1/09/2017

what my fourth positive pregnancy test taught me (+ a giveaway)

It was the day after Thanksgiving, a year ago. I remember making an extra stop at the closest dollar store that day to pick up a pregnancy test, thinking "it's got to be negative, no way it's positive, but just to be sure..."

Ha! One thing to be sure about in life: When you're definitely sure the pregnancy test is going to be negative, but you're taking it just-in-case--that's a pretty good sign to go ahead and order the newborn diapers and wipes.


Photo: the day before the big news hit.
Sean came home and I immediately departed to pick up the best home pregnancy test I could find (which is definitely not found at a dollar store). Back at home, this one came out positive, too. Surprise, surprise.


My mind immediately began spinning with questions that had no good answers: Where would we put this new baby? Do we find out the gender this time? What makes me think I'm ready for another baby? If it's a boy, do I giveaway all the girl baby clothes? How will I handle four little kids? How will we pay for college four times over? College? Heck, how about parochial grade school tuition? AND HOW DID THIS HAPPEN??!!!? (well, that question did have an obvious answer.) : /

In all this pending uncertainty, I wondered how different life would look after this fourth baby's arrival.


My third baby taught me definitively that I'm the mom--I'm the authority on my kids. And now, this fourth baby has taught me a most important lesson: I can choose my attitude. And the attitude I should always chose, no matter the circumstance, is gratitude.

I saw this Ann Voskamp quote forever ago, but it has stuck with me:

http://annvoskamp.com/sticky-notes-signup/

"Everyone gets to decide how happy they want to be. Because everyone gets to decide how grateful they are willing to be."

I can choose to be an irritated mess each morning because I've been up all night with the baby. Or I can slurp some coffee and chose to be grateful that my baby is home with me and not in the hospital.

I can choose to be depressed that labor + delivery ate a good-sized chunk out of our savings and delayed our house projects. Or I can snuggle my kids on the sofa we bought years ago as newlyweds and chose to be grateful we have a perfectly wonderful home, dated kitchen cupboards and all.

I can choose to envy the families that are out of babyhood and survival mode. Or I can stop and smell the top of my baby's head.


Get used to church bathroom selfies with your mom, kiddo.

I can choose to be frustrated that going to the grocery store takes a double stroller, 6 reusable bags, a baby sling AND a bribery stop at the bakery counter--and that's all before I go grab one gallon of milk. Or, I can choose to be grateful for never having to wonder if there's enough money in the account to cover milk, eggs and diapers.

I'm much more aware now, too, that at a minimum, I have two bigger sets of eyes observing me--and my boys' observations are likely to stick with them. Children watch. And they learn. Modeling gratitude for them now is essential.

So. Thank you for making it through this little post :) Now on to the fun part!

1. Comment below and tell me one thing you are grateful for today, and you'll be entered to win a $50 gift certificate to Diapers.com!

2. Sharing the Facebook post for this contest will earn you 1 extra entry.

3. Winner to be picked in one week

 This giveaway is a partnership with Nakturnal, with a prize of a gift certificate.

Update! This giveaway is closed. The winner was Rachel! Thank you to all who commented and shared on facebook. 


30 comments:

  1. Snow days!!!❄️❄️❄️
    Great post, Mary! Love these sweet little surprises.

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  2. It's been dismal weather-wise here, so I'm grateful for our warm house. :-)

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  3. While I agonize over still being pregnant, I'm thankful that I know she's still healthy and happy. I'm grateful that I know she will be arriving soon enough!

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  4. I am grateful for my kids and my husband. :)

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  5. Right this second...my delicious coffee, my boys, my husband's positive attitude as we set up our new house, a good new home, my animals, my jobs that let me be at home with my boys even with the struggle to balance and make time, you and your blog posts!

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  6. I am grateful for Mary blogging again! :)

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    1. Oh my gosh that's exactly what I was going to say! I've missed your blogging, Mary - I'm glad you're back 😊

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  7. I am grateful for having just spent another night in the recliner with the baby who won't sleep in her crib, becuase it means I finally have the baby I waited so long for, and she's at home with me.

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  8. I'm grateful for so many friends & mentors who have loved me, taught me, & led me to Jesus.

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  9. I am grateful for Mary's last surprise baby.😊 He's another one of God's beautiful, charming creations.

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  10. I'm grateful that I was sick over the weekend, instead of during the week, and that it was a short bug and not a chronic illness. Even as miserable as I was, how could I complain when I really do have it so good??

    Also glad to see you blog again!!

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  11. I am grateful to be able to create life when so many have fertility issues.

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  12. Looking at your first picture, it looks like you and I are just in step. This post resonated with me a lot! I am pregnant with my fourth child, and all of mine are 19.5 months apart. Despite their regularity, 75% of them were surprises, very much including this one. I am starting my second trimester, so the peaceful feeling of "I'm ready, I'm all in!" has finally settled over me.

    I'm thankful for my husband, who is ALWAYS all-in, happy, and sure from the moment we see those pink lines. He's an inspiration, the one who "converted me," who convinced me of being pro-life in college, and who has made it a joy to live that out everyday henceforth.

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  13. I'm thankful for a surprise,inspirational letter from my cloistered Carmelite SIL.

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  14. I am grateful to be pregnant, even though I have a history of miscarriages and we don't know if we will get to keep this baby. I am grateful to have this time with this baby now, even if we don't meet till heaven.

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  15. I'm grateful I'm able to breastfeed, even if it's difficult and painful. I'm grateful my husband is able to take classes and move into a different job (2019 - God willing!). I'm grateful for our warm house in cold WI. I'm grateful that our son potty trained quickly (awake at least), even though we had no idea what we were doing! Beautiful post. :)

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  16. Grateful that we can have babies at all!

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  17. I am grateful that my husband is safely home. (He has been out of the country since the day after Christmas.) :-)

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  18. I am grateful to finally be back in our overcrowded, snow-crusted little house after three weeks of travel. Groceries and laundry never felt so good!

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  19. I keep trying to respond here as something other than "Unknown (Google)". Initially I was grateful for our little family and indoor dance parties when it has been too cold to go out to run off our extra energy. Now I will be thankful if this thing publishes.

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  20. I'm grateful that I'm getting to snuggle my 3 beautiful babies in a warm bed tonight.

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  21. I'm grateful for the opportunity to be home with my kids! :)

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  22. I am grateful for my kids today and everyday!
    sonyadmorris@gmail.com

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  23. Shared on FB.
    https://www.facebook.com/sonya.morris.9/posts/1221378624620316
    sonyadmorris@gmail.com
    Thank you! :)

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  24. Love this read! Thanks for the gentle reminder to be grateful of this amazing life I have and how amazing it is that I have been entrusted by God to be the mommy of these two precious little humans. I am guilty of the sleep frustration REGULARLY. And by regularly I mean every night. I need to remind myself that it is only a season. I'll sleep again one day... one day.. someday.. :)

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  25. I am grateful for my little girl.

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  26. I am grateful for my family and I am grateful for the vet who successfully saved my cat.
    JenniferAnne74 @ aol.com

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  27. I shared on Facebook
    https://www.facebook.com/JenniferAnne74/posts/10209238019925094
    JenniferAnne74 @ aol.com

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  28. I'm grateful for my 4 kids and my husband! Okay, that's 5 things!

    mami2jcn at gmail dot com

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  29. shared--https://www.facebook.com/permalink.php?story_fbid=390139104657819&id=100009851985013&pnref=story

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