On Valentines Day of 1999 we confirmed the pregnancy of our 2nd child – not quite one year after our 1st child was born. Again, I cried in fear and an overwhelming sense of helplessness and inadequacy. Married, traveled out of the country, had our first baby, DaRonn lost his father to cancer, we moved to another State, both of us working, DaRonn a full time university student, and we got pregnant again – all in the course of 2 years and 2 months. Talk about some stress!
The pregnancy progressed completely normally. During the third trimester we prepared for a road trip from Missouri to Chicago. My prep consisted of growing our firstborn son and getting him born. DaRonn’s prep consisted of training for a marathon. He was doing it as a fundraiser. Did I mention he was still a full time student (due to graduate shortly after we returned from Chicago) and working to provide for our growing family? During our “free time” also we volunteered at our church leading a marriage small group and spending Saturday mornings at a kids club in a downtown neighborhood.
This pregnancy taught me that children have distinct personalities from the moment they are conceived. Whereas Raimy’s intrauterine movements felt like a butterfly or the gracefulness of a jellyfish, Timothy’s movements were deliberate and almost predictable and scheduled. Raimy remains a free spirit and beautifully flows in grace and softness. Timothy is my scientific, structured thinker who thrives on schedule, predictability, and logic. How fascinating that their traits were identifiable from the very start of their lives in my womb.
Timothy’s due date came and went. We scheduled his induction for the 11th of October. I felt that was providential since Raimy was born on the 11th too. Another cold morning for going to have a baby. The same IV and bag breaking procedures were followed as with my first. This time I wasn’t so happy to be connected to an IV, though. I had the urge to be moving around. They allowed me to walk some but wanted me in bed. So I tried as many positions I could on the bed. I moved around alot!
The laboring time was again around 6 hours long. He was born face up. This means the back of his skull rubbed against my bones as he descended. Usually babies are born with their squishy faces down. When the back of the head pushes on the spine there is no break from the pain between contractions, just a bit of a lesser pain. Still, I opted for only mild pain killers through the IV drip. I was glad that the pushing was started and done in just a 10 minute span.
Timothy Aaron Washington was born in Saint Joseph, Missouri on October 11, 1999 – my first son. This beautiful, round boy weigh a nice 7 1/2 pounds. His low cries sounded like manly moaning. We took him home as soon as we could.
Just weeks later we made the road trip with our family of four to the marathon event. We stopped along the way to nurse and let our toddler run around. The highway rest stops from St. Joe to Chicago are very nice. I enjoyed our trip very much.
We didn’t go out to see the early morning start of the marathon with DaRonn. He told us an estimated time to be near the finish line to see him cross. I loaded the kids up in the double stroller and we found a sunny, grassy spot in the crowd to wait and watch.
I sat with my back against a tree on the frozen ground to nurse my newborn and corral my toddler. I felt so strong, like I could do anything. I watched people of every shape, size, ability, and age cross that finish line. Considering the crowd, the finish-line crossers, and our little trio under the tree had an empowering effect on me. My little son, especially, gave me a sense of strength and worth. I am capable and resourceful thanks to Timothy Aaron.
DaRonn’s race took about 4 1/2 hours. My labor to birth our oldest son took about 6 hours. As a couple we supported each other during these tremendous physical feats. We made a good team.