The one thing Monica Thompson wanted she just couldn’t have. For 16 years, she tried desperately to conceive a child with her husband.
But it just didn’t happen for them. Sadly, her husband Kevin Thompson passed away in 2016, dashing all hope she’d ever had of having a family.
“It was hard because all my friends were having kids and here I am, not having a baby. We did everything we could but we weren’t in a financial position to try IVF. When I turned 40 I became content with being a dog mother.”
Fast forward a few years to where the 46-year-old Las Vegas widow had found love for a second time with a man named Jason Ratliff. She never expected it to happen, but it did and she was so happy.
They met through a dating app in 2017 and moved in together in October of that year.
One day at work, she began enduring stomach cramps that accelerated in intensity and pain. She figured it was a nasty case of the flu and headed to urgent care to get checked out.
“The doctor comes in and he asks, ‘Do you think you might be pregnant?’ I’m like, ‘Haha, yeah right. There’s no way. I’m too old to have children. I am probably going through menopause.'”
Little did Monica know, she actually was more than seven months pregnant! Her dashed dream was really coming true!
“It’s just total shock.”
There wasn’t an ultrasound machine available at urgent care and she thought she was experiencing incontinence. It turns out that it was amniotic fluid leaking!
A pregnancy test confirmed that she was pregnant. So how did she not have a clue that she was expecting a baby?
Monica had embarked upon a new lifestyle and health journey, resulting in a 20-pound weight loss that disguised any pregnancy weight she might have traditionally gained.
Needless to say, she was stunned by the news.
“It’s like hitting a brick wall. ‘You are having a baby now.'”
If Monica thought she was shocked, imagine her fiance’s reaction! He couldn’t believe it!
“Is this a joke? Are you kidding with me? What’s going on?”
But within 24 hours of learning she was pregnant, Monica needed an emergency cesarean section. When she arrived at the hospital, doctors informed her she was in active labor and already dilated to five centimeters.
Their beautiful baby boy named Jayden Anthony Willie Edwin Ratliff arrived 1.5 months early weighing three pounds, nine ounces.
He was admitted to the hospital where he remained in the neonatal intensive care unit for more than a month.
“I couldn’t see the baby until the next day because of my surgery but when I did see him for the first time he was covered in wires. I got to hold him for the first time a week later, and it was surreal. I felt so bad because I wondered if I had known about the pregnancy, maybe he wouldn’t have been in danger. But the doctors said I took very good care of myself during that time and not to worry so much.”
University Medical Center clinical director Cathryn DeLee said Monica’s journey to motherhood is rare, but not unheard of. Monica never stopped having a period, although they were lighter and a bit more erratic than usual.
“I have been doing labor and delivery for 27 years and it occasionally happens.”
No matter how it happened, one thing is for sure. Monica finally had her dream family.
“God actually answered my prayer that I wanted to be a mom.”
Thankfully, family, friends and coworkers pitched in and rescued the brand new parents by gifting them with all the necessities, such as diapers, clothes and other baby supplies.
“The day after I had him, I had to call my boss and tell him I had a baby and he couldn’t believe it. He was like ‘What the heck.’ They were so supportive. They couldn’t believe I was that pregnant, it was shocking to everyone.”
Even though Jayden’s birth was a complete surprise, it truly was meant to be.
“I thought, ‘Wow, I’m a mom.’ It felt right. I felt complete. I think it’s extra special to become a mom at this age. ‘Of course I would like to have been younger, but I know more now. I just feel very grateful that I have the chance to be a mom when I had given up on that dream.'”
In less than 24 hours, Monica thought she was battling the flu. Instead, she was in labor and well on her way to becoming a new mom at age 46.
Watch their amazing story in the video below. Miracles really do come true!
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Parenting Isn't Easy
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