I think the desire to have a large family manifested early on for me. I can recall thinking as a child that I wanted lots and lots of siblings. If you’re an only child also, you can feel me on this one. Unfortunately, my mother never had any more children. Whether she wanted to or not, being a mother of multiple children never became her reality.
When I finally arrived. You know how it is when you become an adult with your own money, your own place, and your own rules…you feel like you have arrived. So, back to my arrival. When I made it to the fascinating world of adulthood, next on my list was to begin having babies. It was a no brainer, right? I thought so too.
Then reality set in. Getting pregnant, staying pregnant and having a baby weren’t as easy as it looked on TV. Let’s be real. It appeared to be so simple for everyone else. For me it was becoming a chore. Why was it taking me so long to get pregnant?
After a few years, I had finally missed my monthly menses. Yes, this was it! I was going to take a home pregnancy test, see the much anticipated positive sign and share the good news with everybody! I was beside myself with excitement! Everything was falling into place. That is until 6 weeks later…
In Feb 2007, a friend had just left my apartment and was heading back home after we enjoyed an awesome girl’s day out. I went to the bathroom and saw some pretty defined spotting, so I immediately called my partner at the time to tell him what was going on and asked him to hurry over. After an hour or so, I went back to the bathroom and the spotting turned into bleeding. I called the babysitter to come over to watch the twins, and let my partner know I was going to the hospital and he could meet me there.
Upon arrival to the hospital which was only a 3 block walk from my townhouse in Central Harlem, I was cramping and feeling less than perfect. They took me up to Labor & Delivery right way. The doctor came in and began examining me. There was so much blood by this time, that there was no way an internal exam could be done, so I was ushered off to have an ultrasound. There was a sac but no fetus. I had miscarried. Devastation set in and I barely heard a word that came out of the doctors or nurses mouths after that point. My partner never made it to the hospital. I was cleaned up, given my walking papers and told to schedule a follow up appointment with my OB to determine if any “products of conception” were still lingering inside my uterus. How could they be so cold? Products of conception? Come on people, this was my baby! He or she was real to me.
I went home, relieved the babysitter and crawled into bed. My partner arrived a short time later and I cried myself to sleep on his shoulder. It took a week for me to get out of bed and return to work. My employer was very understanding and allowed me that time off to recover.
My experience with miscarriage didn’t stop here. I lost 2 more babies over the following 2 years before my body just decided to stop getting pregnant. I was certain that I was never going to get pregnant again and have a baby. My dreams of having a biological child had slowly slipped away. My reality was that I was only going to be a mother to my adopted twins. My partner and I had gone our separate ways and life was moving on.
My husband and I had a whirlwind courtship and marriage, and here we are 3 years later. We met in November and married in February. Hey when you know, you just know! One of the things I was sure to disclose when we met was my desire to have more children but my history with miscarriage and infertility seemed to be preventing that. He was so caring and supportive and made it known that he was open to adoption. He already had a biological son from a previous relationship. The 1st year of our marriage was uneventful on the pregnancy front. Then midway during our 2nd year together, I had a miscarriage. Heck, I didn’t even know I was pregnant until I saw the blood and smelled the amniotic fluid.
This time around I was sad but I wasn’t angry. I prayed and kept moving forward. My husband was sad but we supported each other through it. Exactly 25 days after I had that miscarriage, we got the call about our beautiful baby girl. Her birth mother was in labor and our presence was being requested at the hospital. We gathered ourselves, called the hospital and made our way up there the next morning. 2 days later, all paperwork had been signed and notarized and the nurse was walking us out of the hospital with our beautiful bundle of joy!
We were now a family of 7! Can you believe it? I was now a mother of 5 children. None of whom I gave birth to! Tell me that God isn’t in control of all things. He is, I am a testimony of that fact! I’ve never forgotten about my 4 angel babies, but I am grateful for the beautiful children that call me mom. Mom, that’s me! Today and every day moving forward…