Monthly Archives: July 2014

Baby Blues and Breastfeeding (a lesson on trusting God)

baby bluesMy daughter is one week old today (so is her brother, turns out). Our family grew from 2 to 4 in a couple heartbeats, and it’s been crazy ever since. This month has been perhaps the most sanctifying season of my life.

The babies and I have entered a crash-course on learning to breastfeed. Evi in particular is not a fan of “school.” When I bring her to my chest, she becomes inconsolable, gasping for air, punching at me, shaking her head. Finding the right spot to suck is a great stresser in this little one’s life.

Sometimes, her fit stresses me out too. But one thing I’ve found absolutely adorable about it is her “crazy legs.” She kicks and stretches in perfect rhythm during her melt down. Shane and I have dubbed her “Crazy Legs Magee” when this happens (during diaper changes too).

I think of Crazy Legs Magee every time the “baby blues” hit me out of no where. I start to question whether or not I can do this. My mind races with identity-management mode: I am a mother now. In many ways, this enhances all other roles, including wife, mentor, and daughter of the King of kings. In other ways, the demands of my new role has trumped the activities that define the others.

  • I am still a wife, but I am sleep deprived and feel too mentally consumed to provide good conversation or companionship for Shane.
  • I am still a mentor and ministry director, but I need to keep my babies healthy during these precious first weeks of life, which limits my involvement with student activities and long-anticipated summer trips.
  • I am still a friend, but I have about 17 un-answered texts, Facebook messages, and “can I drop by” requests.
  • I am still an extrovert, but strangers are so low on my priority list right now, I am so not a nice person when they try to engage me with “are they identical” for the umpteenth time.

The most prominent identity shift has come with my husband starting a new ministry position within a month of our babies’ birth. Ministry has always been a hard-and-fast team effort between the two of us. But this season requires us both to fly a little bit solo—me in the mama role, and he furthering his ministry occupation.

In my head, I know the loneliness I feel to be a greater part of Shane’s new journey is unfounded. This is a beautiful, messy, exhausting season, but it is still just a season. Still, my heart needs convincing.

The emotions flow. I whimper a little; the tears threaten my eyes and I find myself sucking in air like a fussy baby. Crazy Legs Magee and I are not so different.

When I feed Evi, she acts like she will never get that honey-sweet milk she craves and needs. Of course, I know I have enough to provide for her… more than enough. Breastfeeding twins and pumping every 3 hours has given me an abundant supply to meet both my babies needs and more! (To the glory of God and my great relief).

(P.S. Perhaps the most pathetic thing EVER to a new mom is a 5 oz bag of breastmilk slipping through your fingers and soaking the kitchen floor. So much hard work just waisted. Ok, rant over.)

Philippians 4:19 says “And my God will meet all your needs according to the riches of his glory in Christ Jesus.”

My Heavenly Father looks at me with the same perspective that I have with Evi:

“My darling, I have more than enough to meet your needs. My riches are beyond abundant. I promise you will be satisfied through what I am going to give you. Relax against Me. Lean into Me. Find the source of joy, contentment, and honey-sweet assurance that you are longing for… but first you must trust.”

God knows me better than I know myself. He knows what will bring me the most satisfaction and joy: Him! Not being more involved in youth-activities, not having an easy time breastfeeding, not giving birth in the way I pictured it. All these things are good, but ultimately, the riches God plans to meet my needs with are not these things.

The song “Satisfied in You,” by The Sing Team, sums it up well for me:

Let my sighs give way to songs that sing about your faithfulness
Let my pain reveal your glory as my only real rest
Let my losses show me all I truly have is you

As a deer pants for water, so my soul thirsts for you
And when I survey Your splendor, You so faithfully renew
Like a bed of rest for my fainting flesh

Baby blues and breastfeeding… Crazy Legs Magee and I will make it through. Because God has promised to provide.

In what ways have you been “Crazy-Legs Magee” with God? How did he provide in the end? Feel free to share so we can celebrate His faithfulness together!

