Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Scars of Change

Its late and I'm turning out lights and slowly making my way upstairs. The work of the day clings to my body, and I'm moving quite a bit slower than I was this morning. My back, stiff from stooping to pick up toddlers and toys and supporting the growing roundness of my abdomen.  My legs ache from holding me up and my feet, sore from being on them all day.

This is the fifth time I've watched my body change, morph into a home for someone else.  And although the changes happen earlier now than they did the first time, it still takes me awhile to remember to slow down and remember - don't rush these precious few months on by.  My hips pop as I take the stairs.

I was 19 years old the day my first child passed from watery womb into bright new world, 19 when I looked in the full length mirror in a hospital bathroom and let out a wild sob at the sight of my body, "ruined" at 19.  A broken vessel.  And, although with time and exercise and nursing and eating right, things came back together, in some ways I will never be the same.  Ghostly white lines feather their way across my low stomach, reminders - I was stretched to my limit.  I stretched until something broke, scars give witness.

It was hard at first.  Hard to embrace "the new me" even though I loved being a Mama and felt the sacrifices I had made to be completely worthwhile.  I fought tooth and nail for a while, exhausting myself with work out routines, completely bent on getting back to who I was, where I was.  But no matter what I tried, I couldn't undo it.  I was changed.

Tonight its all reminding me and pointing back towards the Truth of it all.  When a seed of change is planted in our lives and we are required to grow and change and stretch and yes sometimes even break, when we wear battle scars that speak to the hard work of growing up.   There's something strangely beautiful about it all, and I hope that I'll continue to see it unfold.  We can come back together after learning hard lessons and being worked on, but we'll never truly ever be the same.

There's a sweet promise there in the midst of it all, something to cling to when who we are hardly resembles who we used to be -

Phil. 1:6
"...being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus."

A good work.  We know that trials come and maturity is gained the hard way, through pain and struggle but also through trust and hope. 

Maybe its time to stop looking at the scars, the evidence of change, as being imperfections.  Maybe its time to celebrate how we are continuing to be broken and mended, worked on, on and on, every day.

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  1. I turn 39 next week and had similar thoughts when I looked in the mirror this week. Gravity is working double-time, I think. :-)

    But we wouldn't change it for the world, would we? They came into the world stretching us, and I don't think they ever stop, do they? Not even when they grow up big.

  2. Hoping for number four, I ponder all these things, even fear them a little. But, the blessing of that new life is worth it all. I stay in prayer that God will help each day during that amazing process should He bless again. I know you are in that place of trusting and relying on Him for your strength. Wonderful post lydia! Have a good day.

  3. Very well put. I love this post. It is definately what I needed to hear.

  4. When I was pregnant my aunt told me to think of stretch marks as badges of honor. It helped immensely...I don't mind them at all but the post C section tummy flap...Ugh.

  5. Beautifully put. I love to decorate our place with old and distressed items for this very reminder. This perfectionist needs reminders! It applies to so many areas....stories and memories are made of the mishaps and not the perfections anyhow. "I will glory in my weakness, because then He is strong."


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