I survived first trimester; that is literally what it felt like. A daily survival.
From unstoppable stomach contractions attempting to pull up the emptiness in my guts every morning and evening, to sleeping 10+hrs a day and having absolutely zero energy to even manage a 30 minute grocery trip. I slept in parking lots almost daily because I wasn’t safe behind the wheel to complete a full 40 minute commute in one go, and now am admitting online that this avid cleaner has not properly mopped her floors in three and a half months.
I cried almost daily because this type A personality felt defeated. I went from a person that spent hours running errands, cleaning, being active and productive on days off, to someone that struggled to function with daily tasks. I could not understand why on earth people “missed the feeling” or told me to “cherish every moment of this season”. I told them they were crazy. There is nothing about this season I could see myself missing in a years’ time.
I felt like a victim of pregnancy. I still sometimes do, but less often now that I’ve called my mind into obedience to Him. I allowed myself to feel like pregnancy had robbed me of my personality and I did not know how to feel or how to act. I was no longer myself, yet, I felt bad for wishing things were as they use to be, because that would mean potentially not having this gift growing inside me. It is here where my mother reminded me that “this is where a mother’s sacrifice begins. it is no longer about your wants and your comfort, it is about keeping your child well”. And I felt . . . convicted? Upset? I’m not sure what I felt, but it was as if reality hit and I wanted to both feel bad that I had I chosen to take on a victim perspective instead of being grateful, but I also wanted to fight the perspective that it was no longer about me. What about the modern day woman that is supposed to be able to handle it all? How was I supposed to be that while feeling like this? Why did feeling so unwell mean everything with this little creating was okay? Why couldn’t it be easier for me? How am I going to get through motherhood with sanity if this is the easiest part?!
I am now going in my 16th week of pregnancy and, though most symptoms are still hanging around, I am at least glad my energy is partially back. I am glad I am slowly finding little parts of me again. Parts of me that I understand and know well; there is such comfort in feeling like yourself. I feel like the fighter in me is back and is reassuring me we will get through whatever challenges may be placed ahead, and I am holding on to her, but something tells me I should be holding on to God instead.
That’s the other thing that had me feeling lost. I have a tendency to pull away from God and isolate when I feel ill. Hardships and heartbreak make me run to him, illness makes me pull away. It’s odd. I have not gone out of my way to encounter God in three months. I have deprived myself and also my child of His presence, His peace, and His goodness. Why? Because I was mad? Because I couldn’t be bothered in a season of physical hardship that abounded in feelings of defeat? I could still feel Him appearing in my day-to-day, but I was not connecting with Him. I’m still not fully back to where I prefer to be most – in daily intentional communion with my Provider and Saviour.
Life gets messy without Him. It gets scary and lonely. I don’t know why it is so hard for us to turn to Him during these times. Honestly. It is downright stupid to pull away, and I know this, I feel this, and yet I DON’T DO THE VERY THING I KNOW I NEED TO! Looking back, I made my first trimester harder than it probably could have been emotionally because I chose isolation and my flesh over His presence and my spirit. *shaking my head*
Sigh. All this to say that, if you are in a season of life that has you feeling defeated and lost, choose to pursue God instead of isolating in your anger and discomfort. Life will get a heck of a lot better if we simply let God into our circumstance, into our confusion. Maybe it is a hard pregnancy trimester for you as well. Maybe you are facing an unimaginable loss, or a drastic and unexpected shift in your plans and expectations. Whatever it is you face, let Him in. Effort sometimes looks like you pursuing, but it can also look like a sobbing or screaming mess on a bed, wishing things were different and whispering “God, come in because I cannot handle this alone”.
Wherever you are in your journey today, I bless you to encounter Him. I bless you to feel Him and know the truth of His goodness for your life. I bless you to not feel alone and abandoned, but to feel comforted by His presence and carried by His strength within you.