Before I was on a journey to “get to the good stuff” — the baby in arms loving me back. But I have found that God has this process — pregnancy and the journey through childbirth, that he obviously intended very specifically to be the way it is, and usually that means he has a reason. The past few weeks I have rarely read a section of scripture that didn’t make reference to the “pains of childbirth.” I’m no scholar, but don’t people say when there is something often mentioned that we should pay extra attention?
I don’t think it’s just about the curse and the pains of childbirth inflicted on evil woman since the garden. Like the kings, prophets, apostles, Jesus, and many other men & women of God — their stories are laced with difficult, trying, and many times physically abusive episodes. Continually men and women of God are challenged to persevere through trials and suffering to find what God has for them IN the process, and on the other side. Why doesn’t anyone talk about this when it comes to childbirth? Maybe it is too sensitive a topic and they are afraid of what people might say in response; I run some risk even now!
I started the process of researching “issues” or “topics” like whether to use an epidural or not. But I realized it was MUCH bigger than those specific decisions. There is this beautiful thing I have discovered in exploring women’s stories. I have found an amazing value of life and relational intimacy for mom-dad-baby through the resources mostly written by natural childbirth advocates. I have found their philosophies and writings some of the most beautiful human and life valuing perspectives from anyone — even more so than many Christians I have read and talked with.
It’s not about who can survive the most pain at the end of the day, or anything so trite. These women simply embrace the fact of how women’s bodies are designed and the purposefulness of the created order; the beautiful empowerment and intimacy that the pregnancy can create for mother-father and baby; and knowing that you could survive something you didn’t think you could. Ultimately I know it is because of God’s love and grace and intervention in strengthening us.
I feel like God has truly called me to embrace the adventure and seek Him in this process, trusting him, and seeing what he might have for me, my husband and baby. How often does he call us to face things that we are scared of, that may hurt us (emotionally, physically, etc) and how often do we cry out to him in the midst of despair and disillusionment and cry for him to save us. And what has that journey been like to experience his grace and mercy overflowing around us?!
He is allowing me to change my view, and while I have anxiety and fear, and I have NO idea what the pain will be like, or even ultimately what specific choices I will make, I feel like he has something special for me in this process with my husband and my baby. As I’ve sought him, and wisdom from others, my fear has lessened and my excitement has increased. God is good.