I delivered my son after 31 trying hours, completely differently than the way I had prayed about so diligently. I felt let down by God, my Father, the Promise Keeper, the One Who had always answered my prayers for even the smallest things. Why had He chosen not to honor my request for a natural labor & delivery? Why had He chosen not to redeem me from the pain of childbirth like He had done for others? What had I done wrong?
“It must be because I allowed myself to be induced…”
This thought plagued me, rooted itself into every situation for the next 2 weeks. Baby J had to be deep suctioned after he was delivered. “It’s because I was induced.” He didn’t go to the bathroom for two days. “He is in distress because I was induced.” He cried for two hours every night, wanting to constantly nurse for comfort & be swaddled in the fetal position. I cried with him while guilt cried “This is because I was induced. He wasn’t ready. He needed more time. This is what I get for taking the timing into my own hands.”
As my own tears flowed each night, my husband showed me the grace I couldn’t show myself, grace I wouldn’t let myself receive from the Lord yet. He patiently repeated the logical things – we left it in the doctor’s hands, we didn’t ask for the induction, it could have been God’s plan since your fluid was low, & after all, God gave you a healthy baby boy. That doesn’t sound like punishment.
The hormones wore off & the fatigue became manageable, & I began to hear Him whisper in the quiet spaces that were starting to form. Imperfectly memorized scripture randomly came to mind. “There is now no condemnation…”, the verse about our Father who gives good gifts, Jesus is my Redeemer & Propitiation, His ways are higher than mine, His will is sovereign, God cannot be tempted & He does not tempt. I realized that even if I messed up, He forgave me the first time I asked, forgot, & gently smiled the next 25 times I asked.
For those two hours each night as I held my crying son, I wished that he was aware enough to fully receive my love, understand how safe he was, & be comforted by it. I wished he could express his needs so that I could meet them perfectly. I can imagine that my Father had the same desire as He watched me cry. “I wish she could grasp the depth of my Love for her & receive the comfort I want so badly to give to her. Does she not feel My arms so tightly embracing her? Can she not hear My gentle words in her ear? Feel each kiss I place on her cheek? If only she could understand the desire I have to be close to her, My daughter, My princess, whom I have redeemed & created for a purpose.” Now that I have a child of my own, I can just hear my Father mirroring the thoughts I have for him. It’s almost too deep to look straight into, that Love for him & His Love for me.
It’s almost too deep to look straight into, that Love for him & His Love for me.
I also feel fear, uneasiness at the newness in my arms. But my Father has already written each moment to come. This is why I can rejoice in time to come. Why I can rebuke the guilt of what may or may not have been God’s perfect will anyway. I can live in perfect peace that in the end, His will is done, no matter how often I mess up.
Over a month has passed & I realize, sheepishly, how many prayer requests He answered in all the fullness of His grace. I labored beside my husband the whole time. I held my son immediately & I was able to nurse him. I was able to labor naturally for 20 hours without subjecting us to medication unnecessarily. I didn’t have to have a C-section, a concern because of the width of my pelvis. I had prayed for redemption from pain, & this came in the form of the epidural, the thing I had feared most. This allowed me to rest & be fully alert to push & deliver my son. Despite low fluid levels, I was able to carry my son to full-term, fully developed, healthy & safe. He was so strong & alert from the very beginning. Worth the extra two days! God showed me that I could endure more than I thought I could with the help of my family, angels in the form of nurses, & His Holy Spirit. I can shed the guilt that the Tempter so cleverly placed when I was in my most vulnerable state.
I can’t end this blog with a huge statement of what I learned because I am still learning. I have no big lesson, just my story & my testimony of redemption through child-bearing. What I can say is, be thankful for the story God has given you, no matter how messy, no matter how much you didn’t want it. Be humble in your requests. Always desire His will above yours. And when you don’t feel it, when you’re spiritually confused, cling to what you know, remember who God is, & let yourself be comforted.
Side note: Some may read my story & recognize it as post-partum depression, baby blues, or, personally, spiritual warfare. In no way did this diminish the incomprehensible joy & wonder of those first two weeks with my child. It just added another dimension. If you experience something similar, don’t fear it. Name it. Let at least one person in. Accept help with the meals & housework. And write it down. Most of this post was from my personal journal. The Lord is there & sometimes it takes us creating lines for Him to speak between…