If there’s one thing I’ve learned these last eight months of growing a tiny human, it’s that motherhood brings with it a whole host of worries and fears. Pregnancy is beautiful and miraculous and I don’t want to discredit that for a second, but I also believe deeply that part of being human is experiencing fear and struggles even in the midst of joyful, beautiful things.
That belief is why I was honest about how the first few months of pregnancy were underwhelming, why I shared about my fears of miscarriage in the first trimester, and why I continually share about the hard parts of marriage, relationships, and life as a “grownup.”
But today, I want to focus on one aspect of pregnancy that’s been on my mind a lot lately: fear. I’m hesitant to even label these things as fears for some reason. More than I am deathly afraid that everything will fall apart and be horrible, this list is a few things I am anticipating will be just plain hard. I’ve seen over and over again that God uses those hard, stretching experiences to grow us and draw us deeper into Him, but that doesn’t necessarily make those hard things any easier when we’re right in the thick of them.
So even though I know God will use these things for good, I want to share a few of the things I’ve been praying about and wrestling with as we prepare to meet our little man in just ten short weeks. If these things scare you or you’re facing them right now, you’re not alone!
Five Things That Scare Me About Being A Mom
1) Labor and Delivery
I’d say this one is pretty self-explanatory. Like I shared in this post about how motherhood is changing my views of Christmas, I know that stretching and the pain are part of how God brings forth new life, both in our bodies and our hearts. But does that make the pain itself any easier? Maybe not. I am nervous for this part, but I know that ultimately it’s out of my control, and all I really want is to come out the other end with a healthy baby (and as a healthy mama).
2) Sleep Deprivation
Y’all, I am a girl who LOVES her sleep. I go to bed by 9:30 or 10 most nights and will usually choose a good night’s sleep over any social engagement that lasts past that time (I’m a 90 year old woman at heart, I know). The changes in my routine are something I know will stretch me thoroughly, and I’m anticipating that this will be tough for us like it is for well….just about everyone.
3) A Shift in Identity
This one is more a heart one. This next year will look very different for our family as we switch some things around and make decisions of how work and life will look different now that we have a little one. I’ll share more about that soon, but no matter what I know that becoming a mama will be a huge shift in identity. I will no longer be just ME: a blogger, a teacher, a wife, etc. My world and my identity will shift to focus largely on meeting the needs of a tiny human (and other tiny humans in the years to come). I think this shift will stretch me in all sorts of beautiful and painful ways, and I am nervous and excited for the hard conversations, prayers, and processing that will accompany it.
4) Body Image Post-Partum
I wrote a whole post about how I’m learning to love my pregnant body a few months back, but as my belly grows and grows, I’m starting to realize that this will be a pretty big transition after our little man leaves the comfort of my womb to face the real world. I want to exercise and live a healthy lifestyle after Caleb arrives, but I also know that no matter how hard I work there are some things about my body that will be forever altered after partnering with God in this amazing process of creating life. I’m praying that I’d give myself grace as I learn to love my new mama body, that I’d view the stretch marks and scars as beautiful reminders of what God has done in me and through me.
5) A New Season of Marriage
I am SO excited to see how we will grow closer to each other as we marvel over the life and family we created and learn to take care of that family together. But like I’ve heard from many couples before us, I also know that the combination of sleep deprivation, identity shifts, and lots of other things can really stretch your marriage and force you to lean in to places where your selfishness usually wins out. I am praying that we would lean in to those hard conversations, that we’d know that this season is just that – a season, and we’d love each other and give each other lots and lots of grace in the midst of it all.
Moving Forward In The Midst Of Fear
Like I said before, I believe wholeheartedly that God loves us and meets us in the midst of our brokenness and fear, even when that brokenness comes hand-in-hand with some of life’s most joyful experiences. Becoming a mama is a world-altering process that will grow me in ways I never could have dreamed of. It will be hard and painful and beautiful and full of joy, and I know that God will be with us every step of the way. I’m praying for lots and lots of grace for myself and for my hubby as we adjust to this new stage of life as parents. Even in the fear, I can’t wait to see how God will grow us and stretch our hearts to love our little man in ways we never could have dreamed of.
Moms-to-be, can you relate to any of these fears or do you have some fears of our own? More experienced mamas, do you have any advice or thoughts on your own experiences with any of these things?
I’ve been finding lots of great posts about pregnancy and motherhood on this Pinterest board over these last few months. Make sure to follow along for more heart-based posts like this one and lots of practical stuff about pregnancy and early motherhood!