6.24.2014

pregnancy, motherhood & womanhood

Judging by my blog, it may not seem like I'm overly excited about this pregnancy.
When we were waiting to bring Bo home, I couldn't shut up about my anticipation.
I posted pictures of his room, any photos we received in weekly updates, etc etc.
And all I've written about this new baby is how many times I threw up and speculation about the gender.

Part of that is due to my shifting thoughts and increasing ambivalence toward blogging.
Part is due to my realization that no one cares what I'm craving or how much weight I've gained.
Well. Certain family members might be interested in that last part.

The largest part, however, is what I've learned from being an adoptive mom
and what I've learned from friends and family.

First of all, I've been surprised by how intertwined this pregnancy and our adoption are in my mind.
When I feel the baby kick, it's exciting and weird and wonderful.
But I also wonder about Bonsa's birth mother. And how his kicks felt to her.
When I was hanging over the toilet bowl, I wondered if his growth caused her nausea.
I don't feel like I missed out on experiencing all of that with Bo - 
his story and our journey to him have taught me so much that I'd have missed out on otherwise.

Second, when we were in the adoption process, we didn't know whether or not 
we'd be able to have biological children.
We'd been "trying" for about a year with no success before we sent in our adoption application.
Then, after we brought Bo home, we decided to just "see what happens"...
and nothing happened for over a year. 

I know what it's like to sit on a bathroom floor with a negative pregnancy test
and curse my body, curse God and curse pregnant women.
I know what it's like to visit the doctor and stare at a black space
where so many other sonograms have a teeny little bean growing.

I've read multiple blogs and heard countless stories about women who claim
that they've never felt like a true woman until after going through the birthing process.
They've never felt stronger or more beautiful or prouder of their bodies or what have you.

I have beautiful friends who long to be married.
Sweet friends who have been through excruciating miscarriages.
Wonderful friends who are currently battling the struggle of infertility.

I think - especially within the Christian culture - there is such a high emphasis placed on reproduction.
When I was resigning from my job teaching, I was explaining to my former [male] boss
that we were getting ready to bring our son home and I was going to stay home with him.
And he told me, "Good for you! That is the most important thing a woman can do."

What? 
I mean - don't get me wrong. I do believe a woman's first priority should be her family.
But THE most important thing a woman can do?
What about my friends who are unmarried? 
What about my friends who are unable to have children?
Are they carrying about lesser business than a mom?
Does God care less about the work they are doing than wives and mothers?

My ability to procreate doesn't elevate my importance.
My womanhood isn't determined by my ability to push a human out of my body without painkillers.
My femininity isn't found because of my marriage.

I am created in the image of God.
My identity is rooted in Christ alone.
Yes, the other details of my life shape me - 
but the determining factor is always Christ.

Whew. Unintentional soapbox there.
All that being said - yes, I am SO excited about being pregnant 
and welcoming another Parton to our little pack!

7 comments:

  1. Thank you for this, Rachel.

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    1. I've read some of what you've shared as you and Kevin walk faithfully along the journey of becoming parents. Praying that God reveals His plan to you soon and continues to teach you along the way!

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  2. Thank you so much for sharing!

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    1. You're welcome - thanks for reading. :)

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  3. Well said, Rachel. I also love what you wrote about your adoption and pregnancy being intertwined. I can only imagine how the two experiences impact each other.

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    1. Thanks, Kristen. I look forward to hearing about what God teaches you & Andy as you continue along the adoption path!

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  4. Thank you so much for this, Rachel. For those of us who live with infertility every day, I thank you for voicing this!

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