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For the First Time Ever, I'm Planning to Be a Mom

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I've hit the halfway point in my pregnancy. Over the halfway point in fact. It blows me away to think that two months ago I was terrified of a miscarriage and that I was taking each day, grateful that I still was pregnant. This pregnancy has been a dream. I haven't had any complications, yet I still felt like I was waiting for the ball to drop. But hitting twenty weeks, I feel more and more like I will actually get to meet this baby in December.

It's weird to think I have a baby inside me that weighs just under a pound and squirms around like crazy. I don't even have to rely on my Doppler to calm my daily freak-outs because the movements reassure me. Hitting twenty weeks was a huge milestone, along with passing the anatomy scan. Once I hit twenty-four weeks, I think I will feel even better because then if the baby comes early, the doctors will intervene to try to save it.

Passing the halfway point has changed me in the way I plan as well. For years, my planning was all about the next treatment, the next medication. In fact, up until a few months prior to this pregnancy, I couldn't even fathom having a child to care for. Everything I have done in the last years has led up to one goal: get pregnant.

I have never allowed to think beyond the next IVF cycle. If I got pregnant, I would deal with it then. Don't even bring up the idea of a child. This shift in my thinking has not come easily.

But now, after the maternity clothes have been considered and purchased, after researching the best ways to cure morning sickness, after worrying constantly if my baby will have a heartbeat at the next appointment, now I am planning beyond that.

I am planning for my baby's arrival.

Now, this doesn't come lightly. When my husband and I found the antique dressers that would be perfect for the nursery after a good paint job, I admit, the thoughts of "What the hell are we doing?" did cross my mind. For every gender neutral baby outfit I found at garage sales, a rush of fear would wash over me as I handed over the money. I would walk around stores, looking at wall hangings for the baby's room, telling myself to hold back.

But still I plan.

I have been researching car seats, strollers, carriers. I am starting to plan my baby registry. No longer am I reading articles about IVF success rates. Now I read about sleep techniques and breastfeeding. I am seriously considering cloth diapers. No longer am I planning on getting pregnant. Now, I am planning on being a mom.

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I've never allowed myself to do that. I have never allowed to think beyond the next IVF cycle. If I got pregnant, I would deal with it then. Don't even bring up the idea of a child. This shift in my thinking has not come easily. There are many doubts and there were many times I wouldn't allow myself to think about the future. Even now, after ordering a crib, there are still times I truly wonder if this is too good to be true. Will I really get to hold my baby in four months? Will I really get to touch the little feet that I only have seen on ultrasound? Will I really get to kiss the tiny hands that I could only feel punching me from the inside?

I am overwhelmed and grateful and excited and scared. I'm halfway there.

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