Involuntary Miracles

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

The biggest change from my first pregnancy to my second is this: I worry less. Maybe I worry less this pregnancy because I am more educated than last time. Maybe I worry less this pregnancy because I know the experience and what can be expected. Maybe I worry less because I already have enough to worry about! Maybe I worry less because I'm tired of taking care of my 1 year old and just more vulnerable to hand over the "control" I think I have in the first place. Nevertheless, I embrace the peace.
I realized this the other night, praying over my baby girl and my growing tummy, praying for my children and their health, growth, wellness, and mostly just free-flowing continual thanks to God for the ridiculous amount of blessings that pass by me unnoticed every minute of my life. This cell triggers this nerve, sending a message to the brain, making it so my child can now climb onto the couch all by herself. Voila! Another miracle. And I'm not sitting there thinking about "Thank you God for those little cells and nerves and brain"...I'm sitting there thinking "Oh my goodness, now my kid can climb on the couch!? Just another way she can damage herself and/or our furniture!" And yet these little physical and tangible miracles involuntarily occur whether I recognize them or not.
But it's not the "not recognizing them" that causes my lack of worry over this pregnancy...just the opposite. It is the very acute recognition that I absolutely have no control over it! I am the vessel - God is the weaver inside the womb. I can feel a gurgle and take a wild guess whether it is a new reflex of little baby fingers, or whether it was that burrito I ate last night...but God knows every tiny little follicle that He is forming on that tiny head that has yet to have ears set in their proper place yet. Unreal.
And while these involuntary miracles are occurring around and within me all day long, I imagine the only thing I can do is to focus my energy on being more tuned in to being thankful for them. So that, one day, maybe a new habit will be formed: an involuntary constant recognition of all the things I have to be thankful for. Then, and only then, can I imagine actually putting aside all of my illusions of control and fully laying down my worries once and for all.
As a mother, we wear "worry" as a badge of honor. "It's our burden. It's our blessing. It's what mothers do." we tell ourselves constantly (and anyone willing to sympathize with us). But, maybe we can change this. I'm finding gratitude is the weapon against many of my foes. When teamed with Christ's love and peace, then fear and worry had better start running - they don't stand a chance. I'm not saying I'll never worry. I can't imagine that day will come until I'm staring Jesus in the face. But until my involuntary gratitude kicks in, I'm trading my worry in for thankfulness...for gratitude...for appreciation of all the little things I never considered before. That is a miracle all in itself.
Thank you, God, for those tiny little cells building that tiny little baby in there. I'm so glad You're in charge.

Big Girls Don't Cry (They Buy Bigger Pants)

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

What is the statute of limitations on wishing everyone a Happy New Year? Well, I'll admit I haven't blogged in a while - I was on somewhat of a "headache hiatus". This pregnancy struck me with a three-week-plus headache that simply did not allow my brain to function at a capacity I felt willing to subject you to via blogging. Things seem to be looking up, however, as we enter into the second trimester, ready to embrace the promises of "less aches, more energy" that all the books and websites suggest for the next few months.
Another thing I am fully embracing: big girl pants. I am exclusively in maternity outfits now, or at least greatly-modified-regular-wear...and loving it. There are really several advantages to wearing maternity pants, even apart from the comfort. You don't have to worry about "muffin top". You don't have to worry about accidentally leaving your fly down. You don't have to wish you could change into pajama pants all day since that lovely elasti-band is basically just as comfortable anyway. Yup, I'm all for it. I wish normal pants could take a page out of the maternity fashion book and incorporate a spanx-like-smoothing top to all the pants I already own. Am I crazy here? Who's with me?
The other funny thing that I'm noticing "this time around" is people's lack of surprise when it comes to me and my ever-growing-abdomen. That is, when I was pregnant with Matilda I constantly and immediately got the "Oh wow, you are huge" looks, glances, questions, comments, etc. With this one...well, that is just not news. In fact, the most common comment I get these days are "Oh, look at you popped out already - that's right, you do get huge don't you?" or "You got your belly already! You just pop right out, don't you?" It's humorous to say the least. I walk by and people glance at my belly and then nod with a reaffirming "Ah yes, I remember her" with a few "I guess she is pregnant again" looks along the way. I haven't quite figured out the right response other than "Yup, I'm just glad I really am pregnant, otherwise this would be awkward." (Facetious, I know.)
Here we go, second trimester. The belly is out. The pants are on. The countdown continues.
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