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.|
Here's a little update:
7QT: the JP edition
No Sex for Months
Kids are Great! and No Sex for Months Part II
So We're All in this Together