Only When We Are No Longer Afraid

>> 9.29.2009

The LORD is for me; I will not fear... Psalm 118:6a

Throughout my life, my parents' faith has been a constant source of support and comfort. I have often relied on it when my own faith has failed. It is strange, I know... but even when I am not sure if God exists for me, I have never doubted that He exists for them. I know He will not let them down.

Since the moment I found out I was pregnant I have constantly battled with fear, doubt, and insecurity. It has certainly stolen a certain measure of my joy. I often cannot focus on the wonderful miracle that is happening within me because my mind is so preoccupied with worrying about the health of the baby. I have also kept myself from bonding with him out of fear of falling in love with someone I will never meet. I have been afraid to want him too much. Which is honestly ridiculous because even though he was such a surprise and I did not even know I wanted him... I have never wanted or loved anything more in my entire life.

Last night I went home to my mom and dad to ask for help. I have not been feeling Liam move strongly or consistently for days. While there is still an occasional poke or twinge that reminds me of those first early movements... I can hardly remember what those strong jabs I was experiencing last week feel like. So I find myself headed down the same road I have been up and down throughout this entire pregnancy. And to be perfectly honest... I am just... tired of it. My mind is tired of it. My body is tired of it. I did not feel like I could do this anymore.

When I got home, my dad and I started talking. He reminded me that I have battled with fear since I was a very small child. I would worry myself sick over things I had absolutely no control over- often ridiculous things that made absolutely no sense, like my parents dying in their sleep or whatever it was I imagined lurking behind the shower curtain when it was pulled closed.

When I expressed my exhaustion over this constant worrying about the baby... he made a very good point:

This is a battle I am going to have to fight for the rest of my life.
So I might as well get good at it.

If I keep giving into these insecurities, doubts and fears... I am going to live a pretty miserable existence. Liam Eliot is now a part of that existence; he was from the moment I saw that little pink line in the window of the test and he will be until the day I die- regardless of how long he is a part of my life.

The struggle with fear will not stop when they place Liam in my arms. It will not stop when he takes his first steps or goes to school for the first time or gets his driver's license... or goes to college.... or gets married....

I can't stop the fear from knocking on my door... but as my Daddy put it: That doesn't mean you have to accept the delivery.

When my mom and dad prayed for me, I realized how very familiar that sound was: they have been praying for me my entire life. They know exactly how I am feeling right now because they experienced it for the first time when they found out they were having me.... and they have relied on prayer throughout my entire life; trusting for my safety.

I don't want to be miserable. I want to enjoy every moment I have with my little boy... so I am determined to get good at this. I am not going to give in anymore.

Even though my folks and I don't see eye to eye on everything... I gotta say:: they are pretty darn smart.

My family at my brother's high school graduation in 2008


2 comments:

Julia September 29, 2009 at 12:49 PM  

AW. That made me cry... In a good way. I am glad you have such supportive parents. I as you know, like you, have constantly worried about this baby from the minute I found out I was pregnant. When I told some people yesterday that I was worried because I hadn't felt her in days they said why You never worry! Which is or should I say WAS true. I am not a worrier by nature. I am so confident in myself and my abilities that I never had need to worry. Now I feel like there is nothing I can do to keep this baby safe and it is out of my hands. I completely have to trust God to keep this little one safe. And it is hard for me, especially since I have noone to talk to about it. Anyway I said all that to say this. Tell your folks thier advice helped out an interent friend too!

Lets both enjoy every moment with out little ones inside us. This is the only time they are all ours! Good Luck to you and Thanks for being such and open and honest blogger

Julia

karmapearl September 30, 2009 at 8:11 AM  

Hey Michelle, I'm just now stumbling across your blog from BabyFit.

I know exactly what you mean about the worry. I have actually been relatively worry-free this pregnancy though I do get anxious before each doctor appointment. That's one of the downfalls of being friends with a lot of different women who have been through a lot of different types of pregnancy/infant loss, you see how many things can go wrong.

But I've really been able to embrace an "it's out of my hands" approach since the beginning... I realized that nothing is promised to me. Not another day with my daughter, not another day with my husband.. Hell, not even another day of life for myself. When I came to that realization, I decided to make the most of it that I can. Enjoy every single second that I'm given, because I am not promised another day...

But to help ease your mind a little bit, I've been going through the exact same thing with Nellie. Last week (week 23), she was an Olympian. She was kicking, punching, and thumping me like crazy. She even had her own little routine; quiet in the mornings, a little active in the afternoons and in the evenings she'd be very active. Then on Saturday, it changed. I was lucky to feel 5-10 thumps all day. And they weren't as belly-shaking as they had been. I still felt her, but not as much. It's been like that ever since. I've sought advice from the ladies on my message boards who have also been through a loss, and they assured me that it's normal. Our babies are still small at this stage and have plenty of room to roam and turn. It's very possible that at any given time they are turned backward; so their feet face your spine instead of your belly so naturally their kicks wouldn't be as detectable. There are many reasons for slowing in movement; and from what I have been able to read/find out it's totally normal.

One thing that I could reccommend that I haven't done for myself because we can't afford it is to rent a doppler. I don't know if you guys are in a financial place to rent one, but they're really not all that expensive. You can find some here http://www.bellybeats.com/

Or, if all else fails.. Call your doctor and see if maybe they can squeeze you in for a listen, just to ease your mind. I've been tempted to do so myself, but haven't. I have worried to the point of knots in my stomach.

Just try and take a deep breath and relax.. And realize that in the end, it really is out of our control. You know I'm not particularly religious, but I do believe in a higher power and fate to a point. It's scary to give control of certain aspects of your life up, but it's kind of the only way to stay sane sometimes.

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