The car seat is installed. The changing station filled with plenty of diapers. Clothing carefully folded and outfits packed with Teddy (our Molly Bear made to Teddy’s weight), and the essentials, for post-delivery. Bottles washed & sterilized. A to-go bag ready at Grandma’s house for Nathan’s weekend there. We are ready – ready as we can possibly be for sweet Delilah’s arrival.

Mommy and toddler kisses - ready as can be

Author’s Personal Collection/Elizabeth Michalski

Today we hit 40 weeks of pregnancy. A week I never in my wildest dreams thought we’d make it to.

I thought my body was incapable of carrying a baby to term. I thought if I could just make it to viability week – I’d feel at ease, knowing there’d be something doctors could do to help a baby who came to soon. That week came and went, and so did the rest. I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t holding my breath the last 40 weeks. Waiting for something to go wrong. Some may call it pessimism. Anyone who’s experienced pregnancy loss would call it normal. It takes one moment to change your life and perspective on what you once thought was something so beautiful and simple.

Toddler using Doppler on Mama's pregnant belly

Author’s Personal Collection/Elizabeth Michalski

Pregnancy is still beautiful, but it’s also terrifying.

The last few nights I’ve had trouble sleeping – and a lot of it is because I feel like a turtle stuck on its back trying to get comfortable in the middle of the night. But the other part is my anxiety, keeping me awake. In between the haziness of sleep deprivation, the darkness creeps in, and I find myself in tears, wishing Delilah would give me the slightest wiggle – so I can feel at ease. I am absolutely petrified of getting so close – to have it all be taken away. Teddy’s stillbirth left me with the worst sense of fear of losing another child before they could be born. I wish it was a fear I could shake, but I can’t. I’m just keeping my fingers crossed and hoping for the best, that’s all I really can do. I’m impatiently waiting for the moment I hear her first cry, and I can breathe again.

My doctors said my odds of having Delilah come naturally aren’t great, a whopping 27% success rate of avoiding a c-section, but calculations are just that. I’ve often found myself to be that odd percentage, so what’s one more time? To be safe based on her weight and my history, my doctors are planning to induce tomorrow – at 40 weeks 1 day. Part of me of course hoped she would come on her own – but I’ve also become content with the idea of being induced. Anything could happen – I could potentially still go into labor on my own – but there is a finish line. My induction by no means guarantees a c-section. I didn’t heal well from my last C-section, and it is a major surgery, so if I can avoid it, I’d like to.

Mommy and toddler snuggles - Ready as can be

Author’s Personal Collection/Elizabeth Michalski

But at the end of the day – if Delilah arrives safe and sound, that’s all this mama can hope for.

So my team is rallied and ready for the big day. I’ve been soaking up every moment with Nathan, my darling rainbow baby, getting in all the snuggles and cuddles before his baby sister arrives. Bags are packed & ready to go – I’m planning on having a delicious lunch with my mom, Nathan, my bestie and my husband before we head to the hospital. My husband and my bestie get to be with me and I could cry with excitement. My bestie wasn’t allowed to come for Nathan’s birth, as policies changed as Covid was beginning to shut things down at that time. This time I get to have both of them – with Nathan spending some quality time with his grandparents and only a Facetime away (thank you technology – and mom & dad). Having my support system with me is what’s getting me through all of this. Although the darkness has been trying to make its way in – I’m trying to find the light. I know it’s coming – it’s only a day away.

We can’t wait to meet you, sweet girl.

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