Our Biggest Sale of the Year is Here!🎄 ➔

“I want a summer baby,” I tell my husband as to why we are delaying the conception of our final third child.

“I want to lose a little more weight,” I said as the summer baby window went by. He looked at me with questioning eyes but didn’t dare test my comment on my weight. He’s a wise man, as you will soon find out.

Days turned into months, and soon approached a year. As I run out of excuses, I finally fessed up my heartbreaking truth.

It wasn’t that I want a baby with a certain birthday or that I really felt I needed to lose a few extra pounds (if that was the case I wouldn’t have a bag of chocolate hidden in my closet).

My truth was this is would be our last baby. Or at least would be my last planned pregnancy—we all know God laughs when we make plans.

But the reality is this will be my last time downloading a pregnancy app, tracking my ovulation, stocking up on pregnancy tests, getting more excited than the last time to pee on a stick and pray for two pink lines.

With all the excitement that comes with trying for a child from conception to birth, knowing it will also be your last comes a little bit of heartache.

All these names stored on my phone as “potential baby names” will be a moot point if they don’t get used this round. It will be the last time I get to decorate a nursery, decide if I want to find out the sex, and call my parents to let them know they will be grandparents again, for their last time, too.

But three is our number, this was always the plan. I have known since baby one, and after baby two. But now that it is approaching, the thought of being pregnant for a last time makes my heart hurt.

I am one of those moms who loves pregnancy, I love the smell of a newborn, and never minded the late nights rocking and holding them to sleep knowing newborns don’t stay new forever. Soon they grow; they begin to sleep through the night on their own, and don’t need you as much. Their firsts turn into lasts, and in what seems like a blink of an eye you’re walking them into kindergarten.

I will be completely honest, my husband didn’t get it. We are in our mid 30s now and his viewpoint is that he does not want to be a man in his mid-50s with a child still in school. But as a stay-at-home mom, I see a soon-to-be-empty nest.

It’s a big jump from feeling the pangs of a last pregnancy to the grief of an empty nest, but I think they both might have the same bittersweetness. And I want to relish every day of parenthood because my babies won’t always be babies.

My husband, being the wise man he is (as I promised you would discover), simply replied, “When one season ends, another begins.”

Frustrated he did not understand me, we left the conversation like that.

A few days later I found myself finally understanding his Yoda moment.

Seasons of life are as beautiful as the phrase itself. While this might be my last pregnancy, it’s also the completion of my family. While picking out a name, I am discarding some amazing options but I am completing our part of the family tree. I am giving my daughters their final sibling, and completing our gallery wall with no missing children.

So yes, my season of having pregnancy announcements, gender reveals, and late-night feedings may be coming to an end after this baby, but as my husband said, “When one season ends, another begins.” I still have a while left in this one, and what an amazing thing that is. So I am going to breathe and enjoy every second of it, even the uncomfortable parts. I’ll savor the moments of feeling a baby hiccup in my belly, and laugh at the fifth time in a row I get up and waddle-walk to the bathroom, because this season will not last forever as another one begins.

You may also like:

Being a Mom of a Kindergartener Is Harder Than I Thought It Would Be

To My Last Baby, Please Don’t Grow Up Too Fast

The Littleness is Leaving Our Home

These Seasons of Motherhood Won’t Last Forever

If you liked this, you'll love our new book, SO GOD MADE A MOTHER available for pre-order now!

Pre-Order Now

Crystal Couch

I am an Army wife and stay at home mom of two girls living in Virginia. I homeschool my 6-year-old, am a freelance writer, and lead a Girl Scout Troop in my free time.

Dear Loss Mom, Grieve Your Baby In Heaven Without Guilt

In: Baby, Grief, Loss

My third baby was due on October 19, 2019. Instead, she was born into heaven on March 24, 2019. Not only do I grieve her more in October than in other months because of her due date, but I also grieve for so many other parents who have also lost their children.  RELATED: A Letter To My Mama From Your Baby In Heaven Pregnancy loss is such a strange journey to walk through. I’m years into it, and there are still days when the grief hits and the tears come and I can’t breathe. On other days, I am so...

Keep Reading

1-Year-Olds Are Wonderful

In: Baby, Kids, Motherhood, Toddler
1 year old baby smiling

Newborns—who doesn’t love them?  The captivating scent of a brand new baby, their fragile little bodies laying so delicately on your chest. Everything that comes with a newborn baby is just absolute magic. But have you ever had a 1-year-old? I used to think the newborn phase was my favorite, nothing could ever be better than having such a tiny helpless little human rely on you for absolutely everything. I could hold my newborn for hours, soaking in every tiny little detail before it became nothing but a beautifully distant memory. But I’ve realized it’s 1-year-olds who have a special...

