It’s so easy to get wrapped up in the everyday chaos. It’s so easy to focus on the little things. I find myself stressing about the morning routine, my lack of sleep from the night before, the mess that is my house and the list of things that I know the day ahead of me holds. I stress about the homework that will arrive home that day and getting dinner onto the table in enough time to give the kids; baths and get them to bed so that they get just the right amount of sleep for the next day.
I stress about spending enough time with each of the boys while also finding time to write, grocery shop, get the car inspected, run an event at preschool, clean the house and be a wife. I stress about it all. I find myself at the end of the day often thinking, I need a break. Tonight as I sat with the boys for story time and the 6-year-old read to us, I could not help but think about how I got here, how we all got here.
There was a time when it was just me and my husband. We slept in on the weekends. We went out for late dinners. We hung out with friends. We traveled on a whim. We slept (I may have already mentioned that.) Two years into our marriage, we decided it was time to start a family. From the moment we made that decision, I envisioned what our life would be one day. I envisioned us just the way we were, but surrounded by children. I knew our lives would change, but I don’t think you can ever really know how much they will change until they actually do. That being said, I monitored my cycles, I knew when I was ovulating and I was so eager to become a mom.
I will never forget the day that the little stick showed a plus sign. The overwhelming feelings of both joy and fear came over me. This was it. We were going to be parents. I would love to say that I told my husband in some really cute way, but to be honest the moment he walked in the door I just screamed WE’RE PREGNANT! And so we began our journey. Our first ultrasound was scheduled and I was so excited to begin the journey we had been waiting for. As I got myself up on the table, I smiled from ear to ear. The technician told me to relax and that the gel would be cold. She began. She didn’t say anything. She didn’t look at me. I knew. She excused herself and as I sat there feeling beyond vulnerable, a million things began to run through my head. I started to think about the future I had imagined. I saw myself standing in the kitchen watching my husband play with the kids outside. I saw the bedrooms that were currently empty becoming the home to our children who I would check on every night before bed. I started to cry and the Doctor walked in. She took my hand and said I am so sorry, but the baby has no heartbeat and I cried. I cried from disbelief. I cried from sorrow. I cried from fear.
I felt fear that we might never experience the chaos of everyday life with children, that our house might never be filled with laughter other than our own. I cried thinking I may never trip over a toy on my way to bed or have a teddy bear to pick up and put away before I brushed my teeth. I cried thinking I might never have a child who needed help with homework or that our dinner table would never contain more than two people. I cried because it was in that moment of loss that I knew just how much I wanted a family.
Tonight as I sat with my two, beautiful boys and I listened to my 6-year-old read us a story, I could not help but flash back to the moment I feared none of this would ever come true. Our lives are chaotic and our house is never quiet, but I never liked the quiet, anyway. The silence that filled the room the day of that ultrasound was louder than any noise I have ever heard. The sound of my boy’s heartbeats was the best sound I have ever heard. Sure, the sound of each of their heartbeats has been followed with the sounds of crying, laughter, fighting, screaming, running and playing and there are times when I think I would love some peace and quiet, but this is what I wanted and I would not trade it for the world.
I realized tonight that we are here and there is no place I would rather be. As I walked the boys to bed I stepped on three cars, a train, and a couple of blocks but I could not help but laugh. This is exactly what I wanted. The chaos is not something to stress about, it’s something to celebrate.
A version of this post originally appeared on Outsmarted Mommy