Prepared to be Unprepared

I feel like I’ve gotten a little sneak peek into my future.

It began Monday when I went in for an early morning appointment. I was half asleep and hadn’t yet abandoned my morning crankiness. I was sitting at the check-in desk with my back to the waiting area when I heard a voice behind me, “Are you having a baby today?” I hesitated to turn around because I didn’t think they were talking to me, but I peeked around my shoulder and sure enough, there was a man standing there sporting a ball cap and a  w  i  d  e  smile. Even though I was a little thrown off by the question, I politely replied, “No, not today. We’d be about 6 weeks early so I’m not hoping for it either!” I started to turn around again, but he continued, “I’m getting ready to have a granddaughter any minute now…”

…and my heart melted. That cheesy smile had nothing to do with me! I softened up a bit and we started to chat about how excited he was to meet his granddaughter and how 7/11 was a good birth date. The look on his face took me back to Christmas Day last year when we told my dad that we were pregnant. He was teary eyed and giddy. The happiness was almost tangible. It was that over-the-moon kind of happiness that just saturates your whole body. That was exactly what I saw in this guy and it made my heart smile.

I couldn’t help but picture my dad and my father-in-law in about 6 weeks. These manly, salt of the Earth guys, pacing the waiting area with goofy grins on their faces and randomly interrupting strangers to tell them about the granddaughter they’re getting ready to meet. They are shamelessly wrapped around her teeny finger already.

That encounter was the gentle nudge I needed to start my day off right. Shortly after that, I was called back for our weekly biophysical profile. Once again, everything looked great. Baby Girl was facing my back so I wasn’t able to see her beautiful pouty lips, instead she showcased all of her hair! Not only that, I got to see the little pudge rolls on her arms! It’s incredible getting to see her grow and develop. I can only imagine what it will be like watching her on the outside and I’m so excited!

Next was my hospital tour and meeting with the neonatologist. It felt so weird to walk through the halls knowing next month I would return, but I wouldn’t be leaving with a baby in my belly. I got acquainted with the layout of the rooms, completed lots of paperwork, and got a good idea of what will happen before, during and after delivery.

Because of her heart condition, there will be at least two NICU personnel in the room with us, standing by. They don’t think there will be a need to intervene, but they will be there to assess her immediately, just in case. This made me feel very confident in the care we’ll be given. I realized that each person I spoke to had reviewed our file. I didn’t feel like part of a routine. The whole experience was very personalized to what Jacob and I want and what Baby Girl needs. They were extremely reassuring that if she ends up in the NICU, everyone (her pediatrician, cardiologist, neonatologist, therapists, etc.) would be notified and would collaborate on her treatment. I have never felt so guided and safe!

Roo helping me organize the nursery.

Now that the nursery is complete, bags are packed, and paperwork is filed, I feel ready. The next month and a half is about kicking back and realizing that we’ll be cuddling our girl soon. At this point, I feel prepared to feel unprepared. We’re getting pretty used to plans changing so it’s time to sit back and ride the roller coaster.

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