Perhaps what we are meant to do is to work with what is already in our hands. It may seem quite simple but truthfully it is not what I usually focus on. My goals and dreams are bigger than what I can reach. I often pursue them while I sacrifice the now to achieve the future. I know what happens when I do that, life happens. No matter how I resist my current state and extend my hand to a higher calling, it always seems to pull me down to what is now calling my attention. The more I fight it, the more my hopes and goals take a hit, the more disappointed I am and the more of a failure I feel. If I begin to narrow these things to what is truly important, I may just may get somewhere.
I’d love to be a writer. One that actually has time to write on a daily basis, one that works on a novel and extends that even to other fields of writing. I would love to be that awesome business owner that seems to know how to increase sales and suck the juice out of every advertising venue. I would love to be that pilot that can log hours into destinations that become the center of new adventures and more writing. I could be the woman who speaks about God in a way that would set fire to hearts desiring more to know who He is and why He does the things He can only do. I would love to be that rocking mom that makes her kids laugh, enjoy their lives and feel inspired to make the right choices for their lives. I would love to be that woman who leaves her husband breathless and always thinking of her. I admit right now I am these things in some ways, small ways really. Nevertheless to try to be all of them, leaves me without accomplishing any of these.
I haven’t written in a long time and I guess part of that is that I’ve been trying too hard. I can be the writer that writes when inspiration comes or when I realize nothing fulfills like a good typing exercise. I do work slowly when I can at this small business I have when time allows. I am the pilot that dreams of being in the air and does what it can to stay connected until the money flows enough to help me fly. I do speak and encourage all that I meet to believe in a God that cares and is willing to love. I am the mom that flusters herself trying so hard to do all and do it well. Then I pause. When I take the time to bathe my babies while singing songs and making airplane noises while I brush their teeth, I do become someone I admire. My husband still says I keep him on his toes and thinks of me often.
Life happens, your expectations didn’t match your reality. My expectations did not match and to try to fight it with all my might, leads to missing out to what I have right now. So I pause and work with what is in my hands. It’s not perfect in the way that I would want it and though it was a tough day today I realized it. I sang with a giraffe puppet in my hands making my toddler laugh hysterically and it hits me. I can be this and this is pretty good. This is the woman I am and the one I want to be, one that uses what she has to live, embrace and bless.
Looking around her the huddles and circles of confidants abound, yet she’s not a part of any of them. She watches as they hug each other with such loving gestures. They ramble of their days without an ending punctuation. As one finishes their story the other begins in a flow of excitement and disbelief. Sharing stories with one another builds their life. She wishes she could be a part of any of these circles. She approaches one and listens partly to a conversation. She gives some input and receives a polite smile. Then the conversation changes to stories only the original members would know about and she finds herself unable to add anything at all. She sees rather abruptly she does not belong in the group, nor is there a desire from them to have her join. She tries one more group and the results are the same.
She comes home to her husband distraught. She explains how she joins these community groups to find friends and a life outside of home. She sits on the kitchen counter and cries. Her husband consoles her saying she should keep trying.
The next meeting comes and she feels a challenge brewing inside. She can make herself more interesting, more desirable as a friend. Somehow she should produce the same expressions of excitement and disbelief from a few sentences. She could peak their interest and be a part of any group. She listens to what they talk about. It’s gossip. Though she doesn’t like to gossip nor does she feel it is right she’s desperate for a bit of attention even if the sincerity lacks. She walks up to a huddle and waits for an opportunity.
“Yes, she said she wouldn’t do it again, but you know how these things go.”
They all nod in approval and she sees the open door.
“At least she didn’t do worse, like give her husband a woman just so she could have a child through her.” She ends her remark, sighs, smiles at them and walks away to grab a cup of tea.
The group looks around at each other, hoping she returns. She lingers by the snack table and strolls her way back to the group and starts another conversation.
“You know, I’m not sure that the volunteer program is bringing up enough volunteers.”
