This Is Our Story
Becoming a mom can be an exciting and frightening moment in your life. I remember looking at that pink stick wondering if I was going to see a plus or a minus sign but before I could even set it down on the bathroom counter that sucker turned a definite PLUS! I should have known all along looking back now at the signs. My husband and I were not married at the time when we found out. We had just gotten engaged the week before. I was in our local Hobby Lobby picking out wedding decor in the flower section and in the next split second I was balling my eyes out and I had no idea why I was even crying. Pregnancy hormones are no joke! I chopped it up as maybe I was just stressed trying to plan a wedding in such a short amount of time.
My husband had just finished 3 months of bootcamp November of 2012 and had been home on leave for 2 weeks. (Apparently those Wiggins genes are strong because I got pregnant the day he came home from bootcamp.) He had to leave again soon to SOI (School of Infantry) for a couple of months for his MOS (Military Occupation Specialty). He proposed to me December 1st and we found out I was pregnant on December 11th. Our original plan was to be married on our dating anniversary May 20th the following year. So at that moment in time, not knowing I was pregnant, I had 5 months to get a venue, a photographer, the dress (which actually came in for me to try on THE DAY I found out I was pregnant), flowers, invitations, the whole works! I really thought my crying breakdown in the Hobby Lobby aisle was the stress of planning a wedding and which flowers to choose. I know you brides know what kind of stress I’m talking about. I feel you girl.
There I was though, a day late, sitting in a friends bathroom waiting on the results. It’s really amazing looking back now how in just that one day, that one window many women pray for to try to get pregnant, and it just so happened to coincidentally be the day my husband was coming home. We wanted children very much. We hadn’t planned for it to happen that soon but we were blessed with the most loving and sweet hearted silly little boy.
You can probably see our predicament now with planning a wedding and me, the bride, being pregnant… I hadn’t planned on being 6 months pregnant in a wedding dress. My sweet husband told me he didn’t care when or how we got married, just as long as he could marry me. We decided then to go to the courthouse, just me and him, and elope. Our families had ended up getting together instead and planned a little shindig at his aunt’s house December 29th and we had ourselves a Christmas wedding in front of their tree. It wasn’t anything fancy like I had originally planned for but that’s not what a marriage is about. A wedding doesn’t define your marriage. We were there in front of our family joining all of our lives together. I remember making my entrance walking down the stairs barefoot, in an 8th grade pageant dress I had that was originally a wedding dress. (Yes, sadly I could still fit into that dress.) As I was coming down all I could see was him lock his eyes with mine trying to hold it together. He looked so handsome in his dress blues. All I could think the whole time was, don’t fall down the stairs, don’t fall down the stairs! But there he was, holding it all together, calm and sound. Still to this day that is what he is to me. He is my calm and peaceful place. (I’m tearing up just writing that.)
The preacher had us repeat the vows after him and he looks at Cameron and says, “Cameron, you may now kiss your bride.” He sweetly grabs my face and pulls me in and right then I became his wife. We had our first dance together and we whispered to each other about how thankfully I didn’t trip down the stairs and that he didn’t have everyone staring at him anymore waiting on me in front of the tree. (Makes me giggle because my husband absolutely hates having the attention on him.) We then ate cake and he smashed cake in my face and I accidentally stabbed him in the face with a fork trying to smash cake in his! (Your future look into what marriage is like is stabbing your husband in the face with a fork…I’m totally kidding! )
Jump to March of 2013, we had our entire life packed up into a moving truck and shipped across the country to California. No family. Just us. We were each other’s family now. I was extremely nervous about what was to come, being pregnant and living on the other side of the United States without my mom physically being there. I’m so thankful for FaceTime! My husband was gone a lot, weeks and months at a time for training. Although he didn’t want to leave, I was there alone a lot. First time pregnancy, new surroundings, and having no idea where anything was in this new town. It hurt my husband not being able to be there with his new bride and missing out a lot on the pregnancy. I was so fortunate to have an easy pregnancy! I didn’t get sick, and felt great most of the time. There was a little scare around 21 weeks where little man tried to come too early and it ended up putting me in the hospital. Thankfully everything turned out ok and they were able to stop the contractions. Months came and went and August 13, 2013, arrived. Our son’s due date. I had my last Dr’s. Appointment the day before and had an induction date scheduled if he didn’t arrive soon. Ya’ll I was so terrified of anything medical being done. I am not one for medicine. I hate hospitals. I hate needles and IV’s. (But yet I have 5 tattoos. I don’t care what you say the 2 are totally different!) I like for my body to respond and do what it’s made to do. Apparently Lane connected with me in the same way because he was born ON his due date! My mom was able to fly out and be there a few days before I went into labor and was able to stay and help for about a week. My husband was AMAZING during labor! He was cheering me on the whole time and held my hand through it all. On August 13, 2013, at 9:28am we embraced our 8lb 5oz little boy. My husband’s mini me.
