It was starting to get silly. The algorithms on social media must have all been showing me every woman on the planet holding up a newborn baby with the caption, “2 weeks early!”.
I saw a post before I headed to yet another midwife appointment that I didn’t think I’d be at:
“Baby born today! 10 minute labor!”
During that same appointment, I got 2 texts- a friend of mine who was 10 weeks behind me with twins sent me photos… Although a planned induction was still 2 weeks out, the first text: “SURPRISE” and the second – her new additions; Apparently they were born even earlier, at 32 weeks. (Praise God those miracle baby girls are strong and heathy!) Immediately after was, “any updates on your baby?”
I told my boys it would be their birthdays (end of July) then their baby would come, then school would start (August 10th). That was what I was feeling and had not a doubt in my mind that what would happen.
By end of July, we had the birth tub in the living room, school supplies taken care of, we just were in waiting. My mom asked me if she should go on a work trip out of state at the end of August. “Yeah, mom, no problem. You do what you gotta do. We’ll be fine.” Of course, we would have a 2 week old by then.
In my mind there were some perfect opportunities to have a baby. Like when the kids just so happened to be staying overnight. Or when they were at school. Or when I got a good nights sleep.
I’ve always believed a baby will come when they come. No amounts of anything can spring a woman into labor. But let’s debunk these myths, shall we?
Spicy food. I walked into my favorite Indian restaurant. The waiter started with the giggles. He knew why we came. “I need spice,” I said. “Not American spice…I need Indian spice.” He gave a hearty laugh and said “No problem.” in his thick native accent. The spice melted my face off but nothing happened.
I walked the causeway… then followed up with more spice. Nope.
I had a friend sending me pics of the moon phases, the gravitational pull on the earth paired with a big summer storm or two in the forecast.. “Could be this weekend!” Nope.
Joram’s spanish school teachers joke that we need to use “spanish power”. Yeah, I’ll just leave that there.
A question I got often: Have you had any contractions?? Yes, I started getting them mid-June. And with a bit of black cohosh, I thought for sure we’d have this party done by end of July.
When my midwife casually said we should move the due date back as I was approaching 40 wks, I thought she was joking. I can’t make it another week.
A friend lightly said it would be fun if my baby would be born on her birthday next week (Aug 19th), I couldn’t handle the thought of going that long.. THERE’s NO WAY ON EARTH I CAN POSSIBLY BE PREGNANT! I’ll die before then, I just know it!
I walked the mall. Everywhere I go people stopped asking when the baby was due but would comment, “You poor thing.”
My midwife said she’d be outta town for almost 5 days covering my due date. Surely, I’d have him before then so it would be no big deal. “I come back Saturday night then leave again the following Friday for a week in Hawaii.” I was getting discouraged, not that she was leaving but because I hadn’t had a baby yet and I had been ready since the 3rd week of July.
Mid-August, a stranger said, “Honey, are you allowed to be walking?” Like maybe a doctor had forbid to much movement because it just hurts to look at me at this point. I get it.
I really don’t understand it all, the mental, physical and hormonal battle- a woman no matter how you slice the math and the logic, can be convinced that pregnancy is forever. FOR- EV-VER…
Emotions got the better of me. My body ached, I get these crazy, spinal nerve jolts that are quite painful, I can’t fit the chiropractors table anymore and I am thrown into contractions often because my 3 other children have too much fun treating me like a trampoline.
I was 4 or 5 days overdue when my kids were at my parents house overnight, Jonathan and I were out driving late at night picking up some last minute food since we ate all the previously made victory meals: “This would be a great night to have a baby. The house is clean, the kids are gone, we have food in the fridge.” And BAM! We got rear-ended on Palm Bay Road.
Time stood still those seconds before impact. I was holding on to the “oh, crap! bar” already because, well, we both drive like New Yorkers. He did a fabulous job swerving outta the way as much as he could, while I was wondering what was going on – I didn’t see it coming. I heard the screeching wheels. And then the jolt of impact.
We pulled off the road, I called the non-emergency 911 and told them I was a few days overdue but I didn’t think there were any injuries outside of damage to the vehicles.
The fire department, police and an ambulance came within minutes. Oh here we go, the Schroers are causing a scene..These guys spring into action throwing on gloves like I’m about to have a baby in the parking lot outside of Regions Bank.
“Fellas, fellas, please.”
“Don’t you want us to take you to the hospital?”
“No, dude, I don’t even have my babies in the hospital. But if you wanna do this, we live like 2 minutes away and my midwife is outta town.” They looked at my husband confused.
“She’s fine,” he assured them.
I think they were looking for some adventure. May have been a slow day at the fire department. I appreciated their spring-in-to-action’ mentality. Other than my blood pressure being through the roof, there was nothing to report.
What a great story this would be: Get into an accident. Go home and have a baby. Surely tonight is the night…
Jonathan got coverage for the weekends and tied up loose ends throughout the week. He originally was asked to speak the 3rd wknd in August but turned it down because we would be in babyland.
Mid- August, the boys stopped asking if the baby was ever coming. I think they thought I was lying. Jonathan joked to his co-workers that we had faked the whole pregnancy. This is getting rediculous.
We need to get a new baby… This one isn’t working.
Every week I would beg God to just have the baby so I could skip the next midwife appointment. I’m so tired of talking about this, let’s just do it already.
I was becoming an emotional basketcase. So unstable. So grouchy. One moment I’m totally fine, having a great day-knowing it’s a hormonal-mental game. The next moment, I’m sobbing, wishing I could escape my own body, wondering if this will ever end. Just transport me back to jr. high please.
