I'm getting personal today. Alex and I have recently started thinking about having a baby.
We've been married two and a half years. We both have good jobs. We're in a solid financial situation. We done those "Twenties" things like staying out too late or having too much to drink. We've taken the dream vacation to Italy we talked about for years. We've raised two dogs, which although nothing like child-rearing I'm sure, does prove a moderate capability of responsibility. We've done all the things you're "supposed" to do, in the "right order" - high school, college, love, marriage. We feel ready. Or as ready as I suppose anyone ever feels when contemplating whether or not to bring a life into the world.
I am a control freak. I like to have a plan, and stick to that plan. I am extremely motivated by to-do lists and accomplishing goals. And the more I understand (and re-learn from 9th grade health class) about the complexity of what actually has to perfectly align to conceive a child blows all of my planning and to-do lists to bits. I mean, seriously. You start reading this stuff and you think, "How does anyone actually get pregnant?!" I guess that's why it's called the Miracle of Life, huh?
I am a worrier. I have struggled with intense worry many times in my life. Matthew 6:25-34 has been one of my favorite scripture readings for years because I cling to those words: "Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life?"...
I don't want to worry about the things that might happen. I have no reason to believe that I will not be able to conceive, or that I will have a child born with complications, or will lose a child. Alex and I are just getting started on this journey, and it's different for everyone. Three consecutive posts in my Facebook feed last week prove this. Three women who I went to college with, all sorority sisters of mine. All love the Lord, all have an intense faith.
The first woman is a mom of 2 healthy, perfect little girls. She was pregnant with her 3rd, a little boy. She found out around 24 weeks that he had Trisomy 18 and would likely be stillborn. She delivered him last week, a tiny, stillborn baby boy who will never have an earthly life. She and her family are mourning the loss of a child, grandchild, and little brother. Her faith throughout this ordeal has been incredibly inspiring. She was literally bracing herself for the sure loss of a child for 9 long weeks before it actually happened. I cannot imagine.
The second woman found out a few months after her wedding that she was expecting triplets. Natural triplets! Although she had no problem conceiving, she delivered the babies - 2 girls and a boy - very early and, as with most multiple or premature births, there were complications. She just brought the last of the babies home from the NICU a few weeks ago after a nearly 3-month stay. Thankfully, everything looks good now and the babies seem to be doing fine.
The third woman has been trying to conceive for more than 2 years. She recently started writing personal blog posts about she and her husband's struggle with infertility, and the possibility of adopting. They had an adoption in the works, but it fell through. Then, a picture popped up in my newsfeed: she was holding a darling, squishy infant and the caption was "It's a GIRL!"She literally woke up one morning and found out that they were getting a baby that day - no time to prepare a nursery, no time for a baby shower, no time to even tell her job! She is now a mommy, and seeing those pictures makes me well up with tears of joy for her.
These cases are all amazing. They are all sad, terrifying, and uplifting in their own ways. I could go on and on about the many women I know who have miscarried, been unable to get pregnant, have had complications with pregnancy or birth, or have had truly terrifying health scares with their children.
But you know what? I know even more women who have had no problem conceiving, have had beautiful, healthy children, and the only pregnancy "issue" they had was gaining a little too much pregnancy weight.
I must choose to have faith greater than fear. If I start to think about all the things that could go wrong, I'll make myself crazy. And in the end, it's in God's hands. It's all in His perfect timing, in His perfect way, in His perfect plan.
So here we are, beginning this journey that will end one way or another, by God's grace, in parenthood. Which is the start of another journey. I don't know what the future holds. I don't know if I will struggle to become pregnant. I don't know if I will have a healthy child. I don't know if I will have a baby at all. But I DO know that God has a plan. Faith greater than fear.
Here we go! Wish us luck (*wink*)