Since I was a little girl I always loved my dolls and playing dress up. I never really thought about how many children I would have or wanted but I always knew that I loved a big family. Growing up, one of my favorite movies was The Sound of Music. One of the reasons I loved this movie was the fascination of this huge family. All these children and what fun it all looked like!
Fast forward a few years, now in adulthood, I still think of the magic of that idea. A home full of love, laughter and music.
I decided I wanted to have my third (and final) child almost immediately after I had my second baby Alexander. He was so delightful and easy, I loved choosing baby clothes and the friendship my two children had. Intact one of the most gratifying moments of being a mother was watching Annabelle and Alexander play and laugh together. I knew I wanted to try for one more.
My husband wasn’t so sure! It’s true that we were so busy already juggling work, kids, life that adding one more personality to the mix could potentially rock our world.
Babies are so demanding and we weren’t sure we could give all the attention the new baby and a third child deserved. We agreed to wait a year.
Our pregnancy journey began in March when we found out the exciting news! We decided to wait to make an announcement till we were 3 months along and in the “safety zone”. Once everything looked good, we went ahead and told Annabelle. She was so excited and thrilled for a new baby.
I was so excited and happy. I knew this baby was my third and last and I really wanted to enjoy the process. Savor every moment. With my first two children it went so quickly. Moving houses, countries, jobs. There was so much going on, and I hardly documented the pregnancy . This time I knew I wanted it to be different. Every week was accounted for. I had stickers marking the weeks, and how big baby was in relation to familiar fruits and vegetables 🙂 It was so much fun going all out on maternity fashion, and styles. Showing off my bump at every opportunity.
The first trimester was as exhausting as it had been in the past. Looming nausea and discomfort plagued the first several weeks. By lunch time I was totally exhausted and the only thing I was looking forward to was a nap!! I’m not one to usually stop midday for sleep, but it became an essential time in my day. I’m lucky that I was able to incorporate that quite time in my schedule, and soon the Second Trimester would kick in and I’d feel like my old energetic self again.
The Second Trimester or Honeymoon phase was wonderful. We went on a family trip to the South of France with the family and I felt great. Besides not being able to drink the lovely wines, and enjoy the French cheese everything was smooth. Of course when you are so far away from home and your doctor a tiny part of you is always a little extra cautious. You really don’t want to put yourself in the position of needing help when you are over seas. The flight was uneventful but the doctors do advise that you get up and walk around the plane every hour for several minutes to keep the blood circulation flowing and prevent clots. Fellow passengers were very respectful and I didn’t feel like I was disruptive of their journey.
In the past, flight attendants would make a point to assist you when needed. This time no one offered us any special accommodation, but still I was determined to ask for assistance if and when needed.
The final Trimester just flew by. All I had time to do it seems was pick out a stroller travel system and reorganize the sleeping arrangements to accommodate Angelina. We were worried that Alexander would be jealous and unhappy if we gave Angelina his cot bed, so we went out and bought him his dream truck bed. He absolutely loved it and never asked to sleep in his old baby bed again!!
Since we decided not to find out the gender till birth, I started buying both newborn girl and boy clothes. We re-opned our list of preferred baby names too. Since we already have one of each, we pretty much just went over the names that we didn’t end up using for Annabelle and Alexander.
The last few weeks of pregnancy I was really starting to feel much slower and heavier. I knew I was slowing down because I could hardly keep up with the kids. I also started taking them out on my own less because I was afraid if one of them ran off I may not have been able to catch up and get them!
I was expected in for a scheduled C-section on November 5th. Since my mother (and savior!!) came to town a few days earlier I felt brave enough to take the kids out Trick-or-Treating for Halloween. Even though I wasn’t getting much sleep anymore (from those long nights of tossing and turning, trying to find a comfortable position), I felt it was important to spend as much time with the kids as I could before the baby came.
Well the Next morning I went into early labour and a few hours later on November 1, 2015 Angelina Luella Bowman was born!! She was 6.15 Lbs and just a dream.
The nurses pointed out that we were the result of “The Halloween Effect”! Apparently, all the expecting woman that are about full term and spend the night out walking and preparing for the busy event can go into early labor!! The hospital staff anticipates this, and prepares for a rise of unscheduled deliveries for that day!!
When I set eyes on Angelina after a hectic and 24 hours of uncertainty, I think my heart bust with joy. When the doctor announced that there was “a heartbeat” and then moments later “IT’S A GIRL”, I had to thank God. I felt so humbled and so grateful. My heart beats fast just revisiting those emotions. No one and nothing can prepare you for those roller coster of emotions. The deepest concern to the highest elation. When I held her in my arms we just looked into each others eyes. She was perfect. She didn’t cry, I and I feel in love right then and there. To be fair I know I had been loving her for a million moments and days before too.
Thank you Angelina Luella for choosing me as your mom, I love you so much and I promise to cherish and protect you everyday of my life.