I've always liked the song Climb Every Mountain from The Sound of Music. It's been a theme song or ambition for my life for a while, especially the line that says "A dream that will need all the love you can give every day of your life for as long as you live." I think that is a worthy goal for me, to pursue a life that calls for all the love I can give every day.
Giving birth was an experience that brought a lot of lessons home for me. It reminded me of the song because it was like a mountain to climb. And I thought it would all be downhill after little Mark was in my arms, but my body had some complications to be dealt with and I found myself going up another incline. Then, once that was over I thought that would be the end, but nursing proved to be another challenge as did energy as Tim and I learned to care for baby Mark. I realized that every challenge is like a hill or mountain. As I trust God for the strength to climb the one I am on I can also trust that He knows how many mountains are ahead and will only give me as much as I can handle with His help.
That's also like another lesson I learned in labor - it helped me to remember that my body was made to give birth. And so, I can remember in life that God made me to face the challenges He is putting before me. That can give me courage to persevere, knowing that they will not be too much for me - at least not with God's help. Labor definitely felt like it was too much for me, but I cried to God for help and He gave me strength. I could feel the strength from Him helping me when I thought I couldn't make it myself. So, also in every mountain that seems too much for me He is my help. "I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength."
The phase of labor where I wasn't supposed to push yet, but had the urge to push was pretty tough. I made it through by looking at my midwife's mouth as she blew the way I was supposed to and I could follow her. If she stopped blowing or I stopped looking at her I couldn't control the urge to push, but as long as I fixed all my attention on her mouth and imitating her I was able to somehow keep from pushing. So, in life, there are so many distractions, trying to make me afraid or discouraged. It seems a small thing but if I keep my eyes focused on Jesus and being like Him, that is enough to keep my little heart from worrying or becoming discouraged.