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Fear-Factor Fridays: Grace Finds Me

Last week we tackled being rooted in fear, which produces the fruit of anxiety, insecurity, etc.

Hopefully, we are all striving to be rooted in love instead of fear. Still, a valid question many of us are asking is: “How do you get rid of fear?”

My husband and I debated on whether fear is a restrainable emotion or uncontrolled state of mind. Eventually though, we brought the question back to the Bible.

“To get rid of fear, we must look at the cross,” Shane affirmed.

The cross is where Jesus power was greatly displayed. His power over sin and death is certainly stronger than fear as well.

Also, the cross gives us perspective of God’s grace. So even when our fears seem more persistent than the truth of God’s power, His grace meets us there.

20130912-092158.jpgAs Matt Redman sings, “Your grace finds me…”

My prayer today is this:

“Lord, I am so grateful for this truth: it is your grace that carries me today through every fear that dares to plague my thoughts. In every scenario–Your grace will find me! Someday, I will find the strength to walk in the confidence of your power. Until then, I am ‘breathing in your grace, and breathing out your praise.’ Thank you Savior for this victory–not over– but through the minefield that is my thought-life.”

I echo this prayer over you my friends, my family, my sisters. You might not be struggling with fear in your thoughts, but perhaps it is temptation, uncomfortable situation, a heart-heavy calling, or finding strength to share the gospel with a friend. Look to the cross for a victorious perspective. Sing this truth and let God carry you through it:

 

“It’s there in the newborn cry
It’s there in the light of every sunrise
It’s there in the shadows of this light
Your great grace

It’s there on the mountaintop
It’s there in the everyday and the mundane
There in the sorrow and the dancing
Your great grace

Oh, such grace

From the creation to the cross
Then from the cross into eternity
Your grace finds me
Yes, Your grace finds me

It’s there on a wedding day
There in the weeping by the graveside
There in the very breath we breathe
Your great grace

Same for the rich and poor
Same for the saint and for the sinner
Enough for this whole wide world
Your great grace

Oh, such grace
There in the darkest night of the soul
There in the sweetest songs of victory
Your grace finds me
Yes, Your grace finds me

So I’m breathing in Your grace
And I’m breathing out Your praise
I’m breathing in Your grace
Forever I’ll be
Breathing in Your grace
And I’m breathing out Your praise
I’m breathing in Your grace
For our God, for our God

Yes, Your grace finds me.”
Matt Redman, “Your Grace Finds Me,” 2013

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Twins in Progress: Introducing….

The babies have arrived!

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Please help Shane and I welcome our beautiful boy, Titus Zachariah Rosty:

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Born on July 23, 1:16am, 6.5 lbs, 19.5 inches long

And our precious little lady, Evangeline River Rosty:

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Born on July 23, 1:18am, 6.7 lbs, 18.5 inches long

Daddy and Mama are doing great! (Birth story of our peace-filled adventure to follow!)

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Feel free to celebrate with us:

Pray for easy transition into being a family of 4,

find us on mealtrain.com (Shane and Becky Rosty),

or drop by with a box of diapers anytime 🙂

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Twins-in-Progress: Week 38

I take back everything I said about making it to 37 weeks. I just finished 38 weeks of pregnancy, and today I begin week 39. If I didn’t know any better, I’d be looking for the candid camera. We expected to be induced this past week, but my womb was not “favorable.” Honestly, I was at the breaking point of my convictions of birth, ready to just get it over with. God’s grace provided a doctor who raised my flag for me when I no longer could.  I am so blessed Dr. Damron understands the human body, the medical advances available, and my ultimate wishes to have a vaginal birth… and that he is willing to contend for the best scenario possible for us!

