I wrote this two weeks ago after a trip to the park with my dear girls on a beautifully sunny day. It still makes me smile to think about that day. Enjoy!
Today was the first sunny day in about a week, so I decided Lily, Kimberly and I should soak in some Vitamin D and happiness. I imagine a bar over my head that I call my happiness meter that needs filling. Sunshine is a very quick and easy happiness meter filler. Maybe I have watched my husband play too many video games. I wish I had an energy bar that actually reached the top for once.
As I sat on the park bench watching Lily explore her surroundings I had plenty of time to think. I like to let Lily explore on her own. She knows her boundaries and limitations. I trust her to be able to climb and slide as she feels comfortable. I love when she has finally conquered an obstacle and the pride that she feels as she realizes she has done something HUGE and all by herself. It took her a long time to feel comfortable going down a slide. I didn't push her. Finally she felt ready to do it on her own, and she was wonderful! She was so happy! I trusted her time table and it was perfect.
I wish I could say that I trusted Heavenly Father's time table just as much. As I marveled at Lily and her carefree nature, I thought about how I used to want to rush things along. I couldn't WAIT to be married. I wanted to be married by the time I was 20. Crazy, right? I was afraid of getting too old and then my future husband, whoever he would be, wouldn't think I was pretty anymore. 20 came and went without a marriage. Each year that passed I fretted about running out of time. For some reason I had it in my head that I needed all my babies out by the time I was 30. I knew I wanted 3, so I needed to get on the ball. I wanted there to be enough time to get married, enjoy time being married without kids, and then have time to pop out all 3 kids before reaching my 30th birthday.
Well, I didn't get married until I was 25. I felt like an old spinster getting married at 25, but that's when things happened for me to be married in the temple.
I had my first baby at 27 and it just changed my life. Childbirth was the most amazing thing, and I was hooked. All of a sudden, I didn't care that I wouldn't have all my babies by 30. I didn't want time to go by too quickly. I didn't want Lily to grow up too fast. I didn't want my childbearing years to be over in a hurry. I fell in love with this time in my life. I began to cherish this time in my life. I've made an effort to enjoy it so much, to soak it in so much, that when I would look back on this time, I would have no need to miss it.
And today I realized something. Things had to happen exactly the way they did in my past in order for me to marry when I did, to get pregnant when I did, to meet the right people to encourage me to give birth where I did. I know there is a lot of luck in birth, but there is also a big difference in approaches to the way childbirth is handled depending on the philosophy of the care provider. And it's not just a matter of midwifery model of care versus the obstetrical model of care. What does that individual think about birth? I feel like I got amazing care and I had an amazing birth that wouldn't have happened that way if I had given birth anywhere else and any other time. Even when I begged Heavenly Father to help me get married earlier than I did, He really knew what He was doing by saying, "Not yet. It's not time yet."
I am so thankful that He placed the right people in my life and blessed me with these beautiful birth experiences that I cherish so much. I am thankful that He has placed the desire in my heart to serve other families as they bring their babies into the world. I am thankful for each and every family I serve. Things had to go the way they did when they did so that today could be the way it is.
I am feeling so blessed today. I have an amazing husband who, even though I am almost 30, still thinks I am gorgeous. Even after seeing me give birth twice, he makes me feel pretty. I have two beautiful daughters whose births made me realize that everything else that happened in my life before they came was just keeping me busy until I could be their mother. There are anonymous angels in my life, that for whatever reason, have taken care of our family in so many ways. Whoever they are, we are thankful and wish we could return the favor. But we'll just have to pay it forward when we can.
So hopefully this little tender mercy I've been given, this moment of understanding that I have, this bit of testimony that Heavenly Father really does know me and love me and wants me to be happy and has a plan for me and its a plan that I'll actually LIKE, hopefully this will help me remember that while times are hard for us, while we wish things would just HURRY UP AND GET BETTER, Heavenly Father's timing really is the best timing. Hopefully this will help me remember that when I wish Lily would hurry up and potty train or Kimberly would just hurry up and let me put her down for once so I can eat, or that our current trials will just HURRY UP AND BE OVER HAVEN'T WE GONE THROUGH THIS LONG ENOUGH, hopefully I'll remember God's timing. Because today I realized, it's actually perfect. I never knew just five short years ago while I was begging Heavenly Father for things to get better, that I would be blessed with my darling husband, with my much longed for temple marriage, and my beautiful daughters that I had no idea at the time how much I would love and cherish. I just didn't know, nor could I know, the things He had in store for me.