Sunday, March 18, 2018

A Jumbled Mess

It's harder to try. 
I don't want to try anymore. 

It's hard to explain to your husband how trying hurts more. The disappointment is greater. The risk feels higher. There's a constant awareness that the trying brings-- every twinge in my gut, every day that passes, every possibility. I found myself Google-ing a lot a few weeks ago. Did you know that practically everything can be a pregnancy symptom? But also that the biggest (most obvious) symptom is a missed period? But, for whatever reason, our irrational brains have a hard time waiting just a few more days so we read into every plausible "symptom" that could indicate that, yes, maybe this time it worked. 

I cried again. The weird part is that I still don't know why I get sad. Maybe it's pride. Maybe it's a fear that I feel like I'm letting everyone down. I feel like there's a great number of people cheering us on, praying for us, supporting us--and sometimes all I want to do is bring you good news. Maybe it's because I really do want kids and I'm too scared to actually admit it. 

I have been on a journey with spiritual disciplines for the last few months. 

"Disciplines" is one of those gross words that kind of makes you want to vomit in your mouth a little bit. Or, at least, that's kind of what it used to be for me. The trendier word for it right now seems to be "rhythm" - a safer, gentler, cooler sounding vibe. Spiritual rhythms: melodies we live our lives by that are rooted in a spirituality. 

A lot of my classes lately have had elements of disciplines, rhythms, rules attached to them. It's a part of being spiritually formed, of being centered in God, of casting off the old and living in the new... part of living in such a way that envokes transformation in those around you, that asks us to dig deep, to reflect, to be willing and open to change in ourselves. 

When I used to think of spiritual disciplines, I used to think about praying, or reading the Bible, or journaling. In my mind, the list of disciplines was pretty short. But for the past few months I've been practicing the presence, service, memorization, gratitude, retreat...and now I'm entering into a two-week stint of "slowing". Slowing down my life, giving room for God to move by creating space in the midst of the hustle and bustle of being busy, taking time to give the Lord my days before I take my head off of the pillow, driving in the slow lane, choosing the longest line at the check-out. Because I'm too busy, too unwilling to pause and let the little inconveniences open my eyes to the world around me. I pretend to be too busy to even really process how I feel about infertility and only give myself a few minutes to cry before wiping my eyes and returning to work again. Too busy, too unwilling to let people see the rawness and the pain of it. 

Have you ever felt something stirring in you? 
Something deep, something big, something unknown? A feeling that there's something coming your way and you may need to brace yourself for what lies ahead? 

I've been feeling like that lately. That something big is around the corner. I don't know what it has to do with, but I have felt like the Lord has asked me to be patient in the process and to seek Him all the more. I wonder, often, if it has to do with children...and more recently I wonder if it might have to do with my growing passion and awareness of social justice and how Scripture repeatedly takes up the cause of the orphans, the widows, the poor, the oppressed.  

This is the second Sunday in the last few months where I have left church and told my husband that I feel like adoption is in our future, even if I don't know what that tangibly looks like. Sometimes I think that a child with no mother or father might just show up on our doorstep (probably not literally) and that we just need to be ready. 

I say all of this, and I say it all over the place because I don't know how to succinctly make it sound pretty or well-thought out. My mind is jumbled. But, I know, more than any other track of self-improvement that I could choose right now, this is the journey that I must take...and the one I want to take. More than the attempts to keep my skin young or to shed a couple pounds, I need to be disciplined in my quest to draw closer to God. I need the transformation of the soul, I want to be more like Jesus. I want the things I say I want to be the things I really want--I want God's word to impact me to the core of my being. 

I think these disciplines, these rhythms are preparing me for what is next. Perhaps they're preparing me for a life without biological children. Perhaps they're preparing me to move to Africa. Perhaps they're preparing me for a life of simple obedience in the mundane, ordinary day-to-day. 

I want to boast in the Lord.
Only in Him. 
I don't know if I know how to do that if I continue to hold on too tightly to the world I think I want. 

So for now, I will pay attention to the stirrings... waiting patiently until He calls, and press further into knowing Him. 

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