We were so young when we had Taylor. 19. I meet some 19 year olds and think, "Ohhh..umm..you should wait to procreate." For us, and especially me, we knew that this was what we wanted in life. A family. Someone I could call "my own". Like your heart was missing this beautiful piece. When we married, entered the Air Force, and moved to Florida into our own "home" it was so many things. Exciting, humbling, scary, new, joyous, and rubber-stamped. We made it. We were not a statistic. Just because we did things backwards in a short amount of time, did not degrade the value of our complete love for each other. I knew he was the one on that chilly evening in January 2002, and we hadn't even gone on our first date yet. (Just ask Cameron Wells, I called him when I left our friends house. He said I was nuts. I call it "intuition")
As time went on, life was fun. A lot of suck it up and keep marching, with deployments and such. Made great friends, made great meals, and made all the trips to our families that we could afford more precious. Little did we know, there was a hurricane on it's way by the name of Lauren Riley. She was a spit-fire from the womb. That hurricane made me feel nauseous from the rapid kicking and punching she would perform. She was just testing the strength of the hotel she so lavishly was enveloped in. She was work from the beginning, and everyday is an adventure in her mind...I have 12 more years until she's 18. But, we love our Lolo..
Here's where the "that's funny" comes in. We moved to California after a stint in South Korea. We were living there around 2 months, when we came home to visit AZ for Taylor's spring break. While there...I felt just so emotional. More then normal. I had just started a workout regiment, and thought March in AZ- perfect time to start running again. Strange though..got this metallic taste in my mouth, could hardly pick up the speed, and came back to the house and cried about everything to CJ. Two weeks later (after we came home)...pregnant with Harlow. It was like my brain was abducted. Putting things in the wrong place, speeding...under speed limit..then speeding. Could not concentrate for nothin'. Low and behold, I am with child. So here's the funny: Each one of us was born in a different state. We have first up-
CJ in Texas
Me in Ohio
Taylor in AZ
Lauren in FL
Harlow in CA
Did we plan that? No. But I think it's freakin' awesome.
We were only there a couple of years, new job equaled a new location...which equaled a NEW STATE. Jokingly I said, "Oh, hey..Colorado. We don't have someone from there." His response...we have 3 kids. WE HAVE 3 KIDS. Of course when he gets back from 5 months of school, his response was different. You'll find a lot of military kids are born 9-12 months after a separation. We got somewhat settled in, so I started running again. I had extreme lightheaded episodes, blacking out for a solid 7-10 seconds multiple times a day. The stairs seemed impossible to go down without the feeling of falling over. So I googled it. Pregnancy kept popping up in the search. Well. Huh. We were trying, but still didn't think it could be true. The very week flow was supposed to come, she didn't. We were only living here in Colorado one month when I took my pregnancy test. One month.
I had this thought in my head. This nagging that I should look up twin pregnancy symptoms. My Dad is a twin, his Mom was a twin, my Dad's Dad had sisters that were twins. Yet out of Grandma and Grandpa's children (there 7 of them!) none had reproduced twins- and none of the grandchildren had yet to do so either. But I had a thought to see what others had felt. Most, as everyone would think, said they knew because they were severely sick or took a test really early. But there were a select few that said "I had no clue."
Let me say this: I would have rocked that. Yeah it would be tough. I like a challenge. Kid crying? Give them to me. I'll figure it out.
My November 12th appointment didn't show a second baby. Although there was this white line going from north to south within the uterus..but there wasn't anything visible in it. I just thought..that looks different from the others. Usually it's this triangle with a little alien squirming around in a mist of black. It looked like two sacs. I didn't ask the tech, it was super quick check for a baby, and out.
Friday, November 15th didn't go how I thought it would go. I was suppose to be making a cake for Taylor and Lauren's birthday dinner with family for Saturday. I started to have light cramping that lasted around an hour, and then I started to bleed. Not something you want to have happen together. He came home, and so did Taylor to watch her sisters, and we went to the Doctor's office. The ultrasound showed a happy, heart beating, kickety baby. I felt like I just knew this one was gone, but there it was. My eyes weren't deceiving me, but why a nagging feeling that this wasn't over? Go home and rest they said. I did. Chatted with my bestie before bed, took some extra strength tylenol for the contractions (thought it was cramps at that moment for the last hour) and maybe I should hit the pot before I fall asleep. The minute I stood up, I felt it coming down.
I ran, I made it, it happened, I cried. And cried.
Any of you that have gone through this, know the next thought. I didn't want to or know if I should flush. I just sat there. It's gone. And the pain stopped.
