"And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus." -Philippians 4:7
As we approach the birth of our daughter, there are a lot of things that I expected to feel: fear, anxiety, a desperate urgency to get this little life out of my womb while she's still alive.
And yes, I do experience those emotions as well from time to time.
But I have to say, I expected these days and weeks before Hazel is born to be more fearful for us - more anxious. This summer and fall I dreaded labor every time I thought of it. I would think of the trauma of Evie's birth and worry that I'd never be able to step foot on that labor and delivery floor again. I was afraid that I'd never be able to push Hazel out on my own because delivering a baby had such devastating "goodbye" associations for us rather than the usual ecstasy of "hello".
But Hazel is Hazel. She isn't Evie or Oliver or any of our other babes that have gone before her. She is our precious, unique 7th child. And the story our Lord has written for her, the plans He has for her (and for us with her) are just as unique.
In that same way, Hazel's delivery will not be like Evie's. It won't be like Oliver's either. That's the beauty of birth, I guess.
Oliver's birth began with my water breaking at home, progressed at the hospital without epidural and ended with him being delivered nearly 24 hours later to eager yet exhausted first-time parents who had NO idea what to expect.
Evie's birth began with heartbreaking news, progressed with every form of chemical induction possible, including the help of an epidural, and ended with her Mama and Daddy cradling her little body and singing "The Lord bless you and keep you..." to our precious daughter as we said goodbye to our little girl until Heaven.
I don't know how Hazel's birth will begin, how it will progress or even how it will end. What I do know is that I am overwhelmed by a peace that surpasses understanding in these days. I am reminded that we serve a God who is not only sovereign, but who is also loving and full of mercy.
He gave us this sweet baby in His timing - a complete surprise to her Mama and Daddy who were adjusting to (and praying for contentment as) a family of three. And since that time, while we worried daily whether our baby would survive the first trimester and if our little girl would have a healthy heart and body, our omnipotent God has perfectly formed her little body in a secret place, just as He did for Oliver and Evie Grace, so that she can be equipped to fulfill his plan for her unique, precious life and bring Him glory.
Thanks be to God!
And as I face today, 38 weeks and 3 days pregnant, I am savoring these moments with my girl rolling around in my womb. I am preparing my home, my family and my heart for a new life. And I am overwhelmed not by fear, but by a peace that surpasses understanding that the Lord is sovereign, merciful and loving. "In His book were written, every one of them, the days He formed for Hazel Wren Myers, when as yet there were none of them."