2007 brought talk of expanding our family and we were excited at the prospect of it. I don’t even think I gave one thought about my dream from college. Not that I had “put it out of my mind”, but that I hadn’t given it a thought really since Chris and I had talked about it that day in the Mustang.
When we returned home from our 2007 family Christmas vacation, I was immediately feeling different. Tired, blase, and HUNGRY! I was pretty sure that I was pregnant but several pregnancy tests were turning up negative. I remember waking up on Kayla’s floor while she was napping one day. I was laying there asking God what was going on with my body and was so exhausted that I fell asleep. I just KNEW that I was pregnant no matter what the tests were saying. Finally, in February, a test came up positive and I made an appointment with my doctor. Sure enough, I was pregnant! Hooray!! Chris and I were happy! Very happy! We kept this pregnancy a secret for a while. This was fun to have a special little piece of information that only the two of us knew!
We had fun telling family first and then our closest friends. Eventually, we told others and it was very fun and exciting. I started going to the doctor regularly and got to have fun appointments like finding the heartbeat and beginning to measure “The Bump”. One of the doctors even nick-named the baby “little jellybean” because she was so tiny and would hide from him when he was looking for the heartbeat.
I remember the day in May of 2008 as clear as if it were yesterday. Kayla was having her birthday party at school and I was going in to take pictures and bring birthday treats. Before heading to her school, I had an early doctors appointment. I was seeing a new doctor who was checking things over just like all the rest. As she found the baby’s heartbeat, she listened for a while then said “Uh-Oh!” NOT WHAT I WANTED TO HEAR! An arrhythmia could be heard. The heartbeat was so irregular that even I could hear it. She said that I needed to go to a specialist and that she was having a nurse make an appointment. I laid there crying and hurt. I couldn’t believe what I was hearing and I was scared to death. I remember calling Chris and trying to tell him all the details. Telling him that he HAD to get off work and come with me. I left the doctors office to head to Kayla’s school and cried all the way. I called my mom and told her what had happened and cried some more. I heard a song on the radio that day that I knew well but that I had never understood before. The song was Blessed be Your Name by Matt Redman. There is a part in the song that says:
Blessed be Your name When the sun's shining down on me When the world's 'all as it should be' Blessed be Your name Blessed be Your name On the road marked with suffering Though there's pain in the offering Blessed be Your name Every blessing You pour out I'll turn back to praise When the darkness closes in, Lord Still I will say Blessed be the name of the Lord
Before that day, I hadn’t really had any days marked with suffering. My days had all been “in the sun” kind of days. I told the Lord that day that NO MATTER what was happening with our baby, I was going to love him and do everything within my power to make sure that he was happy and have every opportunity afforded to him.
I made it through Kayla’s party and don’t even remember what happened with her that afternoon… The Lord has really blessed me with a few friends who will jump at the chance to help me with my kids!
So Chris and I went to the neonatal specialist for a stage three ultrasound where they measure organs, and measure waves and function, etc. We didn’t understand any of it, but were thankful when the tech said that she could not detect an arrhythmia. She asked us to go back to the waiting room and told us that we would see the Doctor soon. We were very happy to wait and see what the doctor was going to say. When we spoke with Dr. Phillips, he was glad to tell us that the baby’s heart looked great. He was, however, concerned with some other measurements that the technician had taken. The baby’s head/tummy ratio was off. The head was on the small side and the tummy was on the large side. He was not too alarmed but wanted to see us back later.
We went back for several visits and eventually I got a phone call at work from Dr. Phillips himself who said he was sure that everything was fine and we had nothing to worry about. We were SO relieved!
Everything went great from then on out. My due date came and went (just like with Kayla) and a week later, Rebekah Anne Wheeler was born on September 21st, 2008. It was a Sunday (just like sister!) when we finally met Rebekah.