Two weeks from now will mark the day my husband and I started to date. WHAT!? You have a baby! You are married! Well Yes, and Yes. My husband and I had known each other for a couple years as passing acquaintances before we actually “met” had deep conversation and fell, well just that, deep. We knew almost immediately that we would marry each other. Many of our friends thought we were crazy, some of our best friends even rejected us for it. We had never been happier. It was not the right time in their minds, it was in ours. We may have only been dating 3 months before we were engaged, but we knew. There was a sense of security in the relationship we were building. We felt at home, we knew this is where we belonged. It is almost exactly two years ago I walked away from a church community that I was heavily involved in. Many people looked at me and also told me this is definitely not the right time. Many said you must be dating a year, or have lived together, or traveled the world. Almost every single person had a reason why now was not the right time, but none had a reason why my husband and I were not the right couple. Almost all the people in our lives actually supported the relationship, none understood the intensity and speed it took on.
Less than a month after we were engaged I became very sick. I could barely move, was exhausted, and my body felt like it was shutting down on me. My internal organs were not functioning the way they should and I knew I needed fixed. I went to the doctor hoping they could find a cure. I am a google queen so the 24 hours before my appointment put pure paranoia into my mind. My regular doctor was out of town so I saw the offices PA. She swore I had appendicitis and sent me straight to the hospital for tests. They all came back clear. No one recommended further testing, but I knew something was wrong. We had traveled to Chicago for our engagement party with my husbands side of the family. I looked pregnant my stomach was so swollen. I am not a great traveler so I assumed when my intestinal track just quit processing my food it was due to that.
A week later I started to get very nervous. I made an appointment with my normal doctor and he got me in as soon as he could. He wanted to do an ultrasound of my pelvic area. Hoping this was it I booked the appointment the next day. The tech gave a couple leery looks but said that she thinks everything is ok. The doctor would get back to me within the next 5-7 days. A couple hours after my appointment the doctors office came up on my caller ID. I was frantic. They told me I needed to come in first thing the next morning. That was one of the longest nights of my life. Every possible scenario went through my head. Fareed and I decided through long conversation that if this was the only time we would be able to have kids, we were doing it.
The next morning my doctor told me that it was more serious than he thought and he was referring me to a specialist. I don’t know if its because I was 22 at the time, or she just forgot, the nurse wrote down the name and address of the specialist but not the practice. They both failed to mention it all together. I drove up to the address they gave me. I sat in that waiting room what seemed like hours processing in my head why I was at a cancer center.
The specialist told me that I had a type of tumor/cyst that has a very high chance of being cancerous. He told me it needed to be removed immediately and have a biopsy done. All that is going through my head is my fiancee, our future, our future family. THIS WAS NOT THE RIGHT TIME. I kept thinking I was to young for this, too healthy for this. But I wasn’t. My parents balled as I told them the news, they wanted to fly down in that instant. My husband had it under control though. He took some time off work and made sure he was able to be there with me. He was living out that love I knew so well when I met him. My husband is one of six kids. Even the thought of not being able to have children made me worried he would run. He stayed, and promised me he loved me enough that this is what he wanted. My husband proclaimed since a young age he wanted children. Marrying him was the right time. He was the right guy.
As I prepared for surgery they asked me to sign a release form. In short it said that if the growth was touching the other ovary, fallopian tube or part of my uterus they were allowed to take those as well. My doctor said it is best to sign this so I wouldn’t have to have another surgery in that situation. Also, if it was cancer to stop the spread quickly. I couldn’t sign. I couldn’t wake up knowing I would be infertile. I never even thought I was a kids person, I quite frankly was terrible with children under 18 months. Until that moment when I thought it was all being ripped away from me. Those days are emotional blurs. So much went through my head. I did not sign that release. They were allowed to move my left ovary, that was it. I would risk it for the chance.
Waking up from surgery you always feel like your entering heaven, or start to feel terrible pain. I remember little of either. I looked at my fiancee and asked, do I have cancer? He replied, No. NO? NO! I started to cry and I don’t know how. I was still under all those drugs but I knew the weight of those words. The doctor came in to explain that he had not seen a growth this big in his career. It had completely damaged my left ovary. There was no way of saving it without leaving part of the growth so they removed it completely. My fiancee screen captured the pictures the doctor took of the growth. It was huge. He compared it to the size of a squash. I listened to all the facts, the daily healing routines, the statistics. Above all, I heard I didn’t have cancer. It was not the right time for that.
I had lost an ovary. I almost always forget that it is missing, I don’t feel a little heavier on one side, or a gaping hole. I remember though that I only have one that will create our beautiful children. We knew that directly following the surgery I would be the most fertile. Without thought of others, we tried to have our son, and we conceived. I found out I was pregnant a month after my operation. It was the biggest blessing in a season of rush and worry. Again, most people thought we were crazy- or that it was a mistake. It was just the opposite. It was the right time for us.
I can tell you we should have saved more money, or traveled more, or been married, or been married x amount of years. We weren’t. What amount of money would have made me said I’m ready? How many vacations should we have taken before settling down? When should we have gotten married? Was a shotgun wedding better? After how many years of marriage are you ready to add another to your family? That question is definitely a hard one to answer for anyone. So why do we as society try to answer it for everyone?
It is never the right time to do anything, or maybe quite opposite it is always the right time.
I wasn’t ready to be a mom, but thank goodness God gave me 9 months to prepare. I knew that it was the right time for us. It was time to jump in. We were given our amazing son and he couldn’t have come at a much better time. Our friends who are self proclaimed “single for life” swore us off. We were against everything they believed in. Or lack there of. Partying, late nights, and anti commitment were no longer part of our agendas. A good portion of our “Christian” friends looked the other way. We weren’t married when I got pregnant and most of them did not understand our decision.
For us, I lost my left ovary, we were forced to face decisions that we never thought would occur only months after starting to date. We faced them with our whole hearts. Because of those actions, we have the most beautiful son we could ever imagine.
So no its never the right time. It’s Gods time. And His timing saved my life. It molded me and blessed me more than I could ever imagine. Amidst darkness their was light. Clarity for our emotions.
You may think it will never be the right time, but watch for signs. Listen to your heart. We are never ready, but the biggest surprises our often the biggest blessings.
Photo: Cheryl Dawn Photo