plot twist

In a little over a week I’ll be 43.

Forty. Three.

In a little over a week I’ll also be going into my third trimester…with my first child.

(gasp!)

This time last year I was learning that I might be on the autism spectrum. It wasn’t a shock, but it was news. To be honest, late diagnosis autism (super duper late) is more like and AH HA than an OH NO moment. After I accepted it for what it was things actually seemed to get “easier.” You could say a door opened in my mind and it just let things in; possibilities. Socially awkward and painfully aware was how I always described my reality – then it shifted and I existed as myself, unbroken. Within this diagnosis I actually made sense and I was no longer alone.

At the time I was caring for my sick beagle, I didn’t know yet we only had 3 months left together or that a week after he would pass my mother would have a heart attack and I’d be in New York visiting her at Christmas. It was shortly after Christmas we found out we were expecting; another AH HA moment. When you’re in your forties you assume the possibility of becoming parents is about zero. But here we are, excited and terrified.

It was late February that we learned we’re having a girl and at that point I was just glad that all our tests were coming back clear and the baby was thriving. Gender was just bonus information, really. After age 35 the risks go way up apparently – for mom and child. I was reading about the risks and scaring myself thoroughly but we got through the tough tests and so far…everything is progressing as it should.

We would make our announcement to friends and family in early March once our spina bifida and cell free DNA tests came back normal. I opted out of an amniocentesis so that’s still in the back of my mind, but my doctors assure me that at this point (7 ultrasounds later) my risk is low for “major” problems. I’m staying positive and they’ve banned me from googling. When you have all these tests to get through and so many fears about what could go wrong (thanks internet) you don’t really feel like you can enjoy being pregnant. Not that sore feet, backaches and constipation is enjoyable…but, emotionally, you’re guarding yourself against heartbreak. At least that’s how it’s been for me. After 3 really crappy years of disappointment and loss it’s difficult to let your walls down. They’re crumbling a bit now though and I have 3 months to knock them down even further.

Currently, we’re putting the nursery together and learning about childbirth and newborns and holy crap daycare is damn expensive. Honestly, we don’t know how people choose to do this more than once! We’re clueless but hopeful and extremely thankful for this blessing that we never (ever) expected. I might not share much about this pregnancy until our little girl arrives safe and sound, but I’ll do my best to summarize our highs and lows once I’ve had time to process it all.

Life is changing so fast and we don’t want to miss a single precious minute.