+[the blessing]+

Transition times in my life as a mother have been very much like the transition stage of labor when each of my girls were born.  I did not need to be told I was in transition.  I had already gone through early and active labor; I was very clear that within a short period of time my life was going to change. 

Transition labor, the next step after the early and active labor times, is the most intense.  Contractions are very strong, coming every two and a half to three minutes or so.  I start to shake or shiver at this point in the birthing process, even feel or act on extreme nausea.  There are a lot of fluids and blood involved in this stage - a lot of mess and easily a lot of confusion if focus is not maintained.

The last few months of my life have been much like transition labor.  I have known change was coming, but had no idea what form it was going to take.  Those closest to me have waited with me, squarely aware of what the end result would be, but knowing only I could make the journey to birthing the change.  They have encouraged me to continue, talking me through one figurative contraction at a time.   With each contraction though, the change became more and more visible and a sign that the end was in sight.

This past month especially I have felt intensely compelled to push toward this change.  Instead I stopped and waited altogether.  Though I had not planned for that slowing of the process, it allowed for a very controlled and blessed delivery.  Dont get me wrong, controlled does not mean that I wasnt panting through the entire business.  It simply means it was not rushed.

Doug sat next to me in bed this week as I explained that I needed more now.  More than I have needed in these past 5 years of mothering.  Suddenly I knew that the girls needed to see me expanding my life to embrace others, that if they did not see that in me they would not believe me as Im counseling it in them.    Not expanding into something that will take away from our family life, but something that will add to its engagement breadth.

He sat and listened as I rode out the final defining contractions.

I explained that I thought I needed something, a job perhaps.  I needed to share what has been grown within me. 

Smiling, already knowing, he asked what that ideal job might be.

Ideal?  I didnt know, I told him. We both knew that wasnt true, but that was what I said.

Ideal, he asked again.

With voice up an octave as contraction peaked,  I said I.didnt.know.

He asked again, knowing we were close.  He wanted me to say it to him and to myself.  Outloud.  To name it as Adam did, to call it to life and purpose.  He wanted me to experience the act of authority in imposing the name and the act of submission in receiving it.

Well, I guess writing, I blurted out, sounding mad at someone, something.

He sat silently, letting me have the space I needed, and waited for the next contraction.

But its not like I can just go out and begin writing my ideal for someone else, its not like there is some job out there like that. 

Ideally what would that look like to you, he asked.

What do you mean, what would it look like?

What would it look like?  Would this job be part time or full time?  Where would you work? 

Oh this is never going to work I thought.  This was foolishness.  (Same point in birth as when you swear you will never be intimate with your husband again and you will certainly kill him for doing this to you).  What was I ever thinking?

He waited.

I dont know.  Losing focus I nearly began to cry. 

What would it look like? Would this job be part time or full time? Where would you work?

Only part time, I still have a counselor role here with the girls and still have the directing of their schooling.  So, I guess in the afternoons a couple of days a week.  In the coffee shop, so I could concentrate.  But this is all dumb because there is no job like that out there.

What compensation are you wanting, he asked, compelling me to push.

You know I dont want to be paid!  Its not about that!  Its about something within me begging, no demanding, to come out.

Then you are hired, he said.

What?

You are hired to write a few days a week.  Im hiring you.  I want you to write, its time.  Your friends have told you that, your children have told you that, I have waited for you to tell me that.  And now Im telling you to go.

But the girls need me in the afternoons and the family schedule dictates that I be available.  I cant. (Same point as when all the exhaustion of delivery has hit and you somehow believe you can keep this life inside, like you can just stop the whole process in the final moment. As if.)

If you had a part time job the family would adjust.  Some things may be missed, but thats ok.  Like you said, in this life season, their teen years, they need to see you expanding your life to embrace others, to go out and share what you have learned.   I know you will find precise ways to train them even as you expand.  Go!

Silence.

You are giving me your blessing to go out and do this?

I already said I was.

Well, say it again.

He chuckled.  Ive known for a long time this was coming but you had to get here.  Go!  You have my blessing.

And Life came and was embraced.  Years of waiting, hoping, thinking, dreaming flowed out of me.  I sat next to him staring at him.  Smiling with everything within me.  He gave me his blessing, his encouragement to go out from the chamber, to the mountaintops and the hills.  He told me to go.   And after all those years of praying for my God to lead me through my husband in the unpleasant things, I must believe He is in pleasant as well. 



Like staring into the eyes of a new life being held in my hands, I have no idea what form it will take, but sit in wonder.  And again, I begin the prayers I prayed over the girls cribs, for the Lord to make this what He had in mind when He designed it within me.  I do not know the Plans, He does.  But He has given me a new life to nurture and I am full at the thought of all that is to come.

Amazing Grace plays in my headphones at this moment as I sit and write.  Like a new mother, I am in awe.