Is it possible I am really halfway through this pregnancy? The calendar and that little wheel thing at the midwife's office say it's true. I still have trouble wrapping my mind around it. I look down and I see a growing bump and I still struggle to embrace the fact that, yes indeed, a new precious life is growing.
When I realized I was pregnant this time, it hit me like a ton of bricks. Just months before I had struggled with an intense longing for another child. Some days I though I was going crazy, it was all I could think about. I struggled because, rationally, another pregnancy was probably not the best thing to long for. After all, many complications meant that I couldn't even carry John to full term and the memory of the fear and anxiety as I realized my liver just could not have me be pregnant a day longer and John would be a preemie were all still very fresh in my mind. Nevertheless, I struggled with letting go of my desire.I needed to live in the present moment where I knew God's grace was sufficient.
I decided to offer up that longing for various intentions and resolved to get my body healthy. I had started Tae Kwon Do already, but threw myself into it with greater vigor. I carefully watched my diet. When summer came I resolved to swim laps every few days. Slowly my body changed. Muscles tightened and toned. I was stronger, healthier and I felt it. I was happy because, just as I hope and work to be as healthy as possible during pregnancy, I knew God was asking me to be just as disciplined without a pregnancy. I knew I was called to be the healthiest mother I could be to my children.
And then there was that positive test. Oh my. My friends, don't get me wrong. I was happy. But it was (and still is to a certain extent) overshadowed by a tremendous amount of fear. The fear has left me feeling somewhat detached from this precious baby and there are days when that fills me with great sadness. It is a struggle. As Advent approached, I thought about the St. Andrew chaplet. I prayed it last year, longing and hoping for another child. God always answers prayers, doesn't He? And this time he saw fit to give me exactly what I asked him for. I know, I KNOW, there is so much for me to learn from that alone. This year I'll pray the chaplet again, but with a far different intention. This year I will pray for His peace to surpass my understanding, the things I know in my head "could go wrong". I will pray with humility and gratitude for His generosity.
Tomorrow I'll see my baby on ultrasound. I will learn if it is a boy or a girl. I'm so very worried there will be something wrong. It's irrational. Not where God wants me at all. I thought perhaps to wait until tomorrow before sharing these thoughts. But it seemed better to share them tonight, as I sit halfway between joy and fear.