July 7, 2013

Nine Months of Doing it Wrong

I have written and rewritten this post at least a hundred times in my mind and several times on the blog. Every version seems wrong and in the end I've decided that this is what it all comes down to:

Ever since we learned I was pregnant with this baby I have been afraid and angry.

I have been angry at myself for sucking at nfp (because really when you keep trying to do something and the opposite keeps happening then really you do suck at what you're trying to do). I have been afraid of the long abstinence that will come after this baby's birth.

I have been angry at families with kids spaced every 2-3 years who have tried to tell me that I don't suck at nfp because, really, they just don't know how I feel and their well intentioned cheerleading is actually painfully isolating. I have been afraid that they're actually right and that while God is blessing me with all these kids spaced so close together I'm allowing myself to feel overwhelmed instead of being grateful and joyful.

I have been angry with God for this abundance of fertility and for creating sex and marriage and bodies to have a specific type of meaning and truth and beauty. I have been afraid that when the Christian couples I know say they only want three kids or praise their tubal ligation that I am their reasoning, proof, and confirmation.

But mostly I am afraid that this birth will be traumatic like Resa's and JF's. I am afraid of the physical and emotional pain. I am afraid of another stuck baby, breathless baby, lifeless baby.

And, in another sense of the word, I am afraid that for the past nine months I have been doing it all wrong. Instead of casting my concerns to God I have mostly stopped praying except for grace before meals and "Lord, have mercy." Instead of offering up the pain and suffering I have wallowed in it, building up the fear and worries. Instead of choosing to hope and trust I have lived in the dark and embraced the grief.

None of this has gotten me anywhere. On Tuesday, July 9th I'll arrive at the hospital a little before 6am to be induced at 39 weeks. In an effort to birth a ten pound baby instead of an eleven pound one I won't wait for my body to do it's thing. In an effort to not feel the pain I will have my first medicated birth. I no longer trust my body or myself and I am going into labor still very afraid.

I wonder what would have happened had I actually spent these past nine months praying and working with God through these emotions. Would I have peace?
And what if I had spent these nine months offering up my struggles for others? Would my part in redemptive suffering have brought healing to an infertile couple or peace to a tumultuous marriage?
What if I had joyfully accepted my fertility - which is both blessing and a burden for me - would my witness mean others would be more open to the gift of life?
What if instead of nurturing fear and anger for these past nine months I had spent my days whispering, "Jesus, I trust in You," and, "Thank You, God, for these great gifts"? What eternal good could I have done had I chosen faith, hope, and love?

I know that this baby is a blessing and fruit of a happy, healthy marriage. I know that when I hold this baby in my arms for the first time I will be amazed and the love I already feel with magnify. I know that my Lord is all good and that He loves me and will forgive me for any sins in these past nine months. I am sorry that I didn't appreciate the towering positives from the very beginning.
This is my attempt at humor.
And if I could ask just one small thing, please pray for me, my baby, and that all goes well on Tuesday. Thank you.

Here's a little update:
7QT: the JP edition

Related posts:
No Sex for Months
Kids are Great! and No Sex for Months Part II
So We're All in this Together

70 comments:

  1. We'll be praying for you & the sweet baby !

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  2. Bonnie - I'm sending you an email. Be assured of my prayers. Diana

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  3. I know what it's like to have no confidence in your body - 1.5 years of trying, an extremely depressed pregnancy, an induction resulting in a c-section, a pregnancy on our first round of "being open and trusting via NFP" ending in a miscarriage with complications, etc. - and I have no confidence in my body and have spent most of the last month dealing with bitterness and jealousy with everyone I see having it so much easier in the baby making department, though I know it comes with it's own struggles.

    I offer up all of my struggles right now for you and an easy labor and some answers =)

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  4. So many prayers for you, baby, and a safe delivery. I'll offer up my week of blood draws for you!

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  5. Bonnie, I think 1) you're brave for writing this all down for us to read, with humility comes grace and 2) every pregnancy journey is different. It sounds like this pregnancy has been a spiritual journey for you, perhaps the drought will bring about greater fruits post-delivery. All I know is that your journey is your journey. Every moment of drought, every moment of suffering, it all allows us to experience a tiny portion of God's love for us. You are doing it right, Bonnie. And you are loved! Tuesday you have all our prayers from Texas (and that's a lot!) Hugs. K

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  6. You know I will be praying for you :) I pray that you are able to experience a wonderful and safe birth. I also pray for your physical and mental healing.

