Oh, Internet. I have been trying to write this post forever. I keep coming back to it, because I wanted this one to be well written. I’m starting to realize that maybe I can’t do it justice.
I wanted to say that the 36 weeks and 5 days (but who’s counting) of this pregnancy were the longest and hardest days of my life. Tired, sick, depressed, and often in pain, I struggled most days just to put on a happy face for work. You’re shocked, I know — I suffered in such silence.
See, I’ve already said all that. I don’t really need to go over it again.
Then, I wanted to explain how the physical difficulties of pregnancy were made worse by my state of mind. I wanted to be the mother of two children. I hadn’t planned on three, and I was sure I’d never be able to manage.
But I’ve kind of already been there, too.
I guess what I really wanted to get at was that I never considered that this was the family we were always meant to have. I knew I would love my babies, I just didn’t realize that I could be this good at it.
Unfortunately, I feel a little hypocritical writing that, since just today Raisin ate a piece of apple off my unwashed kitchen floor, and I let Apple and Orange cry for several minutes so I could finish sorting a Himalayan mountain’s worth of laundry. That’s quality parenting, that is.
Sarcasm aside, though, I honestly do believe that this family could never have been complete without either Apple or Orange. There’s a line in Pride and Prejudice about Elizabeth Bennet knowing she was happy rather than feeling herself to be so. That’s true for me, too — when I am frustrated about my inability to meet everyone’s needs at the same time, I still know somewhere deep inside me that I was born to do this job.
I feel silly now that I know. So many people were praying for us, and I wouldn’t let myself believe in the power of their love. Or, more importantly, God’s love. I’m usually pretty private about my faith; it’s not something I’m comfortable discussing outside my most intimate circle. Before Apple and Orange were born, I would’ve professed a belief in the power of prayer if you cornered me and made me do it.
Now, you’d still have to coax it out of me, but my confession would be from the heart. God loves us, and he answers our prayers.
One of my favorite authors, Jan Karon, often writes that her characters pray “the prayer that never fails.” It took me a long time to realize what she meant by that (see the title of this post), but now that I know, I think it’s a beautiful sentiment. God’s will is always done. Our choice is whether we will consent to take part in it, or if we will hold ourselves outside His grace.
I should have known that it was God’s will for us to have these children — all three of them are gifts more precious than any life I could ever have created for myself.
So there. That’s what I wanted to say. I just wish I could’ve said it better.