I felt the need to tell you, oh blogging world and friends, that I'm feeling better.
Thank you for "listening," for sending me warm thoughts, and especially thank you to those that left comments. I appreciate so much your insights and encouragement. It really does mean so much.
My last post was the result of months of questions, not just about children, but also about our current living situation. We've been going back and forth about Adam's job, him possibly relocating. We made plans for one thing, and they got yanked out from under our feet and we've been crawling around on our hands and knees since then trying to find our footing again. Trying to find our place, where we're needed, where we'll be happy. I don't do well with uncertainty, with not knowing what's next. I'm a planner; it's what I do. The gray, middle area scares me, and that's what I've been swimming in since the beginning of this year. My last post was like a pin to the balloon - a verbal explosion of some of the pressure we've been feeling.
I called up a BFF after writing that post and she said, "It's so hard to blog about those kinds of things because the minute after you write them and publish them, you already feel different. That was just a snapshot of how you were feeling right then." And that's true - as soon as I wrote it all out and got it off my chest I felt a little better already. Just throwing it all into the universe seemed to free up my brain a little bit.
This friend also reminded me that I had gone through a very similar phase before we decided to get pregnant the first time around - a period of grayness, of confusion. I had completely forgotten about that. I looked up an old blog post of mine, just to compare. Here's what I read:
I had such a bad attitude ... and just didn't know where I was supposed to be. I was experiencing a major "stupor of thought" --- a post-college depression, if you will. What was going to make me happy? Getting a new job? Going to graduate school? Certainly I wasn't ready for a baby....was I?
I was seriously depressed. I got up every day at 5:30 in the morning, went to a job I didn't like, and was exhausted when I came home at 5:30 at night. I didn't have energy or time to make dinner, take care of the house, or be a good friend or wife to my husband.
I was quite shocked to realize that that was exactly what I had been feeling like lately. All those questions, a bad attitude, a constant stupor of thought. Feelings that honestly went away once I made the decision to get pregnant.
This time, though, it was two major things - well, two major people and the things they said to me - that have helped me see a bit more clearly.
The first one was Adam. We talked about all the things I've been afraid of, my hopes and my hesitations; he not only validated them all, but made me feel better about every single one. And then he looked me in the eye and said, softly, "I want another baby. I know it's you that has to do it for us - I can't do this - and I don't even know what all you do have to go through, but I will be by your side every step of the way. I will go through this with you as much as I can."
Now, outside of that moment, I can stop and I can say, "Yeah sure you want another baby. You sleep through the night while I struggle with back pain and a huge belly, while I breastfeed and comfort. Then you go to work all day and associate with professionals and come home to excited Axton for a few hours and then put him to bed. You have no idea what another baby will mean for me." (And, later, I did say those things to him).
But in that moment? Him looking me in the eyes and asking me to do something for him, something he really wanted, something that he couldn't do for himself - well, honestly, I was reminded of the Savior. Just as we cannot save ourselves, just as we had to ask Jesus Christ to suffer, to bleed from every pore, to be crucified for our sins - I was reminded that I am doing God's work. That I would be doing something for this world, for my husband, for this waiting soul, that no one else can do. I have to sacrifice a lot to make it happen, but it's been asked of me. By Adam, and by God. (And isn't it wonderful that it's been asked of me, not forced on me? Isn't agency and the gift to choose beautiful?)
I have always told Adam, during our periods of transition, "I just wish God would tell us where to go, rather than us trying to decide between here or there. If God would just say, I need you to go to X, then I would. Happily." But God, so far, hasn't done that too often with us - He's given us our choice, and redirected us only when necessary. I decided I needed to be real with God - I got down on my knees and said an out-loud prayer - something I hadn't done in quite some time. I poured it all out to Him, even though I knew He already knew.
I just talked, and He just listened.
Until I asked the question. I only asked him one question, and I asked it straight out. And, in return, He answered me straight out. His answer was just one single word that clouded all my other thoughts. I tried to beat it away, tried to ask again just in case He had said the wrong word on accident but again this word came back, and I resigned. I said, Okay.
And as soon as I accepted, I was filled with just a glimmer of excitement. Of hope... Of Courage.
It's going to be really hard - but [eventually] I'm going to do it anyway.
And I think there's power in that, in doing something despite being afraid of it. Isn't that the definition of courage? I remember asking another friend, who is currently pregnant with her second boy, if she was scared. She told me, "I was at first, but now I feel up to the challenge." I've been thinking about those words a lot lately, how this is a chance for me to gear up and face things head on - to rise up to the challenge and come out conqueror. To prove to myself - over and over and over again - that I can do hard things. I can have a baby at a birth center, with no medication. I can run 13.1 miles in 2 hours and seven miles....and one day in the future, I can have another baby. I can do hard things.
2 years ago