Greetings, all! It's been a busy couple of weeks! Houseguests, birthdays, swim classes, more house hunting - we've been hopping! We just lost our sixth house bid. I don't know who on earth has decided that it is a buyer's market, but this buyer is finding house-hunting nearly impossible! Or rather, yes, it is a "buyer's" market - the market is flooded with buyers! This last house that we lost had no less than NINE bids on it!! So we are back to the drawing board.
Caleb had his first haircut this past week - Joe's sister Anne cut it during his birthday party. I wasn't upset about him getting his hair cut - although I was very fond of his dear little curls, I was quite tired of getting "what a beautiful little girl you have!" practically every time we went out into public. But when it happened, what a shock! I think he has aged a year in looks. I have spent the past week wondering where my little baby went, and who this new little boy is who has taken his place!
If Caleb will give me a few minutes, I wanted briefly to continue on the subject of Christian faith and hyperemesis. Or rather, to digress in a slight tangent. I already have my next blog entry thought out - about the dilemma of HG vs. strong Christian faith, but since I have had this blog entry in mind for a long time, I wanted to write about things in order.
I would like to list briefly the spiritual benefits (yes, you heard rightly) that hyperemesis has brought into my life. For a hellish experience that still leaves me drenched in fear, it is hard to think of anything pleasant associated with it, but I can name several specific improvements that it has left in me spiritually (not physically!). (Speaking of physical effects, I tried on my bathing suit last week that I have not worn for three years and two pregnancies... It, oddly enough, has shrunk! I'm thinking it's the Phoenix heat. It's affected all my other clothes, so why not my swim suit, LOL???)
So here goes....
(1) Firstly, HG has helped me to realize that my Christian faith is weak and in serious need of improvement, not strong and impervious to trials/temptations, as had been my previous, though unconscious assumption. Since this series of blog entries deals almost exclusively with this topic, I won't attempt to cover it any further here.
I should mention that I am currently reading C.S. Lewis's "The Problem of Pain." Though a devoted Lewis fan, I have not yet read that book, and I am thoroughly enjoying it. My soul always stretches by about fifty years whenever I read a Lewis book. Because it deals with a subject near and dear to HG mums' hearts (i.e. the problem of human suffering), I will post a book review here when I have finished (and probably reread it). Unfortunately, though, the problem of human suffering is both ridiculously easy to grasp in a theoretical sense, and nearly impossible to deal with practically - as Lewis notes in his forward.
(2) Secondly, HG has helped me to realize that everything that I am and that I have is truly a gift from God, and not of myself. We all know that fact theoretically, but all of us (at least, I hope it's not just me!) tend to take pride in what we have and are - probably more of the latter than the former. I may not take (too much) pride in my possessions (although I'm not free from it), but I tend(ed) to take pride in my person and character - my moral standards, my intelligence, my education, my abilities and talents, etc. And we/I take for granted things that are also a gift from God - namely, health. Hyperemesis knocked me flat on my back and took away not only my "life" in terms of social intercourse, activities, etc., but also my ability to function as a normal human being. While it was at its worst I was unable to hold a conversation, comb my hair, cook, wash dishes, handle food, do the simplest household chores, or even walk outside. It has helped me to thank God continually for the blessing of health and for all his other blessings, which are exactly that - blessings from God, and nothing from myself.
(3) Thirdly (and this is to my shame), HG has taught me compassion. I am not naturally compassionate. I have a lot of Yankee get-up-and-go, pull-yourself-up-by-your-bootstraps, just-deal-with-it kind of thinking going on, and in the past I was not very compassionate toward weakness and illness. I remember visiting the home of an invalid and thinking, "This place smells awful. Why can't you just get up and straighten up around here?" Well, HG gave me a nice long stretch where I, too, was unable to "get up and straighten up around here," where I had to rely upon the help of others, and where I was not able to "just deal with it." I think that I have been able to meet life more compassionately since HG, although un-compassionate-ness is a temptation which I think that I shall have to fight all my life.
I am sure that there are more spiritual benefits that have been sprinkled into my life through HG, but those are the main ones that come to mind. I would love to hear from any other HG mums out there who have perhaps thought on this subject - or from anyone who has thought on the subject of suffering vs. faith!
This subject (of faith and HG) is the most serious that I need to deal with in this blog - I cannot face another pregnancy without coming to terms with the spiritual implications of HG. I need to do some really fast maturing. Thankfully this blog is helping me to be able to deal with HG's spiritual ramifications rather than concealing/stuffing them as I have been (unconsciously) doing for the past couple of years. Hopefully the end effect will be good! And hopefully I have learned my lessons well enough not to have to repeat them, LOL!! Of course, lessons are different each time, and it is doubtful if a human being can ever learn during one's finite lifetime, all the lessons that human suffering has to give. But I don't want it to be in vain!
We have more houseguests (my parents) coming on Saturday, so this blog will probably (and unfortunately) be neglected for the next week, unless I can fit in another blog entry tomorrow. I have not told my parents about this blog, due to the fact that (a) I have always been a private person with regards to my parents, and (b) I doubt that any woman wishes her parents to read a blog that contains details of her reproductive and/or spiritual life!! But I will be thinking about the subject of my upcoming blog ("the main spiritual problems/questions resulting from HG/human suffering") and will hopefully have something worthwhile to say when I return.
Love to all!!