Monday, 2 April 2012

Planting my feet

Today I had one of those days where I felt buffeted around and like I was scrambling to get a foot hold. It wasn't one major thing but the combination that seemed to have me feeling so at sea, as it were.

First, daylight savings. Gosh that extra hour which just means up an hour earlier with a little girl full of energy, has completely undone me. Add that even going to bed by 7pm wasn't quite cutting it for my busy, baby-growing body and I am a wreck. When I woke this morning I was reminded again that daylight savings takes a week to recover from. So first add tiredness.

Then some lovely news about a friend that triggered a surprising sadness which had me all in a tizzy about why I felt that way and what it meant.  I don't like not understanding why I feel the way I do and also know the importance of not letting feelings freak me out. So was busy attending to some "issues" that were being raised.

Then I had a little run in with the corner of the osteopath building and our car. Not nice to hear the screech down the side of the car or to see the look of terror on my daughter's face. Thankfully only mildly cosmetic and definitely not something we will need to spend money on. But as I sat in the car and caught my breath I thought "Having a good cry would actually really help right now". But since Mummy losing it in the front seat was not going to reassure daughter, I took a deep breath and off we went to the osteopath.

By the end of the appointment I was feeling better physically but a bit of a wreck mentally. Apparently my hip was very twisted, and though it has been corrected it looks like something which I will need to keep on top of. I suspect part of the reason I had a difficult labour and c-section with Ella is due to this. I really don't want that again and just felt my confidence drop as I faced what is a big fear for me. Instead of hearing the fact that it can be managed, all I could feel was the sinking feeling that history was repeating. I have been really trying to promote this baby to be a in a good position and the hip issue is something which may get in the way of this. Since I am planning a homebirth (this is an informed decision that hubby and I have made which I may discuss in an upcoming post but is not the point of this one), I want to make sure I do all I can to take responsibility for that decision. But some things are not in my control.

I then met up with a Homebirth Support group I go to rather infrequently. You would think this would have been a great idea since I was feeling a bit discouraged. But though I loved being there and visiting the cohousing development it was held at, I came away still feeling very lost and at sea.

As I lay in bed while Ella fell asleep beside me and I pondered all of this, trying to find some firm footing, I remembered something my midwife said to me last time I saw her. We were discussing the fact that birth is more about the mental than just the physical. She shared that during the birth of one of her children she reached a point where she thought "Sh@#$, I am actually the only one who can do this". She had been looking around the people who were there to support her and none of them could offer a rescue package which would save her from actually having to birth her child. She was going to have to do it herself and despite everyone's empathy and sympathy, she was on her own.

This "truth" really resonates with me today. I often wish and hope for someone to save me from the things I find hard and challenging in life. I am not a self reliant and independent person naturally. When I need to make a decision my instinct is to ask everyone I know what they think. If I am struggling I desperately look around for an escape route rather than accepting the situation and dealing with it. And so today as outside influences seemed about to blow me over I kept looking outside myself for strength and reassurance. But it didn't come. And it wasn't ever going to - at least not definitely.

Now you may think this is heading for the moral of self-reliance and hardening up. But actually I am not one for that either. I think my faith in God leads me to a third option. I am actually not alone. I am designed and meant to be the way I am. I have failings and weaknesses and I also have strengths. And I don't have to face life or each day or moment alone. But my feet need to be planted on something more steadfast and reliable than the daily ups and downs that inevitably come. Then I can have the courage to be vulnerable and real about my struggles and confusion but also to know that I don't carry it alone and that the solutions are not just up to me, or the wonderful people around me.

Just like the miracle of the little boy growing inside me, so much is beyond my control and happening despite myself. And there is goodness and hope. And I am small in the big scheme of things. So when I have a day like today I find that comforting and my feet come down to earth and I feel planted again. No big answers, no total clarity, but not lost and not alone. And I do need to embrace a bit more of "Sh@#$, I am actually the only one who can do this", but also in the knowledge that I have what I need to face my fears and the feelings and events that are bound to blindside us in life. I used to be terrified of the hard stuff cause I was so dependent on everything around me to get me through. I am slowly learning that I have the resources to deal with life and even though it will be painful, I can face the pain and be okay, with feet planted.

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