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  7. yup. prayers. and i enjoy the honesty you decided to write with.

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  8. I remember reading once that NFP can be used just like contraception, whereas we have the contraception mentality. When our plan doesn't really go according to the way we envisioned it, we start to become angry and worried about the new life God has given us, and in some cases may see infertility as the better gift. We must remember God is all love and mercy, and His love and mercy are new each day. I know recently before giving birth to my fourth, I was very scared and nervous about the delivery. How painful it would be and I think some of that fear stayed with me and I ended up starting to hyperventilate while in labor, but the baby was fine and so was the labor. I have four children 3 years and under, so I understand the stress and worry you may be feeling. I will be praying for you, but remember life is always a gift, never a burden. God gave you this precious child for a purpose, he or she may bring you (and others) closer to God and true joy than you ever thought possible.

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  9. Prayers for you and your family Tuesday and throughout the fourth trimester.

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  10. Bonnie-I am afraid, too. I could write so much more but I just want you to know that I know. And with each pregnancy, it becomes more difficult for me to manage my fear. But I also am learning to love my babies better. Maybe not too well during pregnancy. I'm weak. I'm fearful. I am terrified of the pain and the unknown.

    We missed Mass this morning because I thought it was time... again. I feel foolish... again. And my husband assured me last night as I walked around all scared that I would do great. And I thought that maybe this should be the first time I have an epidural. And I did pray that somehow, God would give me a miracle and make it not hurt at all...lol.

    I know this is going to sound trite but this is where God needs you to be. You are afraid and anxious and angry and feeling a loss of control... because the reality is that you have no no control. It's out of your hands and every time you grab for it, all of those negative emotions increase. He needs you to let go of that control in order to transform you into someone you aren't capable of being on your own. I'm not going to say something callous like "Buck up, kid" or "offer it up." I know how badly this stuff hurts. And you know that's where God starts with us... I can read it in your writing. You already know. It just hurts so bad that it's hard to manage.

    You're not the only one. You're not required to be perfect. The Divine Surgeon is working and isn't using as much anesthesia as you'd like today. For your good, for His greater glory. Thanks be to God.

    I might have a baby today. If I do (when I do), I'm going to offer the suffering of labor for you and your intentions. God loves you so much. Hang in there. And when your baby comes, just love that kid to pieces. That's my plan anyway.

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  11. I will pray for you. I know the overwhelming feeling you are experiencing. Hugs and payers my friend.

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  12. I will definitely be praying for you! I'm so sorry that you've been dealing with so much fear and making decisions based on that. May God grant you peace and may the birth be exactly how He wants it to be. Can't wait to see you holding that sweet baby. And remember that nothing is set in stone if you are really unsure of how things are planned. God bless!

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  13. I'm pregnant with our second, and we're one of those couples that end up with spaced children (almost three years) because of struggles with infertility. I never used to understand a perspective like yours, but now I have a very close friend who is also dealing with super fertility (that isn't even to the degree yours is!) and talking with her has really opened my eyes to see what a cross that is! I will definitely be praying for you in these final days. I'm actually going to be 37 weeks on Tuesday, and I get bad nausea for my entire pregnancies, so I'll be sure to offer some of that up for you! For the record...I think it's totally legitimate to feel the way you do and I don't think any of us blame you one bit. Thanks for being willing to share a very "real" side of nfp with all of us!

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  14. I've been dealing with a very painful back condition for two years and it's very easy to get in a place of being distant from God. I love that He loves us so much that He is right there whenever we're ready to go back to him. I'm a generation older than you and didn't practice NFP. My reality was that all it ever took for me was a lustful glance and I was pregnant. After three high risk pregnancies my doctor said, "we can't keep doing this" and I had my tubes tied at 26. In retrospect, I wish I had consulted with God about this issue but I was so overwhelmed with children and clueless, really, about these things. I pray that things go well for you and that your family will be strengthened, that you relationship with God and with your honey will be strong and that you'll have better luck with the NFP process in the future. *hugs* Heather

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  15. Also...I am amazed by your humility in writing this post. I don't know that I could be that humble if I were in your shoes! Rest assured that it sounds like God is working something very special in you right now, and it is an inspiration to all of us mamas!

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  16. Bonnie - I will be praying for you!

