19 weeks is almost 5 months, which means that we are about halfway there.
Oddly enough I have a few mixed emotions about it all.
Have I missed the magic? Have I had a poor attitude? Am I doing this all wrong? Will I look back and regret the way this unfolded?
When my thoughts go here I am reminded of the work I do with clients who are digging deep and evolving; I always remind them that they cannot judge their past ‘sick self’ from their newfound outlooks, if we knew better then we would have done better. This is where the work of self-compassion comes in, knowing that the way we show up in life is the very best way we know how from moment to moment, and as we know better, we do better.
I can also see that based on the way I am thinking and the worry about ‘missing the magic’ that I have taken a definite turn for the better in terms of how I am feeling. 18 weeks of hell, there was no way I was going to be able to ‘find the magic’, there was barely a way I could even find a single piece of gratitude - I was absolutely taken over by physical and mental upheaval.
HELL is a vast understatement.
But for a week now I have been delightfully indulging in salad bowls, water isn’t making me gag, my netflix time has halved, I’m walking daily + hitting the gym, focusing on words in a book doesn't bring me an overwhelming sensation to vomit all over the place. Last week I coached all my clients, and barley had to shift my schedule around. Not to imply that I am 'pushing it', because I am not - even if I wanted too, my body has taken over and is wholeheartedly demanding slowness, no matter how much I resist. It felt good.
I’m learning to tap into the alien in me, I’m practicing talking to the soul that has taken up temporary residence in my body, I am reminding alien that although this has been such a struggle, that is is not a reflection of alien, but rather a reflection of a physical torment of my personal journey into pregnancy. That practice helps, it connects me to the being in me, and the mystery of this existence.
With all of that being said, with all of the spinach + fresh California fruit I have eaten, with all of the deadlifts + squats I’ve sweat out at the gym, with all of the writing + venting + processing I am doing, and all of the words I've read, and slow time on the couch, I’ve got to say that this time of my life is absolutely terrifying. I’m not scared of having a child, I’m not even scared of the birthing part, what’s scaring me the most is the way that I can viscerally feel a deep death of self. I’ve heard this transition referred too as “maiden to mother”, and I can feel it - I can feel the death of maiden, the layers shedding, the lack of knowing who I am or where I fit in. I know that moving to California + being in such a time of unbelievable transition is adding to the sensation of this death, but it’s here and it’s very much alive for me.
Honestly, it feels exactly.the.same as early sobriety; they told me “not much has to change, just everything”, and that seems to be what’s happening right now. Everything is changing, there is no 'norm'. I can not decipher up from down, I am restless at times, irritable, discontent. I am overwhelmed by unbelievable fear at times - fear that truthfully has me want to run far, far away and never return. But what am I running from? Wherever I go, there I will be. And I know this. I have been down this dark night before, I know the pain and terror of it, I also know that the only way through is through - there is no other way around it. I know that the golden gems that exist in the dark night are the shiniest of diamonds in the rough, and I know - I know with every cell of my being - that this phase, this death, births the next phase. It is an ascension. It’s a right of passage. I have been here.
And as scary as it feels at times, as dark + miserable + downright frightening, I know what to do. I know how to ride this out. I know how to walk through the storm with faith, surrender, and grace. I also know with all of my heart that the clouds will part.
All of this feeling for me has me becoming increasingly interested as to what this experience must be life for the father - and from the few conversations I have had with the brave men that have been open enough to share, I am learning that this is not easy for them either. The men seem to report that perhaps this transition takes even longer for them than for the mother - they do not have the experience of the hormones, and the pregnancy, or the birthing, and breastfeeding. They are not said to have post partum, or have to endure the physical and psychological aspects of "motherhood", but for some men that seems to be a part of the struggle - it's all hearsay, they can not relate directly and the know nothing about how they are meant to fit into the picture. How does a man just become a father? I would imagine it is the same as how a woman becomes a mother - through a painful death of maiden, and an awkward and intuitive birth of the high self she is meant to become.
I am beginning to see that although dark + horrible for some of us, this experience is a birth.
It's a birth for the babe, it's a birth for the mother, and it's a birth for the father.
(Or a birth for 2 mothers, or 2 fathers, of whatever the family unit looks like).
It's messy, dark, hormonal. It's painful, awkward, and deeply trying. But I think... I think... that with surrender and trust - trust in the flow, trust in the cosmos, trust in life - that the incubation, the death, the shedding, and the rebirth give way to the very nature of what we are all meant to become.
A baby is born.
And 2 adult humans both die and are reborn in the process.
No wonder this path is painful, that's a tall order.
only love, -k xoxo