Motherhood Took Me By Surprise! {How I Became a Mother}


I was 27 when I married; he was almost 30. I had planned out our life in my “most organized” fashion: three years of wedded bliss and then family — sounds good, right?! But a mere five months after the wedding, I was surprised, shocked, and somewhat bewildered to find myself pregnant. What?! We took precautions! I was taking The Pill like it was my religion — same time, same place, every day! Our firstborn, Wesley, came into the world a perfectly pleasant baby, and although his was the first diaper I had ever changed, we made it work and loved being a little family of three!

Needless to say, I talked to the hubs about “beefing up” precautions, so as to not be surprised again. Wesley was enough to handle. I was still navigating married life! As Wesley was beginning to walk at around 10 months, I started to feel nauseous. “Oh, surely NOT!” I must have said to myself a million times. I was in such denial that I didn’t even see my OB for a couple of months … ridiculous, I know! My plans for our life were once again taking a detour; and to my surprise, shock, and awe, Barbara was born the following summer. She was the daughter I had always hoped for!

So there we were, a family of four — a son and a daughter. Soon we added a dog or two and settled into real life. In the back of my heart and mind, I was still feeling like “fertile Myrtle”, living month to month and wondering when the next “surprise” would drop. But I have to say that my relationship with God and my husband took some interesting turns during that time. I was learning on a deeper level how to trust and relax, how to live life to the fullest every individual day. Several years went by, and I will never forget a conversation I had with the hubs one evening. He reminded me that we had talked on our honeymoon about having four children. His comment was, “We need to go for it, because there are people missing from our family.” At that point, I remember thinking, Hold on! We have a son, a daughter, and a dog! We are the all-American family! And, for goodness sake, who are these “missing people”?!

God changed my heart over the course of the next few years, but as much as we wanted a third child, we couldn’t make it happen. I suffered three miscarriages. It was painful and brutal. I was quite honestly surprised at how deep I could desire something (or someone) that was totally out of my control. It was an eye-opening, heart-revealing couple of years. I quickly got into the routine of carpooling and recitals. Wesley and Barbara were enough for me to handle, or so I thought. I wasn’t giving “trying” for that third child much thought at all. Yet I could tell through my husband’s prayer that he still believed “people” were missing.

In February of 1993, I got pregnant again. My memory of the miscarriages was still fresh, so I didn’t put much hope in this morning sickness. But you know how in your heart you sometimes feel like something is just different? I had that feeling! So, when my OB told me that I was indeed pregnant and that my hormone levels were high enough to sustain the pregnancy, I was surprised with so much joy! I think I just floated out of his office!! Carly was born in November of that year. It was a hard, painful pregnancy. I hadn’t had a baby in 7 1/2 years, but the sight of her made me forget that there had been anything ever wrong in the world! I was almost 39 years old, and I was DONE.

Watching Wesley and Barbara “fight” over who was going to hold Carly was a delight to me. She was our newest toy!  My mother warned me that she would be “rotten” if I didn’t watch out, but we were reveling in this joy. Little One was a mere 5 months old when this “old lady” found out that she was pregnant again. One of my first thoughts was Wow, the hubs has quite a prayer life! Wade was born in January of 1995. He was my biggest baby, my second son, the complete answer to our honeymoon prayers for two boys and two girls. God had given us all we could ask for and more! All of “our people” were present. No one was missing anymore. To this day, I continue to be surprised by all that motherhood brings my way!   

This post originally appeared as part of our "How I Became a Mother" series in 2017. We would like to thank Children's of Alabama for partnering with us on our "How I Became a Mother" series. Every time a baby is born in Birmingham, Children's of Alabama is there to offer support. Ranked among the best pediatric medical centers in the nation, we are thankful to have this state-of-the-art facility and these compassionate care providers available to Birmingham families.