I didn't call or go in, it was 10:30 pm on a Friday. I waited and called Monday morning, talked with the Doc, and because I knew what happened I just opted to do the blood work instead of coming in for an ultrasound to verify. I have had a miscarriage before, but it was caught and I had a D and C. The blood test will test for the HCG hormone that elevates while pregnant. That is what those nifty home tests are looking for. So I went in that day, went in 2 days later to see the difference. Mine was high the first day, and definitely took a decline. So it was true. I continued week after week through December. By maybe the fourth week (mid December) it should have leveled to zero. I mean sure it was going down..but just not quickly. "It could take up to 8-12 weeks" they said. I missed the drawing the Friday before Christmas. So in a two week gap it went down what it was doing on a weekly basis. WHAT is wrong with me??
I had started walking, and being more active. Using my livestrong calorie tracker, and some days 1400 cals just wasn't enough..so weird. But those numbers were not coming down and starting to plateau, something is not right. I can PALM my uterus, it's still puffed up- somethings not right. So Doctors are all in agreement, "Come in, and lets do an ultrasound to see how much matter is left. We have meds for that." I just wanted an answer. I wanted to feel normal. I felt so strange. I wanted my body back and life back to normal. I joked with CJ the week before that my muscles were mad at me for all this activity, because I could have sworn there was a baby in there with all the twinges I was feeling..
For those that don't know, there are two ways to get in ultrasound. The typical over the belly, and an internal one that is like putting on binoculars to see better. Since haha...there's no baby, internal it is for me. Up on the screen was this BIG empty uterus with a line heading north to south. The Tech says "Hmmm, I can't see very well. Let's just use the other one." Yeah sure, whatever. Let's just make the assessment so I can get the pills and go back to feeling normal.
Squirt some warm goop on my belly and....OH MY GOD. Over and over. Oh my God. What? WHAT??
There's a big baby in my big uterus. What did I first see, you ask? It's brain. Lobe left, lobe right. And mine feels like it's about to explode.
But I don't understand. I passed something. My numbers were going down. They wouldn't be doing that immediately after that event unless it were true. I lost something. But...there's someone in there! I was shaking. I was crying. I was as squirmy as "it" was. It was a miracle that she could even measure the baby to find out the due date. "It" was a miracle. And "it" was 19 weeks, as I would be as if the miscarriage never happened. I spent 7 weeks "not pregnant". Had a few glasses of wine spread out and a couple beers over that, nothing consecutive. We had completely, wholeheartedly accepted that we would never have a baby boy. Three beautiful girls we were blessed with, and FINALLY I was happily at peace and it was so hard to come to that. I was OK with never giving my wonderful husband a boy (he was fine with it, I struggled for years). I thank God for that. It was all him. Back to the event unfolding:
I said, "We weren't going to find out. Last baby, we decided let's make it a surprise.." (as I'm crazy eyed and rubbing my head at the conundrum before me).
"YOU TELL ME RIGHT NOW WHAT THAT BABY IS!!"
She slid it over one inch, and there HE was legs wide open. AS IF my eyes could shockingly open any further is beyond me. This ain't my first rodeo, but the way I was acting..you'd think so. "I have to call my husband. He's not going to believe me. I joked this morning that if I called him in a blubbery mess and he couldn't understand me and that he got me pregnant again- that it would mean that I would feel/be pregnant for 12 months. ONE year. I would hurt him. Badly."
So I call him. I sound crazy. He thinks I'm in a ditch with my leg falling off. I take a deep breath: I am STILL pregnant, and IT'S. A. BOY!
Silence. "Courtney. Are you ok? Where are you?" SMH. Did you not hear me?? So I repeated and shoved the phone up to the speaker so he could hear his first baby boy's heart beating. He asked "Is he OK?" SMH. YES! Amazingly, beautifully, safe, alive and well. I wish you were here...This is when two nurses came busting in the door. No knock, came straight to me took my hand, and had these just frightful looks on their faces. The tech with a smile tells the news. CJ is just patiently quietly listening. I'm a cross between crying and crazy laughing. These ladies were sooo confused. Welcome to the party. The office thought I might be pregnant AGAIN, but not STILL. Their heads flipped around like the exorcist to look at the screen, and then came the tears.
Never in my life have I been this hysterical. Never. I didn't recognize my own voice. I kept rubbing my head, looking at the screen through blurry eyes. Never did I think in my wildest dreams would something like this happen to me. I could have been on the show "I didn't know I was pregnant." Think about it. You take a test because you suspect. You have 16 WEEKS to find out the sex. I found out both within one minute. ONE MINUTE. The one thing in life that I dreamed about, prayed for, bought for with no assurance that I would be given. A boy. And he will be loved. I just kept saying, "There's a penis in my belly. That's never happened before." Silly to some, but it meant so so much to me. I (we) had a name picked out all ready, Easton. After spreading the news to family, friends, our facebook world. After coming down from our high and accepting our new future, CJ jokingly said, "We will refer to him as Jason Bourne. After all, he's still alive." My husband, the comedian. Applause all around. And so is the tale of how Jason Ryan Coles came to be named.
"A dream is a wish your heart makes. When you're fast asleep. In dreams you will lose your heartache, whatever you wish for you keep. Have faith in your dreams and someday your rainbow will come smiling through.