    Start right now - this minute. Offer up your suffering for infertile couples, for very fertile couples, for babies lost, for babies aborted.

    Your fertility is a gift. Even if we don't joyfully accept gifts, they are still given to us.

    Start whispering, "Jesus, I trust in You," and, "Thank You, God, for these great gifts" right now, and I'll whisper them with you!

    I remember when I was eight months pregnant with my son (now 21), I suddenly recalled the trauma, fear and pain of my daughter's birth. There was a big feeling of "Uh-oh". That might be what you are experiencing.

    God is with you in this. I will be storming heaven on Tuesday for a safe, easy, and peaceful birth. I am holding you close.

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  17. I will be praying for you and for a safe labor and delivery. Don't underestimate the difficulty of your life right now. I really believe that God works through all of the times in our life when we are angry, afraid, overwhelmed etc. Just b/c you didn't specifically "offer it up" does not mean that he hasn't used your struggles and suffering anyway. He is so much bigger than we imagine. Sometimes just putting one foot in front of the other in our day to day life is all we can do and God uses it too. God knows your heart. Prayers for peace for you Bonnie.

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  19. There is no time in Heaven - so no perfect time to start "anew".
    Mercy is always in abundance!
    I will be praying (as I already have been, fiercely) for you and baby.
    "There are few things more beautiful in life than to see that deep passion of man for woman, which begot children, transfigured into that deeper passion for the Spirit of God." *Ven. Fulton J. Sheen*

    God Bless Bonnie!

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  20. Bonnie! Be assured of our prayers.

    To everyone else's comments, and your lovely and honest and raw post, I would just add the reminder that it's easy to get caught up in FEELINGS. It's easy to focus on whether you FEEL like you want this baby or this labor or the abstinence that will follow it. But feelings aren't what really matters to God. Your actions matter, and throughout your dark night of the soul (and that's what this really sounds like) you have continued to ACT as a child of God even when you don't feel those consolations from him that you may have felt at other times.

    That is nothing short of heroic. It's what the saints have done in your situation. You know what you need to do, you wrote it down. Even if you only have one minute left before this baby comes that's all the time you need.

    If I were you, I'd try to make a visit to the Blessed Sacrament.

    Keep your chin up. You're doing better than you think.

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    1. What a beautiful response to a very humble, honest post! I second all of this.

      I'm praying for you, Bonnie, that you will have a safe, boring labor and delivery and a very healthy baby!

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    2. I think this response summed it up perfectly--what matters to God is what you DO, and what you are DOING is picking up your cross and following Him. No matter your emotional suffering, you are choosing HIM. That is what counts.

      You are very much in my prayers and will continue to be so. Thank you for being such an inspiration.

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  21. I've been thinking about you all week, knowing that your induction is coming up. I can't understand exactly how you are feeling, and I can't give you any more advice or nice comments that anyone else has. Don't feel ashamed of how you are feeling. What you have been through in the past few years with all the mental, emotional, and physical exhaustion..well I would say your feelings are completely justifiable. I am sad that you are feeling this way. I am really praying hard for you to have a smaller baby and a quick smooth uncomplicated birth. I can't wait to meet that sweet baby! And please let us know if you need anything. We miss you guys!

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  22. Prayers for you from Georgia.

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  23. you will have ALL THE PRAYERS!!! on tuesday.

    as one mother who went through a traumatic birth to another, be gentle with yourself. fear may not be of God but that doesn't mean that it isn't VERY. REAL. you can offer up prayers on behalf of couples suffering from infertility starting now and have that be a focus during labor, but don't beat yourself up over not offering them up during the last nine months.

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  24. My prayers are yours this week. I've got more words to say but don't know how to say them and am typing on our cross-country move on my phone. So I'll keep the words and just send you prayers.

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  25. Thank you so much for this humble post. Please know that our prayers are with you.

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  26. Good luck on Tuesday!! I am already planning on a medicated birth for the next baby, and I'm not even pregnant. I just don't think I can handle one more natural labor. Too much anxiety and pain.

    It's good to know what you can handle, and let God take care of the rest. He already has this baby's labor and delivery all planned out, so all you have to do is show up! HUGS!!!!!

