“You’re not having an epidural?? Are you CRAZYY?”
I’m not sure how many times I heard that while being pregnant! I wasn’t opposed to getting an epidural, and quite honestly, if it wasn’t for the thought of having a needle inserted into my spine, I may have considered it.
However, that’s not how it works and if you know me, I. Hate. Needles. Big time. I hate shots. I hate getting blood drawn. In fact, one of the worst parts of labor and delivery was getting the IV site placed (in case of an emergency). They had to give me oxygen after I got really pale and lightheaded. Looking back, it’s quite humorous.
Plus, I’m sort of a hippie, natural-freak when it comes to certain things. All natural/toxin, sulfate, paraben, etc., etc., etc. free lotion, shampoo, toothpaste, soap, cleaning supplies, you name it. So going all natural for childbirth seemed to be the right choice for me.
Attempting a natural childbirth just made sense. Women have been doing this for thousands of years and it isn’t so bad that the earth has failed to repopulate. This is how God designed our bodies, right? I could do this.
The day our precious Tripp arrived was one of the hardest, most beautiful, painful, awe-filled days of my life. It was a clear depiction of the Gospel. I spent 14 hours in labor, beginning at 4 am curled up with our puppy, Piper on the ground comforting me during contractions to 6:07 pm when I was joyously repeating to Alex, “This is our baby! This is our baby!”
There were easy hours throughout the day when I was relaxed and sure it would turn out okay. As the hours chugged on by, the labor pains intensified and I experienced moments of extreme exhaustion and questioned whether I had the strength to go on. I had my husband encouraging me every moment of the way, reminding me to find my strength in Jesus. I had my midwife repeating encouraging, positive words when a contraction would overpower me and the pain was evident. Our Spotify playlist echoed songs that got me through the pain as I was reminded of Jesus’ truths (You are good, good, ohhhh. Center my life on You, Lord.” When I seemed like I had no more energy left, no more strength to push him out, it was that last moment before our lives changed forever…”push, breathe, push” when a baby was plopped right on my chest. All the pain was washed away. The pain that had been so hard to fight through,so hard to go on. In the end was that joyous moment we had been waiting nine months for. Our firstborn son. The precious blessing entrusted to us.
Isn’t that so much like life? We go through hills and valleys, ups and downs, joyous times, and troubling times. Sometimes we don’t know how we will get through it. But God does. He gives us His Spirit to strengthen us and guide us. He gives us His son to offer grace to our lives. When we feel like giving up, He is there carrying us through. He offers light through the darkness. He gives us people to reflect his love and care as a faint shadow of His character. He calls us to do life in community with other believers who can be His hands and feet. And…one day, after living on His earth for a mere 80-90 years (God-willing), may we, like the joyous end to labor pains, see our Maker face to face. Oh, what a glorious day.
I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. 2 Timothy 4:7
Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us. Hebrews 12:1
I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus. Philippians 3:14