Dear Mama of Only Mere Hours,
The day has arrived. Your firstborn child is in your arms.
I know you are a bit loopy from the anesthesia and other drugs from your unplanned c-section, but the emotions flooding you are real and not narcotic induced.
The love is unbridled and uncontainable right now. That won’t change. Actually, it will grow to epic proportions as you see her accomplish every new task and as you see her become the person God has designed her to be. She is so much more than a warm, snugly newborn and your love will mature with her.
The amazement is palpable and paralyzing. That feeling will not be debilitating for long, but you will never cease to be amazed by the arrival of a baby because it is amazing. Seriously. While you will always feel a rush of warmth up your chest when you see a new life, you will not always be paralyzed by the presence of a new life waiting to be cared for and loved.
The fear is rushing in and heavy right now. That will lessen every day that you hold your daughter, but it will never fully disappear. Mothers are known for their anxiety regarding their children and you are no different. God will take this load from you if you ask Him, truly. Don’t wait as long as I fear you might.
I know you are struggling with dissatisfaction at having to have a c-section instead of the natural birth you longed for so long. There was no water birth. There was no holding your baby on your stomach as soon as she came out. There was no feeling of fulfillment as you pushed forth your child. While God did design the woman’s body to deliver a child, He is not absent or disappointed when a child is brought into the world through the scalpel that insures you and the child are safe. He was there in that operating room. He was there when you became a mother. And He was pleased.
Fend off the depression by truly believing that the most beautiful ending to labor is a living and breathing mother and child pair. Fight off the bitterness by remembering that God is sovereign and has a plan in you having a baby through cesarean-section. Fight off the anger by refusing to accept the teaching of many women that you are a second class labor and delivery participant. You have been given much in having a child and getting the chance to mother her. Remember that sooner than you plan to right now.
Mindy, this little, precious, swaddled bundle of new life is breaking your heart already. I know you are worried that you will mess up and affect her negatively and break her heart. The truth is, you will. You are human, not Jesus. You are a mother, not God. You are a vessel, not the Spirit. There is so much more joy ahead of you than difficulty.
This baby girl will grow to be more than you even hope right now. She will be known for loving well written books, for appreciating beauty of all kinds, for enjoying study of theology, for knowing God’s Word, for choosing carefully whom she gives her affection to, for appreciating nature and for helping those who don’t seem to fit in well. She will make you proud, but you’ll grow to know that your efforts were blessed only because God desired to bless them.
She will be funny and pretty and a true delight.
Just as you will not be a perfect mother because you were not meant to be, she will not be a perfect daughter because she is not meant to be. BUT … She will be more than enough for your heart. And then some.
As you sort through all your emotions today, stop and take a slow deep breath. Why? Because the time will fly by even more quickly than the older women from church are telling you it will. Seriously.
Today, just stop and thank the LORD for choosing to give you this gift.
Actually, it’s a good idea to do it for the next fifteen years too. And more.
Yourself 15 Years from January 16, 1997
*If your c-section experience was not a birth experience you wanted and you want to have more children, buy my book (Make the Most of Your C-Section: Prepare for a More Natural & Personalized Birth) to learn how to advocate for a more family centered birth!