Six Weeks Postpartum & This is What I Know

postpartum

It’s 3:00 in the morning.

I’m sitting in the dark with my baby who woke up to eat a while ago, but somehow… drifted back to sleep on the journey between the initial stirring in our bedroom, and arriving in the living room to feed.

As I look at her precious face in the glow of our night light I am struck by complete confusion of whether to now wake her back up for the meal she should be having… or head back to the room and allow sleep to overtake us both again.

If there’s one main lesson I have learned in the past six weeks since her birth it is this:

I am truly clueless.

Motherhood has been a humbling journey.

postpartum

I am constantly faced with decisions, big and small, that leave me realizing that I just plain don’t know.

And I can make educated guesses — but I’ve found that my state of total ignorance as a parent is what positions me in a perfect place to refine my posture before God as His child. 

In this season, there has been ample opportunity to have my eyes opened in new ways.

I’ve fallen at His feet in desperation in the heavy and hard moments.

But I’ve also been alerted to the realization that I can, at times, arrogantly assume His guidance is only necessary in those “big” moments or the ones that obviously surpass my human ability to solve…

…and I am now remembering just how deeply I need His wisdom and direction for even the smallest of scenarios and deep within the seemingly average seconds that tick by.

There is, in actuality, nothing small enough that I can handle it on my own.

There’s no moment simple enough that it shouldn’t be laid on an altar before the God who has offered to go before me and with me in it all.

I’ve found that it is easy for us to assume we’ve got the mundane covered in our own strength.

And often, the experience of the daily begins to distract from our worship, rather than developing it as it is intended to do.

It is frighteningly simple to bypass the heavenly and the Spirit breathed as we operate from a false belief of self-reliance.

And when that happens, we lose.

I’ve benefited greatly by watching the hand of God in my bigger times of need recently –

But I’m afraid that I have been missing out on oh-so-much by thinking that I have the small stuff covered on my own.

I don’t.

I need Him in the 10,000th diaper change.

In each and every feed.

In the daytime and the middle of the night.

In my healing.

As I’m tending to my daughter.

As I’m partnering with my husband.

In the washing of dishes and the heating of food.

I need Him in the decision making.

And I need Him even when I think I know the answers; Because only He does.

What’s small is meant to be formative.

Foundational.

Freeing me up to build habits and rhythms of reliance on Him — so that worship also becomes woven into the daily.

And therefore, so does submission.

And therefore, so do demonstrations of quiet yet powerful glory.

What’s small is meant to beckon me to what is eternal.

Instead, the small often solidifies our assumption that as long as things don’t get too hairy; we are good to handle it in our own strength.

We bypass surrender on the way to deceptive self-sufficiency.

Nothing in life is small enough to negate the dependency that was mercifully built into us.

And dang – My first six weeks into parenthood have consistently instructed me that complexity obviously demands petition of Him; but also that what is average and necessary and routine requires that passionate seeking, just as much.

The less dramatic moments are the quietest but sweetest invitations to build a constant and humble approach of the God who dwells in the eternal – yet still cares to place His sovereign hand over my daily.

I need Him, daily.

And when I live in the belief that the daily lacks desperate need, I miss out on the offer for the intimate. Which is often hidden within the normalcy of life.

What feels mundane is also ordained; setting the stage for a purpose far greater than I know.

As I hit six weeks out, and begin to leave the shock of the start, I enter now into more of a repeating experience of the sweetly tiring and confusing days.

I’m reflecting on the moments when I have been hit over the head with need, as well as how desperately I never want to forget that need when the dust seems to settle.

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The past six weeks have included numerous set backs in my healing.

Allergic reactions to sutures and unfortunate infections and crazy awful cautery procedures as my recovery process at times seems to take one step forward and two steps back.

Honestly, there were moments when I felt as though the pain of childbirth was actually preferable to the pain of being in this postpartum season.

But I pray that as my body regains a semblance of normalcy, that I never forget in my health that I need Him just as much as I did in my hurt.

The past six weeks have been sleepless.

Newborns require round-the-clock feeding and care, and ours in particular has been experiencing stomach issues and allergies that have made the nights even shorter; causing each evening to leave us increasingly only more exhausted.

I have had several moments of wondering if we are ever going to really sleep again.

But I pray that as sleep returns (or as we get used to being without), that I never forget that my body is sustained by Him foremost – and I need Him in my energy as much as I did in my exhaustion.

The past six weeks I’ve been navigating extreme change as I learn to be a mom.

Life is now pretty much defined by an inexplicable combination of monotonous routine and overwhelming transition.

The days have all kind of blurred together into one beautiful but challenging lump.

But I pray that as she grows and the seasons pass and parenthood evolves again and again, that I never forget that I will need Him years into this journey just as much as I do right here and now as it all begins.

I need Him.

And I have to fight to not let the dailiness of life lead me to ignore that truth.

I have to fight to not be distracted by routine occurrences of our every day, but to press in all the more to choosing to sit at His feet and ask for Him to take over, even what I falsely believe I can do on my own.

A life of worship includes offering up not only the obvious, but also the overlooked.

Giving all to Him, and receiving more of Him.

Living out John 15 in an active and intentional way – even (and especially) when time and energy are short and replaying demands on me are high.

I have a choice.

Will I cash in on the blessing contained for me in abiding – not only in the monumental moments, but also in what feels minuscule?

Will I steward well the gift I’m given of each day; knowing they add up and fall away, and I’m left with the sum of what remains eternally?

What about you?

What is your seemingly small? Your mundane, your routine?

What is your daily that would be easy to attempt to take on alone — but is actually beckoning you to build into rhythms of worship?

Let’s not miss out on the opportunity for His glory contained within our every moment.

There is so much more.

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This piece originally appeared at the author’s blog, published with permission.

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Kristy Fry
Kristy Fry is a first-time mom living in Virginia. Her heart beats passionately for her Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. When she's not loving on students and lifting others up, Kristy spends her time painting, writing, and hanging out with her hubby Brandon, and baby girl Everly.