An introduction: Not that I’m not “real” when I write on other days, but there was something (probably rather someone) prompting me to start a new series in this space that forces me to write about things that I might not otherwise. Thoughts, struggles, worries or joys that otherwise would go unpublished. That said…I hate pictures of myself which is why I made this button. It’s me being real and that is what I hope you will find in this space.
So here goes.
If you have read any of my posts in the last month you will know that I’ve recently had surgery. It was a surgery that had been scheduled in June and yet was something we didn’t really share too much publicly. I waited a long time before I even mentioned the word “surgery” in the web world at all. I never mentioned it on facebook to friends until most recently when I wrote this post. And while I felt strongly that I needed to share that post, hitting publish was totally freaky.
But what I haven’t really shared is this: I had a hysterectomy. This is where the “real” comes in. I’ve struggled with that word. When people have asked what is going on and I’ve shared I had surgery…I’ve whispered that word. There are certain crowds of people in my life I haven’t even wanted to say that word. It is a word that can make a room go silent. Nobody knows what to say.
And honestly, I’m not here to tell you what to say.
But what’s been coursing through my head these last few days is why?
Why have I been so afraid to tell others what is going on in my life. Not in a billboard sort of way, but in a way that frees others to talk with me about it?
I think one reason is because I am ashamed.
I am ashamed because I made a choice to have something that physically made me a mother be removed. While it had to happen; it was still a choice. But does having the amazing privilege of being able to physically grow and birth my children really make me a mother? I am surrounded by friends who have adopted children and they are just as much mothers as I am. Yet, while I know the Lord obviously didn’t call us to birth a large family, there is that part of me that is ashamed that now I can’t. And I’ve got to let it go.
I think the other reason is because I don’t want to grieve.
I have grieved partly, back in June when we first knew this was the best course of action. But for the most part I’m not opening my clenched fists to let it all out. My sweet friends who have questioned where I am in this and have pursued well have brought me close to that place of grief, but in all my strength I have not fully entered into it. I am totally freaked out with who is going to be the person that I finally lose it with. But last week made me realize I’ve got to let it out. As I sat in a dentist chair and listened to a hygienist who clearly had no “shut up” button in her head go on and on about her experience finally tell me that I had lost my “baby sack” I knew that it was time.
It was time to say the word out loud in order to release my shame and release my grief.
And then this morning, as I read about Rivers of Peace and Waves of Sorrow I knew that I was beyond blessed with friends and a gracious family to whom I could “lose it” with and in the end know that I will find joy.
The Bible speaks to such waves of joy and pain. For example, we are called to “rejoice with those who rejoice” and to “weep with those who weep” (Romans 12:15). Even though we are treated (for good reason) as sorrowful, like Paul we can also continue rejoicing (2 Corinthians 6:10). As Christian Hedonists, in both celebrations and agonies, our aim is to “rejoice in the Lord always” (Philippians 4:4).
As one of my mentors says, “God always gives us enough to remain hopeful and he always gives us enough to remain dependent.” That’s right. Both are for more of him. Both belief and suffering are loving gifts (Philippians 1:29). ~ find the full post here