Tuesday, October 12, 2010

God and Tomas, prologue

I wanted two children. My husband wanted two children. A match made in heaven for this and many other reasons. We would send them to Catholic school, and live according to our faith. That is a very brief synopsis of the first 13 years of my marriage.
We were married almost six years before my oldest was born. Three years later her sister was born. Two beautiful, healthy, perfect girls, and we were happy and finished. A two year kidney illness on my part and a 3 year horrific toddlerhood on the younger one's part and that decision was just further cemented. Preschool came and went for the oldest, and although it was at a Catholic school, it was not what I was looking for.
My husband and I decided to try homeschooling. Actually, I decided, and bullied him until he finally agreed to let me test Kindergarten - figuring I couldn't screw it up too bad and we could always just stick her back in if I did.  I joined a Catholic homeschooling group and found a very happy place indeed. This was definitely our groove and where we were all supposed to be. I thanked God often for the richness of this life, and contentment reigned.
In hanging with the Catholic homeschooling community, I began to hear a lot about NFP (Natural Family Planning) and fertility charting. I just figured it wasn't for me and shoved it aside. I always knew the Catholic church disapproved of artificial birth control, but just went on my merry way anyhow, never reconciling the two, but not worried that I couldn't. Several years went by and then Catholic radio came to town.
For the first time, I began to understand WHY the church doesn't allow contraception. I read Humanae Vitae and knew that I had to change. I tortured my poor husband, who was perfectly happy with the way things were, thank you very much. Finally, he told me to bring home some literature so he could read it. I knew then we would change. He read some things, and listened to some programs, and we were set free to really test the waters of our faith.
We were still not planning on having any more kids, we just needed to stay not pregnant in a way that didn't offend our faith. Well, a few months into the charting and I was pregnant (I confess poor record keeping on my part - I did not learn enough in those early months and never took a class). Two weeks later and I miscarried. Neither of us was thrilled initially about the pregnancy, but I wrapped my heart around the little pink line pretty fast, while my husband was not there yet. But the miscarriage devastated me, and he shared my pain, for my sake.
A few months went by and I told him I wanted to have another child. He wasn't ready, and I waited. Sometimes patiently, sometimes not. Another year or so went by and he said he would be ready in August. I still laugh when I think about this, such an arbitrary thing, but it gave him a sense of control, and I was over the moon happy to have him on board - so August it would be.
I found out I was pregnant in May of that year.
I need to back up a bit, in April my husband got a job offer for a transfer to another division, which also meant a relocation. We went back and forth for a while, and spent the better part of the next few weeks making the decision. One weekend in May we went over all the financial aspects, made the pro/con lists, etc...In the end he decided to accept and signed the papers on a Monday morning. I tested positive on Tuesday.
And that is where the story really begins. Me, with 8 months left of my pregnancy; him, with 1 year left to relocate to his new job; and both of us inching our way deeper into the faith of our childhoods.

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