Sign Me Up!
Monthly Archives: September 2015
Well, I’m exhausted.
A little over two weeks ago, I gave birth to my second child, Mabel. It feels so weird to say that. I am a mother, of not just one, but two little children. I have been given stewardship over their lives, their hearts, their souls. I’m in charge of their days, their nights, every little need they have. They are mine, and I am theirs.
One child is exhausting. A two year old, in particular, is exhausting. I swear this little guy never runs out of energy. It was really tough, especially toward the end of my pregnancy, to keep up with him. I was tired, and huge, and pretty uncomfortable most of the time. I took lots of naps.
And you know what else is exhausting? A newborn. You sort of remember, but don’t quite fully remember, what it’s like being up every three hours for an hour at a time when you’re supposed to be getting your full eight hours of restful, restorative nighttime sleep. It’s not until you’re back in it that you truly remember how draining it is, how delirium is close at hand not only in the middle of the night, but often in the middle of the day too. Sometimes I feel great, there have been mornings when I’ve thought to myself, “I feel better than I did while I was pregnant! This is awesome!” But there are also times when I feel like I might pass out, except I can’t, because life is happening around me, and usually there is a toddler close at hand.
My back is killing me, I’m still recovering from the birth, nursing is still somewhat awkward and uncomfortable, I sweat constantly, and gosh am I irritable. Between hormones and sleep deprivation there’s just no hope for good spirits to prevail. Why don’t people tell you all of these things when they are ooh-ing and ahh-ing over the future birth of your blessed, sweet child? Somehow they manage to slip under the radar.
My poor husband has been on toddler duty for the past two weeks, and we’ve had so much help from family and friends, so this is the first week I’m taking care of the two of them by myself for the majority of the time. Part of me feels like “I can do this!” And part of me, usually the part that has only slept for a couple hours at a time for the past two weeks, wonders how I’ll ever survive.
And yet, I’m smitten, and in so much awe of this new little life that God has given me. And still just as in love with my two-year-old son, who is whinier than he has ever been in his life, but who is also saying new words and learning new skills at an alarming rate that is so fun to watch. It’s amazing, isn’t it? There’s always grace.
If I’m honest, I’m not feeling very eloquent right now. The words just aren’t coming easily. But I’m not going to let that keep me from writing. I want to keep writing, and I need to keep writing. My next few posts may not be anything groundbreaking, but I’m going to write them anyway.
In the words of Dory, “Just keep swimming, just keep swimming…”
I’m sitting here (on an exercise ball, of course) the day after my due date, waiting for my baby to make her big entrance into the world. It’s the oddest time, this waiting period, for one of the biggest moments in your life, that you have absolutely no control over. It could happen next week, it could happen tomorrow, but I have no idea when or how it will happen. For all the research and reading and exercising and stretching and red raspberry leaf tea drinking I’ve done, there’s nothing I can do to get any closer to figuring out when she will be here.
And you know what’s the most frustrating thing about it? That no matter how hard I try, I can’t keep myself from focusing on the waiting, from being impatient, from living in the future of when she does decide to come, instead of enjoying this time before she comes.
This is the last little bit of time I get to have with my family of three, just the boys and me, in our small little toddler-driven life. It’s the last little bit of time I can do whatever I want with Shook all day every day, just us chickens. I’m about to enter a whole new world of chaos, one I know nothing about, except that it’s going to be hard. Really hard. How am I going to get anything done? How am I going to cook dinner? How am I going to even make it through the back yard and out to my car, let alone actually go somewhere in it? I should be relishing these breezy car rides I’ve taken to the grocery store the past few weeks, bathing in the ease of being a mother of one.
But no, I can’t stop thinking about this little baby, and when she’s going to get here. I’m stuck waiting, anticipating, anxious for what comes next.
Can I get a witness here, is this not what we spend most of our days doing? Granted, waiting for a baby to arrive is a BIG thing to wait for, but if I’m honest, I spend most of my days waiting for something. Waiting for naptime. Waiting for naptime to be over. Waiting for Marshall to get home. Waiting for bedtime. Waiting for that time I wake up in the middle of the night and it’s morning instead. Waiting for the weekend. Waiting for the weekend to be over. Waiting for that package to arrive (I mean seriously, why is it so exciting?). Waiting for vacation. Waiting for the next vacation. Waiting to make more money. Waiting to make more money. Waiting to make more money. Waiting to feel comfortable. Waiting until the house is fully decorated. Waiting to be settled. Waiting until I’m writing enough, writing what I want, writing when I want. It’s endless.
Does anyone live their life NOT waiting for something? I can’t even imagine what that would be like. Don’t you think we would enjoy life so much more if we weren’t spending all of our time looking forward to the next thing we think we are going enjoy? What a terrible trap to live in, and I feel like I’m constantly living in it.
And then I was listening to a sermon the other day, and the pastor said the reason we are always waiting for something is that nothing in this world will satisfy us the way we want it to. So of course we are looking for the next thing. Until we look to Jesus for that satisfaction, no next thing will ever satisfy us. Nothing in this world was made to satisfy us completely. Only Jesus can do that.
This is one of C.S. Lewis’s big arguments for why there must be something more out there. Because we long for something more. Why would we long for something else if it weren’t there? God has put eternity in our hearts. We were not made for this world, so nothing of this world will satisfy us.
Until Jesus becomes the thing I seek for fulfillment, nothing else will fulfill me. I’ll always be waiting for that next thing. Jesus sits next to me, patiently waiting for me to turn and look on Him. He has his arms outstretched, waiting for me to run to them.
Waiting for me to stop waiting for something else to satisfy.