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  27. Sometimes I think there's not much we can do about the anger and the fear that we go through. Sometimes I think that if we were able to do all that we thought we should do in the middle of our cross that we would pat ourselves on the back for carrying our cross so well. I think sometimes we need to be in the dirt, fallen under the weight of the cross, to realize our true dependence on God. Of course, in the middle of that, He feels the farthest away. But it isn't about whether you make progress or carry the cross beautifully and heroically. It's about whether you keep trying. Which means, it sounds to me like you are in fact doing beautifully.

    Praying for you and this baby!

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  28. There is such a humility in "not trusting your own body." Im with you -all my pregnancies/births from here on out will be filled with medications and interventions. It was hard to accept at first, but now I see the humility in having to rely on others to get my baby out alive, because I dont trust my own body and we dont know what it will do.

    Im sure some people might see your family and site them for a perfect example of why to get "fixed." But I think more people see a beautiful openness life, one that is real and honest. We are praying for you...I hope this birth is the best yet...and I hope you love the meds, I know I do!

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  29. My spiritual director always told me "It's enough to desire to desire..." In your case, it's enough to desire to trust even if you don't feel trusting; desire to be fearless even though you feel terrified. God is much gentler with us than we are with ourselves.

    You may feel like the past 9 months have been wasted, but the comments should tell you otherwise. Your vulnerability has allowed many moms (me too!) to admit to fear and that is a good thing. Perhaps it would have been better for you to pray peacefully through the pregnancy, but God brings good out of our imperfect efforts.

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  30. You are in my prayers. Your questions are questions I've asked myself recently, but mostly in the past 4 months. It's hard to trust God. It's very hard. I never knew just how hard it was until things didn't go my way with my last pregnancy. So, this post really resonated with me. I pray you have a peaceful labor and delivery and holding your baby is better than anything you could have ever dreamed.

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  31. Sometimes all you can say is "WTF, God?"

    The Old Testament is full of people being angry at God, questioning God, arguing with God. You're not the first person to feel this, and your honesty is appreciated. It can be very isolating when all the Christians around you SEEM to be living such perfect, faith-filled lives while you're struggling.

    P.S.: As for NFP, if you don't trust your body, Marquette may be helpful. The monitor gives you something you can trust in.

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  32. Like Kendra said (much more eloquently), you're doing the right thing even when it totally sucks, and in the end, that's what's going to matter. You know what you need to do from here on out as well, and I'll pray God not only gives you the strength to persevere but also that he gives you a break now and then. No harm in that. :) You're a wonderful example, even when you doubt it, or don't feel like it. Lots of prayers for you and your lovely family.

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  33. I will be praying for you Bonnie! I am two weeks behind you in my pregnancy, and I know I haven't been dealing with the sufferings that come with it as prayerfully as I should. I can't imagine the stress of going through a pregnancy with the weight of the additional crosses you bear. I will be praying for a peaceful, grace filled birth for you.

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  34. Way to keep it real, lady. Having delivered two children (more or less pleasantly) after my traumatic birth experience, the thought of giving birth again still makes me anxious. Those experiences heal like scar tissue, and it changes your perspective.

    I know I've said this to you before, but the desired outcome of delivering a baby isn't actually your ideal birth experience, it's a healthy mom and baby. I'm glad that you've planned for a delivery that addresses your fears (hospital, medication, etc.). If I may paraphrase Galadriel, this task is appointed to you, Bonnie of Illinois; if you don't find a way, no one will. I will continue praying for you, including that you will spend Monday looking toward the light and allowing God to manifest Himself to you.

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  35. Praying for you, Bonnie! And your baby! This is exactly what I needed to read today. Thank you for sharing your honest feelings. One thing I often think about is that...if we aren't in our right mind to offer up our sufferings DURING those hard times, why can't we just offer them up later on? God works apart from time, so just think of all those who you wanted to pray for and offer it now! Also, please try not to feel like a failure for getting interventions, says this 4 c-section mama! I know it's hard! Love and prayers from Texas...

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  36. Awesome honest post Bonnie. My favorite thing about God is that there is no faking it and He doesn't want us to. He only asks us to bring ourselves and whatever complicated jumbled feelings we are having to Him and place them in His hands. It is enough. Love and prayers for the whole family!

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  37. Praying for you the new baby and your family. I had surgery last Tuesday and will offer up things up instead of whining about not feeling better yet.

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  38. Prayers for a easy and smooth delivery, peace of heart and mind, and renewal of spirit.

