It truly was a fun day. We had an appointment with my midwife, which is about an hour from our house, and since I was three days over due I had to get a non stress test and check my fluid levels to make sure all was well with baby.
At the hospital while doing the tests Jeff and I got a feel for what our actual stay would be like when I delivered. We were excited. We laughed and had fun and of course Jeff complained about the terrible wifi connection-- though a relief to me that I would have his undivided attention during what I knew, but didn't yet understand, would be the most intense and important night of my life. (Don't worry, Jeff wouldn't have actually neglected me to browse online;)
I was having regular, but mild, contractions the entire two hours we were at the hospital and so in hopes that they might progress we decided to stick around near the hospital instead of drive home and have Jeff's birthday dinner in Provo. That dinner was one I enjoyed probably most throughout my pregnancy, despite having progressively more intense contractions the entire time. (Sorry if that grosses you out--I realize how unappetizing it sounds.) I dealt with nausea throughout my entire pregnancy and my appetite was basically non existent. Food just rarely sounded very good. But this night-- what with the starch and carbs galore-- was an excellent dining night.
I'm already looking back on the two and a half years Jeff and I shared without kids and wanting to cherish them with the tightest grasp. And this is not to say because I don't absolutely love where we are now. That's far from the truth. I say it because with the demands of school, several jobs, and the anticipation of the unknown of our future, it was sometimes hard to see the forest through the trees. Now I can proudly declare that those years were so extremely important for our marriage and my personal growth. I love Jeff, his strengths and weaknesses, with all of my heart and soul. Though that is not to say I don't have an infinite amount of growth and learning to do because boy, I do.
Even up until the last year of my undergrad, I let myself doubt if what I was doing was the right thing. I wanted kids, I saw and sometimes envied the paths others chose to take, and I often questioned. Again I am of course eternally grateful for finishing school and more so for the opportunities I had that will help me both personally and professionally because of it.
But where we are now. Hardly a day can pass without choking up just thinking about it.
I wonder and awe over Nora everyday and I know.
This is why I'm here. Her and her hopefully many siblings to come. She changed me from the instant I held her. It was a feeling that I built up and had such high expectations for-- yet she still managed to shatter my expectations. No, I didn't instantly recognize her. No, I didn't immediately know how to hold her just right, but through my happy sobs I knew that she is what I was yearning for, what I'm here for, and to her I am eternally grateful for making me a mother.