It’s so easy to compare our bodies and come to the realization, it is imperfect.
Swiping my Bible off the bed, I took its place while hot tears chased each other in a course down my cheeks. My best friend was pregnant again. I was not. I cried out to God beating my body, despising it.
Why could she get pregnant so easily? Why couldn’t I? Seven years had passed since the birth of my daughter in my teen years.
One year later, I learned I was pregnant. After my son was born, a slew of tests were administered and the results?
I have PCOS, a tilted uterus, endometriosis, severe PMS and here’s the kicker…my body was hostile. Yes hostile.
During the baby dancing stage of my life, I viewed my body as defective, imperfect, not whole. I willed it to obey through temperature taking, charting, eating right, exercise, comparing my body to others and lots of drugs. 25 months later, Tori-Grace finally arrived…sort of.
(For first time mothers reading this…look away. Look away NOW).
It was no easy birth. Having been induced once, I had to come back a week later to do it again. After 12 hours of the highest pitocen drip possible, the nurse discovered scar tissue and broke it accordingly. The epidural didn’t “take” leaving the outside of my body numb and the inside where its needed–not so much. Waves of fear crescendoed with each contraction as I watched the doctor’s expression reveal fear.
Tori was so large, I couldn’t push–it hurt too much. Yet, the body I hated did it for me. With each wave of contractions, my body pushed Tori from her cramped living space and into the world. She arrived oversized, 10 pounds 2 ounces to be exact. Tori had the doctor and nurses breathing deep sighs of relief after she exited her once cozy home. They feared she would get stuck, they knew births like her consisted of damaged nerves, broken clavicles and hemorrhaging. My body conquered these possibilities (I won’t mention how many stitches were needed though :-)).
Tori-Grace is now a vivacious four-year-old with a strange attachment to her big brother. She wakes up asking for him. As she stumbles out of her cobweb of dreams to find him, I smile and hold my stomach. I’m thankful for what it did. Left behind are my battle wounds from birthing three children, 8, 9, and 10 pounds respectively. I hug myself, smiling as I think of Alex, whom my body carried only for a little while.
I follow Tori as she climbs into Elijah’s loft bed, thanking God for my joy–my kids whom wouldn’t be mine without the work my body did. Though it isn’t pretty according to fitness and beauty fanatics, it works for me. It may have love handles and scars but it works hard for me. I have arms to hold my children, legs to chase, a mouth to scold and encourage; a heart swooshing life to every extremity. I have a body perfectly suited for my needs.
Jill Savage of No More Perfect Moms writes her challenge,
Take a good long look in the mirror and know this: regardless of what you see, God sees the beautiful person He created, and He loves every square inch of you just the way you are. Memorize 1 Corinthians 6:19-20 to help you remember this truth.