I have a heavy heart as I contemplate a predicament I face with one of my friends. She has several children and while she loves being a mother and serving God in that aspect of her life, and does give that aspect of her life completely over to Him, she isn’t in the position of really wanting more kids, just as I am not. She has a very hard time accepting the news of a new pregnancy and often is in denial about the reality of her situation. So, as I was speaking with her this morning about how overwhelmed I am and she was empathizing with me on the subject, she shared with me her own fear of the possibility of yet another pregnancy.
I urged her to take a test.
She was supposed to be going to a family party this weekend and was worried that she couldn’t have a drink and then people would be asking her why and she wasn’t ready for all of that. But she needed to know so that she could make the decision not to have a drink.
This afternoon, she took a test and I called her to find out the result. The first thing she shared was her elation over a negative result. She was so happy. I was happy for her, in that I knew that she would have a very hard time allowing herself to give in to the concept of another baby. But as I recalled what she had been telling me earlier about her NFP charts and her cycle, etc, with the teeny bit of knowledge I possess on the subject, I saw out of the corner of my mind’s eye a red flag slowly being raised.
I did not want to burst her bubble with my reservations about the test being accurate. How do I tell my dear friend, who means so much to me, something that will put her down into a low that I myself have been in numerous times and can vividly remember the complete darkness and total chaos it can create within oneself?
*Now, before I go on, I must reiterate that both my friend and I are on a similar path when it comes to child-rearing and the fact that we are willing to do whatever God plans for us as mothers. But at the same time, it is a hard task to mother even one child, let alone three or four or five (or more) and I understand, especially because I am now faced with mothering three, how she feels about mothering five. I do not think her fears, worries, anger, resentment or any other initial negative reaction to another pregnancy are unwarranted or out of place. After all, the most important things in life are also the hardest and it is very much human nature to have a sense of anxiety over such things on the surface, even if your heart is completely willing to oblige.*
I allowed my friend to have her moment and after a conversation about other matters that were unimportant in nature, we got off the phone.
Then I talked to my sister, who is as newly pregnant as I am. She knows a lot about NFP, as she was practicing it before. She also suggested that the details of our friend’s chartings and cycle were a little bit fishy and that she was a little worried that the negative test result could have in fact been wrong.
So here I am, knowing I need to at least tell my friend that she should take another test at some point, but I still am hesitant about bursting that bubble. And what if she hates me because I suggested she take another test and it’s positive? There’s a reason the phrase “don’t kill the messenger” was coined.
But at the same time, I am thinking I want to scream at her and say “Don’t you know that there are tons of people out there that are in worse situations than you are that are pregnant and don’t know what the hell to do?!!” The situation I was in when I was pregnant with my daughter was far from ideal and it was all I could do to get out of bed every day and get to work, knowing my life had already changed and that I just had no clue as to how much yet…..knowing I could do absolutely nothing about it. God bless my friend, she isn’t in a place where she can say “yippee, a baby…” and she may never be there. But hopefully, she will find the strength to accept what God plans for her with a little more ease than she has in the past.
So I called my friend and she didn’t want to hear what I had to say but she listened anyway. I was shocked she made it through letting me speak but at the same time, her reaction was not surprising. In total denial-fashion, she told me she had to go. She was going to enjoy her day because it was such a happy one finding out she wasn’t pregnant and she wasn’t going to heed my advice about taking another test.
I love her, I really do. I love the way she won’t allow things to knock her down right away. Me, I’d be flat on the floor crying as soon as she said that the test could’ve been wrong and I would’ve hung up the phone and not answered it ever again.
I am praying that she can get over this enough to see it for what it is and, just to be sure that she isn’t putting herself or possibly her baby in any sort of danger over the weekend, take a test.
And I’m praying that even though I popped her bubble with the largest pin I could find that she won’t hate me, especially if her next test is positive.