38 weeksThis update comes to you in a slightly different format, but I think you’ll get the idea of how things are going:

38 Weeks: July 13-19

Monday:

I spent the first half of the week trying every home-induction idea available. By Monday, I was in complete breakdown mode:

  • I still hadn’t felt a single contraction,
  • we were heading to Billings the next day for an exam
  • I expected to return later in the week with babies in tow.
  • Emotions of my inadequacy to become a parent overwhelmed me

The Lord worked marvelously through friends and family to speak truth to my trembling heart. Will I ever reach the end of His grace for me?

Tuesday:

  • Encouraging chat with a friend over bagels
  • I got home excited and a bit nervous for our appointment, thinking Shane would be pulling his hair out too… Alas, he was playing bluegrass tunes with our neighbor, completely relaxed. I am so grateful for a grounded husband.
  • a peaceful drive and encouraging conversation with the love of my life.
  • Worst moment of the week: the cervix check from hades (I will never again laugh at a man getting kicked in the nuts)
  • Surprise! My cervix is indeed stoic. (I have been comparing it to Helm’s deep of LOTR)
  • A bit of frustrated processing our options and eventual decision to follow our blessed Doctor’s advice and head home and wait it out
  • Another delicious trip to A&W (we are calling these trips to Billings our little Root-Beer-Float runs).
  • Sleeping soundly for the first time in several days

Wednesday:

  • I dreamt about our beautiful babies all night
  • Funniest moment of the week: During one dream, I was talking to our little girl, and she was cooing back at me in the sweetest little voice imaginable. I woke up to the sound of my stuffy nose “cooing” the same sound. Thank you congested sinuses for the sweet dream stimulation.
  • I spent the day relaxed and at peace, visiting friends and shopping with my mom.
  • I had a couple “cramp-like” feelings, but nothing rhythmic
  • Ended the night with swollen feet but a happy heart

Thursday:

  • The air-conditioning was set to 67 and I was still sweating all night.
  • I was pretty restless and somewhat nauseous throughout the night as well.
  • I woke up with a new resident in my pelvis… it appears a bowling ball has replaced my baby down there.
  • Took an intense hike/walk during a hazy sunset. So happy that my future isn’t hazy to God.
  • Watched “the Hobbit” with that good-lookin’ man of mine.
  • No matter how hard I concentrate, I just can’t seem to “catch” any more labor symptoms.

Friday:

  • Perused pictures of twins on pinterest: Can we get on with this already?! I can’t wait to meet my babies!
  • Efficiently mastered the art of nap, eat, walk, nap, eat, walk. Trying to stay rested just in case.

Lullaby of the week: Here’s My Heart. Crowder beckons us to come to Christ, offer Him our heart and listen to the truth He will speak to us:

I am found, I am Yours
I am loved, I’m made pure
I have life, I can breathe
I am healed, I am free

‘Cause You are strong, You are sure
You are life, You endure
You are good, always true
You are light breaking through

You are more than enough
You are here, You are love
You are hope, You are grace
You’re all I have, You’re everything

Truth I’m dwelling on: Romans 8 explains how all of creation experience the birth-pains of waiting for God’s people to be redeemed:

19 For the creation eagerly waits with anticipation for God’s sons to be revealed. 20 For the creation was subjected to futility—not willingly, but because of Him who subjected it—in the hope 21 that the creation itself will also be set free from the bondage of corruption into the glorious freedom of God’s children. 22 For we know that the whole creation has been groaning together with labor pains until now. 23 And not only that, but we ourselves who have the Spirit as the firstfruits—we also groan within ourselves, eagerly waiting for adoption, the redemption of our bodies. 24 Now in this hope we were saved, yet hope that is seen is not hope, because who hopes for what he sees? 25 But if we hope for what we do not see, we eagerly wait for it with patience.

I read this passage every day, remembering this patience for birth is just a minuscule example of the patience our world experiences for the perfection Christ will bring us to in the end. I want to yearn for Him in my life so much more than I do for this birth.

Looking forward to: Worshipping God through the glorious event of giving birth to our twins, whenever and however it happens.

