How come there’s no way to prepare anyone for the changes ahead until they experience it for themselves? I’ve found this with many life experiences – marriage, moving, pregnancy, postpartum. I suppose some of this results in that everyone is different, so our experiences won’t necessarily be similar. For me, I had no doubt becoming a mom would be challenging, but I didn’t know how those challenges would manifest. Nursing was never easy for us. My anxiety was rampant. Mustering enough courage and energy to leave the house left me feeling like I had run a marathon. More days than not, I’d feel chained to the nursery, trying to get Caid to nurse and nap and do all those things that mom’s seemed to just know how to do. It was an exhaustion I’ve never felt before, my anxiety physically exhibiting itself as a deep bone tired in the form of aches, upset stomach, and night and day sweats. How does one prepare you for this?
We recently moved from Laurel, Mississippi to Lynchburg, Virginia. A huge factor in this decision was being near our family. Having a little one completely changed our world in every which way, and although we believed we could’ve continued life where we were, we knew it wasn’t what was best for our family. Jim’s job consisted of long days with a lengthy commute, and my days were filled with navigating this new venture called motherhood. There’s no doubt in our mind that we befriended some of the most genuine, creative, kind people in Laurel. Our neighbors, coworkers, and church community supported us through the fog that is postpartum, and never missed a beat when it came to checking in on me or making sure we were cared for with our baby. We created lifelong friends, and we are eternally grateful for those years in that small Southern town we’ve come to love. But as a good friend of mine reminded me, there’s a season for everything, and we knew our time in Mississippi had ended. Confidence and calm mixed with sadness and separation. While we were thrilled to be near our family, goodbyes to our dear friends and sweet, first home in Laurel were difficult. How does one prepare you for this?
As an enneagram 6, preparation is my love language. But I’m beginning to see that no matter how much you try to prepare, something can always derail your efforts. This verse in Proverbs continually rings true: “The heart of man plans his way, but the LORD establishes his steps” (16:9). This thought, while at times exacerbating to feel so finite, is simultaneously humbling and comforting knowing God’s infiniteness. I’m ultimately not in charge of all the factors at play in these scenarios, I’m only in control of my actions and reactions. His plan is sovereign, and even when I don’t understand, trusting His plan is for my good. Preparing to be unprepared, now that’s a thought. How does one prepare you for this?
By trusting that, although you’re unequipped, He is able.