I stood in that sterile bathroom for what seemed like an eternity staring at my reflection in the mirror. I had in my hands a piece of fabric that they called a "gown" but resembled more of a remnant from a discounted bag of fabric with strings attatched. They told me to change- change from the only pair of yoga pants that had fit me the past month. But I wasn't budging. Did I really have to change? I began to feel every ounce of rebellion running through my nervous system. I was angry. Angry because I didn't have any coffee to drink that morning. Angry because it was still dark outside. Angry because, I was 42 weeks and 1 day pregnant, and at the hospital for an induction.
Sure, I was absolutely thankful to be pregnant and absolutely excited to finally meet my little girl. I have experienced the loss of a baby and that makes me even more grateful for the gift of life thriving inside. 42 weeks and 1 day thriving. And yes, I had done this induction thing twice before- once at 40 weeks and once at 41 weeks. The full deal, they hook me up to pitocin, they break my water, pump more pitocin, I get an epidural, and then the miracle of baby. But man- 3rd baby? Every. Attempt. To. Naturally. Induce.
ALL OF THE WALKING. ALL OF THE METHODS (within reason). ALL OF THE PROGRESS pointed to progression. "Your body was made to do this." , they said. "When baby is ready she'll come." , they said. (all with good intention and all with good reason).
But there I was- unable to "do it on my own" and unable to get "my body to work". There I was depressed, disappointed, and discouraged that it just hadn't happened. So the midwife (bless her heart), broke my water, told me to walk, and gave me 2-3 hours to "get things going". So we walked. Joe and I, round and round the hallways of Labor and Delivery unit- hearing babies crying and seeing the nurses faces grow more and more empathetic each time we passed.
We walked and we waited. I kept preaching to myself Psalm 73:26 " My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever." I knew He had to be my strength because I was failing MISERABLY. After over 1 1/2 hours of walking and waiting, I had some good and painful contractions. All by His grace and certainly His timing.
I made it through as much of the pain as possible, and by 12:15 p.m. I got an epidural and thanked the Lord for modern medicine.
My body relaxed and shortly after I was ready to push. The delivery was beautiful and a peaceful experience- Seeing Selah for the first time was a feeling that I cannot put into words.
My first moments with her are ones I will treasure for years to come. And to think it has been 6 months already!? Selah Josephine was worth the wait and through her birth and my pregnancy with her, I have learned so much. My ways are not usually the best ways. My thoughts about what an experience should be like are not always the way they turn out- and that's okay. I realize that this is part of what makes life beautiful and part of how God chose to enrich my life in Him through sanctification. It's not like I just had a baby and boom! - angry heart gone. Discontented spirit gone. No. These are definitely issues that I have had to work through and by His grace He has given me strength to do so. I'm sure these will be themes that rear their ugly heads in the future, and I will again fight against them - hopefully remembering the 29 year old who stared into the mirror , heart full of rebellion, whose heart was healed by His grace.
There you have it, words from my heart, from a day our little girl ,Selah Josephine came into the world. A girl God has definitely been using for His glory and it is my prayer that He would continue to do so.