Questions for the Mamas: 

What was your must-have song for your Delivery-day playlist?

Prayer Requests: 

  • Both Babies will be head-down when I go into labor.
  • I go into labor spontaneously before our appointment on Monday, so we can avoid Pitocin
  • That we will glorify our Savior and Sustainer, Jesus Christ, no matter what happens
  • For a spirit of humility to be cultivated in our two children starting now (they have received so much attention over the last couple weeks, you’d think the world revolved around them… and they are playing it up!)

I’m not making any more promises for when these babies will show up, but I trust God will deliver them in His perfect timing.

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Fear Factor Friday: Am I rooted in Fear?

Anxiety is one of modern day society’s greatest struggles. Young and old wrestle with this great foe day and night. Christ-followers seem to be just as prone to anxiety-attacks as those who don’t have hope in Christ. I am personally quite familiar with fear myself. But I KNOW it is not God’s best for me.

Join me as I tackle this subject every Friday, discovering how Christ’s love makes us more than conquerors over this epic battle against anxiety.

We will start today with a truth God taught me in the Fall of 2013: to avoid producing the fruit of fear, we must get to the root of things.

Am I rooted in fear or love?

Where am I rooted?

Ephesians 3:17 commends us to be “rooted and established in love.” A tree with healthy roots will produce life-giving fruit. The same is true with our life.

1 Corinthians 13 gives us a beautiful description of the fruit (product) of love:

4. Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. 

5. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. 

6. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. 

7. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.

8. Love never fails… 1 Corinthians 13:4-8

While studying these verses, I realized these are also the characteristics of Jesus. If I am to reflect Jesus, who is LOVE incarnate, then why do I not have these characteristics in my life? What is missing?

Instead of a loving patience, I am often plagued with debilitating anxiety. I tend to avoid bearing all things with confidence; instead, I typically cave emotionally at any opposition. Instead of a childlike hope, believing that God could work in all things, I lean toward giving-up easily.

After much prayer and study, I understand that my life was not operating from a place of love. If love produces belief, hope, and endurance, then I must be operating from the complete opposite of love. So, what is the opposite of love?

I believe God reveals the answer in 1 John 4:18

“There is no fear in love; instead, perfect love drives out fear, because fear involves punishment. So the one who fears has not reached perfection in love.” 1 John 4:18

If there is no fear in love, then perhaps fear is the antitheses of love. Perhaps fruit of anxiety, self-concern, and doubt comes from a life rooted in fear.

I tested my theory by rearranging the 1 Corinthians 13 passage, with fear as the main factor instead of love: (verses 4-8)

4. Fear is anxious and impatient; fear is unkind. Insecurity (a form of fear) is full of envy; is boastful; is conceited.

5. Fear will act improperly; fear focuses on self; it easily annoyed; it maintains a detailed list of wrongs;

6. Fear finds joy in evil, but is cautious to rejoice in the truth;

7. Fear cannot bear anything, doubts all things, loses hope for all things, and gives up easily.

8. Fear always fails.

These “verses” accurately described my heart.

For example, I wake up anxious about how people will perceive me. I am afraid of rejection or disapproval. I have no patience for God’s plan to work itself out. I have chronic fear of failure.

Also, I am so terrified of mediocrity that I over-do everything.

And I doubt God. I stop believing that a person can change in the power of Christ. I give up. I get irritated when I don’t know “the plan.”

I think, in most cases, I am simply afraid of my pride getting hurt.

Being rooted in fear, instead of love, we naturally produce the fruit of self-centeredness, anxiety, envy, and giving-up easily.

Our Father has a great purpose for our lives, but that purpose is rooted in love, in HIM! (God is love!)

So we must do as the rest of 1 Corinthians 13 suggests and “put aside childish things”…. like fear. We have been given a spirit of power, love, and self-discipline (2 Timothy 1:7). Those are the qualities of a mighty woman of God. Fear is the characteristic of a child who does not understand her adoption as a daughter in Christ. (Romans 8:15)

We must “put aside” this childish insecurity and fear. “When I was a child, I spoke like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a [wo]man, I put aside childish things.” (1 Corinthians 13:11) We do this by keeping our eyes on the cross!

