It has been an emotional weekend here for me after I learned that one of my cousins lost her baby at 20 weeks of pregnancy. I found out early on Sunday morning- one that was particularly busy for me. Normally, I would take news like that and make my world smaller for a little while, but I had to move into my day this time. I found myself crying in the car on the way to church, wondering how I was ever going to make it through the church service. On top of that, I was in the choir and we were performing which meant I'd be right up front. Ironically, this is why I was going. Our choir is very small and they need my voice.
I went up to my minister to say good morning. As she hugged me, I said that I really needed the hug right then and she said that she did, too. I hadn't planned to elaborate, mostly because I didn't want to start crying again, but she stopped me and asked what was going on. I took a deep breath and told her what had happened.
She said that when we become mothers, our heart is then outside of our bodies. Becoming parents is always a risk. We don't know how long we'll have our "babies" with us. But it is worth it. All of the pain. All the uncertainty. It is always a risk, which we take gladly.
Having lost a baby of my own, the news of this loss really hit me hard. It was especially difficult because my cousin's baby was diagnosed with the same fatal condition as my baby was diagnosed with. I knew that I was being pulled back into the vortex of my own pain. Of decisions that I didn't want to have to make. Of knowing that my baby's birth day would also be the end of his life.
The stakes are high when becoming a parent. We risk everything. And it is messy sometimes. And still we show up. And we step outside of our own comfort level to risk love.
This risk can scare us into not stepping out at all. Or it can help us to rise to the occasion and realize how much we really do have in this very moment. I pulled my kids in tighter and embraced this moment- the only moment we ever really have.
I think it is like that for all relationships. There is always a risk. Reaching out to anyone always entails a risk. But not taking the risk means that we miss out on the greatest gifts of all. I simply cannot imagine my life without my children. Has it been hard at times? You bet. I've struggled perhaps more than I would like to admit. Was it worth it? Absolutely. I would not be who I am today without the experiences I have had thanks to my children. All of them.
Risk it all for love. It is worth it!