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The Joy of Being a Mom - Our Story

Our first little boy was conceived out of wedlock. Woah, shocker right! Many who know me or my husband would never have guessed this would be our story... honestly neither did we.

Now before I truly begin... let me clarify. This post is not to say that having premarital relations is okay. This post is about the beauty of motherhood, which is still to be found, no matter the timeline of when it starts.

November 30th, 2022: This is the day I found out we were expecting our little Peter. I was 3/4 done with the first trimester of my senior year. Right in the midst of writing and putting my thesis together. (Thank God I decided to do my thesis that semester!) My husband saw the news coming before I did. I guess I was showing all the signs: feeling sick, more tired than usual, a bit more moody... (you get the picture). When I finally took the pregnancy test, I was shocked. We had been doing the long distance relationship for most of our time together, and having him back from France made it easier to struggle with purity. However, we didn't want the impurity to define our relationship and valued saving something so special for marriage. We had sought out confession, counsel, and had accountability. Though we had made these efforts, we were just a week too late...

The following few days: I will admit, they were hard. But there's something neat about motherhood that gives you almost a type of superpower. Being a mom is no easy job. Yet its so cool to see this superpower activate and you become unstoppable. I mean you can do anything... and everything is *so worth it*. I must also give credit to the amount of support we had. It really makes a difference and my heart goes out to the single moms who have no one. God and everyone around us provided so much and it helped me to realize early on how beautiful and joyful motherhood is.

Advent: I found it pretty interesting that the beginning of my journey of motherhood started near the season of Advent. The season where we get to journey with Mother Mary and prepare for the coming of baby Jesus. I remember one day sitting in the living room of my (now) in-law's house and looked up at this beautiful picture of Mary. It hit me that she conceived before being married to Joseph and many people ridiculed her and thought of her as impure. While she didn't do anything wrong and we did actually make a mistake, it was still so neat to journey with Mary in such a unique and beautiful way.

Gettin' Married! : We decided early onto finding out we were expecting, that we wanted to get married earlier than we had originally talked about. We wanted to raise our little guy together and not let him be penalized by our actions. So, wedding planning began!

January 17th, 2023: The first ultrasound. Oh my word. I cannot even tell you how amazing that day was. Getting to see our little one moving all around while the nurses struggled to get a good picture was just breathtaking. I would tease my husband all the time that I wanted to go back all the time during the pregnancy just to get to see him moving around and see (vaguely) what he looked like. It was really that day that being a mother hit me. I was so overjoyed and excited to meet our son one day. I downloaded an app to keep a track of all the milestones and would have to try to hold back from looking too far ahead in excitement.

March 21st, 2023: The anatomy scan. We had a slight clue that we were expecting a boy, and this day confirmed it!! Oh our little Peter! Knowing his gender lead to so many more vivid imaginations of what it would be like to not only have a child, but to have a son. Just like Mary...

Getting closer!!: Being able to feel him move was probably my favorite part of the pregnancy. Getting to feel those cute little kicks, then not so little... man I can't even describe. Even during the struggles of senior year, balancing a work schedule, running sound for the theater production, wedding planning, getting ready for college graduation and so much more... (woof, even writing all that was exhausting...!!) feeling those little kicks and him moving all around got me through each part of that crazy season. Like I said before... superpower...!

July 15th, 2023: John (my husband)'s birthday. I started having contractions every now and again. John joked that it would be pretty hilarious if my water broke that day and maybe the two of them could share a birthday. Peter's due date was originally August 1st...

July 16th, 2023: My contractions were getting closer and closer together. They were irregular though and I wanted to wait until they were consistently 5 minutes apart. While I would have contractions 5 minutes apart, they would also randomly jump to 17 minutes, or 20 minutes apart, then back to 5 minutes. To my husband's better judgement, we decided to go to the hospital. I was so sure that they would tell us we came too early and send us back home. However, we were admitted to a delivery room later that night and we monitored the contractions. I was so nervous. So extremely excited, but so extremely nervous. Everything was so unknown, but all I could think about was getting to hold my little guy skin to skin to my chest and it made every step to that moment worth it and okay.

July 17th, 2023 at 3:59pm: Peter was born!! I pushed for just short of an hour, starting at 3:01pm. (Divine Mercy hour! Man was God looking out for us!) The delivery process was such a remarkable experience. It's wild how it can be so intimidating, but so exciting and you can feel deep inside you that you were designed for this exact moment. Getting to hold my little baby skin to skin to my chest was... (I literally paused here for a while as I wrote struggling to find the right words...) indescribable. I literally bawled my eyes out. My poor doctor worriedly asked if I was okay, haha! I was just so overcome with joy and emotion.

August 15th, 2023 (today): It is two days until my little man is a month old! All those who say the time goes by so quickly could not be more right. It's wild to think this little guy has been out here with us for almost a whole month now! Let me tell you, nothing gives me more joy than to be here writing about this little guy as he's cuddled up on my chest. My life feels like it has so much more purpose now... I *get* to wake up every few hours of the night to provide food for my child. I *get* to change his dirty diapers that show he's eating healthy and growing as he should. I *get* to change him (yet again) into another cute outfit provided by family and friends. I *get* to see his little head pop in and out of view from the kitchen from his little swing going back and forth as I wash the dishes from the day. His smiles... his little coos... Every moment of pain worth it.

Ah, let me tell you. I could write for the rest of my existence the joys of motherhood. It has given me a whole new understanding of joy. I cannot wait to keep discovering it in more and more ways with a new little person by my side to journey with. I'll be sure to keep you posted ;)

Enjoy some photos below of some of the milestones and joy of our journey!

Picture 1: Baby bump!

Picture 2: Engagement & maternity photo!

Picture 3: First moment I got to hold Peter. Literally bawling my eyes out!

Picture 4: That skin to skin moment I've held onto for the whole pregnancy!! Picture 5: Peter's first photoshoot

Picture 6: Peter in his cute Sunday outfit for his first Mass!

Picture 7: Me currently writing this post ;)

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Hi, thanks for stopping by!

I'm Joslynn Rice, the author and creator of the content you find on this website. I am a Communications grad from Franciscan University, happily married, and a boy mom!

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