Keep Reading

Here In the Struggle of Motherhood Are Tender Moments I’m Afraid to Miss

In: Baby, Motherhood
Baby in mother's arms looking up

I didn’t realize the fear I would feel going into the operating room. My hands trembled and felt as if they were not in my control. The delivery I had planned had gone up in flames and a C-section became my only option. My baby’s heart rate was dropping, and the life I dreamed of flashed before my eyes.  This was not the way it was supposed to go. When I arrived at the hospital that Wednesday evening the nurses boasted about how well my baby boy was doing, how strong he was, how active he was, and how good...

Keep Reading

There’s Light At the End of a Hard Pregnancy

In: Baby, Motherhood
Newborn lying on blanket, color photo

That little pink positive mark hit me. Hard.  The pregnancy test revealed the news that I guiltily hoped was negative. The idea of another pregnancy—the hormones, the weight gain, the lack of sanity and sleep—seemed to overcome me. HOW? HOW could I possibly do this AGAIN?  Full of shock, I broke the news to my husband. I was like a broken record, repeating to him with tears, “Are we going to be okay?” He tried to reassure me, but I felt the uncertainty, the darkness.  In the next months, I was depressed. Focused on trying to make it through the...

Keep Reading

Every Time I Put You Down, You Grow a Little More

In: Baby, Motherhood
Black and white photo of baby sleeping with pacifier in his mouth

You’re six months old today.  Everything about you is so much bigger now—including the personality that’s showing through. But today? I want to soak in the littleness.  It’s a weekend, so I get to put you down for your naps. Your daddy took your brother to the store, so it’s just you and me.  It’s quiet. You have my full attention with no distractions.  As we rock, your eyes start to roll back in your head. You sigh and put your hand on my chest—as if to make sure I’m still here.  Sweet little one, this is the only place...

Keep Reading

This is the World of a Preemie Mom

In: Baby, Motherhood
Preemie baby foot with monitor attached

You came into this world much before your time. Your daddy and I weren’t ready for you, but that didn’t matter—you were determined to make your entrance at 27 weeks gestation. The first time I laid eyes on you, I was taken aback. You were wrapped in clear plastic bags with wires sticking out from all sides of you. You were so small and fragile—990 grams and 983 grams—the size of a pineapple I might buy at the grocery store. Your daddy took pictures of you, but I wasn’t sure if I would show them to anyone. You didn’t look...

Keep Reading

Secondary Infertility Took Me By Surprise

In: Baby, Faith, Grief, Loss, Motherhood
Mother holding toddler by open door

Selfish. Unfair. Guilt stricken. Shameful. Those were just a few of the words that regularly stabbed my lamenting heart as I longed for a second child. Yes, I was grateful for my healthy, beautiful boy who made my dream of motherhood come true, but why did I not feel complete—was he not enough? Was I doing this motherhood thing all wrong and didn’t deserve a second child? Why did I long to give him a sibling so badly knowing millions were aching for their first—how could I be so insensitive? So many questions, so many buts and so many whys....

Keep Reading

I Used to Feel Shame for Having PPD, but Now I Just Feel like a Mother

In: Baby, Motherhood
Mom holding toddler by window

I had my first son when I was 23 years old. My husband and I named him Isaac, which means laughter. The first few months of his life brought me anything but laughter. It felt as if for the first five weeks, my son cried constantly. It seemed if he wasn’t crying then he was sleeping. It was a really stressful time for me. I cried, he cried, and in the end, we’d both be so exhausted we’d fall asleep. I remember telling myself “I can’t do this” over and over and over again. Eventually, those thoughts manifested into actions....

Keep Reading

The Smell of Dreft and Hope

In: Baby, Motherhood
Woman folding baby onesie

My husband and I sink onto our living room couch at the end of the day, cocooned within distant, sound-machine ocean waves while our two toddlers sleep in their respective rooms. We’re trying to decide whether to watch another episode of 30 Rock or not.  “Let’s have another baby,” I say suddenly, hopefully. The past several months have brought those familiar pings of longing again, and it’s exhausting trying to pretend they don’t exist.  My husband isn’t surprised—we have some version of this conversation at least once a month. He pauses before speaking, picking at the couch cushion. “I still...

Keep Reading

No One Prepares You for When Your Husband Has Cancer

In: Baby, Cancer, Marriage
Family sitting by window

No one ever prepares you for the moment you hear your spouse has cancer.   More so, no one prepares for you to hear this when you have a 5-month-old at home. “Mom, they said the tumor is cancerous, and they need to enucleate his eye on Thursday,” I say quietly into the phone as I pump in a dirty bathroom stall at the eye hospital.   Whir. Whir. Whir. Whir. Gosh, I hate pumping.  Today is my first day being away from my daughter. My mom is watching her while I made the trip to the eye hospital with...

Keep Reading