Pregnancy is an experience I love and treasure, aside from the morning sickness and other unfortunate side effects. We are pregnant with our fourth, and final, child. From the moment of conception, I knew this baby would be our last child. Acknowledging that led to a rush of emotions I never expected.
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Savoring the Moments of My Last Baby
Forty weeks feels like eternity, but it's far from it. Each pregnancy seems to be shorter and shorter, as our days fly by faster than ever before. School, work, homework, practices, and lessons dominate our days that seem to end as soon as they begin. We are over halfway through our pregnancy, and it has gone quicker than I could imagine.
Because of this, I've turned to savoring the moments. I try not to rush to any milestone. Last night, my husband felt our daughter move under his hands for the first time, but for the last time. That precious moment, when my husband was able to feel his child move for the first time, will never come back again. It was a joyful yet bittersweet moment, because I knew I would never experience that again.
Pondering the Future
What will our future look like without more babies? For the past eight years of our lives, we have focused on raising newborns, breastfeeding, and surviving toddlerhood. I can't help but wonder what our lives will look like once those stages are gone for good.
I wonder if life will feel the same if I don't have a baby suckling at my breast. Will life feel the same if I don't have a pregnancy on the horizon or if a toddler isn't terrorizing our home? Everyone says that the next chapter is bittersweet, but just as wonderful as bringing new life into this world. While I am sure that the new chapter will be filled with joys, will it be just as wonderful?
Related: Goodbye 1st Chapter of Motherhood: A Letter to My Kindergartener
Counting Down the Weeks
Despite savoring the moments and my wondering what life will be like in a few years, I am still excited for the birth of our last baby. She, without a doubt, will bring happiness and brightness to our life. In a few short months, we will wonder how she wasn't always part of our lives. She will fit in perfectly.
So, until the moment we get to hold her, I will continue to stare at my belly and smile, watching her movements. I will treasure the ultrasounds. I will bask in the final weeks that I get to feel a baby move, our precious time when she is mostly mine.
Finally, I will continue to treasure these moments because they are fleeting and will be gone before I know it.