I want my thoughts and actions to be rooted in love, so I may have the fruit of love in my life. Through Christ, I can be patient, kind, content, humble, considerate of others, rejoicing in the truth, hopeful, persevering, enduring, bearing and believing all things.

I know I can only do this through the power of the Holy Spirit. So I will put my big-girl panties on, ask for His help in uprooting fear, and live a life rooted in His love.

How about you? What fruit have you been producing lately? Share how God is helping you get to the root of things by commenting below.

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Twins-in-Progress: Week 37

I honestly didn’t think I would “get” to write a post about how my 37th week of pregnancy went. Everyone said, “twins? oh you’ll go early….” —doctors, friends, other twin moms, family. In traditional Becky-fashion, I’m here to prove you wrong and blaze my own trail (though this time, I really would have liked to live up to the expectation).

Doctors want me to schedule an induction soon (so the babies will be small enough for a vaginal birth). Shane and I are still praying about it, at the risk of the C-section I’ve worked so hard this whole pregnancy to avoid. Time will tell what God has planned for the birth of these kids. One thing is for sure, God has proven faithful thus far, and will continue to do so. My body is more powerful than I ever thought, and carrying two souls this long has broadened my perspective on God’s grace to sustain me.

Here’s to the week I never thought I’d have (of course there is still more time to have babies this weekend):

twins in progress week 3737 Weeks: July 6-12

Babies size: Watermelons (2 of them!)

What’s new with babies? Babies have definitely “dropped.”

What’s new with Mama? I keep feeling those stretchy pains of my skin and belly making more room for bigger babies.

Sleep: I’ve been getting 13+ hours per every 24 hour day this week! It could be all the extra walking/ball bouncing, but I have been logging in the hours of deep rest, and I’m not taking them for granted.

Best moment this week: a conversation with a friend that didn’t completely revolve around the babies/birth/pregnancy.

Babies’ Movement: Still kicking’ and rolling, especially when Shane plays and sings sweet songs to us.

Genders:  a Boy and a Girl.

Labor Signs/prep: I dream every night about having a contraction. Still nothing in reality. I do get a sharp pain at the top of my uterus every few hours. Several weeks ago, I thought it was my bra digging into my belly. After the babies dropped, I realized the pain was lower, but still a consistent, burning/digging-in feeling. Not sure if thats a weird form of braxton-hicks or what.

Natural Induction Attempts: Knowing my doctors would like to induce me soon, I thought I’d try a few “home remedies” to get labor started. Here’s what I think, (beware of TMI!):

  • Dancing
    • Effectiveness: babies definitely dropped after 20 minutes one day.
    • Thoughts: fun activity
  • Spicy Food
    • Effectiveness: nada for labor… but my sinuses clear up a bit!
    • Thoughts: I could do without the gas pains (dirty little trick to make me think I have labor pains)
  • Walking
    • Effectiveness: I thought I felt a contraction while racing through Walmart during Rodeo week (what was I thinking going in there this week?)
    • Thoughts: I passionately enjoy the runners high: pushing my body to the almost-breaking-point while running. Of course, I have avoided that through the whole pregnancy, to stave off pre-term labor. Now that we are past that point, I am enjoying the “9-months-pregnant-walker’s high” every day.
  • Pineapple
    • Effectiveness: zilch
    • Thoughts: tasty!
  • Evening Primrose Oil (orally)
    • Effectiveness: can’t tell yet, but hopefully it softens and dilates.
    • Thoughts: Smells so gross!!!
  • Birth-ball
    • Effectiveness: sore quads, perhaps more open hips?
    • Thoughts: I have no shame. I bounce like a circus monkey in our living room while watching youtube videos and admiring our gorgeous view. I’m sure our neighbors find my ball-work quite entertaining.
  • Labor Cake
    • Effectiveness: No contractions
    • Thoughts: DELICIOUS! (its a mighty chocolate overload)
  • Leaving the house a wreck
    • Effectiveness: I figured a sink full of dirty dishes would DEFINITELY do the trick. Alas, I woke up with no labor signs and a kitchen to clean.
    • Thoughts: I’ll try to keep things in order for our lovely puppy-sitter when we do head off suddenly. Maybe the cleaning will initiate a “nesting” mentality and get things going.
  • Stimulating the “lovely lady lumps”
    • Effectiveness: nothing
    • Thoughts: uncomfortable, though I haven’t tried the breast pump yet
  • Gettin’ frisky
    • Effectiveness: what are we measuring here? I feel like my big belly is a walking advertisement of our effective sex life. Unfortunately, the same tactics to get the babies in there hasn’t worked to get them out (yet).
    •  Thoughts: Ladies don’t kiss and tell 😉