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  39. I'll be praying for you and your family! Don't worry -- God is always at work. Even now, He can fill you with peace.

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  40. As others have said, your post is just what I needed to hear today (God is so awesome that way). I will be praying for you, your baby, and your family, and offering up my own difficult situation for you.

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  41. I second, third, and fourth what Kendra wrote. Your humility and fidelity are saint-like. I am sure that, even though you may not feel it, the Lord is so proud of you and your perseverance through this difficult time. I promise you my prayers!!!

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  42. Being open to life is hard...especially when you are "blessed" with fertility! I know it is truly a blessing but sometimes blessings can be crosses! (I have 9 children with the first 7 coming within 10 years of each other so I guess you could say I suck at nfp, too! We did the prolonged abstinence after baby 7 and it sucked:( I highly recommend mucus signs(bc I never sleep long enough for an accurate temp and ovulation tests!)

    You have quite a few different emotions that are mixing together to create the perfect storm! First, God is not held within the restraints of time. Today, you can offer up all your moments of fear, anxiety, and sorrow for any intention you want and it "counts"...your emotional suffering of the last 9 months has been wasted!

    Second, going through a traumatic birth experience and almost losing a child leaves you with post traumatic stress disorder so it makes perfect sense that entering the same situation is going to cause a ton of fear and anxiety. Be open and honest with your doctor and nurses tomorrow! You need some extra reassurances all throughout labor that things are ok. It won't take the fear away...but it will make it more bearable and keep away the feeling that you are alone and stuck in your fear!

    Thirdly, I think your decision to go medicated is smart. I had 7 natural deliveries even though the last 2 left me emotionally bruised. Despite this, I planned to go natural with #8 until God gave me a good wack on the head and made me realize that I just couldn't do it! So, literally at the last minute I switched to a doctor from my midwife so I could have an epidural. It was the.best.decision.ever for me! When there is emotional pain connected with childbirth, throwing in the incredible physical pain is a bad mix! I think you are wise for choosing to be medicated because just handling your emotions is going to be a struggle! and I honestly bonded much better with babies #8 and 9 because of the epidural. Win-win!

    It is a blessing for you to be so honest with your feelings before the birth. You have not missed out on blessings...all of what you have suffered emotionally is a special gift that God is simply waiting for you to hand over to Him whenever you are ready!

    Today's a new day...tomorrow is your little one's birthday! Prayers and hugs to you...Philippians 4:7
    And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

    May you feel His loving embrace around you and your new baby! I can't wait to see pictures!

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  43. Yikes...typo in paragraph 2! Meant to say that your emotional suffering over the last 9 months has NOT been wasted! Ugh sorry...sleep deprivation!

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  44. Bonnie I really, really understand where you're coming from. I wish I had the answers for this, I wish I felt better through my last pregnancy too. I know I've felt the exact same way you describe. Its hard to not feel excited for your baby, its hard to hear people's good wishes when they don't understand how many diapers you change a day, and how you're being woken at night not only by a newborn but another small baby. I felt guilty for feeling crappy and not dealing with it graciously on top of it all. I just know that its all hard even though it's God's will. Its hard to go through when you don't have a bit on consolation. My prayers are with you-especially tomorrow! Good luck, you can do it!

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  45. Love to you from a sister in Christ in IA

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  46. I wish I knew of a local resource to help with the PTSD that you surely suffered during and after the birth of your miracle (alledged be darned, he is a miracle) baby. I have been doing a lot of research on trauma care the last few years. At any rate though, I will be praying fervently before during and after the birth of this baby! Can't wait to see pics!

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  47. Bonnie,
    If it's any consolation, your honesty and willingness to put your situation and intentions out there has been a great help to me. I do not struggle with super-fertility, but I have a difficult-to-read cycle and have lost a baby too. I've also dealt with extremely long periods of abstinence surrounding my pregnancies and have dealt with very stressful situations around the births of my girls.

    I don't have anyone in real life to talk to about these things, and so it is truly a blessing to be able to read that someone else deals with these things and holds her cross up high, as I desire to. I look up to you, Bonnie, and I hope knowing that helps you to feel assured that even when you feel like you're "doing it wrong," you've been doing it right.