“Yes dear, it’s hard to find people who care.” One of them replies and stares at the other.
“Did they have their child?” Another begins the questioning.
“I’m sorry what?” She pretends she already forgot.
“Your friend did her husband have a child from that other woman.”
“Oh, she’s not my friend and yes he did.” She goes on to tell the story and at the end of the night she says good night to her new-found friends.
On Sunday at church, she tells her husband all about it and they laugh before the sermon begins. In the pew in front of them, a few women start to whisper to one another, as they hear the bible story of a man named Abram who slept with his wife’s maid to produce a child. At the end of the service, she walks up to some of the circle of friends and confesses. She doesn’t gossip, so that’s all she could think of telling. They laugh admitting how these bible stories are juicy. They promise one another to help each other be sincere and say goodbye to their gossip club.
Excitement and hormones encourage the blood pumping and the race begins, when it first slows down. When she feels ready to start this stage of her life, she finds out changes take time. Her body gains weight and she looks forward to showing her baby belly, yet the weight does not give her a sweet bump but a hefty look. She feels that everyone that sees her wonders. She can almost hear their assumptions.
“She’s really letting herself go. You think she’s depressed?”
“I thought she was working out, maybe she’s not as much?”
No one asks her what is new in her life and she doesn’t feel ready to share it anyways. Some people know from experience, you never ask unless its obvious. They wait to ask when they a see a woman rushing to the hospital, doing her breathing exercises and screaming. It’s safer for them to ask between contractions than being wrong. The embarrassment alone of being wrong and offending a woman who is not expecting and is in fact overweight is enough to send some to seclusion for days. They know, you do not ask.
At this stage no one can tell except her, the one with ravenous hunger, queasiness, potential mood swings and the frustrated dresser. However, she figures a way to calm the curious by a simple gesture. She rubs her belly and rests her hand under her belly leaving the observer quiet as they see she is expecting. Even so, who dares to ask?
A brain disconnect is an understatement. It’s easy to understand that with the physical changes in your body, stress alters your way of life. There are plenty of thoughts that float in a woman’s mind, more so when there is a baby on the way. Nevertheless, there is a pause. A pause that has no excuse or explanation. It is when in the middle of a conversation you cannot remember the topic anymore. It is where a place you drive to every day becomes a game of Marco Polo as you take the wrong turn and don’t remember the street names. Forgetting or losing keys is a thing of the past. Your present is leaving a toddler outside the door of a car while you strap your seatbelt on and see his or her face looking up at you from outside. Organizing the day is a blank sheet of paper or a blank paper towel, either one serves a purpose if you could only think of what it is you want from it. Tears flow in response to all of it as frustration becomes your ally to the feeling of dumbness. In the end, there is a point to this, your creativity and problem solving skills diminish. If only for a brief time, the baby feeds from your intelligence since conception. It sets in motion a new trait, the mommy brain. Though at times making connections is harder than ever, it also leaves eyes behind the back of your head and the supernatural ability to multitask in the seasons to come.
Author’s Note: Cheers to the mammas that make it work with exhaustion and sometimes with half the brain cells. 😉
When the body makes peace with all the changes to come, a sudden rest takes over. A small bit of bliss gives hope to the life forming within. Most women for the first time stand with their hips forward. They push their gut out and their hands rub their belly. Truthfully there is nothing to show, except that it’s well to gain weight and to loosen a bit. Other women work hard to delay the process. It is a defeat they will not take lightly. No one will say what their body will look like and have dominion over it. We find these two standing beside each other, one comments of how wonderful the changes will be, the other comments on her efforts to support her current lifestyle. There is of course a third, who waits and perseveres to hear her good news. She passes all the tests, she knows her choices and as she looks around at the mothers that will carry their own, her own another will carry. Hers will be one born of her loving heart, her body unaffected but her heart continually struggles. Her heart will bear the stretch marks as she waits. How will these relate when in the end they will hold in their hands someone they expected but could truly never know what it takes to rear it. A child will change their lives but how it will, they are still learning. Guts out, work outs or hearts yearning, let your journey inspire another.
