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Unexpected Babies

Moving to Acceptance

Sometimes it takes a while to work up enthusiasm for an unplanned baby. "We didn't have the kind of excitement we felt when we found out about Jake," says Matthew. "It wasn't until the first sonogram, and we saw the baby moving, that the excitement came back."

"It took me a long time to get over the shock," admits Pia about her unexpected third child, "probably up to the last month before delivery. I found myself actually apologizing to friends and family, as if it were taboo to have a third child past the age of thirty-eight."

Linda and her husband, Joel, took even longer to welcome the idea of becoming parents. In fact, true enthusiasm didn't arrive until the baby did. "Even after Anna was born, and I was very happy, for the first few days in the hospital, I was terrified," she says.

Fortunately, a wise doula she'd hired was reassuring and told the new parents they had good instincts. "She also said we had an angel baby," says Linda. "And that was all it took -- an experienced person telling me it was going to be okay, that I'd hit the jackpot. And, of course, by then I'd fallen so in love with my daughter that nothing much mattered after that!"

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