I was so emotionally distraught and physically exhausted with the energy-zapping fury of Florida heat I thought I’d be too tired to have a baby. “I won’t have the strength!” I wept. Ok, I’m being rediculous -I realized that no matter what, God would supernaturally give me the shot of adrenaline I need.
Shall I bring to the time of birth, and not cause delivery?” says the Lord. – Isaiah 66:9
I got a call from a woman, who I’ll refer to as The Jungle Lady. This woman will call out prophecies and intercessory prayer like a boss. She’s amazing and terrifyingly unpredictable all at the same time. She was the one who laid her hands on me and told me I was pregnant with baby #3 at church when I had no idea that was going down.
“I felt the Lord asked me to pray for you,” she says in her Carribbean accent. “He told me the date you would have your baby but I’m not gonna tell you til after the baby is born. I put it in my calendar. Just know it’s coming.”
She spit fire from heaven right through the phone as I sat at the dining room table and cried. From the moment I got off the phone with her, it was peace like a river. I felt strengthened and renewed by God Himself and the weight of anticipation completely gone.
With this renewed strength and my own immaturity, I thought: Great! Tonight’s the night!
Still my heart and mind were completely at ease, even as the days continued to pass. I love how it says in the Word of God that He is the Prince of Peace. What more could we ask for in such an age of high anxiety. Truly, He is all we need.
Daily, the Bible app on my phone would sent me verses at 7am. All of them exactly what I needed to marinate on, the sweet whispers of encouragement along the way. Hebrews 12:1, Psalm 46:1, Psalm 27:14,1 Corinithians 15:58, Psalm 139: 13-14, Zephaniah 3:17, Psalm 91:2
If you’re like me, you line up other women’s births in order. “She goes, then she goes, then it’s my turn.” I had 3 friends ahead of me until it was my turn. As time passes, and those algorithms kicked in, I stopped counting after 14th baby was born in August. More comments or suggestions on what to do to get the baby out. More kind words and text from friends far and near reminding me that He’s in control. I feel good. Other than new stretch marks discovered every day, the back spasms and the inability to put on my own shoes, I feel fine. Oh, and this weird clicking in my hips when I step with my left foot. All is well. I truly am content. It’s all because of Jesus.
“for it is God who works IN you to will and act according to His good purposes.” Phil 2:13
My midwife came back in town Saturday night. I started contracting every 2-3 minutes for almost 3 hours. “I know you’re tired from your trip but it may be going down. Letcha know when it kicks into high gear.”
I bet Jonathan 1 cryptocurrency that we would have a baby by morning.
I woke up the next day, still pregnant. Out $275.
We’ve made 5 different celebration cakes and eaten them all. The snacks for the birth attendants and post birth victory meals have all been eaten. Multiple times over. Waiting.
I had this joke with a friend of mine that this kid would come out with Wolverine claws and a beard. And he may even be a toddler. Little did I know he would come with sideburns as well.
My original due date was August 21st. Then after our emergency sonogram in my 1st trimester, the date was moved to the 16th. A second sonogram said the date would be around the 13th based on his size but because of the genetic factor in the 2nd trimester, that’s just an observation. This kid is big.
After all 3 due dates had passed, I made a public service announcement with an update. People had been asking, even texting my mother. One of the most profound comments was that:
“the Lord is just as much in the waiting room as He is in the delivery room.” -Anjule Cooper
Spoken like a woman of wisdom who has been through her own set of challenges herself.
One day, I was dropping off Jethro to school and a classmate’s mom came up to me. “Girl, the Lord woke me up and told me to pray for you.” I burst into tears. Little did I know that today would be the most difficult 3rd trimester day in all 4 pregnancies I’d have to face. I came home, slept, and when I woke I couldn’t move. My hips were jacked up. I sat on the couch funny at 4am and now I’m locked. I shuffled around 3inches at a time, unable to shift weight to walk. I was in pain. What if I go into labor now? C-section? Emotionally, I lost my bearings. My midwife was going off duty as of Friday at 9pm and has just ordered for testing to be done. Breathe. He is in control.
This was me, trying to walk:
I hobbled into the chiropractors office and tried to be brave. I was in pain. The entire office was shocked that I was still pregnant because they hadn’t seen me in the last 2 weeks. Holdja breath and craacck!
The next day I was sore but could walk better, my heart perfectly content. Keep going, keep going. Almost there. I can’t see the finish line but it’s gotta be up ahead.
A verse comes to mind I had memorized years ago:
“Do everything without complaining or arguing, so that you may become blameless and pure, children of God, without fault in a crooked and depraved generation, in which you shine like stars in the universe…” Phil 2:14-15.
This whole journey taught me a thing or two: He’s in the waiting. Take courage no matter what you may be waiting for or fighting through with no end in sight, Jesus knows. There is strength and power in His Name. I had the privilege of experiencing God in a whole new way through all of this. He gave me everything I needed to keep going, weights lifted, I could run with endurance. One of the biggest blessings I experienced was having a community of support around me, the prayers of a thousand saints. It’s truly humbling and I’m so grateful for each of them. Life was never meant to be lived alone. I encourage you, while you wait, share your need with others. He’s in the waiting.
Find strength in joy
Let His Words lead you on
Do not forget His great faithfulness
He’ll finish all He’s begun
Stay steadfast my soul
He’s in the waiting
He’s in the waiting
Hold onto your hope
As your triumph unfolds
He’s never failing
He’s never failing
“for it is God who works in you to will and act according to His good purposes.” Phil 2:13
Thank you for being a part of my story…