Wow, that's a baby belly.
Today I am 26 weeks along, and Miss Lucy is becoming quite the little mover and shaker. Sometimes she kicks me so hard I can't help but say, "Oh!" It never hurts (at least not yet) and, truly, I love every minute of it.
I want to bottle up all these moments and keep them forever. That's why I blog about her so much. I don't want to miss something and then go back and have to fumble through my post-pregnancy brain to try and remember the details.
Only...sometimes I just want to remain pregnant. Sometimes...I don't want to be a mother.
I'm not afraid of the responsibility. My life has been about me for a long, long time. I can't imagine a greater service than raising my daughter. My fear comes from being terrified of messing up so badly that there'll be no coming back from it.
I want my little girl. I love her so much that it shocks me sometimes. How many mothers in the world have said that? We all think there's no way these tiny little humans who we haven't even met yet will consume our hearts...and then they do.
But what if it stops here? What if, when I meet her, I don't feel the same way?
A significant reason why I chose natural birth is because of the intense biological attachment that occurs as the mother's body releases ridiculous amounts of oxytocin, a process which can be inhibited by certain medical interventions. I wrote before that I long to be present for every single moment of my daughter's birth, the pain and the joy and everything in between. I don't want to miss a second. Not one. And I have to admit that my longing for this attachment, my desperate need to love her the way she deserves to be loved, motivated my choice to do things the natural way.
I guess what I'm saying is some mothers choose not to give birth naturally because they're afraid of the pain. I'm choosing it because I'm afraid of the exact opposite: feeling nothing.
When I let myself simmer on these moments of fear, they are quickly drowned out by the image I have in my head of what she'll look like. Of seeing Pierce hold her tight against his chest. Of her soft little voice saying "I love you, mama." Of tip-toeing into her room and finding her little nose pressed against a book. Tears stream as I write these words. If I feel this way right now how can I possibly be afraid of not loving her? It doesn't make much sense and, yet, it's still there. Fear is such an asshole.
Lord Jesus, give me the courage to love her fiercely and with great abandon. Just like You love me. Just like You love her. Let it be as instinctual for me to protect her as it has been for my body these last few months. I ask that You show my mind how to catch up with what the rest of me has already been doing. And, most of all, Lord, I ask that You remind me of who has already saved me from this fear. It's not Lucy. It's You. And it will be You who saves her, as well. So please help me show her what You've done, every day, in every moment. For the rest of her life.