My husband and I met in college my senior year. I worked with his roommate at the cafeteria and I’d go hang out in his room after work. When I first met Matt, he seemed stand-offish to me. Personally, I thought he was a snob and I didn’t have any interest in getting to know him. Then he grew on me. Next thing you know, I was madly in love. That was 11 years ago.
We weren’t really together at the end of the year, but we’d hang out every day, and I spent the last week of my senior year at his home in Massachusetts. It was great and I missed him when I had to leave for my home back in Montana. Over the next two years, we’d fly back and forth to see each other. August of 2008, we decided to make it official. He moved to Montana in the summer of 2009 and we got married on our anniversary the following year.
I did not have any plans of having children. I had told him as such in the beginning and he never pressured me. A long time ago, a doctor had told me I may never be able to have children which was okay with me. I was the oldest in a family of 8, which meant I helped raise my sisters and brothers. I was done raising kids the minute I turned 18 and moved out of my mother’s home.
One day, Matt and I were at the grocery store and there was a newborn in the cart ahead of us. I couldn’t help staring at his chubby little cheeks and something inside me made me say “we should have one of those.” My husbands face lit up and he said “really?” “Yeah, we should,” I said. And that was that.
Five months we tried to get pregnant. Every month that slipped by and only one pink line showed up was a stab to my heart. Just when I said I give up, maybe that doctor was right, I’d never be a mother, we got pregnant. I was home alone and when two little lines showed up nice and bright pink, I started screaming. My cat was looking at me like I was deranged. I called my husband first but he didn’t answer so I called my sister.
Throughout the first trimester of my pregnancy, I was convinced this baby was a boy. I named him Jack and talked to my belly all the time. When it was ultrasound time, we found out Jack was actually a Jackie. Our beautiful baby girl was born in December of 2011. I have since dubbed her Penguin #1 because when she gets out of the tub, she waddles with her towel wrapped around her towards the living room.
Penguin #2 was similar to Penguin #1. We tried for a few months and again, I said, okay, I’m giving up. For some weird reason on my birthday, I went home and decided to take another pregnancy test. That second pink line was a little faded, but it was definitely there! A handsome baby boy was born in April of 2013.
And finally, my last Penguin, my biggest adventure and what made us a family of five was a huge surprise. I was on birth control when we decided we’d try for another baby. I didn’t think I’d get pregnant right away and I had mentally prepared myself that it might take more time to get pregnant. However, we found out we were pregnant with Penguin #3 right away. We had barely started trying when I felt all those familiar pregnant hormones. He was born in October of 2014.
It’s been quite an adventure raising 3 kids. Like I said before, it wasn’t something I had planned for my future, but I’m so glad I changed my mind. My husband is an amazing father so I couldn’t have picked a better partner. He works so I can stay at home with the kids (my idea, not his). I worked with the first two and although my parents babysat for us, I still dreaded leaving them every day. I missed out on all the “firsts” so when we found out we were pregnant with Penguin #3, we devised a plan so that I could quit working and we could live off my husbands income. It’s working out pretty great for us. We have a couple of set backs every now and again, but we always manage to pick ourselves back up with the help of my family.
So this is us, our family of five. Enjoying every second of it!