This is a bit of a serious post. Sometimes I struggle with serious anxiety. It used to be a lot more often when my life was frequently changing back in college, but the DNA still remains. I tend to enjoy predictability and knowing when to zig and when to zag. I am also an incredibly fearful soul. I hate germs for fear of illness, standing too far in the middle of the grocery aisle for fear of making someone upset, or confronting almost any ailing personal relationship (aside from my marriage) for fear of starting a fight, just to name a few. I often polarize situations to be "the best thing ever" or "the worst thing ever." I'm not much of an in-between gal.
Clearly this can make things tough, because life isn't exactly a straight and narrow path. So you can imagine how early pregnancy might be rocking my "always steady" world. I woke up out of a dead sleep last night at 3am in a sheer panic attack. I'm talking shortness of breath, head spinning, sweating, no way I'm going back to sleep type panic. I know what it was about, too. It was about everything that could (and in my mind, would) go wrong with our pregnancy and baby. I have read and heard way too much at this point about miscarriage, ectopic pregnancy, signs of miscarriage, stories of women miscarrying, etc, etc.
All I can think about is miscarriage. It's consuming me and stealing my joy. I have to be honest, so many of the miscarriage stories I've heard are from the handful of people we've already confided in about being pregnant. Note to everyone out there: Please do not talk about miscarriage and tell detailed stories about all the women you know who have miscarried at all stages of their pregnancy to a new mom going through her first pregnancy. I dearly love all my confidants, but it literally, multiple times, has looked like me telling someone how scared of miscarriage I am and them proceeding to tell me a story about all the women they know who have miscarried. Not helpful.
I know it's not their fault and they're just trying to relate, but all this miscarriage talk has got me so wound up. I also feel like there are a bajillion friends, coworkers, and randoms who are pregnant in front of me right now, most of them at least 8 weeks ahead of me. I've found myself telling Arthur over and over again how I wish I was them. How awful is that? God absolutely does not want that for me. The only reason I wish I was someone else right now is so I can be further along, and in theory, in a much "safer" point in this pregnancy. I have heard that right now we are basically at anywhere from a 25–70% (who knows what's actually correct!) chance of miscarriage until we hear the baby's heartbeat, when it then drops to somewhere between 2–4%. Our first prenatal appointment isn't until week 9...3.5 weeks from now. Crap that's a long time to have to wait to see if your baby is okay. And even then, we simply might not be able to hear the heartbeat just yet. Crazy. Town.
|Enjoying the fruits of patience last summer|
"The law of the LORD is perfect, reviving the soul; the testimony of the LORD is sure, making wise the simple; the precepts of the LORD are right, rejoicing the heart; the commandment of the LORD is pure, enlightening the eyes; the fear of the LORD is clean, enduring forever; the rules of the LORD are true, and righteous altogether. More to be desired are they than gold, even much fine gold; sweeter also than honey and drippings of the honeycomb. Moreover, by them is your servant warned; in keeping them there is great reward. Who can discern his errors? Declare me innocent from hidden faults. Keep back your servant also from presumptuous sins; let them not have dominion over me! Then I shall be blameless, and innocent of great transgression. Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in your sight, O LORD, my rock and my redeemer."What I get out of this is that God is perfect, sure, right, pure, clean, true, righteous, finer than gold and sweeter than honey. I'm really struggling with viewing him this way. He has revealed to me over the past few months that I have a really distorted picture of him and his nature. You see, I often lift up God's wrath, power, control, and having fear of the Lord above his other traits. I struggle with seeing God as loving, period. In my mixed up mind—even as I write this—I believe that God would allow this baby to die to draw me closer to him.
I tell Arthur these thoughts all the time and he does the best he can to constantly remind me that while, yes, God could very well do that, he doesn't just do it for "fun". I find myself angry at God knowing that he could do this. And then I start to panic thinking that my sinful thoughts are going to cause God to want to do this even more because "clearly I'm not focused on him and coveting the baby inside me that isn't even ours". This baby is God's and I finally gave that up this morning in my desperate early morning prayer. I can't say I am fully believing this truth yet, but I'm praying the Lord would impress this deeply onto my heart. My sweet husband keeps reminding me that this is going to be a lifelong task, praying for our child. It's never going to end so I better get on board.
I know this is deep and maybe a bit too intense for everyone, but this is how I'm really dealing right now and I am certain I'm not alone. And honestly, this is why I'm blogging through all of this. I have found so much inspiration and courage from a few key women (many are not helpful or only make it seem like unicorns and rainbows follow them everywhere) who have blogged through their pregnancies. I hope I can pass something helpful along to the next overly anxious first-timer. Please don't hesitate to email or comment with a prayer request or if you just want an understanding shoulder to cry on. Our husbands are superheroes, but they don't always know what to say.
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We're Having a Baby!
How We Found Out
Pregnancy: Week 5