Symptoms: Pain in my hips (there’s a baby getting ready down there), and more swelling in my feet.

Mood: I started this week out with a major hormonal shift. Sunday morning I woke up feeling like a 13 year old girl experiencing PMS for the first time. I was irritated and grumpy at everything. By the time we arrived at church, I was ready to weep. Thankfully, everyone at church is quite understanding of a woman who weeps during worship and communion. By mid-week, I was so burnt-out on emotional upheaval, I was beginning to feel a bit callused and inattentive.

Through it all, I strive desperately to come to Jesus every hour, searching the scriptures to shape my attitude in truth, not just what I’m feeling at the time. It can be a lot of work to fight your emotions and stay on track with truth, and I will say I am exhausted spiritually, mentally, physically, and emotionally from it (maybe that’s why God has granted me so much sleep this week! Hallelujah!).

Lullaby of the week: Every night this week, while we are getting ready for bed, Shane starts singing “This is the night…. its a beautiful night…” to my belly. The babies haven’t been cooperating with Shane’s tactics, but it definitely lands Bella Notte, from Lady and the Tramp, as the Lullaby of the Week.

Truth I’m dwelling on: Striving to be more desperate for Jesus than I am desperate to have these babies.

“…that I may know Him and the power of His resurrection…” Phil 3:10

Looking forward to: Experiencing all that God has planned for us these next few weeks.

Questions for the Mamas: 

Did you try natural induction techniques? What worked? What would you steer clear from?

Comment below to answer. And stay tuned, hopefully we will be posting the grand introduction of our beautiful son and daughter soon!

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Fear Factor Friday: Have the Day You Have

Every so often, Hollywood offers a golden perspective on life. I think The Odd Life of Timothy Green is one such nugget.

The Greens receive a gift from their garden: the child they couldn’t conceive. The child, Timothy, teaches them about love, selflessness, and trust, which eventually enables them to let go of their expectations but still cling to hope. My favorite scene in the film is this:

“Have a great day” is apparently too much pressure. And I tend to agree.

Our culture calls this, “not getting our hopes up.” Stop caring. Become callused. Without hope, there might not be any disappointment. We all know disappointment is the enemy of hope… its crushes optimism, cloning all of humanity to being “realists”.

But Love tells us to hope. Love also tells us to endure.

1 Corinthians 13 says…

“love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things and endures all things.” (1 Corinthians 13:7)

Sounds a bit contradictory to me. When I am hopeful, I usually channel my hope toward positive things that will most likely happen. If the forecast says rain, I don’t hope for sunshine. I know I will end up disappointed by reality.

When I knowingly walk into a circumstance in which I know I will have to endure, I check hope at the door and brace myself for the coming opposition. I “have the day I have.”

Jon Acuff, author and speaker, writes, “In these moments, fear will try to hand you an apathy shield… What fear doesn’t tell you is that apathy forms a wall, but that same wall blocks you from joy, too.” *

In Christ, the pressure that Cindy Green speaks of, is off!

