I wrote this post on the 25th - it just took me a couple of days to get it posted...
I'm in the last couple of weeks of my pregnancy and this time is always really hard for me. I have struggled with depression more or less acutely during the last bit of my pregnancies, and struggle with the psychological warfare or worry, anxiety and waiting. It is HARD waiting, feeling miserable, knowing labor could start in an hour or not till next month. Last night I was on the edge of tears just feelings so ready to be done with this pregnancy - so sick of feeling sick. So tired of being tired all of the time, even though I know I'll be flat out exhausted after the baby comes, but post-baby exhaustion is a different kind of exhaustion and one that I typically handle a little bit better.
Last time around God placed "one thousand gifts" in my hands during the last weeks of my pregnancy and it was simply wonderful. Every night I'd sink into the tub and read another chapter. It was exactly what my heart needed at that moment.
Rising Strong has been so perfect for right where I am at right now. I've been thinking a lot this year about what it means to be brave and I've been writing a lot about it lately getting ready to start the Write 31 Days project in October.
Sometimes when we are in the middle of things and it's hard to see what is going on. It's hard to make sense of our circumstances and it doesn't seem clear what God is doing. Then we come around the bend and things start to slowly, gradually and then all at once, start to make sense. I feel like the process of starting to write about this past year of learning to be brave in the small and quiet yet hard and messy places of my life has pulled me around a corner - I feel like things are starting to come into focus and I'm seeing more clearly what God has been doing during this hard year. Feeling His presence more, seeing Him at work in my life more clearly.
This book has been SO good so far - I wanted to share a few quotes. I'll probably be sharing them again during my Write 31 Days project. I was going to save this for then but I feel like I needed to say this now - to say out loud how goodness and mercy have followed me all the days of my life, especially right now during this hard, slow season of waiting for the baby.
Comparative suffering is a function of fear and scarcity... Hurt is hurt and every time we honor our own struggle and the struggles of others by responding with empathy and compassion, the healing that results affects all of us.
Rising strong after a fall is how we cultivate wholeheartedness in our lives; it's the process that teaches us the most about who we are.
We want to be brave, and deep inside we know that being brave requires us to be vulnerable.
Day two, or whatever the middle space is for your own process, is when you're "in the dark" - the door has closed behind you. You're too far in to turn around and not close enough to the end to see the light... Experience and success don't give you an easy passage to the middle spaces of struggle. They only grant you a little grace, a grace that whispers, "This is part of the process. Stay the course." Experience doesn't create even a single spark of light in the darkness of the middle space. It only instills in you a little bit of faith in your ability to navigate the dark. The middle is messy, but it's also where the magic happens.