It’s been about four months since a fire in the Rome airport created mass chaos and forced Dan and me to gate check our luggage (against our will) in exchange for seats on a flight with a final destination of Athens, Greece. As fate would have it, after a long delay and a connection through Istanbul, we were left staring at an empty luggage cue well after midnight in the Athens airport.
Despite our frustration, we were able to grab a last-minute (and very overpriced) room at the hotel across the street and hoped that our bags would miraculously appear by morning. When morning arrived with no bags in sight, we cabbed it into town and found an H&M and pharmacy to grab supplies for the next few days. Scheduled to depart to Mykonos the next morning, we decided that if need be, we could probably rough it in the Greek islands if necessary.
I know, tough life.
But there was one key item that could not be so easily replaced. Amidst our long-lost belongings was my remaining birth control for the trip; a daily staple in my life for nearly 14 years. So on top of having to find a European swimsuit that didn’t force me to cry myself to sleep at night, I now had to add lady supplies to the shopping list. Boo!
Fast forward to when the romance of the island life caught up with us…
Suddenly, Dan and I were faced with a need for a family planning discussion. It went something like, “Uhhh…should we worry about this???” “Well God is in control.” This lead to a general decision that we would just “see what happens”. Basically, we accidentally entered the land of God’s timing without thinking too much about it.
This is how everyone decides to become parents, right?!
You see, at this point, we had just rounded the 8-month mark of our new marriage, but rather than relishing the newness of our story, I was more distracted by the impending arrival of my 30th birthday; a mere two months away! Also being a planner (read: control freak), Dan and I had discussed starting to try come fall. Something about Dan wanting an August-born baby for maximum athletic prowess…
And plus, I wanted to enjoy margaritas with my girlfriends for one last summer…right?!
So why is it that when our family planning season was bumped up unintentionally by a few months, I was suddenly obsessed with BabyCenter instead of my Facebook newsfeed? And when I was the first one in our family to sniff out a poopy diaper at my sister-in-law’s house from a baby crawling half a room away, I took a pregnancy test? (It was negative if you were wondering…)
And why, when one of my dearest friends in all the land, who had been told by her doctors that getting pregnant would not only be incredibly difficult, but also high risk, couldn’t keep in her joyous secret of a positive test only 6 weeks into her new pregnancy, I was squealing with honest joy while my heart started to fill with envy at the same time?
I have a feeling it has something to do with my own brokenness. The big B brokenness of failing to let God into the small parts of myself that are selfish and ugly and controlling. But even if I know that I am doing it, how come I am unable to give it over to Him fully? How come I can’t do as my husband says and just start praying, because a family planning journey will always end there??
But instead, my mind races.
Will my body work correctly? Will Dan’s? Will I even be a good Mom? Should we consider adoption instead since there are so many children out there who need a good home?
Anxiety, otherwise known as my crazy ability to imagine the worst possible outcomes in all things, is something that I have struggled with for most of my adult life; but I refuse to let it control me. So when the cycle of worry starts, I try to meet it with faith instead. I say no to fear, and yes to trust. Even when I sound like a broken record; or a Taylor Swift song that you just can’t get out of your head.
Because as I have learned (mainly the hard way), there is no quick fix for anxiety apart from God’s grace.
So I choose prayer. And worship. And my people. Because these are the only things I know to be the only true antidote to my fears.
And on top of that, I try to turn the anxiety on its head. Instead of fear, I choose excitement. Excitement about this new season we are embarking on together as a couple. A season of saying, God we want a family. Of trusting God in His timing. Of cannot waiting to see what happens.
And of admiring babies in church while trying not to creep out their parents…
And I rejoice with my dear friend as she gets ready to be a Mom. And I stay on my knees with her little one on my heart. And I walk through my life with a deeper empathy for my sisters with stories of trying to get pregnant or lost pregnancies or sick children, that are so much more difficult than my journey of self-inflicted fear. And I thank Jesus for showing me a glimpse of the pain so that I can love people a little better.
And I grab that margarita with my girlfriends and cherish these easy nights out (and slight buzzes!) because I know that every stage of life comes with big changes, and from what I hear about motherhood, there are going to be days when I’m going to be praying that I can feel what it’s like to be childless just for one night.
Oh the irony.
So that’s how we entered the world of God’s timing. Now you know way more than you ever wanted to know about us.
You’re welcome 🙂