A Letter to Waiting Mamas
Dear Waiting Mama,
The weeping cherries I pass on my evening power-walk look like fireworks this spring. A few short years ago, these same trees appeared to be bowed in mourning. Bursting with blossoms of alabaster and rose, the trees have not changed, but I have.
At 32, and nearly five years into failed infertility treatment, I had discovered that life was not like the Choose Your Own Adventure novels I'd torn through in sixth grade. It was more like a story of "God chooses for you whether you like it or not".
I know where you are right now, Waiting Mama: stuck in a holding pattern, uncertain of the ending. Hope is a frenemy you can't hold too close.
Your turn is coming. I scoffed when Fertile Myrtles with babes in arms said this to me, but I once was a waiting mama and now I know it's true. Your turn is coming when you will throw off this weight of mourning and claim joy.
Your joy may come through childbirth, foster care, adoption, or the freeing realization that motherhood is no longer on your bucket list. When you feel like dying, you must choose to live, putting one foot in front of the other until the scenery changes. Scene changing is a slow process and there is no paid crew. You must do the heavy-lifting as God does the heavy-lifting in you.
Waiting days are long days. Last weekend, this line from my daughter's high school play stole my breath. From our theater seats, my husband and I watched our first-born raise her fist in the air, a gesture of defiance against hopelessness. Her adoption nearly 16 years earlier had lifted our veil of grief. Another daughter and a son within four years thrust us into a time for dancing.
The weeping cherries that once mirrored my sorrow are like fireworks this spring. A gentle breeze sends petals floating down like snowflakes in May. My daughter plucks one from my hair when I arrive home from my walk.
"A bug?" I ask.
She cracks a smile. "No, a flower. Mmm...it smells so good."
She reaches toward me, lifting the petal to my nose. Closing my eyes, I breathe in deeply. Its sweetness springs forth, deepened by a long, cold winter.
Dear Waiting Mama,
Your time is coming.