Someday, you may have a kid, and then you may have another kid. Three weeks after this other kid is born, you may wiggle your head and marvel at how three weeks can simultaneously feel like three days and three months. You may feel physically incredible, not unlike one of those miracle healings, considering you just squeezed a small person through your pelvic bones. So incredible, in fact, that you purposely try to find something negative because this is supposed to be a rough time and women are starting to look at you sideways when you tell them how great you feel. You walk past a mirror and there it is — negativity’s best friend, your body. You can’t help but smirk a little, the same smirk you’d find on the face of someone who had just spotted an old fling. It may be negative but it’s familiar. Your eyes narrow toward where your shirt pulls in places it didn’t used to, but when you say “pulls,” you’re really grasping here because the reality is that out of the thirty pounds you gained for this pregnancy, you maybe, maybe have ten left to lose and it’s only been three weeks.
“But it’s a floppy ten pounds,” you say to yourself.
In a search for something negative, you can always count on your trusty body. Just look down and it’s there. Look down at the way your thighs spread a little wider on the couch, at the way you can’t quite button your hot pants yet. Yes, look down and find something to bitch about. Forget about the fact that your son came on his own and your labor didn’t have to be induced. Forget about the four short hours of labor that made you feel like Warrior Woman and the five minutes of pushing with only one tear that healed in a week. Forget about how your newborn regularly sleeps for six straight hours at night, a feat that enables you to enthusiastically engage and love your toddler during the day. Forget about how your fridge has been full for weeks because of the generosity that overflows from your community. Forget about the two paid weeks your husband was able to take off of work so the four of you could really get used to being just that — the four of you.
Forget all the good stuff, then walk by that mirror again and focus only on yourself because that is much easier to do than to live your life in gratitude for the four hundred blessings you’ve just received.
You could snap out of it. You could lift up your eyes and look around at your beautiful life. You could recognize that, even if it’s always at the last minute, He always comes through for you. You don’t deserve any of this. None of it has been gained of your own accord. If it were up to you, you would revel in your own pathetic depravity because you know you don’t deserve any of this. But you’ve been adopted and with that adoption comes the most magnificent inheritance and abounding grace in the form of health and babies and food and love. Stop looking at your body because your body does not matter but this grace and these people are forever.