Author note: Do not let your journey be a private one. Can someone’s wisdom inspire you or can you inspire another? We have all different approaches and beliefs, however we share one common goal to love our children.
There is an incredible truth that baffles professionals. It is the reality of how a woman in her first trimester can relate in every way to a Zombie. She wakes up and the taste in her mouth from last night’s dinner propels her to the toilet for a morning outpour of leftovers. Once she feels the sweet emerging relief, she drops again to face the odious throne. It is difficult to maintain any resemblance to a female creature when all energy flees like a bandit from the crime scene. Behind her she drags her slippers as she makes her way into the kitchen and smells the neighbor’s breakfast. They’re having eggs with sausage and the taste of sausage lingers on her tongue and she flips to her side to drain whatever food remains into the sink.
The day continues and she manages to keep the sprite and soda crackers steady within her except the weight of her head seems too much for her to carry. At work a sitting area with a large couch calls her to rest her feet and lower her heavy head. She sits for a moment, until she opens her eyes to find her boss staring at her. He expresses his concern for her health and she thanks him stating its one of those crazy days. She rushes to the nearest fast food place crossing sideways through traffic to make her turn and arrive at a place she doesn’t frequent but a force within her drives her to it. She eats like a starving child the dripping pickle with chocolate ice cream while she cries at her disgusting self. Feeling ashamed at the events of her day she walks to the parking lot spitting left and right like a camel, feeling every second a lesser woman. She reaches her car door when the sudden rise of pickles volcanoes out of her body to the unsuspecting bush nearby. She rests her body on her couch finally at home, where her husband finds her. One of her legs rests on the arm rest, the other did not make it to the couch, her head hands low on the edge of the right side cushion and from the moss of hair he hears her weeping. She mutters about her day, her exhaustion, her need to use the bathroom every minute , her constant thirst and worst of all she feels all these at once. He brings her water and she cries mentioning her talent for water recycling.
Author’s Note: The funniest part is that mothers will do it all over again for the love of another child. I would. What was it like for you? Or is there something that was difficult that you would do all over again?
Fear thy name is mother. Motherhood begins with incredible news and devastating warnings. The first advice may come from this first fear, loss. Many women know too well the fear and the reality of loss. Their tender hearts encourage the first time mothers even though they need encouraging as well. However, the first motherhood advice can overshadow the wonderful news to delay for the ‘just in case’ situation.
“Sandy, the first 12 weeks are critical, make sure you take care of yourself and get informed.” The doctor places his hand on her shoulder and shakes her husband’s hand.
“And congratulations.” He walks away.
“We gotta get books, magazines and subscribe to all the things they have listed on the resource list.” The mother to be jumps from the examining table.
“Alright, we got time.” Her husbands stands up from his comfy chair.
As they walk out, they see an acquaintance.
“I didn’t know this was your doctor too.” She says while filling out forms.
“Mrs. Gaines here is information about the first trimester and our contact list.” The secretary speaks to the mother to be.
“You’re pregnant, congratulations, but I’m sure you don’t want anyone to know yet right? You probably just found out and you never know…”
“Miscarriage sweetie, its like every 4 out of 5 women miscarry on their first.”
Sandy looks about the room. There are three pregnant women in their last trimester waiting plus the old acquaintance. She would be the fifth or fourth.
“So who should we tell first?” He holds his phone as he takes a picture of the positive pregnancy test.
“No one, I guess.” She sits in their sofa and drops to the side to rest only half of her body.
“It’s our news, don’t let the hag scare you.” He watches space out. “Even if, we shouldn’t be afraid and hope for the best.” He holds her again for another crying session.
Author’s note: When blessings come, a voice of ‘well meaning’ warnings may crush the joy of them. Believe the blessing, enjoy the joy and don’t allow fear to overshadow the good things.