss my cookies. All day. Every day. A friend at work kept teasing me that I was pregnant, but I assured her that there was no way I was pregnant. When I worked up the nerve to tell Devin he rushed off to the grocery store and came back with the cheapest box of pregnancy tests he could find. It was a Monday evening and I was on my way to get coffee with a friend (who just so happened to be pregnant), so I hurried up and peed on the stick. There was no way it was going to be positive, so I never even considered doing anything to make this moment special. And before I could even get the cap back on the pregnancy test it was showing two pink lines! I’m frantically ripping open the box to get at the instructions and trying to decipher the ridiculous secret code that determines if you’re pregnant or not. I seriously don’t even remember what else happened at this point, except that Devin came in and after looking at the test results announced that I was indeed pregnant. I didn’t believe him. In fact, I sent him back to the grocery store with instructions to come back with the most expensive, straight forward, pregnant/not pregnant test he could find. Later that night I peed on one of the high dollar tests. And then again 3 more times the next morning… Sure enough… I was pregnant.
To say I was less than thrilled at this point would be an understatement. My calculated due date was the middle of September – aka the heart of wedding season. We had six fall weddings we were committed to and I would have to cancel all of them. I was devastated. I felt like all I had worked for was being ripped out from underneath me. Not to mention that the nausea was getting worse by the day. My heart was so torn. I knew that I wanted to be a mom, but I was NOT ready yet. This wasn’t supposed to happen for another couple of years. And it certainly wasn’t supposed to happen in September! This was the worst case scenario as far as I was concerned.
To be honest with you, my heart stayed hardened the entire pregnancy. I was miserable. My attitude was despicable. I didn’t want a shower, I didn’t want gifts and I certainly didn’t want people telling me congratulations! They had no idea what I was going through or what this pregnancy was doing to my life. It was ruining my best laid plans. This baby was literally ruining my life. I found myself in pure survival mode, begrudgingly going to my doctors appointments and finally starting to collect baby supplies and decorate a nursery when the baby was almost here. I was mad. Mad at myself for being so irresponsible. Mad at this baby. And I was most importantly mad at God. Why was He ruining my life? He of all people should know that we were not ready for a baby!
Thankfully it’s always the darkest before the dawn. And oh what a glorious dawn it was about to be! Everett arrived and it was literally love at first sight. I immediately fell into my role as mother – and not only that, I loved my new role as a mother! Once I was out of the fog of pregnancy God started revealing his messages to me. I had been selfish. Oh so selfish. I was so much more concerned about my plans and my will that I had been completely overlooking God’s will for my life. Looking back I see just how foolish this was. God knew exactly what I needed, and even what I wanted, before I ever had a clue. Through his grace He has taught me to trust in Him. Because, guys, His plans are waaayyy better than mine. He knows us inside and out. He knows the desires of our hearts. And, ultimately, He wants what’s best for us – even more than we do. Why wouldn’t we trust in Him?
So here we are, finding ourselves expecting again (hopefully due any day now!) But this time we are trusting in His plan for us. Juggling two kids and a business is going to be a challenge, no doubt, but I’m confident that we’re following his will and that this baby will be nothing but a blessing. My advice to any of you out there debating the next steps – when to start a family, what you’re going to have to ‘give up’, how you’re going to manage it all – is this…. Just know that God’s timing is way better than yours could ever be. He knows our needs and He knows our hearts better than we do, and He genuinely wants what’s best for us. Don’t be afraid to trust in Him. And you can always call me to vent and freak out a bit! I’ve been there!
We’ll keep you all posted when this little one arrives. Stay tuned for newborn photos… hopefully soon :)