Two Wonderful Pink Lines
I was an only child, and even as a teenager when all my friends loved babies, I couldn't see the big deal. I met John when I was 11 and he was 13. We were best friends growing up, and no one was surprised when we got married. I think what really surprised everyone was the birth of our son, Joshua, nine months and two days after our wedding. I think they all assumed that he was an "accident" but we really did want a baby as soon as we got married.
He was born six weeks prematurely, but he only had to stay in the hospital for a week. When Josh was seven months old, I really had the baby fever, but my husband didn't. We were using contraceptives and he told me in no uncertain terms to continue using them.
I got pregnant anyway while judiciously trying not to, but I still think wanting a baby so bad somehow got around the contraceptives. John was really concerned about our financial situation, but when Micah was born 16 months after Joshua, he couldn't help but fall in love with him. Then, 23 months after Micah, our little Emily Catherine was born.
I felt overwhelmed with three children, and I told John that if I ever got pregnant again, they would have to drag my body from the bottom of the river. John really didn't want me to have a tubal ligation, but I didn't give him a choice. So the day after Emily was born, I had the surgery to tie my tubes. I felt kind of sick about it after it was done, but I tried to put it out of my mind.
About a year later, I really started to feel that I wanted a reversal, and I discussed it with John. He was quite surprised, but he said if God provided the money, we would have it done. And that was the end of it for a while.
When Emily was about two years old, our family went through the worst time. I had left my family and was living with another man, and John and I had filed for a divorce. John had custody of the children because I was so selfish and thought that he should have to be "cooped up" taking care of them for a while. But God did a miracle and our family was restored just seven days before the divorce was final.
We relocated to Nashville to get a fresh start for our family and to concentrate on reconciliation. I became a Certified Doula (labor assistant), and tried to forget about wanting more children by helping other women have theirs. But it only made it worse.
A friend gave me a copy of an Above Rubies magazine in my church, and I read some of the reversal stories. Then I ordered A Change of Heart so I could get the list of doctors who did the surgery at a reduced rate. I found Doctor Curlin who lives in Jackson, TN on the list.
I had to send my records to him to see if it could be done, and when I heard it could, I really started praying hard for the $3,400 to have it done. John told me to go ahead and schedule it, and we would use some of the money from the sale of our house to pay for it. It was scheduled for April 20th. Somehow it ended up that we didn't have enough money to have it done, and John said if we didn't sell one of our cars by the end of the weekend, I would have to cancel.
Again I had all my friends praying. I prayed with every that the car would sell. God didn't make me wait until the last minute. On that Saturday, a man bought the car, and we had the money for the reversal!
On April 20, 1998, Doctor Curlin reattached my fallopian tubes. I was so excited! I just knew that I would be pregnant as soon as I could get home and start practicing! He said that my best chances for pregnancy were in the first six months, and if I wasn't pregnant after 18 months, I probably wouldn't get pregnant.
After six months, I was discouraged and depressed. I whined and cried to my pastor's wife all the time. My period would be late, I was sure I was pregnant, and then the test would be negative. In November, after countless negative tests, I decided to quit trying. I gave up hope of holding a little newborn and nursing ever again.
But Emily continued to pray every day that God would give her a little sister. That Christmas we had a big ice storm and I called my pastor's wife to tell her we couldn't make it to church because our van was frozen to the driveway. She told me, "That's ok, maybe you'll get pregnant!" I just laughed. "Yeah, right!"
On January 16, John and I were going to go to a blood drive later that day, and I realized I was a little late. I took a pregnancy test just to make sure I could give blood. There were TWO PINK LINES!!! I paged my husband at work and told him he needed to come home. He was so excited when I told him and our children were beside themselves. It was such a wonderful pregnancy.
On September 17, 1999, at our home, Zion Joseph Staples was born after four hours of labor. He weighed 8 pounds and was 20 1/2 inches long. He breastfeeds so well, and he is such a happy baby. His big sister Emily wasn't ruffled at all and she is still praying every day for a little sister. Who knows? God is so faithful!
JOHN AND VALERIE STAPLES
Matthew 8, Micah 6, Emily 4 and Zion Joseph six months as at March 2000.