"For this reason, since the day we heard about you, we have not stopped praying for you. We continually ask God to fill you with the knowledge of his will through all the wisdom and understanding that the Spirit gives, so that you may live a life worthy of the Lord and please him in every way: bearing fruit in every good work, growing in the knowledge of God," Colossians 1:9-10 (NIV)
We're having a baby, y'all!
It still doesn't feel real. God is really entrusting us with this little life. God is letting us be a part of this precious baby's life. God is answering our prayers.
Before I go on, I want to give a little insight as to why we didn't wait for the 12-week mark to share the news. It's our decision and only ours, but I still want to share the why.
We live in a sad world. A world where life is devalued. A world where babies aren't seen as babies. A world that chooses to ignore that God has a plan for all lives. It is for this reason that we shared the news with family at 5 and 6 weeks. It is for this reason that we shared the news with the world at just shy of 8 weeks. Life is life - no matter how small it may appear on an ultrasound. God has chosen this little heart to start beating and we've seen it with our own eyes. Whatever may come and whatever may pass, we have faith that our God will bring us to it and through it.
The Fun Details
We found out about baby Arinez on the morning that I was heading to my doctor to have a check up to make sure that I was okay. It was around 4:48 a.m. and Matt was still sleeping. I quietly took my test and waited. Now, if you don't know, I'm quite blind. Seriously, I can't even write my name without my contacts. So, imagine me standing in our terrible bathroom lighting squinting at what appeared to be two faint lines. I held the test up to the light. I placed it against a piece of tissue paper. . .because y'know. . . contrast helps. I saw the two lines. I dropped the test and turned to the shower and turned it on. For some reason I thought that a shower would help with this new discovery. I glanced back to the sink. I hurriedly turned off the shower and grabbed the test.
Now, I always thought I would tell Matt I was pregnany with some cute onesie or card or a bun in the oven. Y'know, a pinterest inspired reveal. It didn't happen for us.
"Matthew. Matthew. Wake up. I need you to look at this. Matt!"
"Huh? What? What's wrong?"
Mr. Bed Head rolled out of bed and stumbled to the bathroom door.
"What do you see?"
"I think they're two lines. What does it mean? Where's the box?"
We read the instructions. Re-read the instructions. Googled instructions. It was two lines. It was positive.
"Just go to your doctor and have them do a test."
That morning I drove to work and focused on only the test. The time came for me to head to my doctor. Needless to say, a blood test came back positive that afternoon.
Over the next few days, all of our conversations revolved around this new little person who would be joining us. I had yet to experience any symptoms, so I was absolutely full of glee.
One evening, we made our way to our local Lifeway Christian Bookstore. A few months ago, I was looking for a new devotional and in the process I found Waiting in Wonder: Growing in Faith While You're Expecting. That day months ago I left it right there on that shelf, but this time I was going to be taking it home. I found my new devotional and we were walking to the register we just happened to go by the children's section. Matt wandered into the section and I followed closely behind him. We picked up books. We put them down. We laughed at stories. We agreed some were too grown up. Through it all, we knew we wanted to be the first ones to buy baby his or her first Bible book. We did.
Over the next few weeks, we talked, laughed and prayed about baby. We've also cried about baby. Well, I cried about baby. I cry about them holding on to me for 9 months. I cry about having to let them go after 9 months. I cry about bringing them into a world that's sad. I cry about them having their heartbroken because of their first love. I cry about their salvation.
I also cried for myself. Pregnancy is hard, y'all. Do you know how many times I've told Matt, "I can't do this." 9. Seriously, I have let those words come out 9 times. I've thrown temper tantrums at 2 a.m. while waking Matt up for no reason. I've called my mom crying from the Publix parking lot while Matt searched for fresh cantaloupe. It's been pretty ugly. I even turned to a friend to ask how bad her first trimester was when she went through it. Y'know what she told me after I complained quite a bit? "I've got nothing. Hang in there." Then I saw her on Sunday at church and her little girl was in her lap while they waited for daddy to finish up with the praise band after service. The way that little girl held on to her mama's hands made all the negative feelings I experienced over the last few weeks fade.
One day, we'll have a precious baby who will cry when I need to sleep and eat when I need to shower. One day, we'll have a precious baby and that's what makes this a little more tolerable.
Needless to say, our families are ecstatic for us. We're having the first grandbaby for both of our parents. This isn't the first great-grandbaby, but he or she will be the first Arinez.
How did we share the news? Through onesies for my parents and Skype calls with our family in Bolivia.
Oh, we've also bought Richard Parker for baby. He's in the feature photo of this post.
We went to Washington D.C. to catch a Detroit Tigers/Washington Nationals baseball game and while there we, of course, had to go to one of the Smithsonian museums. Matt is fascinated with tigers and I think they're pretty neat, too. Prior to our visit, we were searching for a tiger to give the baby and to use in those photos where you compare the baby to the stuffed animal to see how they're growing. Every single one that we found was simply too cartoony or just mean looking. Enter Richard Parker. We found him in one of the Smithsonian Natural History Museum gift shops. We knew he was the perfect one. Now, mind you, Richard Parker wasn't his name at the beginning. We referred to him as Son (short for Smithsonian) for the first day. The next morning while we were packing to leave our hotel, Life of Pi was on tv and we changed our tiger's name to Richard Parker. Imagine our toddler one day running around asking for his or her Richard Parker. I'm laughing just thinking of that scene. I do regret that we didn't buy more than one, so if you're planning on a visit to D.C. and want to do us a favor. . .stop by and pick up another one, please?
All in all, God is good. He's given us a baby and with that he's given us more responsibility. Our prayers have shifted from giving thanks for His blessing of shelter and food and our petitions of just getting through the day to giving thanks for this precious baby and our petitions to be the parents who seek Him first.
With that being said, we have a prayer request for you all. For now, we're going to keep this request silent, but it has everything to do with this pregnancy. If you could simply pray for us during the next couple of weeks - and remainder of this pregnancy - as we learn about what's next. We have faith and know that God can turn anything into something for His glory and that's our anchor.