    I will certainly be praying for you and baby tomorrow. May God's Will be done. Much love from an internet stranger. :)

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  48. I have only given birth once, and in my early labor knew immediately that I wouldn't have the strength to give birth naturally. I think you are incredibly brave for have done that at all, and I know that birth must seem traumatic after your miracle. But gosh, I am honored to even through the internet world "know" someone whose great trauma is helping a man to saint hood. You will have all the prayers tonight and tomorrow.

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  49. I do not think you should feel bad for your feelings at all. you have experienced traumatic birth and its not just something to be swept under the rug. My second baby was a stillbirth during labour and I still don't feel I have recovered fully from it 13 years later. It was traumatic and truly changed my perception on life. Many people after a loss or such experiences would naturally feel a state of post traumatic stress. Don't feel bad! You are human.

    But that being said...here's a pep talk. Don't feel bad for asking for a medicated birth. It does help things to go smoother and for some people to relax and actually enjoy the process. You will be OK. The drs will take good care of you and you will have this baby and everything will be fine. Sometimes you needed to be carried through things via prayer. I will pray for you all day that it be the easiest birth and recovery yet.

    Can't wait to see the little one:)

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  50. i've been praying for you ever since i read this... praying so hard for you today. just think - there's a BABY you get to meet really really soon!

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  51. i lit a candle for you at morning prayer today.

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  52. Praying for you, Bonnie! Praying you can turn to God in total trust as you wait for this baby to be born. It's never too late to run back to His arms.

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  53. I've been offering prayers for you all day. May His peace fill you.

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  54. Praying a rosary for you and your family right now! And as for not being good at NFP, is that really possible? If you are seeking to do God's will then you are good at NFP, and a saint. It's so hard when His will isn't the same as our will, but He always brings good from every situation, and His will is always better, as you well know. :) And not to keep rambling on, but I've had two babies and two medicated births despite planning to have natural births both times and for a long time I felt bad about it but they are here and we are all healthy and I am grateful for epidurals! You are awesome and I hope you are holding your new little one right now as I'm typing!

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  55. Thinking about you and praying for you. I hope all is well.

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  56. I am praying for you and your baby!

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  57. Bonnie, can't tell you how much I appreciate your honesty. I think as Catholic women we're supposed to jump up and down over our fertility and act like we really want to have 10 babies, because that makes us holy. We're afraid to say we're afraid, or that it's hard, or that we want something different, because that's not pious, that's not what it means to be a good Catholic mom/wife. Your honesty is refreshing. I will be praying for you and for baby!!! You can do this, Bonnie, and even if you feel like you haven't done things right....the Lord knows.....He knows your heart.

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  58. Congrats on baby Joseph!

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  59. I am so grateful for your honesty. In the last two years I've come to the Catholic Church, learned NFP, and promptly had two unexpected pregnancies that ended in miscarriage. Now I seem to be edging into menopause. I have struggled so much to accept what is happening - that I can finally step up, hand my fertility and my life over to God in all these scary and overwhelming ways, and this is my reward?
    One strand of my grief here is that all those years when my fertility was this force that I lived in terror of, I didn't understand or appreciate the gift I'd been given (I should mention that I do have four healthy children). I bought into the idea that contraception was empowering, and that makes me angry now.
    However, I am so grateful that you were brave enough to admit your struggle. I appreciate being able to glimpse the reality that being open to life all along would have brought its own struggles. And I admire you for accepting those struggles. You and your family are in my prayers.

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  60. Every pregnancy is different. Sometimes long, angry prayers are the best kind to have. Prayers to you and the new babe.

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  61. I believe Pope Francis said recently that being angry or sad is not necessarily a sin--it can be a form of prayer in itself! I had a homebirth once and then in later pregnancies realized I wasn't comfortable with that and opted for hospital deliveries with a lot more monitoring. It's okay. It sounds like you are listening to yourself and trusting yourself by following your intuition about what is best for you and your baby this time. Take care!

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  62. What? You're human? I've been praying for something very important and I keep beating myself up for not praying as much as I should. Good thing God knows you ;)

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  63. I know this is an old post. I'm in my seventh week of my sixth pregnancy and wanted to reread this post. This was a very much prayed for and "planned' pregnancy, and even so, I find myself with the same fears and feeling overwhelmed by feeling poorly and worrying about "what ifs". Thank you for this beautiful reminder that I can change the "tone" of this pregnancy. Thank you for the reminder to keep praying, to offer up the discomforts, and to remember to give thanks!

    THe nice thing about reading old posts is that I already know you're enjoying your little Joseph.

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