I have been quietly preparing for birth but thought I'd post quickly to share the joy of our final lap. It's a far cry from the fear-drenched waiting I used to do and I give thanks to God that He has healed so much of that in my mind and soul. Our guest of honor will be here any day (probably late rather than early) and we are waiting joyfully, if a bit impatiently.
YOU ARE INVITED...
To think of a pregnant woman you know and try to do one thing that will help her get excited about her upcoming Birth Day. We plan birthday, anniversary, sacrament, and holiday parties... but we tend to tiptoe into labor with many fears and reservations that can somewhat (or largely) dwarf the joy.
But the expectant mamas you know are quickly approaching a great day of celebration. Birth Day! The very first Birthday of their little prince or princess... and the first breathes baby will take on their earthly journey. A cause for real celebration! And in spite of any trials, pain, anxiety or struggles which may come on that day... there is a reason to dance.
A word or token of real JOY from a friend can take a woman one step closer to touching the reality of that beautiful celebration. Have an idea for blessing her? Just do it.
If you don't follow me on social media, here is a little of what you may have missed. Snapshots of the time of waiting. Snapshots of blossoming joy....
I've been taking requests for prayer intentions to bring with me into labor. All of my readers are already included, but if you have specific needs that you'd like to share, please leave them in the comments or my email or Facebook. Labor is challenging and I'm a lousy sufferer... so this will help me make good use of it!
I made this special "Labor Rosary" with all of you in mind. Each bead a remnant in my collection... unique but somehow fitting together so beautifully. Like the Body of Christ. I love the feel of the different beads; their weights and shapes and textures.
We can advertise joy or fear to ourselves in the words that we use. This pregnancy, I wrote down my affirmations and finally hung them in our birth space. After printing them, I took out my watercolors and painted. I had forgotten how much I loved doing that. The pic at the top of this post shows some of them hung together. In the upcoming weeks, I plan on sharing my PDF affirmations here for those who would also enjoy printing them. They will be plain - unpainted - because I really think there's value in you adding color yourself.
The baby-who-is-no-longer-the-baby... getting ready to kiss her little brother. She is going to be absolutely surprised and smitten when he is born. But she will also have to go through her own stretching. I trust that God will provide the courage I need to continue to love her well.
Last baby bump shot. 39 weeks. And always in a bathroom with a dirty mirror... because I'm just not tech savvy enough to figure out a better way to do it. Or maybe I'm just lazy. I don't love the thought of sharing my belly with the public but I deliberately stepped further past my reservations this pregnancy. I have spent too many years of my life ashamed and burdened by my femininity. Not by the beautiful Christ-vision of womanhood I find in my Catholic faith... but by the world's which says that we are not beautiful enough. Ever. But God's design is awesome... and the pregnant body speaks to that.
Hidden yet not hidden.
Different but beautiful.
In the world but not of it.
Thanks be to God.
The time is close now and I can't wait to share our new baby with you!
As we welcome one little man into our house, we are preparing to move out another. So much stretching! Have you seen our t-shirts yet? Would you love to help a seminarian (mine) in need and also witness to the joy of our Christian vocations? Please click on over and see if you can personally participate or share with someone who can. Thank you! SERVIAM T-Shirt pre-order