I wept bitter tears.
I sobbed for so long and so hard that I ended up with a rather large headache.
Am I scared? Am I dreading the delivery process and the pain? Are those the reasons I cried? The answer is, No.
I cried today over the thought of delivering the baby because it seems like she only just began existing. I feel that I haven't had nearly enough time with her...with DH and me both enjoying the pregnancy, together.
I hear that most pregnant women, by the time they reach their 38th week, are beyond ready to get the baby out of them. So much so that they grumble and complain and do silly things to try to get labor started.
I, on the other hand, am wanting to extend the pregnancy as long as possible...not yet ready to sever this connection I have with the life that is growing inside of me.
I am looking forward to meeting her and to seeing what she looks like and discovering all the amazing things about her that I can when she's here...but (God willing), there will be plenty of time for that after she arrives. However, once she is born, there will be no talking to my belly, no mystery of what's going on inside of me, no feeling little kicks, squirms, wiggles, and hiccups.
I told DH all of this as he supported me in my less than rational state of mind. And then I said, "She's safe inside of me. Once she's born, she's not safe." And that's part of it. Granted, a lot can go wrong on the inside just as it can on the outside, and her being in me doesn't keep her any safer than she would be outside of me. But there's that sense that right now she's protected. She's protected from my mood swings, from temperature changes, from hunger, from diaper rash, from the cat's curiosity...
And in a way, I'm protected, too. I don't yet have to be "super-mom." Sure, right now I have to take care of my body, but I do that anyway. Once she's born, I have to be available in ways I'm not accustomed to. "But didn't you realize that when you embarked on this journey toward parenthood? Didn't you consider the cost?" you may ask. Of course I did! None of the things we've been preparing for are surprises to us. We have diapers and wipes and an entire array of baby things we will need to meet the needs of this little girl once she makes her appearance. We recognized almost a decade ago the challenges that come with parenthood. We counted the cost and are still more than willing to meet those challenges head on.
But today, as I complete the last day of my 38th week, as my hormones fluctuate in preparation for labor, I realized how fleeting these 38 weeks have been. I look forward to seeing our daughter face to face. To cuddling her, nuzzling her, caring for her, hearing her precious newborn cry...
But as much as I want to meet her and see her in my husband's arms, I'd be okay with her hanging out inside of me just a little bit longer.
Copyright 2012 Rebekah Lynn Photography