By Dr. Heather Bozant Witcher, Clarion Herald
During the Mass celebrating the feast of Corpus Christi, I sat in the pew, gulping my water, while seemingly squirming around in my seat. I’m sure the people behind me were awfully confused and perhaps even a bit perturbed.
The reality was that my twins were moving around continually, while kicking in all of the wrong places. “Uncomfortable” doesn’t even do justice to what I was feeling.
At one point, my husband looked over at me and his eyes widened. The boys were out of control, and my watermelon-sized bump was heaving in certain areas.
One of the things that I’ve learned in the third trimester is not only how tight and heavy the bump gets, but that as the babies get bigger and stronger, they seem to take on an alien-like presence.
You can see them rolling and pushing as the belly undulates. At times, a quadrant rises up momentarily. In those moments, my husband’s favorite thing to do is what he calls “playing” with them. They push up, he pushes back. It’s an ongoing match until baby gets tired. Never mind that I have organs somewhere in the midst of the growing uterus.
It’s in these moments that I see and feel the growing reality of our situation. In the months leading up to the final trimester, there’s a growing excitement. For most, that excitement is heightened by the creation of the nursery. Making space for baby. Our nursery currently consists of a section of boxes in our living room as we prepare to move. But now, as the clock counts down, and contractions begin, the reality has hit.
In just a few more weeks, we’ll meet our boys. We’ll be in the throes of sleeplessness, figuring out a new way of living together. The routines that we’ve built over the past seven years will come to a grinding halt, and new routines will be made.
All of the books and advice emphasize the need for flexibility; the need to focus in on the new family that we’ve created, drawing strength from our spouses. They also emphasize patience – with myself, with each other and with the tiny little lives that are so dependent on us.
If this process has taught me anything, it’s that we’re not in control. Our journey to becoming pregnant has not been easy, nor has the pregnancy itself. Combined with a number of stressors and transitions, I’ve learned to let go. To listen to my body, to listen to the signs that the babies give me; but, above all, to trust that everything will go according to plan. Not my plan, but his. In time, I’ll know the fuller picture. But for now, I’m living moment by moment.
Dr. Heather Bozant Witcher can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.