Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Cloudbursts

It is a raining outside and I am waiting for a baby. I say the same thing almost every day, it seems-- it is sunrise and I am waiting. It is sunset and I am waiting. It is another full moon and, as always, I am waiting for God to bring our efforts at conception to fruition.

I'm not actually very good at waiting but it's become so much a part of my life the past year that it's not so much an action as a state of existence. Like the weather, which currently is pouring and roaring in a classic summer thunderstorm.

It reminds me of a day like this two years ago, when I sat on my front porch thoroughly past my due date and thoroughly tired of my pregnancy. The thunderclouds darkening the sky and the wind in the trees hinted that rain was on the way and as restless and hot as I was, I couldn't wait. I decided to sit on the porch and watch the storm. The wind gusted promisingly, thunder rumbled, and heat lightening flashed. No rain. The humidity, already oppressive, climbed until the air itself seemed to be swelling, inflating to bursting point. I remember sitting in my rocking chair thinking this is what waiting for my pregnancy to end feels like. All the signs that I was ready for labor without actual labor. I felt ready to burst with anticipation and yes, frustration. But then the clouds burst and the rain came, loud and merry, rattling the tin roof of my porch and filling the earth with delicious coolness. I laughed, patted my belly and reminded myself that God was the one to bring both rain and babies alike.

Now, two years later, I again feel swollen with longing. After a year of trying for another child, I can't tell that we are one bit closer to a pregnancy. I know that God is perfect in His timing but I also, pessimist that I am, wonder in my darker moments if He is ever going to end this waiting. The thought crossed my mind today that perhaps I should give up. It is as if all our efforts and prayers, desires and frustrations built like humidity in my soul, oppressive and heavy. I needed the clouds to burst, needed something to give way.

The thunderstorm this afternoon found me again on my front porch, this time watching the downpour with my daughter Ember. We took advantage of a lull in the rain to explore the puddles in our driveway and the miniature waterfalls dripping from the gutters. A cool wind blew away every trace of the humidity that had marked the morning previously and as I watched Ember splash, my own heaviness lifted. Yes, I am waiting. I am not waiting alone. I already have one priceless gift from God, and my life is filled with all the blessings and challenges of parenting-- as well as moments of sheer puddle-splashing joy.

As long as there are days of rain to break the humidity, daily joys to break the longing, I think I stand the wait a little longer.

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