In December, as my friend Corey was chatting with my mom as her very strong adorable baby was in the NICU, she brought the idea up to me about when I might want to have a baby shower. My initial reaction was neither kind nor excited, but one of pure terror. I CAN'T PLAN THAT FAR IN ADVANCE I told her. I was appreciative for the offer yes, and it meant a lot to me, but I am going day by day. I can't conceive of the idea of planning ahead for these babies; too risky, too scary.
She continued to bring it up, nicely, throughout the coming weeks. She threw out a date to me, March 16th, that worked for her, my family, and other friends (Eileen and Tasha) who were going to help throw the shower. Again, my reaction was not socially appropriate for normal pregnant people. I would only be 30 weeks then...I can't be having people buy things for these twins that early!!! How about June, after they're born, or May, or end of April?!?! I was desperate with my tone.
In February, I finally gave in to this date however, I made them put on the invitations that people could not shop for gifts until after March 1st (I would be 28 weeks then).
As the shower day grew closer, I realized what a blessing this particular shower truly was. This would be a shower in which my closets friends and co-workers would be in attendance. They, more than anyone else, know me and what I've gone through over the last almost three years. They know about the miscarriages, the fear, the doubt, the ups and downs because they went through it with me. What a gift to be surrounded by those people at my first shower. People who would completely understand when I would no doubt cry as I opened gifts for these wanted miracles, people who probably laughed when they saw they couldn't shop for the babies until March 1st, people who were not surprised when I showed up 30 minutes early just so I could gather myself before others arrived.
This shower was exactly what needed to happen at that exact time. I continue to look upon that day so fondly and am so thankful for people who traveled in bad weather and gave up some of their time in their busy schedules to come and support me and shower these babies.
Did I cry the entire .8 mile drive to Eileen's house? YES
Did I cry when seeing little onesies hanging up for me to take home? YES
Did I cry while making a speech before opening gifts? YES
Did I cry while opening up gifts? YES
But in a room full of amazingly strong and supportive women, I felt comfortable and safe. Thank you :)
2. March 22nd~ Team 61 Shower (31 weeks, 3 days)
My sixth graders and teaching partner never cease to amaze me. The students have been truly supportive during this time and I think have taken better care of me than I could take of myself during the school day.
On this particular Friday, kids were doing some presenting in my room when the phone rang. My principal told me that I needed to come down to her office right away and that another teacher would be covering my room. You can imagine how much I freaked out wondering what news my boss might deliver to me. As I left the room, a student was out at the same time using the bathroom and asked me some questions as we walked down towards the office together. I sat in the conference room sweating awaiting what I thought to be some bad news. Thankfully, my boss popped in and assured me that it was nothing bad and she would be with me in a minute after escorting a student back to class. When she walked in, she delivered a onesie that said "I'm the favorite" and a clue to go back to my classroom. Now I finally knew something was up. When returning to my classroom, everyone was gone except for a few students who gave me another clue telling me to head down to the library. When I walked in, I saw all 60 students, some parents, and some baby shower decorations. They had gotten me! I was officially stunned, surprised, and of course, started to cry :)
The students donated what little money they have to buy us one of our swing/bouncy seat combos. It was beyond generous and kind.
3. March 28th~ Hope School Shower (32 weeks, 2 days)
On my last day of work, I walked into the library expecting a normal delicious breakfast only to be surprised, yet again, to a baby shower my co-workers had thrown me. I was not prepared with any camera so unfortunately, I don't have pictures to show of the celebration, but it was phenomenal. My old teaching partner and current one outdid themselves with treats and two homemade cakes. As a gift, the teachers pooled money together to start my reusable diaper collection. My teaching partner is officially our diaper consultant as she used these with her son. She even went so far as to have my sixth graders do a math problem to show how many disposable diapers we would need for these twins and how much money it would cost us versus the reusable diapers. She presented the math problem to me as I was opening these up. We are excited to use these and were so grateful to have the collection started for us!
I also received a few other gifts including a handmade pillow made by our librarian that says "After every rainstorm is a rainbow of hope...here we are." Yes, I cried!
4. April 13th~ Hundt
Josh has an enormously awesome family who you can see below went all out for these twins. I would never have guessed that I would be showing up for a shower on April 13th with snow falling on the ground :)
As I opened present after present, card after card, people's kind words and encouragement were amazing. It continues to be surreal for me to open up presents for my own children as there were many times I never thought that would be for me. I soaked up every moment, every gift. The best part was seeing these accomplished and amazing moms pick out things for me that I hadn't even thought of myself. They showed the twins so much love and Hundts from all around the country sent gifts when they themselves couldn't be in attendance. It was really great!