At the age of 25, when she got married, Mercy was ready to have a baby. After all, it’s expected that when you get married, you should invite some the attendees of your wedding to a christening ceremony of your child before, or right about, your first wedding anniversary. However, while she was ready, her husband was not, so they waited but Mercy kept praying within those two years they waited that she would get pregnant…but she never did.
Finally, when her husband was ready to become a father, they started trying and when month after month, cycle after cycle, Aunt Flo kept appearing, she was worried but kept it well under wraps, until a year into their trying, when she sneaked off to her doctor and asked him to carry out tests on her. She was concerned that whatever was stopping them from getting pregnant was her fault. The tests result gave her the all clear; there was nothing wrong with her.
Out of the blue, some six months later, she cried out and begged her husband to please go to the hospital with her. To say he was surprised was an understatement. He had never given any thought to the fact that they had not gotten pregnant, even as it was almost two years since they officially started trying.
He recovered enough to pet his wife, and wiped her tears with his promise to go to the hospital with her. On getting to the hospital, they had more tests done on her, and some done on him; all of which came back with no problems, nor anything to show for their inability to conceive.
With that result, they started their journey into the world of fertility treatments, timed sex, ovulation prediction kits, pregnancy tests whenever her period was late or she was feeling out of sorts. Still nothing worked. A baby did not come, but during this time, she bonded more with her husband. She stopped all the sneaking around to hospitals and opened up to him about all her fears and worries. Even the ones she could not explain.
They graduated to fertility specialists, and the verdict was the same, nothing was wrong with them – Unexplained infertility, it was called.
In the meantime, all Mercy and her husband thought about was becoming parents, they thought about adoption, they thought about surrogacy, but they also learned from other mothers, from other parents. They stayed on the outside, taking a glimpse into the world of parenting, with their nieces and nephews providing them with lots of views and practice.
She realized that although she might have been a good mother if she had a baby at the time she wanted it, she had more to offer her child now than before. During all that time, she learned patience and it was a lesson that came in handy by the time she had her baby and had to deal with her tantrums.
Dealing with infertility also made her realize how her career was not entirely conducive to having a baby. Although she had thought that when she had kids, she would go right back to work, as the journey to momma land got longer for her and her husband, her thinking started to change. She started to think about how she could mold her career to allow her be more of a hands-on mom. She wanted to be present to witness every milestone of the baby, whenever it came.
So, even before she got the BFP she wanted, she started to arrange her life, and her lifestyle, to suit that of a baby. And did she get the BFP? Yes, it came unexplained and unexpected, just as her infertility was unexplained. On the day, they were about to travel out of the country for their annual vacation, she decided to take a pregnancy test. Her period was late again and for the first time in a long time, she saw two pink lines. “Oh! That must be a mistake, that stick was probably faulty” were the thoughts that flashed through her head. So she got some more she already had in the house and tested, all gave the same result.
Still in the bathroom, she called her husband who was busy packing in the other room. Grumbling, he came and met her looking at the array of pregnancy sticks she had spread out, studying them like a scientist. She turned around and told him, “You know what, these sticks say I’m pregnant, but I want you to help me buy some pregnancy test kits from the pharmacy down the road, so I can test again…preferably digital ones.”
Without prompting, he rushed off to get the test kits and came back. She tested again and the result was the same, she was pregnant! They had to reschedule their trip as they rushed off to the hospital to get some blood work done. The verdict was the same. She was eight weeks pregnant and had not even realized it. She still does not have the words to describe how she felt in that moment.
For the nine months of pregnancy, Mercy was on cloud nine. Every pain, twinge and discomfort was accepted with grace, as she kept reminding herself that she was privileged to be pregnant and about to become a mother.
When the baby eventually, her husband joined her on cloud nine, as the baby was a split replica of her father. Ah! The resemblance was crazy. Where, most mothers have war stories to tell about the first six weeks of motherhood, Mercy was just happy to have someone want her only the way a child(baby) would want its mother. Every cry, even if it was in the middle of the night, was a reminder of the gift of motherhood she had been endowed with.
Her work schedule was already scaled back, so she could actually spend time with her daughter if she wanted to for her first year, and take her to work afterwards, because honestly, Mercy did not think she could trust anyone else with caring for her.
She definitely knew she had been given a gift and what she could do was be the best mother that ever liveth!
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