Do you remember that awkward comedy “Just Friends” with Ryan Reynolds and Amy Smart? In the movie, there’s an absolutely insane pop star that Ryan’s character has to babysit and she writes a song that she sings (badly) throughout the whole movie.
“Forgiveness… is more than saying sorry.” (Yep. That’s pretty much the whole song.)
Well, the awkwardness aside, forgiveness really IS more than saying sorry, and I’m just telling you about that part of the movie because I literally think of that line every single time I think of the topic of forgiveness. I wanted to pull you down with me. You’re welcome.
It dawned on me last night that I have held onto some stuff for a really long time that I have needed to forgive. Holding onto things do that to you — they can stay below the surface for years and it never seem like a huge issue until you realize it really was important to you all along.
This VBAC journey has forced me to look at my first birth story and reevaluate it. I’ve mentioned before that I was wounded verbally when members of my family and a few friends made me feel as though I had “failed” in labor. It led me into feeling mad at my doctor and also mad at the people who said such things to a new mom trying to make her way. I never realized how angry I was over the subject — and how I somehow have been holding onto a hope that those same people would someday realize what they had said and would apologize.
But how can a person apologize when I never let them know they hurt me? Also, how many times have I said something unintentionally hurtful to someone else?
I realized last night that I needed to forgive and let go. So I did.
I understand why God calls us to forgive others. It’s not just to demonstrate on earth His forgiveness in a real and tangible way, although that is a part of it. It’s also for us. It to help us to let go of the past hurts and pains in order to live a full and thankful life. It’s hard to embrace things fully when you’re hanging onto slivers of bitterness. This includes judging and condemning as well as forgiving. (Luke 6:36-37)
I know that right now, there are some complications that are potentially hindering my chances for a successful VBAC. I cannot pretend I’m not disappointed — because I am — but I also have spent so much time researching, praying, and doing everything I can to ensure my best chances for one. This is not a result of me being unprepared, or of me blindly going into whatever needs to be done. I am educated and at peace with my options. I have allowed this baby to bake.
I know there is the potential that I will not get what I had hoped to achieve.
I also know that I have given this time up to God, and I believe that He knows what is best for me. I know what I am comfortable with and that there is always the possibility that people will give their opinions — and that they may not be kind.
But I am choosing to let go of what happened in the past and I’m prepared to forgive anything that may be said in the future.
I am at peace. I am at peace with my efforts. I am at peace with my current and very supportive doctor. I am at peace because it is no one’s story but mine.
No matter what, I am not broken. No woman is.
Understand that? NO woman is. Not the woman who has to be induced early, or the woman who struggles with infertility, or the woman who chooses to adopt, or the woman who chooses not to have children, or the woman who elects to have only Caesarians, or the woman who delivers naturally. It’s not the woman who struggles with bed rest and carrying her babies to term or the woman who can’t seem to get her body to go into labor at all.
We all have our own stories and they are all unique.
I am sorry if I ever made you feel like your story wasn’t important, because it is. We need our stories to be unique because we are unique. If this baby has to come by Caesarian — I don’t believe my time preparing was wasted. I believe it’s exactly what God wanted me to do.
I am choosing to let go and embrace whatever comes next. And waking up without the weight of unforgiveness on my chest is quite nice as well. 🙂