I am in the last week or so of pregnancy. I can feel my heart and my mind being pulled in so many different directions. There is part of me that wants to sit down and enjoy the last few days of normal sleeping patterns, two free hands, the freedom to be away for more than 3 hours at any time, sharing in the excitement that is building in our home, and the predictability of life at this point. This is the part that wants to gather up my small children and say yes, we can play store. Yes, we can get out the clay. Yes, we can read this book. Yes, we can make this mess. Yes. Anything you say.
There is part of me that wants to forget about normal life altogether. Is it seriously time to eat another meal??? No, we are not making paper snowflakes. No, we are not dragging out the legos. No, we are not making another mess!!! No, no, no.
Right now, all the creative energy I have is gone. I used it all up on rearranging our house and organizing toys and craft supplies. We are in maintenance mode around here, which basically means that my main goal in life is to go to bed at a decent hour with a clean kitchen and laundry put away.
Part of me is waiting with eager expectation to see the face of this little child. She is going to change our world forever. I am standing on the edge of this birth, knowing that the experience will make an impact that reaches into the very depths of my body and soul. I want to run to meet it, to face it, to walk through it and experience the joy of doing such amazing work. The hardest and best work I will ever do in all my life.
Part of me wants to skip over the hard part. And just get to the part where my baby is in my arms.
I feel like giving birth is like traveling to the very edge of this world and stepping onto the shore of another, unseen world. There are times when you feel like you will never make it back. You think you will just drown there in the ocean. And then, in one instant, when the baby is born you are back. And it is the most beautiful welcome back into a world you could ever receive. The work is over. The face that has only been seen by God looks up at you and loves you.
I am looking forward to this experience and to being on the other side of it. Each of the births of my children have changed my life in a profound way, and I have learned so much about what it truly means to lean into God’s mercy and love through the very hard work of pregnancy, labor, and delivery. It is a gift to be able to travel so far holding tightly to the hand of God. And to see how even when I go to worlds where no one can follow, He will never leave me or forsake me.
In the meantime, I know that God is trying to teach me to just be still and live each moment as it comes. That is the lesson of the last few days of pregnancy and also the lesson of the most intense labor: to live and allow God to do the work that only He can do through me.