My good friend and her husband had a beautiful baby boy recently. During her long days spent in labor at the hospital, we exchanged text messages about what she was experiencing, how she was feeling, and I gave her good words to keep the spirits high. I was so excited - I had a friend who was experiencing childbirth for the first time, just like I had, and I got to talk to her about it. I woke up on Sunday morning with a picture from her - a handsome little boy with a full head of hair. Baby boy is finally here! My heart filled with joy for them.
I stared at the picture for awhile that morning, knowing that my conversations with my friend, relating to one another’s pregnancy and childbirth experiences, would now cease. This is the point where our experiences take separate paths; our own fork in the road. She is going to raise her son with her husband, and they are going to have happy times ahead. In the role of her friend, I am so grateful for their new life and adventure. In the role of a birth mom, I’m jealous, and it’s a feeling I have had for a very long time.
Normally they would call it “baby fever”.. do you have it too? For birth moms, baby fever isn’t just a low grade fever - like seeing a puppy in a window and wanting to take it home with you. Baby fever for us is a sharp pain in the chest; a dreadful longing for a child that we don’t have. Baby fever is deeply rooted for birth moms, and just when I think it has gone away, it comes back ten fold. The heartbreak and emptiness can really do some damage.
It’s not just having baby fever that makes it hard… I feel idiotic for having these emotions. I feel crazy and conflicted - because I am so genuinely happy for my friends, and for all the happy families who are enjoying this one life we have. On the other hand, I covet these people. It even turns hateful at times, and I am not proud to admit that.
If you are like me, and it hurts to see other people with children, I just want to say that I feel your pain. It hurts. I don’t have a solution to fix the pain, but I will hold you and myself accountable. You don't have to pretend you don't have these feelings, but you should try to not compare yourself to others.
A peaceful heart gives life to the body; jealousy is like cancer the bones.
No matter what you believe, this verse rings true. Jealousy simmers and rots in our souls! We have made this life changing decision for our child yes, but also for ourselves. And when we look at other people’s happiness and equate it with the absence of our own, we find nothing positive. Comparison is the thief of joy!
Additionally, it is important to stay on the course that is meant for ourselves. I am a strong believer that we all have a purpose here. Don't miss out on your purpose by getting lost in others’ purposes. That is not meant to be your path; take your own.
For example, I am not meant to raise babies yet. My beautiful friend and her husband on the other hand, they are meant for parenthood right now. And that is okay!
So do not throw away this confident trust in the Lord. Remember the great reward it brings you! Patient endurance is what you need now, so that you will continue to do God’s will. Then you will receive all that he has promised.
Have your feelings, express them when you need to. But don't get hung up on other people’s stages of life. Yours will come when you are ready! Find the peace in your heart this week, and let it lead you.