Monday, November 14, 2011


I was never one of those little girls who had the dream wedding and dream family... the big plans for the exact whens wheres whats and how of my future life, but I've always kind of had it my mind that having two girls would be nice. I guess since I was raised as an only child (both of my half brothers are significantly older than I am and both were raised elsewhere) and I always wanted a sister to share my childhood with.

Almost immediately after having Gracie, Jason was ready for more. At that time though, things were really hard. We were just getting over all the trouble we'd gotten into, we were stuck in a house that had horrible memories and was too small to house all of our stuff, let alone another child, and since we had pretty much just gotten Gracie back, I really wanted to be selfish with her and have her as an only child for a while since we'd missed out on so much.

When Gracie was 3, we moved into a new house - the one we're in now. It's bigger, it's nicer, and life instantly became so much better once we moved in. We moved here in May. In July, Jason and I began talking about the possibility of trying for another baby. Enough time had passed that we had our feet under us with Gracie, and the house situation was better, which cleared up both of my reasons for saying no. (Just to clarify, we had a pregnancy scare while still at the old house just before finding out we were moving. I cried and cried and cried, thinking that I never wanted to bring another baby into that house. I was DESPERATE to not have another baby while living there.)

Within a few days, I started feeling gross. I had the worst heartburn ever. I had just taken a pregnancy test though because I was late (which is what sparked the conversation about having another baby), so I knew it wasn't because I was pregnant. (The only time I've ever had heartburn before this was when I was pregnant with Gracie.) I figured maybe I had just eaten something that didn't sit right and it would go away soon. But it didn't. It kept on, and kept getting worse. It got to the point where I couldn't eat. The pain was so bad that it kept me from feeling hunger.

The first weekend in August we went to visit my mom in Tulsa. One of the reasons for the trip was to go to the mall and get some new jeans. I had just quit smoking in April which caused me to put on about 20 pounds. I felt awful the whole time. I barely got off my mom's couch. We even went to my favorite Italian restaurant, the place where there's no such thing as left-overs because the food is so delicious I'd rather literally bust my gut open than not finish my food, and I could barely eat. I decided that on Monday I'd call the doctor. Something was WRONG with me.

We came home on Sunday and Jason immediately had to go to work. After dropping Jason off at work, Gracie and I decided to go to Wal-Mart to do some spur of the moment grocery shopping. While there, I remembered that we needed shampoo, so I headed to the back of the store. The main row was incredibly crowded, so we decided to walk along the back wall, and while back there, a little purple and white box caught my eye. For some reason, the 2-pack of Equate brand pregnancy tests were on sale. I KNEW I wasn't pregnant, but I figured that when I called the doctor they'd want to test me, just in case, so I figured I'd grab a couple of tests for my own peace of mind beforehand.

After shopping, Gracie and I came home, put our groceries away and sat down to watch a movie. I'd stopped at McDonald's for a large sweet tea on my way home, so by the time the movie was over, I was ready to go. I remembered the pregnancy test and figured I'd better go ahead and take it, just to show myself that these doubts I was having were ridiculous.

The moment I set the test on the sink, the first line started showing up. No big deal - that's the line that is simply there to tell you the test is working. The second line started showing up, which was no big deal either since it's supposed to be a plus sign. I looked up for a second to check my hair in the mirror and when I looked back down, that second line had gone from being simply vertical to being a plus sign. My doubts, as it turned out, were not ridiculous. I was pregnant.

I grabbed Gracie and ran straight to Chili's to tell Jason the news. I went to the kitchen where he was working and asked him to come talk to me. He was incredibly busy and it was obvious that he was annoyed that I'd pulled him from his work at such a busy time, but this was important.

"I'm pregnant," I told him.

A smile swept across his face. "Baby, you just made my night."

Gracie and I ran home so I could start making my phone calls. I called my mom who was ecstatic, and I called my best friend Natalie who was pregnant with her first child. I was so happy.

My pregnancy progressed very much in the same way it did when I was pregnant with Gracie. I had a lot more heartburn and my mood swings were more drastic, but aside from that it was a very easy pregnancy.

I was so excited when I found out we were having another girl. The small differences in this pregnancy like the more intense heartburn made me think I was having a boy. I was convinced. I already had a name picked out: Oliver Phin. What a goofy sounding name, right?! It's a good thing we wound up with a girl, because that kid probably had a world of hurt coming to him for his name alone.

Jason and I fought and fought and fought over what we were going to name this little girl. He'd tell me, "You pick the name." But then I'd pick a name and he'd hate it. Delilah was out because of Sampson and Delilah, and so was Lilah. Lorelei was out for no given reason. Amelia Rose got the boot too, as did EVERY name I suggested. I even threw in some curveball names I'd never want to name my child just to see what he'd say. (I'm not listing the names here though, because chances are one of you out there has a child with one of my curveball names.)

Finally, I remembered a game that Jason and I had played a few years before Gracie was born. The game was called Kingdom Hearts, and there was a little girl on the game named Kairi. I remember Jason and I both remarking about what a pretty name that was and joking about maybe naming a daughter after the character. Before bringing it up though, I needed the perfect middle name. After some careful consideration, I decided to pitch the name Kairi Blake, Blake being after Jason's little brother. Jason loved the name. It was perfect.

I knew that I'd want my tubes tied once Kairi was born. My friends all told me how much different it is raising two children than just one, how hard it is. I was reminded that beyond the basic cost of having two children, we'd also have four proms, two colleges, and two weddings to pay for. And I thought about myself as an only child wishing for just one sister to share my secrets with. I was secure and happy with my decision.

For the first several months, things were really easy. So easy that I began to doubt my decision to have my tubes tied. I thought, "Man, everyone said this would be SO hard and it's NOT! I could do this with another child...." But then Kairi started crawling, then walking, then running. Kairi is very much a full-speed-ahead kind of girl, and I love it. But I knew that I couldn't handle any more kids once Kairi gained mobility.

Kairi is two now and Gracie is six. Our lives are so very different than they were when I found out I was pregnant, but I am confident that my family is complete and I couldn't be happier.