I have the sweetest photo of them two having the same facial expression with the same forehead wrinkles.
Our lives were forever changed. I watched my husband turn into a father right before me. He handled the first diaper changes and didn’t even flinch at the black tar ones. Mom’s you know what I’m talking about. He took it on like a pro his first time!
We learned together how to become parents. My mother stayed with us for about a week after Lane was born and then she was off to Georgia. It was just us 3 again. When they tell you there is no handbook on raising children, they are totally right. Our instincts just kicked in. I swear to you the first 3 months with a newborn are the most exhausting days you’ll have. You will be running on literally 2-4 hours of sleep almost every day and when you are crying because the baby is crying and you’ve done all you can do, that little sweet soul you’re holding will crack his first smile and all of your worry strips away. Right there in that moment you’re reminded that you’re doing it. You are being a parent. Everything is going to be ok. The bad moments are faded away by the best moments. You end up looking back and wonder how in the hell did I make it through? But you did. Parenting will throw you so many curve balls but it’ll also send you on the greatest adventure you’ll ever go on.
Then you think you couldn’t ever love another child as much as you love this one. But you do. It’s such an unfathomable love. My husband was deployed during the birth of our second child. He didn’t get to meet Riley until she was 3 months old. My pregnancy with her was R O U G H. We were transitioning in moving back home to Georgia while my husband finished out his contract in California. I was 2 months pregnant when we moved home.
Being a military family is hard. It is not for the weak. It is not like the movies where you’re swept off your feet and live happily every after. It’s writing letters, missed FaceTime calls, texts and emails and “I’ll see you agains”. You hold onto that countdown you put up on your fridge showing the days he will be back again.Then the day comes where they line up on that parade deck and do their final salute. You’ll run to embrace each other and let every bit of stress and emotion melt away. You count your blessings together each day that he’s home. You don’t take for granted his boots sitting in front of the door that once used to drive you crazy tripping over them because that means he’s there in the same home as you.
(Cameron's first homecoming from deployment.)
Time was coming to end with my second pregnancy and I was so ready to have our sweet girl here. I was the most uncomfortable I had ever been this pregnancy than I was with Lane. But Riley decided to have a sense of humor at my last Dr’s appointment because my Dr informed me that she would be out of town in a few days, but of course Riley had other plans and wanted to meet her sweet mama a week early while my Dr was on vacation. My husband was on Okinawa the day I gave birth to our 6lb daughter. He may not have been there holding my hand this time but he was still there, FaceTiming, the entire time. I was in incredible pain because my epidural decided it didn’t want to do its job. It killed him not being there to comfort me like he could with our sons birth. And this was his baby girl! We prayed for this little girl. The day we found out what she was, he was gone in the field for training and somehow found cell service texting me ,”What are we having?! Is it really a girl?! WE GOT OUR LITTLE GIRL!”
So for him to not be there and hold his sweet baby and could only watch from a screen and only hear her first little cry through a phone was hard. I did my best to hold it together while we chatted about how much she looked EXACTLY like her brother. I wanted nothing more than to kiss him through that phone and pass Riley to him so he could feel how light and delicate she was. ( I’m sobbing right now.) I had to remind us that we only had 3 months left of being apart. Just 3 more months until we are a family again! We’d never have to say goodbye again only for him to come back home from work the same day. We were going to be able to go grocery shopping together, actually plan family vacations, celebrate anniversaries and birthdays together now! That was our hope to hold onto.
Then the day came. He was home. He got to meet his daughter for the first time and squeeze our son who had been without his daddy for over a years worth of time. We were a family again. That’s our story. Wow, looking back I seriously don’t know how we did all of this. It seems so minimal compared to our life now. The bad days will pass and the good ones will heroically follow. We are now celebrating 6 years of marriage this year and plan on many more magical years to follow. Maybe even a real planned out wedding in the future and possibly baby #3. (We’re on the fence.) Who knows! Our lives didn’t go as we expected but it turned out better than we could have wanted. There were trying times but those were followed by immense joy. We have grown so much together as a couple and parents over these years. We fight but we love one another harder. We have messes in our lives that we have conquered and we have celebrations to look forward to! So to those newly weds and new parents, you’re going to be ok. Keep each other’s spirits lifted. Give each other space when needed. But ALWAYS come back to each other in the end with forgiveness. Join each other on this ride called life and enjoy every moment shared.
*Not all images are mine*