I'm writing this not knowing where it's going, what message, if any will be found in the words dribbling from my fingertips. But today my painkillers haven't stolen my words, today I'm going to write, drivel maybe, but letters to shape my current present.
For the last 4 weeks I have been on bed rest. The can't get myself a drink, can't look after my children, can barely roll over unattended type of bed rest. For those who don't know, my current pregnancy has been blighted by a condition knows as SPD. It basically means your pelvis goes all wonky and is very, very painful, a lot of women get a mild form, but, of course, I have to go the extra mile. After ignoring my pain for weeks I eventually got stuck in a chair at church (ironically during a sermon about letting go of control) and wound up in the sorry state I'm in now. Laying down crocheting teeny tiny baby hats and praying, actual real prayers, that I don't end up with an RSI in my hand. My boys pop in and out my bedroom, roaring at me and asking to read the same lion book over and over again, my Mum shepherds said boys whilst bringing me drinks and making sure I'm fed and well. She dims the lights and tries to keep peace to let me nap, she teaches my eldest about bees knees and chickens eyebrows, she reads the lion book when I simply can't roar any more.
That's the funny thing about this whole situation. I'm in pain, and I'm not going to lie, the pain is crap. But I should be a lot more miserable than I am. Today was a bad day, I was fed up, grumpy and hormonal. I cried at surviving the next few weeks and lost any inspiration for worship music, sermons and crochet. I desperately wanted to go to sleep to make it all just go away. Just as my eyes were finally closing the kids burst in, proudly showing me autumn pictures they painted at playgroup. With glitter on their faces and paint splodges on their clothes they told me about cars and slides and how they weren't playing with a boy called Thomas, just playing next to him. Whilst my youngest napped my eldest snuggled up and watched Dumbo, proudly telling me about every animal and how Dumbo was an elephantplane and that that was a real thing. My Mum sat, enjoying the rest. I slouched, still in my fug of gloominess, fighting back the tears.
The husband arrived home. Still grumpy. The boys went to bed. Still grumpy. I ate my dinner. Still grumpy. Then something, somewhere, switched. I apologised for my mood, even though I secretly felt justified, and was starting to realise it wasn't all about me. My husband has been working his arse off, my Mum likewise. My friends sending concerned texts, popping in to hang out on my bed, posting chocolate fingers through my door, just because.
Through all this doom and gloom and pain and misery, God is working. I literally cannot be the strong, indestructible me right now. If I didn't accept help...well, I couldn't not accept help. I am, after all, helpless. But those well timed phone calls when I don't think I can carry on anymore? Those messages, popping up here there and everywhere asking if 'there's anything I can do?' People I barely know asking if they could please bring a meal round, or a cake, or even just to say they're praying for me. Messages of reassurance, of sympathy, of the overwhelming sense that I am not in this alone.
And I'm not, the time will tick past and this baby will be born. We will celebrate, I will mend, this brief period will soon be forgotten. But my friends, my family and the love and care they have given me never will. It feels like a hard shell I never realised I had is gone, going, which maybe is just what God wanted all along.