I'm cutting through all of the "this is where I've been" and "this is why it's been so quiet here" and "we still don't have internet at our new house" to bring you Big Announcement #2. I'm not gonna waste your time - this one is good. I swore I had an ulcer.
It all added up: the stress and secrecy of interviewing, the work of packing, the transition of moving. Having Madeline home all day. Writing, writing, writing. Job offers, blogging contracts, and more writing.
All the symptoms pointed to a peptic ulcer (according to my imagination; I got a second opinion from WebMD and it agreed with my findings). I am really great at ignoring things for which sane people seek medical attention, so for a week or two I tried to nap it away. (I didn't check that treatment plan with WebMD, but it sounded like solid advice to me.)
SHOCKINGLY, it got worse. One day a few weeks ago, the abdominal pain was met with nausea.
Nausea. Nausea! NAUSEA!!
Turns out it’s not an ulcer.
It’s a two-month old surprise the size of a kumquat, with hands and feet and fingernails and everything.
This means several things:
- We are excited. (To be more specific, we are excited, scared, shocked, happy, stressed, emotional, surprised, and in love.)
- Our unplanned babies outnumber our planned babies 2:1. WHAT THE HECK.
- I have a fertility superpower.
- I am going to have 2 under 2; Sam and baby kumquat will be 19 months apart.
- This time next year I might develop an actual ulcer.
The most remarkable thing in all of this is the timing.
At first glance, it looks bad. Really bad. We are still in boxes. We are in a much smaller house. Sam is one, by the skin of his teeth; we still have the birthday cake in the fridge. I’ve made an enormous writing commitment (which I’ll share more about in the coming weeks). I’m stressed to the point of imagining ulcers. Madeline has millions of words. This was not in our plan.
But as a species, we humans are not great at seeing the big picture. What God knew was that Madeline would be in school full-time. And not just any school, the right school - a classroom with typically developing kids and still getting an hour of braille instruction a day, more than she's ever had access to in her life.
God knew that we were moving closer to family (which as we all know means closer to babysitters).
God knew that moving me out of youth ministry, small group-leading, and newsletter-writing put me in the place to do the two things He's called me to do in this season: parent and write.
God has gone before us and made straight our path in every way, on every front. He's provided for us financially, relationally, emotionally.
Big, giant, "our life will never, ever be the same" kinds of surprises like this one (and like Madeline's vision) open our eyes to God's ever-present working in our lives that might otherwise go unnoticed. Apparently, I'm not as in control of my life as I sometimes think that I am. And I hate to think that I might have missed the significance - the perfect timing and placement of this move - but I might have, had my need not been so desperate. I didn't know how badly I needed to be here, but God did. He placed me exactly where I needed to be, and ever since, He's been showing me why.
In March 2013, we'll be a family of 5.
My cup runneth over.