>Announcing our Bonus Baby

>For the last few months, I’ve been holding a secret nestled deep inside me. A tiny kernel that has shrouded me in a fog of nausea and sent me to the couch for deep naps every afternoon. About a week ago, the nausea finally ended, and I finally stopped consuming industrial quantities of cereal and crackers, and started really enjoying the life growing inside of me.

I had been wrestling for a while about whether we were done having children, torn between a continued hunger to once again feel a tiny hand in mine and the worry that our family would be stretched too thin. Finally we decided to just see what would happen, to let fate decide.

The powers that be have a pretty good sense of humor, as it turns out. Not only did I get pregnant fairly quickly after deciding to roll the dice, but I conceived a child with a due date on the birthday of two of my children. Thankfully, only 10% of babies are born on their due date. When my daughters turn 5 and 10, respectively, on October 3, their new baby brother or sister will hopefully already be born, or birthday planning going forward will get even more complicated.

Even though the kids had often told me that they didn’t want any more babies in our family, they shocked me with their thrill with the news. They immediately began debating names, trying out every possibility with theirs, “Bella, Jack, Juju and Jane. Nope, doesn’t work. Too many Js.” This is so different than my previous pregnancies, when my oldest was still in diapers and preschool. This is the family’s baby, eagerly awaited by three kids who can dress themselves and pour themselves a bowl of cereal.

I’m ten years older than I was when I carried Bella like a promise inside of me. Ten years wiser and 10 pounds heavier. The odds of complications and abnormalities are more than 10 fold higher, and I’m much more conscious of all that could go wrong. But when I stroke my belly as it stretches one more time, and I reach for my cache of maternity clothes again, I can’t help but feel as giddy as I did ten years ago.

I can’t wait to meet my ultimate indulgence, this bonus baby. Can’t wait to meet this person and see whether he or she will be a charmer like Juju, a joker like Jack, or a dancer like Bella. Can’t wait to hold his or her tiny head cradled in my hand and look into those trusting solemn eyes for the first time.

41 Responses to >Announcing our Bonus Baby

  1. >You may know this but I have a bonus baby too and he is the best thing that ever happened to us. My children are 16, 14, and 4 and it is just a big lovefest for the youngest one. Congratulations on your new little one and glad to hear you are feeling better.

  2. >Thank you everyone for your enthusiasm and congratulations. I've found that the announcement of a 4th child is often greeted by shock and puzzlement rather than joy, followed up with many questions about why. Your support and sharing of our excitement means a lot!

  3. >Congratulations, Vanessa. That is such exciting news. And 4 is a wonderful number. Best wishes for a healthy, happy and joyful pregnancy!

  4. >Congratulation! New babies are such a wonderful blessing.(And so fun that you have children who have the same birthday! I do too, mine will turn 7 and 5 on June 15th!)

  5. >Such wonderful news! Sounds like you asked fate a question and it gave you a rather straight forward answer.

  6. >No one is as excited as ME! Or the girls… they can't wait to cuddle their new baby niece or nephew at Christmas!
    And I am SO glad you came "out." This was a harder secret to keep than my own pregnancies were 😉

  7. >VANESSA!!!!!!! How WONDERFUL!
    Blessings galore, and much love.

    Celebrating with you!

    (and SO Makes My Monday! I am linking you up!)

  8. >I am SO THRILLED to have gotten to hear this news first hand <3 YAYYYYYYYY for BABIES!!! 🙂

    xoxo

  9. >So happy for you! It was wonderful to meet you last week and I'm thrilled to hear your news. You look fantastic!

  10. >I'm so excited for you and your family!!!! Sending tons if positive thoughts for a happy and healthy pregnancy and an easy birth! {{{{{Hugs}}}}}}

  11. >Congratulations Vanessa! You are a fabulous mom, and a fourth child will be a wonderful addition to your loving family!

    I wish you and your family all of the best!! This is so fabulous, I am definitely sharing the excitement with you down here in Florida!

  12. >Congratulations! And here I was thinking you were brave to have 3 kids when I can barely handle 2. And now a new baby? You're amazing!

  13. >How on earth did I MISS THIS till now?! Just catching up in my reader and caught a morning sickness reference then ohmygoodnightthatisanultrasound. Congratulations to the whole family!!

  14. >Oh, I'm late! But, yay for you and your whole family! Here's to happy, healthy pregnancy.

    And more stories. 🙂

    Congratulations!

  15. >Oh oh OH! Congrats!!!! This is fabulous news!

    No wonder you wanted to share the kiddie ride experience with me at Disney. 🙂

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