There have been many changes here in the Miller house. It all happened right at the end of August on the 2nd day of school. After a lot of preparation and lots and lots of waiting, we were able to welcome to the outside world our 3rd beautiful child, Lincoln Scott.
I am delighted to now have three. I have loved being part of a large family thanks to my parents having many siblings which then gave me tons of cousins. I loved marrying into another large family. My dream for our family was four children, but I cannot say that we will ever get there. I am definitely thankful to have the three we have. I know many who pray to have at least 1.
The Joys of Motherhood This September we began our 9th season of Moms Meetings at my church. The topic chosen to open out the year was "The Joys of Motherhood." I have to say, that was a great opening topic for the year and I am thankful it was suggested. We had our experienced moms present to us on finding these joys even through the rough days or moments when we wonder if we are going to survive or just make it through the day. This past year I have been reminded that in pregnancy and childbirth there is real rough stuff, but yet there is definitely real beauty and real joy.
We Forget There are many things we forget about from previous pregnancies or birth experiences. The first time moms are pregnant we encounter many experiences we had no idea we would encounter that no one ever bothered to mention before, some wonderful and some that are just dreadful. The wonderful ones we remember and maybe as humans we hold onto those and block out the dreadful stuff so that we are not intimidated to have more kids in the future.
With this birth I once again remembered those difficult things I had forgotten. Like how you feel like doing pretty much nothing except sitting in the recliner during the last few weeks of pregnancy, how difficult it is to carry a full term baby in the womb up the stairs, how many times you wake up every night BEFORE the baby is born just to go to the bathroom or get water, how impatient we become waiting to go into labor, how some of us start shaking going into labor that has nothing to do with nerves, the difference between contractions before and after your water is broken, and then once the baby is born, how anxious you feel when the baby goes off to the nursery, how intimidating it is to know that you are responsible for the well being of such a small being,how difficult it is to sleep in the hospital, how you should ask for a stool softener before giving birth, how cloudy you are for days and days, how hard it is to remember to shower, how your breasts feel like they are on fire for a month, how postpartum anxiety sucks so bad, how you wonder if you will ever get to enjoy leaving the house again, how there are moments when you just start pouring out tears, how you want to hang out with friends, but you are too exhausted or in no shape to enjoy friends, how going out to the store for the first time feels like you have to walk 10 miles AND jump through 10 hoops at each one, and well, I'm sure there is more, but I have since started blocking it out again.
We Remember There is however, beauty and joy through all of this. And those joyous moments are the ones worth remembering. Like feeling those little butterfly kicks, feeling those powerful, the-baby-just-took-a-shot-on-goal kicks, seeing and holding your baby for the first time, seeing your husband hold your baby for the first time, watching your stomach deflate when the baby comes out, introducing the baby to siblings, introducing the baby to family and friends, loved ones bringing meals because they care, parents and in-laws who come and devote themselves to helping you and the family, looking or staring endlessly at your baby, when your baby smiles at you, watching your baby learn new things, and watching them grow and learn every day for the rest of your life.
There Will Be More
There will be more moments of frustration and walks through the valley. The frustrations will change. Instead of not sleeping because we have a baby we are trying to get to sleep, we won't be sleeping because we are anxious about our 16 yr old making it in for curfew. Instead of wishing our toddler would sleep in, we will wish our 13 yr old would wake up. But we will also have more moments of joy. I have found more joyous moments than bad and those joys outweigh every frustration and dark day out there for me. To have a community is my dream and to me it is all well worth it. But don't ask me if I'm going to do this again any time soon.
It will pass. It will all pass one day. These moments will not last. We will wish we could hold our babies again. They will not be perfect. They will make mistakes. But the hope is that we will shine with joy when we see all they have done in their precious lives, growing, persevering through trials, accomplishing goals, and living life in our family.