Monday, December 31, 2012

This time last year

We were driving home from Christmas and I started to think about how different this year is from last year.

Besides the obvious, that we were now driving 4 hours, with 4 people, to a different home than last year's 2 hour drive with 3 people and a growing belly -- a lot of things were different.

My in laws have a new home since last Christmas. Its very nice. Its been a great place to stay.
But somehow being in the new home caused my memory to stay sleeping about our last Christmas, since I wasn't seeing the same sights.

I had to start dredging the depths of my mind to come up with "What was I doing this time last year?"

And the first memory that my dredger landed on was this:

We were around the table.
{In the old house}
The light was warm and low to the table.
The table had a news paper laying on it, it was open, in and out of hands.
There were holiday goodies all around.
{I was not to put a single drop of sugar to my lips...too-big-a-baby-to-vbac-parinoia}
And someone asked us about Ames, IA -- our soon to be home.

I hadn't even seen Iowa yet.
But I knew my birthing options.
And they were messy.

   Ames' hospital doesn't do VBACs. It would be a scheduled c-section there.

   There were doctors 45 mins, to an hour, away who would let me "try" to VBAC, but were prone to say no at the end of the 41 week (not 42) wait.

   There were midwives 2 hours away that were awesome and let you get in the water with the waterproof fetal monitors.

   And there was a home birth midwife who could see me in Ames for the birth and I could drive 45 mins to see her for appointments.

Blake's uncle had lived in Iowa.
Immediately upon hearing about the midwives 2 hours away, he proclaimed that was much, much, much too far to go to have a baby. That there was no way to do that. That it was just not an option.

I sat there in a room that started feeling less and less light, but increasingly warmer and warmer, and I tried to stay in the room.
I wanted to get up, walk to the next room, get my suitcase, put it in the car, and go home.

I was holding my breath and trying not to disintegrate while everyone I knew told me why all my birthing options were terrible, one at a time.

I really felt deep down in my heart that God had told me I would have a VBAC. But at the same time I wasn't totally sure he had told me. And so I didn't go around telling anyone because I didn't want to be "the crazy girl" who turned out to be wrong. But if I thought God told me I would VBAC, I was gonna go after it hard, because I felt it was obedience.

I was just about to enter my second trimester, but by that point I had already been told:

To just schedule a c-section because it was easier and I would be able to pick her birthday, and everyone would know when to come see us.
Everything about that sentence ripped my heart out. The c-section was not easy. I hated picking out my first baby's birthday. (Induction.) And I wanted everyone to love me enough to be willing to come whenever this baby wanted to be born.
And this statement was brought up the most when the option of the doctors 45 mins away were talked about. I also hear a lot of defending of the way a doctor might tell me I needed a c-section because "the baby looks too big" -- which I felt to the core of my soul was the most offensive (not to mention, terribly inaccurate) statement any pregnant women could hear.

I also had people (and a whole lot of internet chatter) going on and on about how terrible c-sections, more so repeat c-sections, are.

Like I already wrote, I was told that 2 hours away was just insane and impossible. Despite the fact that I have personally met 5 women who did that just during my pregnancy. And know that its a very common option to take in this area, for someone who wants a VBAC.

And I was told quite a lot of horror stories of birth, and c-sections, and should-have-died stories to steer me as far away from home birth as possible.

Which left me with a load of nothin!

I had a baby inside.
She had to come out.

It just seemed no one was going to let that happen while thinking I was doing it in a good way.

In the car ride, with that memory being pulled to the front of my mind, first out of any memory I could have had,  I took a deep breath and forgave myself for being crazy last year.

Soon after that, Blake and I talked through our feelings on the town of Ames.
And I said, despite the fact that its still not that awesome of a town (definitely not as phenomenal a place as all the build up from others said it was) I am starting to get used to it, and even like it a bit.
And it makes a lot of sense that I had as much disgust with the town as I did before, since the only thing that mattered to me was birthing my baby, and the town made it really hard.
But I forgive the town now, because inadvertently, it gave me the gift of the best birthing experience I could have had. One I wouldn't have chosen without the craziness of my options.
And actually the town has given me the gift of courage -- forcing me (no matter which option I took) to do what everyone was telling me not to and be ok with that. The gift of learning the value in that. (I've always tried to make people happy -- there was no doing that this time!)

This Christmas I drove my family home.
And it felt much more like home than I would have ever thought it would have.

Its really strange and cool to look back at where I was and see where I am.
It shows me just how good God is.
Not just because things turned out how I had hoped.
But because I see that it was His Strength that kept me alive through the hardest thing I've personally ever done.
I'm starting to see it wasn't as much about the VBAC as I thought, and really all about learning to lean on Him despite terror, trials, and anything anyone had to say about it.

As we start the new year we are dipping our toes into our next version of this same story.
Blake will need to get a new job after this year. (His post doc is a temporary stepping stone type of a job.) And he will need to make the call as to what type of career is really for him, and go with that no matter what else anyone in his field has to say about it. (Its amazing how often we people think our life path should be everyone else's life path.)
And I (and us) will need to wait on God to see where this job will physically be located. Wait to see where our lives (might) unfold for many years.

Looking back on this year helps me take a deep breath and put my hand out to hold his while we wait, because I can see how HE walked us this far in such amazing fashion.

And even still,
on the topic of this time last year:
a friend experienced great, great, great loss and today is a hard anniversary for her.
Please say a prayer for her and her family.
My heart is grieving with her. And just praying for God to reveal Himself as good in her eyes despite the pain. I know in my own very small way, how challenging trusting God can be after a hardship. I'm holding my breath with her while she walks towards Him despite all else.

May God show himself good to you.
And may we open up despite the fear and pain.

Thank you 2012 for your incredible obstacles and blessings.

Ok 2013,

I'm gonna just keep on chugging along.
There are a bunch of obstacles ahead.

God, help me grow more in You.
You know I'm still in bit of a struggle.
Give me eyes to see you.
Ears to hear you.
And help me know where you want me to go.
As a mommy.
As a wife.
As a women.
As your child.

1 comment:

  1. Thanks Lydia. We wouldn't have made it through last year, this year and pregnancy without the prayers. I appreciate your love and support.
    <3 Cori


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