This may not be at all what people want to read or hear... but it is the gut level truth...
As a pregnant mom just 12 days out from meeting her newest son, her 5th son, face to face... there are a very wide range of feelings and thoughts that are present for me right now.
I want to FIRST AND FOREMOST make sure I let you all know how overwhelmed I still am with joy over the fact that God allowed us to conceive this special, amazing and miraculous little baby boy Levi.
I have feelings at times where I am totally overcome with imagining what it will be like in 12 days when he is born...
First I have real fear over his birth. I want it to be beautiful, peaceful, joy filled. Yet in my heart I don't know where my emotions will be at considering my last experience delivering Samuel was FULL of some pretty traumatic memories. I do not know that I will be able to separate the two fully. Just like many people who have a serious car accident may have some difficulty getting in the car and driving again... I fear giving birth again.
At times, I will sit and can not help but let me mind go to the beautiful precious places of what it might be like to snuggle this precious little boy, to soak in his newborn smell and precious peach fuzz on his face, watching my kids see Levi for the first time, nursing my sweet little guy...All those beautiful warm fuzzy things most people anticipate with such joy.
Then there are totally conflicting times where I almost want to kick myself for letting my mind go to those places where I feel it could be a reality for us. I have had many friends who have literally lost babies hours before their scheduled C-sections...HOURS... Knowing full well, that I do not know God's plans for Levi's life or ours for that matter... it is a matter of surrendering my will to His! I know that His plan may be for this sweet little guy to live a long life with us, and that is the great desire of our hearts... but I need to surrender also to the fact that God's will may not be for that to happen... As much as that would totally break my heart all over again, I would need to surrender to His will if that is the case as well.
There are times like this morning when it takes them 10 minutes to find him on the monitor. Meanwhile the nurse is nonchalantly chatting about her kids $35,000 smile. In my head i am thinking, please just find the heartbeat and we can talk for as long as you want about whatever. But at the same time I just want to scream, "please take him now, he is still alive!" There is a little bit of controlled chaos going on in my mind right now. It wears me out sometimes.
This is sort of a side note... I know I am having all of these sort of conflicting emotions, that I really haven't shared with many at all... I wonder about the kids. Louis has requested that we wait to get all the baby stuff down until Levi is born. We do have some clothes for the first few weeks that we had set aside over a year ago in case we got a drop off baby through our adoption agencies... but all the rest is still boxed up in the attic where we put it the weekend after Samuel died. Last night Jojo stayed up here at the hospital with me while the bigger kids and Hope went to a friends house while Greg had a meeting up at church. At one point he was overjoyed because I had told him that Levi's birthday would be the day after his. He said, "This is the best day of my life." We continued to talk about when Levi may arrive and of course he stated, like he normally does, "I hope Levi gets to live."
Not but 3 minutes later he was just sobbing saying how much he misses Samuel... We spent quite a few minutes talking about it. I never mentioned anything about Samuel, it was all him. I know they are all processing Levi's upcoming birth in different ways... it will be extremely interesting to see how they all do when he is born. I pray that it is a healing and totally different experience for them compared to Samuel's birth.
I also have struggled a bit with wondering how I will feel emotionally after Levi comes. I have had friends warn me or tell me that they are already praying for me regarding that. As much as I know that Levi will NEVER replace Samuel in anyway... I know that just looking this precious baby in the face will evoke feelings I am not sure how I will handle. I know it will bring my loss of Samuel probably right to the surface. I will, Lord willing if all goes well with Levi, be experiencing everything that I didn't get a chance to experience with Samuel. As much as I will be TOTALLY thrilled to be experiencing all of that with Levi, I know realistically that there may be a part of that, that will be so hard. (Please know that I will never take Levi being born healthy for granted, I would be overjoyed... but yet I know there may be more emotions present as well.)
These are my thoughts on that, I know that many will not be able to understand all of that. I know that may make people uncomfortable. I know that people will just want me to be happy. But for me, this is all part of the journey that the Lord has me on. I NEVER asked or desired for the loss of a child to be a part of my life. But this is the path the Lord has us on. I have always prayed for him to lead me and guide me through each day in this journey of life, whether it is a grief filled day, joy filled day or a mix of both.
I really want this birth and experience to be what the Lord would desire it to be. I want to feel fully all that He has for our family to feel and experience through this... that is how He works. I know that Levi's birth could bring great healing to us... but I also know that sometimes you really have to go through that pain to get to that place of healing. Sometimes you have to go through the muck and mire before He places your feet upon the rock to stand firmly. I want our family to be fully open to what the Lord may have planned for us in this whole experience.
My prayer is that even though I know others may not understand all that fully... I just pray that those that will surround us would be understanding and non judgemental in how we journey through the next 12 days and beyond that. That the Lord would remind their hearts that you can not judge how someone walks the path they are on, especially if they haven't walked in their shoes. And that they would deal with us mercifully, no matter how we are feeling at times.
I thank God for the sweet dear friends that have already acknowledged Samuel amidst these last days of waiting and have even told me that He will not be forgotten in the days when Levi arrives. Unfortunately, these ladies either live out of town or will be out of town most likely when he comes... but it is nice to know that even from afar they will be celebrating Levi's birth, if all goes well, and crying tears with me knowing the wide array of emotions I will be feeling in those days and moments.
Ok, enough rambling on and on... it is just a lot to think through and process... Thank you for praying for some of those specific things. I also would love for you to pray specifically with me that Levi would be a mover in the morning. My specific prayers have been that the Lord would allow him to move in the night when I awake and move quickly in the morning when I get up for good. There are many mornings... he won't move for at least 40-60 minutes ... I really try not to panic and I usually find his heartbeat right away on my home doppler... but I would love to just feel him move right away when I awake over the next couple of weeks. I know that may sound so specific and silly, but it would do my heart good:) Thanks friends. I will keep you posted... another BPP tomorrow....
Blessings to you all!