Monday, January 19, 2009

Almost There

We are less than two months from the due date. Yesterday I was realizing certain things I will miss about it just being M. and me in our apartment together, but I was also missing things we don’t do anymore since we have been married. It is interesting how transitions change things—I do not mean to be redundant there.

More changed when we got married than us living together and moving. We had and still do have a “newly-wed” dynamic which is different from the crush stage, first dating stage, dating too long to count months anymore stage, and the engaged stage. They all have things about them that I have missed since I have moved on, but also things I am glad I will not experience again. I remember savoring the last few months before the wedding, eager to be married, but happy for the right time to move on. Now I am realizing the need to savor this time full of so much hope and expectation.

We are both really excited for the baby to finally come and to experience this new person beyond the waves it causes on my belly. There is also a special-ness of being a newly married couple in our cozy apartment without anyone there. Pregnancy has not really disrupted that. I think it has helped us learn how to be married in serving each other and realizing we have limits to what we can do for each other.

In just two short months, or even sooner-we can’t really predict-the baby will be here and we will discover new joy in our life together. We will find new ways to serve, new ways to sacrifice, and new ways to grow. We will also learn about what is most important, and what can wait or what we do not need. I am excited but nervous.

On Expectation-Thoughts from Advent

Last month M. and I were discussing why pregnancy is often described as “expecting.” This I probably a more appropriate topic for Advent, but here it is now. I started pondering the idea and realized that there are many expectations I have as a pregnant woman about what the future holds, but I do not think that is the whole answer.

So, during Advent I began thinking about the Blessed Mother and her expectancy of Jesus. Really she did not know what to expect—the angel came to her and she gave her “fiat.” Then she heard about Elizabeth and went to hang out with her for awhile. I wonder what she and Elizabeth talked about together, after the leaping in the womb but also as women. Whenever I talk to another pregnant woman, or even new mothers, we always talk about being pregnant and compare stories of aches, pains, and the stuff we have gotten so far for the baby. Maybe they talked about how to take care of babies, but maybe they also realized that there was something greater than they could ever expect in both of their children. John the Baptist was sanctified in the womb when he recognized his Savior and Elizabeth knew God had chosen him for something great! Mary knew that her son was also God. They must have had great awe when thinking about their children. Dom Gueranger wrote in The Liturgical Year about how Mary must have contemplated her child in the womb and meditated upon who he was. It seems that “expecting” is more than having expectations, but involves wonder at the miracle within oneself.

Now I know that my child is not God and has not been sanctified already, though I have tried to find a way to validly baptize it before birth, but I do relate to the Blessed Mother in her expectation and I pray that my motherhood will at least have some of the grace her motherhood has.
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