(Aren't my nephews as cute as pie and just as eatable?)
I'm a woman of many contradictions.
One of the most difficult contradictions I have experienced is my great desire for (and also fear of) having children.
When we didn't get pregnant within the first six months of our marriage I panicked. "What if we cannot conceive?" "What if I am never able to give my dear husband a baby of his own?" (Dalton loves children! :)
Then there were moments when I thought we could be pregnant; when all the signs and symptoms told me to invest in a test and begin planning. I panicked during those moments too. "What if I'm not a good mom?" "What if I'm not ready?" "What if I like my life too much as it is?"
I was ashamed of my feelings. I wanted to be pregnant yet when the possibility was there I was terrorized. Thankfully, the Lord has worked (and continues to work) miracles in my heart. He has also given me grace to learn why I was afraid. Below, I have written three reason for my hesitancy towards having children; maybe one of you can relate?
I was afraid of being pregnant because I had never taken the time to decide if I really wanted children. Children are blessings, gifts from our Heavenly Father, and they should be desired and thanked for! But as a Christian, conservative woman I had allowed myself to believe that having children was the godly thing to do -- mere duty instead of privilege. I had allowed my false belief to taint the way I viewed children; if babies are merely expected jobs then joy is lost. It was only after I was married and faced with the possibility of pregnancy that I began to see that I did in fact want children. I wanted them not because it was expected or the godly thing to do ... I wanted them because they were true blessings!
I was afraid because I was selfish. When I find more happiness in controlling an environment than enjoying/blessing the people within the environment I am being selfish. When I let myself get angry over a messy room and forget that these little people are people I am being selfish. When I love my life more than having someone new to share my life with I am being selfish. I was afraid of having children because children are a big commitment! :D I had to come face to face with my selfishness and call it for what it was ... sin.
Finally, I was afraid because I was uninformed. This was really important for me to realize. I was afraid because I was afraid! :) For some reason, I knew nothing about birth (and watching one show of "I Didn't Know I Was Pregnant" on TLC did not help the matter ... talk about freaky!). I was afraid of the pain, the weight gain and the body changes which often accompany pregnancy. I was afraid of the natural (and beautiful) process of birth. I was afraid of pregnancy because I was uneducated.
Since then, I've been reading about childbirth, natural labor and all that is involved. I was blessed to be apart of my sister's delivery. As I learned, the fear and anxiety magically began to drift away. I am still learning and so thankful to know that God will keep working in my life! :)
Have you ever struggled with the thought of having children? Or maybe you are one of those strangely awesome ladies who have that part of life all figured out? No matter who you are, do leave your comments. I'd love to learn from you!
With love, coffee and sunshine,
// p.s. check out this link for the final post in the baby love series! //