I am hooked on Hulu where I can indulge in this new American past time; binge watching. At first I was riveted by each episode of the PBS television series “Call the Midwife”. The diverse stories of women helping women, detailing all varieties of birth narratives and the impact emerging new life has on those already planted. Oh, the dramatic complexities of every season and circumstance: the abused wife, the lonely immigrant, the strangely suspicious couple.
I initially found each story compelling and informative….That is until recently.
For some reason..NOW…RIGHT NOW… I find myself watching the obligatory birthing scene, and I am in tears, peaking though my fingers like a “tween” at a horror movie. Now, for some strange reason, I can’t bear to watch this woman on the screen without remembering myself in my difficult birthing moments. I find the scene almost unbearable. Things I had long, long forgotten now are fresh in my mind; the terror of complications, the exhaustion, the melancholy, and the slow healing process. My youngest child is now 26. Why now do I find myself watching these women in travail so unbearable to watch?
I think it is because it makes real for me how difficult, how painful, how unpredictable , how painful bringing something new into the world can be; and at this time in my life I am pregnant with so many things. There are so many ideas that have been fertilized and have been growing in my spirit.
The yearning to make a meaningful contribution; to create something worthwhile and lovable made me a little giddy at first….and the concept-ion was fluid and warm and exciting…BUT NOW…It has been such a long gestation period…YEARS! I have been pregnant, expecting new life to come through me…and now it is almost time.
And, I realize, this far along in my spiritual pregnancy, like any other pregnancy, I am sooo uncomfortable. My appearance is altered from carrying the extra weight of what is about to be born. It is hard to sleep, stand, or be still for very long. The day is fast approaching when I will have to tear myself apart to push new life into my world.
I hope this new being will be healthy and beautiful, but, whatever it is; a move, a book, a project, it will be uniquely mine. And I realize I am not looking forward to the necessary painful labor that I must experience. I realize conceiving is the fun part; thinking great thoughts, brainstorming, imagining…then being so pregnant with possibility.
OHHH…but I don’t want to go into that delivery room. I don’t want the pain. I don’t want the tears. I don’t want the agony.
I think, that is why I wince, peaking through my fingers watching women giving birth on that television program. I realize that is what I too have to endure. I, like the lion in the Wizard of Oz, feel like I need more courage.
Courage to push through.
Courage to know it will be awful, and I will get through it and heal.
Courage to embrace what lies on the other side.
Slowly…I manage to pull myself off the couch, and to turn off the screen.
While I am a little shaken by my emotional response, my head is clearer now.
In fact, I am feeling the urge to “nest”; to make room for what I am expecting- splash some color here and there, have some “retail therapy“, decorate, get the items I need to create a loving space of nurture…and go get a foot massage.