Thursday, August 12, 2010

What are Glory Birthings?

David Crowder (my favorite musician) has a song entitled "How He Loves" on his latest album called Church Music. While I was worshiping to this song last week, I was struck by how this song reminded me of my VBAC and I was just completely overcome with emotion, as I reflected on how merciful the Lord was to me by giving me everything I prayed for for this birth.

Here are some of the lyrics:

He is jealous for me,
Loves like a hurricane, I am a tree,
Bending beneath the weight of his wind and mercy.
When all of a sudden,
I am unaware of these afflictions eclipsed by glory,
And I realize just how beautiful You are,
And how great Your affections are for me.

And oh, how He loves us so,
Oh how He loves us,
How He loves us all

Yeah, He loves us,
Oh! how He loves us,
Oh! how He loves us,
Oh! how He loves.

I just kept thinking about labor- how intense and exhausting it is. It's like being caught in a storm.... but then as the baby is born:
"...all of a sudden,
I am unaware of these afflictions eclipsed by glory,
And I realize just how beautiful You are,
And how great Your affections are for me."

Eclipsed by Glory! How awesome is that? When my sweet victory baby was born and immediately placed on my chest, and I felt her warm wet skin and heard her lusty cry, it was absolutely glorious! The past 15 hours of hard work and discomfort were washed away by the strong wave of relief, pure joy, exhilaration, and deep love for my baby that poured over me.
In the wake of this intense glory wave, I was just left in awe of my God and his incredible design. There was nothing to do except praise Him.

Glory means:
1. praise, worship, and thanksgiving offered to God
2. magnificence; great beauty
3. a thing that is beautiful or distinctive; a special cause for pride, respect, or delight

Glory Birthings are the ones that cause you to give praise. They are magnificent and beautiful. And they cause great delight!

Glory Birthings are the ones that leave you so elated and empowered that you just feel like singing. All the time. 8 weeks after my VBAC, and I am still flying!

Also... less noticeably, Glory Birthings are the ones that change and shape us into something beautiful, even if it hurts. My first birth was very difficult... I suffered from PPD like so many other women I know who have experienced traumatic births. It is deeply unfortunate to have to experience such hardship, especially when many times it is unnecessary. Two years later, though, and I am finally starting to see this birth as a Glory Birth, too. It has taken a long time and lots of prayer, but the arrival of a sweet and glorious newborn babe, the result of a glorious pregnancy, eclipses all affliction that I experienced to get him here. And I am SO thankful! I am starting to see myself not as a victim of an unfortunate culture of fear in our health care system, but as a mother who loves her child so deeply, that she would lay down her life and give up her body for his well being.

I'm not saying that we should just forget what happened to us and just let unnecessary surgical births continue to occur- oh no! We need to use our experiences as catalysts for change. We also need to stop wallowing in our despair and start helping other moms finish their grieving and heal, and to help new moms prevent the grieving from starting at all.

My prayer is that every mom can see her birth- no matter what happened- as a Glory Birth! We, as women, are the crown of creation. Our bodies can do remarkable things. Let us reclaim our births, our bodies, and our emotions! Even if our hopes for a birth were stolen from us, let us not let the glory, the magnificence, of our accomplishments (the beautiful children that we created) be stolen as well.

Both of my births were incredibly transformative and integral parts to my story. They were both glorious. And I praise God for both.

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