So I'll jump right into the good. It's GREAT, actually.
We will be welcoming Baby Boyd #3 in early November!
There is a very charming story behind how this baby came to be, but I will save that for another day. We had not entertained the idea of having another biological child in a really long time. We were at peace with being done with that phase of our life, but now that we are here and there is a sweet little life growing inside me, we are thrilled at the opportunity to experience it all over again. We are truly excited and thankful for what God has in store for our family.
Now, I wish I only felt how that last paragraph sounds. You know, happy and smiling and enjoying my third and final pregnancy. Instead, I have been extremely sick for the last 4 weeks. Not just morning sickness sick. A nonstop, severe sickness that has been completely debilitating and landed me in the hospital for 4 days 2 weeks ago, and has me in the hospital once again as I'm typing this. I have hyperemesis gravidarum, which is a rare but serious condition. I'll spare you the specific details, but I've not been able to keep down much for a month now. I have lost a lot of weight, became very dehydrated with ketones in my urine (a sign my body was shutting down into starvation mode), and basically feel like I have the stomach flu 24/7 for over a month now. I can count on my fingers the number of times I've gotten dressed or left my house since being hit with this.
It has not only been hard physically, but emotionally as well. I know this isn't my fault, but the enemy has been really good at tangling me up with feelings of guilt and despair. Feelings that I'm sucking hugely at life, failing my family and friends, and just being an overall depressing burden on everyone close to me. My house is a wreck, my kids have a very absent mom, and my husband is stretching himself very, very thin. He has been the biggest source of support and I could not have asked for a better man, but I feel terrible that he has to take all this on. I have had some really dark days -- there haven't been many where I haven't sobbed into my pillow because I just want my life back and the thought of how many more tough weeks and months are ahead of me is almost unbearable. But then I remind myself that this IS temporary and will have the best of endings. I think back to the first moments of meeting Harrison and Harper and that instant love and remember that God is gifting us with a tremendous blessing and every single moment of this will be worth it.
I wish the sadness ended there. But then there's Elby. We had to put him in temporary respite care twice. First was when we had a birthday trip planned to New Orleans but then instead I spent the majority of a week alternating between my bed and the bathroom floor. And again while I was in the hospital the first time. I wrestled with so much guilt when I got to the point where I was unsure if I would be able to continue taking care of a baby being this sick and we weren't sure what we were going to do long-term. Because he's in foster care, we couldn't just send him with grandparents or over to a friend's house like we could with H & H. But ultimately, it didn't matter anyway. He had court and the judge ruled for him to be reunited with his siblings. It was good news for him and I'm happy that their family is back together again, but it was also very sad to say goodbye to him. He really is the sweetest baby and we all had grown pretty attached to him. The kids took the news very hard and it was heartbreaking to see them so upset. But that's how foster care is. You pour out love for as long as God asks you to, and then you say goodbye and trust in His plan.