Monday, October 7, 2013

Not really she who pushes

And just like that, the girl whom I blogged about in the previous post will be here in two weeks, God willing. She has a name now, Merris Caroline, and an absurd amount of clothing. She is already a most beloved little sister and her big brothers...well, two-thirds of them, begin their day by figuring out how many more days until she arrives. When your birth will be by scheduled c-section, it makes a countdown a little easier.

 This will, again--God willing, be my fourth c-section. It used to really bother me when I would read the birth stories of women who labored and persevered and surrendered to the pain and then were rewarded with their beautiful baby being pressed against their chests in sweet victory. They were very active participants in their child's entrance into the world and got to experience the heights of despair and then rapture as their pain culminated in a joyful, wonderous result.

 I, on the other hand, just lie there. Strapped down. I feel a little tugging, a little pressure. I stare up at the bright lights and try to stay in a sacred mind space, which is harder to do than you might think with the doctor and nurses chit-chatting about their weekend and Sunny 99.1 playing in the background. Within a few minutes, I hear a cry and a tiny little head pops up from behind the curtain. Hello there. Nice to meet you. I lie there a while longer while my internal organs are replaced, my incision restitched, and I glance over at the nurses busy ensuring that my child is as ready as he can be for this next leg of the journey.

 But as I was reading in the Psalms the other day, a verse I've read many times struck me in a new way. Psalm 22:9 says, "Yet you are he who took me from the womb; you made me trust you at my mother's breasts." So really, it's not about me nor is it about the kind of story I emerge from the hospital with. Maybe the mother's role in childbirth, no matter how active or passive, is not really the point? We have a picture in our head of what we think we want or how everything should go, but ultimately, it is God who takes us out. So it's not really she who pushes, or she who is cut open, but God, who shows mercy.

 So, the tiny little girl who has, by far, outkicked her brothers, will be taken from the womb on October 21, 2013 by her Creator, although it will look an awful lot like a obstetrician pulling her out and lifting her up to be be seen by very grateful mother. The One who thought her up and called her by name and was nice enough to let her parent's feel like it was all their idea will make her trust him. And I will give thanks for this glorious birth story "for he who is mighty has done great things for me, and holy is his name." (Luke 1:29)

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