To the mama on bedrest—I see you. You are not alone.
I was there—scared of my reality, worried about the future, and at times feeling so alone, despite being surrounded by so much love.
The idea of bedrest sounds appealing—at least what the internet paints it to be. I know, because I searched for an idea of what it entailed once the possibility came to life. And all I found were pictures of glowing mothers on doctor instructed “rest” before the arrival of a new baby. Their hair perfectly in place, reading a book, fulfilling a new hobby.
But reality sets in.
“If we don’t do something right away, you could lose this baby in a matter of weeks.”
No one truly warns you how devastating bedrest is. Rest isn’t even the appropriate term for it, because it’s the farthest thing you’re doing. The days are filled with anxiousness and fear. You’re caught in the monotony of thoughts filled with what ifs. The internet becomes your daily foe; none of the right answers are ever there. But most of all, your countdown until want to meet your baby seems so far from the finish line. And rightfully so, because that’s where you need it to be—at full term.
You will have hard days where you question everything and feel jealous of the mamas who glow with pregnancy bliss. You envy the fact that you could be showing off your growing belly and buying the array of clothes to match your waistline. You long for a pregnancy where you biggest worry is the color you’ll paint the nursery, not the reality you’re living.
Then you’ll feel the flutter of the little human you got an opportunity to give a second chance to and all that bitter sadness washes away. Like a reminder straight from heaven that your purpose is so much bigger than the things you selfishly mope about. Because you’re already giving your baby the greatest gift of all—life.
Rest assured, these moments will get easier. You’ll one day start to see the doctors for the miracle workers they are, not prison wardens who have given you this sentence. You’ll appreciate the godly gifts they bestow and awe at the everyday marvels they perform. You’ll develop a deep appreciation for the people who put themselves on the line every day, because despite what we are taught about pregnancy, the reality is, it is not as glamorous as it’s made out to be.
Most of all, you will change. I didn’t know I would, but I did. My 17 weeks of bedrest humbled me in ways I never knew and transformed me for the better. And despite the difficulties I faced in the day-to-day, I could not be more grateful for the overall journey and lessons that challenged and changed me
I became a person who had to ask for genuine help. I took for granted what I had in health and now that I was the farthest from it, I had to completely depend on my village. And there is nothing more humbling than asking someone else for all their help—and taking whatever they provide, because it’s coming from a place of love.
I found joy in the simplest of moments—like having the loving presence of someone with me as I went through the hardest days of my life. I indulged in simple pleasures I wouldn’t have fully enjoyed in a healthy pregnancy. I cuddled a little longer with my baby boy as we journeyed toward him becoming a big brother. I engaged in genuine conversations with my mother, who was my daily caregiver, because neither of us had anywhere else to be. I humbly accepted the generosity of family and friends as they gave of themselves and their time, just to be with me and my family.
And with these everyday joys, I rediscovered my true faith. My doctors are angels on earth; the reality though, is no one knows how your story was written. I prayed hard, I prayed diligently, and over time, I found myself believing everything I hoped for would come to pass. True peace had taken over me in this storm and I knew I’d be carried, regardless of what happened.
To the mama on bedrest: yes, this journey is hard and at times it may feel hopeless, but remember to look around. You’ll find so much abundant love and you may just spot a few angels in disguise. Keep them close, let them lift you, and remember to enjoy the blessing growing inside of you.
To the mama on bedrest: I was you. And I can promise you, you are not alone.
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