Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Last Year at This Time

I keep a daily one sentence journal that circles back to the same page each year.  On this October 1st, I have a little breathing room and am inhaling the present, (a baby from our bodies sleeping in just other room, Dan working on a little painting project, me organizing files for a baby from the Dominican Republic), and exhaling all that last Fall held (a third first trimester in 2013, my husband and I working as much as we can to fund our hopes and dreams, and a home study finally complete and sent off to Homeland Security).

Today I write: Baby sleeping and sitting with the hope of another one on the way.  Yes - another one is on the a Biblical sense...which means, any day... in the next two to three years.  And so I wonder, what will I be writing next Fall?

What a year it has been; and all our little world rejoices.   See?  (photo credit: Taylor Casey)

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Glorious: A Woman's Body

I have grown up in a culture that markets almost exclusively to women's bodies.  Advertising to women targets women's bodies.  Advertising to men targets women's bodies.  White culture, Christian culture, middle class culture, targets women's bodies.  Hide your body, ignore your body, flaunt your body, work your body, "hot wife" your body: body, body, body.

Being a women with a body, my journey to peace in my own skin has been bombarded with these messages.  A journey that faith in my not-teeny teen years, massive health issues in my 20s, and being pregnant multiple times in my 30s has graciously shaped and softened.  A shift in focus from form to function has ironically made me feel, and dare I say even look, more beautiful as I move through life.  

(With that I will say, that obviously God puts a lot of detail into our appearance.  Just look at us - each so uniquely designed; we could have been clones on the outside at least.  And there in is the lie: that sameness - looking like the other - is better than unity that celebrates diversity).  

So it crushes me, breaks my heart, to hear again and again, comments about weight, appearance, and blah, blah, blah during pregnancy from so many of my dear friends.  What horse shit!  (I say again, horse shit!  Henceforth to be [HS], so as to let the offense die down).   I mean, its not HS to listen to your midwives, doctors, stay active, keep moving, eat healthy.  Its not HS that your body feels the burden of extra weight and has to loosen and strengthen in different places.  I am committed to my prenatal pilates, yoga, and walking.  I just swung by Whole Foods to pick up my daily allotment of fruits and vegetables during my very full work day.  

But the truth is!, it is glorious to experience the design of carrying a baby.  Double-dog dare I say more glorious than my body keeping its pre-pregnancy form.  My seminary friend's can help me out, but isn't there a mixed-meaning with "kabod" in the Old Testament: "glory" and "weight" and "heaviness."  I mean, our words mean something.  And our women-speak around the glory of our bodies is skewed: "…but it's all worth it though…I mean, you lose your body but you get a baby…you can always get it back…I was awesome until I had a baby"  And let's not even go there with adoptive mamas, "The best part is you get a baby and your body!"  Lord have mercy.  

A woman's body is glorious - in all shapes and sizes, doing all the things it was designed to do.  Attractive, alluring, inviting, curvy, and changing.  Active, moving, working, feeding, and caring. Weighty, and heavy, and glorious.

PS:  I narrowly said something terribly culturally-bound at four months pregnant, when I was bloated and belly-banding it, and fortunately my very dearest friend caught me, "OH NO you don't!  Don't you even go there.  Not you."  What grace.  I hadn't even gotten three words into my sentence, but she felt the pull and knew I needed that "gentle reminder" too.  Bless it.  Lets all help each other.

Monday, January 20, 2014

Is This Your First?

The Wagner’s have some announcements to make, …, in no particular order.  Because, after all, who could chose which to pick to announce first.  So,…, I just flipped a coin.  Like, really, I just flipped a quarter:

#1 – HEADS – Our Dossier is complete and on its way to the Dominican.  I blame the home study process for sucking all my blogging-ness out of me.  Alas!, it is off.  We are celebrating and thankful.

#2 – TAILS – I am pregnant!  And not just a little bit, (she says ironically).  Truly, my body holds a little girl that will waken to this big, beautiful, and terrifying world in early May.  Imagine our joy.

I am six months bodily pregnant, (oh baby yes), and just started really showing this week.  And so, with the new found freedom I feel with a healthy ultrasound, I have been slowly telling people that don’t know our sweet, long, desirous tale of entering parenthood.  And they innocently they ask: is this your first? 

Oh the answers I could give and the ones I have tried on.  The most simple and honest one I can muster is: kind of.  I say with all grace; I do feel deep grace for the question.  Because who would guess that we have had many firsts, and all deserve celebration, and all ask for patience, and all have brought me here: expectant in more ways than one.  And most fully open to all of it. 

Disclaimer: It is so common for a pregnant mother in the adoption process to hear about an aunt’s friends sister who “had the same thing happen! “  And all the reasons why this may be.  Dear friends, at best it is an urban legend and at worst it speaking for God where we cannot.  Trust me, we have all heard these stories.  And trust me, they are not true of everyone.  Lastly, trust me, it is all good.