Love and pregnancy and riding on a camel can not be hid.
There was little I was excited about in the first 24 hours after I learned I was pregnant. Actually, I could find two things to muster excitement for. First, since we were not even teenagers my best friend and I had always talked about some day being pregnant at the same time. She was six months along in her pregnancy, so if I was going to have a surprise I was thankful from the first few minutes that it was at the same time as my friend. We had let go of that dream a few years ago for multiple reasons, so we both saw the timing of our pregnancies as a gift from God.
The other thing I could get excited for was telling people. I had thought about different ways to share the news for years... if I ever did get pregnant. Now it was here and I wanted to have fun with it. I woke my best friend up and she quickly decided it was the best wake up call ever. Johnie's brother almost choked, we think. (Those who know us well had pretty much given up any hope that we would ever birth children.)
We told my mom we wanted her to make the announcement to the church family. She said no for about five seconds, then cried about being offered such an honor and enthusiastically agreed. I sort of thought she would just shout out something like, "I'm going to be a Memaw!" Or, "Johnie and Amy are having a baby!" With a jubilance (I may have made that word up) only she can achieve.
But all on her own accord she wanted to be ornery too. She thought about telling everyone that there was a new special someone in her life, leading them to think of a romantic relationship. But she settled on another idea that I think was even better.
Circled up to pray my mom was given the floor for her announcement: "I just wanted to let everyone know I'm getting a new car (Karr)!"
Everyone clapped politely, albeit confused. My mom already had a nearly new car and isn't usually one to get caught up in material things.
"A new little baby car (Karr)." People were still clapping and some didn't really hear her. Those who did thought she was talking about a compact car.
A couple seconds of awkward silence. Finally Johnie said, "Do you want to give any more details?"
"Well, I'll get it probably around...." She looked to me. "In November," I said. I thought everyone might catch on then. But there was still confusion.
Finally she brought her arms up like she was rocking a baby. "A new little baby car (Karr)." And people started to get it.
Unfortunately I have managed to miss all the group pregnancy announcements among our church friends to date. I always end up being out of town, or sick, or with some conflicting appointment on the one burrito night I didn't make that year. They probably react similarly to anyone who shares baby news. Or maybe we were just the least likely couple to ever make such an announcement. (One friend said, "you just know some things aren't a possibility so you don't even consider them," when talking about why it took everyone a bit to solve my mom's riddle.)
I was overwhelmed. There were squeals of joy and hugs and laughter. I looked around and people were high fiving and hugging. Some had their hands over their mouths. Others were crying. I was thankful that my mom and Johnie were there to absorb some of the attention, but I was shaking and feeling all tingly.
Maybe it was too much too soon for me to handle, but my heart was reassured to see all the joy on everyone's faces about the life inside of me. As I told them as they asked how I was handling it and apologized if they were being obnoxiously excited, I just felt so thankful to see others feeling about this baby the way I wish I could feel. And in those fear-filled moments, I always found reassurance in a community who already loved and cared for my little one.