And then she came along…

Ah to be a woman.

What a powerful advantage to have. I look at my life as a woman, and am constantly inspired by who I am, and the restless power within all woman-kind. I could call out all the cliche’s related to woman-power, like building, feeding, and nurturing humans all simultaneously and usually while wearing other hats, but that’s too boring. You already know that’s amazing.

The women I know can lead a room full of people to their greatest victories. They can defeat the greatest of obstacles with grace, strength, and a pair of heels. They can meet every goal just because they want to, but they do it because it’s attached to purpose. They are unstoppable forces, that have been there all along. They are full of passion, and value the men in their lives immensely. They know exactly who their sisters are, and they build them up as if it were themselves. These women are innovative, and will take things to the next level. They are driven by intuition and love, and are freaking smart. Need a heart surgery? To go to space? Ask my girl – she knows whats up. My ladies are shaking the very earth you are standing on, because of the fire that lies inside of them. That girl is on fire.

I don’t buy into secular feminism, because I think the Bible is clear on what is inside of women, as well as men, and it’s not the same things you will hear feminists speaking of. While the Bible was written in a time where the culture demanded silence on the women, the authors still were able to sneak in a glimpse of what women really are – a Force.

Esther saving a race, Ruth pioneering a society, Mary birthing a savior.. Don’t even get me started on our ancestral accomplishments.

These truths have been known to me since I was young. I’m grateful that I’ve never had to question the authority my gender holds. Thank you Jesus for a new age that respects me and my girls in a way that is unprecedented.

But fast forward to September 2014, and let me tell you what kind of fear I let into my head.

After Russell passed away, we were very unsure of what to do on the question of having more biological children, because the disorder Russ had was genetic, and we knew there was a 25% chance we could pass it down again.

Christian and I honestly didn’t see eye to eye on this topic, and I believe both of us had valid reasons for how we felt. We knew we would adopt again, and so we weren’t worried about Roman being an only child, but something inside me wasn’t ready to be done with using my body to produce a child. I had a terrible birth experience with Russell, and I wanted to rectify that. I wanted to experience natural childbirth so badly, I wanted to breastfeed one more time, and I just couldn’t face the thought of giving that up without feeling uneasy.

But we had lost Russell just a year before, and the wound had not completely healed. We were sore and not yet fully at peace with the idea of God doing the miraculous. We wanted to believe that God would divert another child bore to us from the disease, or even that the diseased genes in our body would somehow disappear, but our faith was not quite at the level it should have been. Although we knew He does perform miracles, because that is evident in the Bible, we didn’t fully feel that way. But lucky for us, we don’t rely on our feelings very much.  And we aren’t very good with birth control.

And so July of 2014 I discovered I was pregnant for the second time in my life. This pregnancy was a drastically different experience than the first.

With Russell, in the first days of discovered pregnancy, I was unsure of how my life would look after the baby came. I now knew exactly what it meant – I would sleep even less, and be even more physically demanded from, and I would have no choice but to simultaneously process and accept that reality.

Before, I was worried about things like having twins- I was deathly afraid of twins with my first pregnancy, as they run in the family and I was afraid of being what they call “overwhelmed”. Now I scoff at myself for even entertaining the concept of being overwhelmed, because that is my new normal. I was worried about setting up car seats right, or having a highchair. (Now my kids regularly eat cheerios off the floor.)

But this time, I was worried about my unborn child having a disease that would end her life prematurely, or at least was worried that that was what others were worried about. I knew I had a responsibility to be the voice of faith over my family’s situation, and that everyone was aware of what the outcomes could be.

It was also our 3rd kid in 3 years, so there weren’t as many baby showers or people getting excited about my growing belly. It was more like “Oh look, it’s spring, and you’re having a kid again”. Which was slightly disenchanting.

And then we found out we were having a girl – and all the things I knew were amazing about women vanished, and I began to fear the reality of being charged with raising one.

First and foremost, I was worried about her teenage years. I hadn’t ever had a solid grasp on why purity was important as a teen, and had bad habits because of that. I was terrified that she would make the same mistakes, and have a different outcome because of it.

I was sick over the fact that 90% of the women I know have hated (or strongly oppose) their mothers at one time or another in their teenage years, and I don’t consider myself someone who could possibly be hated (I know.. I hear how silly that sounds).

And I just didn’t know what raising a solid girl with my outlook on life would be like. I was scared senseless about all these things for about the entire second trimester of my pregnancy.

But finally, I started to deal with it instead of just being scared.

Women – I want to ask you about your issues, your baggage. One of the greatest gifts God graced me with was this unquestionable ability to process and deal with my issues quickly. I don’t understand why it’s so easy for me, but it always was. I remember even as a kid, deciding I wasn’t going to be insecure anymore. I was like 10! and I’m not saying I handle(d) it all perfectly, but I saw great value in moving forward, and I always strived to achieve that.

What are you dealing with today?

I believe that if you don’t deal with your issues as soon as you recognize them, you have handicapped yourself. Jesus came to bring life abundant, and you can’t live in abundance when you’re weighed down by struggles.

And if you are in the midst of something that you have not yet passed, I don’t think this concept applies to that. I’m talking about those issues we’ve had for years that we are aware of why and how they came, that we don’t give to God, because it’s hard.

I looked at my core issue with being fearful of having a daughter. I didn’t understand what caused me to stumble in my formative years, and a lack of understanding has always been a point of frustration for me. I evaluated what was important in child raising. I spent hours meditating on what the Word said, and researching what I wanted to really focus on as a parent. And then I wondered why I hadn’t done this the first time.

I reflected on something my youth pastor had once said, “Your parents only have 18 years to teach you how to obey God.” And that had settled it in me. All I have to do as a parent, if all else fails, is teach my kids how to have a relationship with God. It’s that simple. There are a lot of things I could add to the list of “I should teach my kids this…” but if I fail at all of those, that is okay. I trust that if my kids know the God I know, the way I know Him, they will be able to thrive, no matter what else they know. Even if they are dumb as a thumb, or homeless, I know that God will still have them.  Of course I probably won’t let that happen, but that’s not even something I should spend energy thinking about.

And to further this peace (especially on the part about purity), I needed tools.  I did some research. I decided to find a stance on sex that I would feel great about teaching my kids. Mary Flo (I know – sounds made up) has a philosophy on teaching kids about sex that I just find brilliant, and we have already started to incorporate it.

And that was it. I had let go of my concerns and equipped myself with the tools.

So with that out of the way I was able to begin to focus on the amazing thing that was going on – I had been charged with raising a woman. The excitement when I say that is full on! I feel like my daughter, Renee, who is now 1, is going to be a true force to be reckoned with.

I’ve known my life was meant to be great for a while, but a long time ago I got a word from God that told me that it wouldn’t be my actions that change the culture of America, but it would be the repercussions of my actions. What that means I still leave room for interpretation, but I often think that will specifically apply to my children. And I just HOPE my daughter could become the fulfillment of that. She’s already shown herself to be a fighter (literally- with me and my husband… sigh) which is actually a great quality, and an independent thinker, and as beautiful and as interesting and as smart as a girl can be.

I’m still not sure what’s going to happen to us when she becomes a teen, but I’m pretty excited to embrace what comes.

Ah to be a woman…

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