Waiting. In the body.
I look twice as pregnant as I am. Two babies kick inside my stomach. Finally my husband can feel them, too.
My hips ache. My stretched skin is impossibly itchy. All day long I walk the thin, tiring line between nausea and needing to consume calories by the thousands. When I catch a glimpse of myself in the mirror, I stop in shock. Is that my body?
Meanwhile the toddler starts to potty train. Meanwhile the bigger boys maul each other like lion cubs and need wounds tended. Meanwhile five people still require clean clothes, hot baths, three meals a day.
I cannot escape the body.
Waiting. In time.
I’m 19 weeks. Expectant mothers become time. We claim our place in the countdown of pregnancy as our identity. As if we own weeks and months. As if we become each milestone that passes.
Each week brings extra appointments, scribbled on the once-smooth planner page. I calculate time for child care, work schedules, school drop-offs, rush hour traffic, how long it takes to navigate winding hospital corridors.
Time is my friend as we crawl closer to the point of the twins’ viability. Time is my enemy when doctors worry about interventions before they can survive outside the womb.
With each week that passes, I picture myself grabbing one hold higher on the mountain face, clinging like a climber to the cliff. As if one more week past could be a triumph. As if I can do anything to make time turn.
Waiting. In the Word.
But then this past Advent became wrapped in worry about the pregnancy and the babies. Overwhelmed with what months of morning sickness does to our family. Grappling with the grinding halt of easy expectations and regular routines.
The only thing I could do was wait in the Word. It was like my own pulsing umbilical cord – nourishing, giving, sustaining.
Now here comes Lent. I am still waiting. In the body. In time. In the Word.
I’m grateful these two dear friends pulled me along into helping create another Scripture study for Lent. I need to stay close to the stories. Lent’s quiet season of reflection and discipline clears this space.
Next week we’ll be launching Waiting in the Word for Lent. I hope you’ll join us through this journey of lectio divina on Scripture for forty days. We have an amazing online community, and we’ve got a few lovely surprises to add to the Mother’s Bundle that will help all of us keep our families close to the Word this season.
It’s just what my waiting needs. In the body. In time. In the Word.
Maybe it’s what you need, too.