I have reached the point in my pregnancy where I’m done. Try as I might to keep some perspective and be grateful, I’m simply uncomfortable and in pain. Little pleasures like eating and sleeping are no longer enjoyable. Pregnancy. Is. Hard.
I worry that sharing this won’t be well-received. Because I realized that there are MANY women out there who would love to be in my position but aren’t/can’t. Whether that’s being able to conceive, carry a child to term, or what have you, I am very aware that when it comes to fertility and pregnancy, there are a lot of broken hearts. So there is a strong part of me that feels incredibly ashamed that I have the audacity to complain about being pregnant.
But there’s another part of me that longs to reach out and know that I’m not alone in my struggles. A part of me that wishes we could all be open and honest about the things that cause us pain and make us feel alone. There are so many things in life that, quite frankly, are hard.
And you know what? That’s OK.
It’s OK if It’s Hard
It’s perfectly OK to struggle when things are hard, and to admit you’re struggling. I think part of our problem as women is that we feel the need to present this perfect image that everything is great and wonderful, even when it isn’t. I’m not saying you have to unload your life story to the unwitting stranger in the Target check-out line, but God gave us friends and family and sisters in Christ who are more than willing to share the burden with you. More importantly, our Savior promises us that we are not alone, nor do we have to face the challenges and struggles of this world on our own.
This is hard for me! I’ll be the first to admit it. It’s difficult because sharing those burdens exposes a very sensitive and vulnerable part of ourselves that we may even be ashamed of.
Christ provides limitless comfort in the pages of Scripture. When things get hard and we struggle, there is no better place to turn then in the assurance of God’s Word.
But it’s OK.
It’s OK if pregnancy is harder on your body than you thought it would be and you don’t enjoy it. Your body was created to do hard things. You have the strength that comes from Christ: “I can do ALL things through Christ who gives me strength.” (Philippians 4:13)
It’s OK if you put on more weight than you were “supposed” to. You were beautifully created by God in his own image, and his work is amazing. “I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Your works are wonderful; I know that full well.” (Psalm 139:14)
It’s OK to be angry or frustrated or devastated that you’ve been trying to conceive with no luck for over a year. Your Heavenly Father has not abandoned you. His plan and his timing are for your good, even if you don’t understand it yet. “I am still confident of this: I will see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living. Wait for the Lord; be strong and take heart and wait for the Lord.” (Psalm 27:13-14)
It’s OK to feel resentful or bitter or heartbroken instead of joyful when a friend announces she’s expecting and you’ve suffered another miscarriage. Sometimes our life doesn’t fall into the plan we imagined. But God has promised, ” ‘For I know the plans I have for you,’ declares the Lord, ‘plans to prosper you and not to harm you. Plans to give you hope and a future.’ ” (Jeremiah 29:11)
It’s OK if being a parent is way more difficult than you thought, and you haven’t had a shower in two days. Being a parent is hard, but you are equipped. “So do not fear, for I am with you. Do not be dismayed for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.” (Isaiah 41:10)
It’s OK if the kids eat peanut butter and jelly for supper because you’re too exhausted to cook or run to the store. Turn to the one who gives rest and peace. “Come to me all you who are weary and burdened and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart and you will find rest for your souls.” (Matthew 11:28-29)
It’s OK if you cry and don’t know why. Your loving Father promises to comfort and sustain you. “Cast all your anxiety on him, because he cares for you.” (1 Peter 5:8)
It’s OK if it’s harder than you expected. And it’s OK to admit when you don’t have it together or you need help. Turn to your Savior for comfort, strength, and peace.”I have loved you with an everlasting love; I have drawn you with loving kindness. I will build you up again and you will be rebuilt.” (Jeremiah 31:3-4)
You Are Not Alone
We all struggle. No one’s life is “Pinterest Perfect” despite what it feels like when scrolling through Insta or Facebook. Despite how we may perceive someone else’s life. The struggle is legitimately real.
But more importantly, you have someone by your side through any struggle you may be battling. Your Heavenly Father upholds you, loves you, sustains you, and promises to be with you again and again. It’s OK if it’s hard, and it’s OK to struggle, just remember whose you are and that you don’t have to face it alone.
I pray that you find comfort in whatever struggle you are going through knowing that you are not alone.
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