They don’t tell us just how permanent those marks are, and how it will take time to get used to having them. Big bellies get smaller with time. Skin break- outs heal. Fat thighs go back to shape with some urging.But the stretch marks… They are permanent. They are scars. Battle scars- a constant reminder of what happened inside me for 9 months.
They din’t all show up at once. It’s as if the skin broke silently when I was not looking, every time the little one gained some weight. Or wriggled. It’s as if the first mark paved the way for an endless network of lines on my belly, new marks appearing every evening when I took a sneak peak at the mirror to confirm my fears.
Stretch marks. My permanent reminder that my life has changed for good. That a whole human being began their life inside me.
They took some getting used to, that’s for sure, and then just when I thought I’d gotten over it, new ones would appear. And then the cycle ran again . One more blemish, one more mark on my already flawed body.
As a person with a predominantly melancholy disposition, I struggled a lot in my pregnancy to believe I was loved. I was convinced I had no friends, and nobody really cared about me. But I love how God crushes lies decisively. I got not one but two baby showers. Amazing humans came together to make the journey for my husband and I that much more special. I remember after the second shower thinking to myself, “…would you look at that! The girl with ‘no friends’ just had a second baby shower”. To all you amazing people – thank you for being so kind and thoughtful. Thank you for allowing God to use you to be a blessing to my family, and to illustrate to me the difference between truth and a lie.
You would think that after an eventful nine months, the last stretch would be at least bearable, a reward for enduring the awkwardness of trying to wash dishes or the numerous aches and pains in parts I didn’t know existed. But my goodness there is nothing quite like labor. It is the ultimate test. The ultimate hurdle before the prize. It is inexplicably, unbelievably difficult. It is like nothing else in the universe. No amount of reading, asking, praying or preparing can make you ready. It is an assault on all faculties, all senses, all dimensions of one’s being. But the miracle of it all is that as soon as there is a cry of life in the delivery room, it is as if you were dreaming- It ends, right there, right then, not to return again… Well, until the next time 🙂
The process that ends in the labor room paves way for a new and exciting journey. Feeding, burping, bathing, diaper changes. Coos. Toothless grins- the cutest thing ever. Wiggles and cuddles. Infinite kisses. Sleepless nights. Tears. Nothing has been so challenging in my life before, yet nothing has been so worth the challenge.
In my journey towards parenthood, I have learnt this.
- That it is a privilege and not a right to carry a life inside me.
- That it is a miracle how two lives coexist in one body- a miracle that only reinforces my faith in the existence of God.
- That my husband is the single most amazing human being I know. He is strong and gentle, firm and kind. Present, unafraid, determined, the biggest cheer leader I have in my life. One of the greatest gifts God has given me.
- That God is sovereign and He can and does His own bidding.
- That there is nothing tear- jerking like looking into the little face of a person you are privileged to call your child.
- That my daughter is the most beautiful girl in the world- hands down! 🙂
The journey to motherhood starts slowly, and gradually we find the rhythm, and then, when our little ones arrive in the world, our lives are transformed forever, never to be the same again.
What a privilege. What an amazing privilege to be a mother!
For my beautiful baby girl, and my very dear husband- literally my whole family. I am privileged to jam through this life with you two 🙂
Photo credits- SpeedSnaps Photography. All rights reserved.