Monday, August 29, 2011

A Letter...

Dear You Know Who You Are,

In light of yesterday's post on my being mad, I thought it best to address why (at least partially why) my days are spent living in the past.

I should have had this on my to-do list as I've been planning a letter of this sort for quite some time.  I just haven't had the courage to put pen to paper. But seeing as there has yet to be any closure for me, I felt this might be a therapeutic exercise in not just release, but possibly even forgiveness.

Consider this public diatribe the best, most gentle emotion I could muster. Especially since I have wanted nothing more then for this to end up in your mailbox...with a few more choice words included.

So I hope you're reading. In fact...I'll count on it that you are. Regardless, I will consider myself done with this...with my hurt...and with you as soon as I hit the post button. Suffice it to say, this letter and my washing my hands of my experience is the first step (in what I'm sure are many) to my piecing my faith, my self-esteem, and my heart back together after what you put me through.

First of call yourself a midwife is comical. To label yourself as a helper is laughable. To claim your services a ministry is blasphemous.

You have scarred me for life in attempting what you knew from the beginning you were not capable of. You have taken my dreams and ideas of what birth is and you have jaded me. You have given good midwives a bad name. You have made me doubt my body...the process...and trust.

After preaching how to dissolve fear and build were the one that instilled fear in me and shot the amount of confidence I had in my body to have my baby. I have had to forgive myself time and time again for what you did...or didn't do rather. It wasn't ME (or my issues) that was preventing my labor from progressing as you stated over and over. No. It was you. My body was simply protecting itself and the baby within me from you and your warped sense of birth.

You gave up. You grossly overestimated your qualifications. You wanted to leave me when I was 8cm. You argued with me. You lied. You even told me you were in no condition to help me since I'd been in labor for so long. 

You were supposed to lend encouragement.  Comfort.  Sincerity.  You asked me three days before I went into labor what I wanted my birth to be.  And my answer was simply...the calmest, most stress-free experience possible.  You successfully gave me the exact opposite.  And everything you have seemingly worked torwards in your study and practice of marred that day.  You abandoned your duty and your commitment.

Even in the aftermath, you reminded me that what you promised was to be my servant, not my Savior.  And trust me, I never once expected to be saved.  But you did indeed fail miserably at serving.

Because of this I likely will never have the birth I had so hoped for.  I don't know that I could now find the courage to attempt a homebirth again.  Certainly I want more children, and I believe God will guide me and protect me in how they arrive, but thanks to your antics, I do now fear birth.  Certainly I still believe that women can have beautiful homebirths and no doubt I will always support it, but how can I bounce back from being one of the ones who didn't...not due to medical emergency, but instead because of selfish gain.

I have to say now that up to this point, the blame has been entirely directed towards you.  But in all honesty, I have to accept part of it, too.  I was negligent in choosing you to attend my birth.  Because I trusted you and your price was right.  Because you were a follower of Jesus.  Because you spoke soothingly and had glowing credentials, I allowed myself to be fooled.  I believed what I wanted to believe and ultimately I made a wrong decision.  And beyond that wrong decision, I went on to have the exact opposite birth (c-section) that I had originally planned because I gave up.  I have blamed giving up and requesting a surgical birth on you, but the truth is, that's not your fault.  I chose that.  You simply contributed to the exhaustion prior to my  making that decision.

I think it's important to note that I wish you no ill will.  I don't hate you.  And from this point on, I will commit to praying for you.  I can be thankful that God was with me when you were not.  I can praise Him that through all of it He protected me, my baby and my family.  And I can only turn to Him from now on as He has placed a desire on my heart to one day become a birth professional myself.  To educate.  To protect.  To advocate for.  To be a voice.  But most of all, to love and truly minister to women and their babies.  I can only be appreciative in accepting that you were part of that grand plan for my future, because God is going to turn my pain into something beautiful I'm sure of it.

And so the moment we've all been waiting for...I know I have...  After all the hurt of these last seven months I choose to move on.  I choose joy.  And I choose to forgive you. 

I do...I forgive you.


Sunday, August 28, 2011

My To-Do List...

I was in the van going to CVS this evening and it was one of the few times when I was able to listen to the radio, in peace.  My oldest girl was at home with her daddy so I was spared listening to Tangled DVD for the thirty gazillionth time.  The baby was with me, but she doesn't care what I listen to.

I immediately turned it to the local Christian station hoping to hear some praise and worship songs (which my soul in in desperate need of), but instead I got some talk show.  Couldn't tell you what the name was or who it featured.  All I caught was one sentence and then all I could do was replay it in my mind over and over and over.  Funny how you often think you need one thing (worship), but God has a way of knowing you need something else (hardcore truth).  And boy did He give it to me.  I needed to hear that one sentence.
Because it's me to a T.

I expected Toby Mac, but this is what God delivered to my ears...

"I talk to women all the time and it's like somewhere in their twenties or thirties they wake up mad one day and don't know why...they are so used to living in the past they are too scared to move on to what the future holds for them."

Um.  Wow.  Thanks, God.  That was a little...uh...raw.
But geez does He know me.  Like, it's His job and all, to know me that is.  But I'm still amazed when He SHOWS me how well He knows me.  Even when I've been keeping my distance from Him lately.

See, I am mad.  And I could probably tell you why.  Boy oh boy could I...but that's another five year blog project so I won't do that to you.  But it has a lot to do with living in the past.  And most of all, being fearful of the future.

It effects all I do.

It mars everyone I come in contact with.

It's all consuming.

And to put it simply, it really sucks.

So there.  It's out there.  God basically spoke through this radio personality what I have been feeling for a while now and I'm supposed to do something with it.  Like every good blogger I decided to write about it.  I'm being accountable and sharing my shortcomings with an albeit small audience.  I am embracing vunerability.  And like every good Type-A, I made a list, too.

A list to signify where I've been and where I'm going.  A list of what I hope to accomplish in the next three years, most of it because God has placed it on my heart, some of it just because.  All of it because Jesus is an Awesome God.  He is Healer, Redeemer, Daddy and Cheerleader and no matter past, present or future, He loves me and has plans for my life.

So here it is...

My (hopefully before I turn 35, stop living in the past, let Jesus heal and look forward to the future) 
To-Do list:
(in no particular order)

1. Reclaim my relationship with Jesus.  Establish a routine of spending time with Him and in His Word.
2. Memorize all of Proverbs.
3. Compile my writings on faith and share.
4. Become a birth professional, expounding upon my own expeience so as to educate and guide others in theirs.  Obviously this would take some more education myself.
5. Write.  Keep writing.
6. Learn to live with joy.  Smile everyday for no reason.
7. Become the mother I so long to be and pass joy on to my children.
8. Learn to take a decent picture.
9. Learn to knit.
10. Travel to Ireland.
11. Have another child.
12. Be at peace with {my} birth, no matter what that looks like.
13. Learn to love me.
14. Be a better wife.
15. Be a better friend.
16. Be a better believer.
17. Walk a straighter path, like that of Jesus.
18. Learn to play with my girls, and enjoy it.
19. Develop my creativity.
20. Learn to nurture my ______. (marriage, children, self, faith, etc.)

There is probably a ton more I could list, but this is good for starters.

Sorry I've been absent lately.  Have had a lot going on.  Writers block for one, but it seems in most cases once inspiration sparks, it's hard to tame the flame.  Let's hope this is the case.

Thanks for reading.