Do we trust that God is faithful? Do we believe He really has the best in mind for us? That “the day we have” is whatever He planned ahead for us to experience (barring any of our own sin getting in the way)?

The pain, the confusion, the waiting, the excitement, the joy, the changes—each are an agent of God’s will to bring us closer to Him, which will bring us the greatest satisfaction anyway! “Having the day you have” doesn’t just mean grit your teeth and bear it; it also requires hope and trust that “the day you have” is also the “great day” your Dad wished you before school.

When we operate from a heart of love, we can do both. We can say “have a great day” and “have the day you have” at the same time. Love enables us to hope and endure at the same time.

I am about to give birth for the first time. I have no idea what to expect. A huge part of me wants to carry an “apathy shield” to guard against disappointment in my birth experience. But my God has wooed me, convincing me to operate from a place of love, not fear. And so, I am hoping like I’ve never hoped before! But I also know that I will “have the birth that I have.” It will be everything God designed for me to experience; and I have confidence He knows what is best for me. So, in the end, it will be everything I hoped for, because my hope is in Christ, not my circumstances.

“For in hope we have been saved, but hope that is seen is not hope; for who hopes for what he already sees? But if we hope for what we do not see, with perseverance we wait eagerly for it.” Romans 8:24-25

I’d like to hear from you? Where have you raised your “apathy shield” to guard against hope? How do you plan to drop that shield to both hope and endure all things?

*from the article "Dreaming God-Sized Dreams, 3 Lies fear always tells you about your goals," in the January 2013 issue of Homelife (produced by Lifeway).
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Not Just a Uterus: Worshiping back to my identity in Christ

Not just a Uterus:

more than a uterusThese past few weeks have been consumed with “when will the babies come?” Shane and I have engaged this intense waiting season with vigor (to hopefully make it shorter) and patience (more on Shane’s part than mine). For people around us though, it seems to be the only thing that exists.

Don’t misunderstand me; I am more than thrilled of this huge life change and new members of the Rosty family. But, as a book I’ve been reading puts it, I’d like to be perceived as more than a “walking uterus.”

I’m sure many women can relate. As a young adult, you are just a “future bride” to everyone: “When are you going to settle down and get married?” If you ever got that checked off the list, the commentators follow through with, “when are you going to start a family?”

These well meaning individuals are worse than the paparazzi. Those of you who did become mothers might identify with the “lost-identity” now that everything is about the kids. The future-bride turned future-baby-maker, then walking-uterus turned mother-hen can’t catch a break.

To be honest, I must confess to being such an annoying commentator myself… to my shame (and I apologize to anyone’s identity I reduced from daughter of the King of kings to just another stage of life).

Even though I sometimes resent all the comments about my new identity, I have wholeheartedly jumped into it. I stop blogging about anything but the babies. I spend my days priming my home and body for the new humans. I gravitate to conversations about parenting and birth and breast-feeding. I change my profile picture on Facebook to celebrate my bulging belly. Then all of a sudden, I sensed the discontent in my heart and wish someone would ask me how my ukulele skills are coming or what new combination I am testing this week on my scones (it is marachino-cherry-chocolate, by the way). I realize I feel disconnected and frustrated, not because of the commentators’ perception of my identity, but my own.

Thankfully, God is shaping me through this “walking-uterus” season. In fact, He has been working on my understanding of my identity since I was a little girl:

Figure-Skates and Crutches:

I spent many of my growing-up years inside the ice arena. My sisters and I learned to figure skate at a young age and loved sport. When I was 14, I was starting to progress in my skills and grace as a figure skater. But more importantly, I was growing spiritually. I began to see the gliding and spinning as a way to worship my Creator. I had always enjoyed singing worship in church, but realizing I could worship God through movement gave me a whole new way to express my love for Him. My identity was skater-for-Jesus and I was flourishing.

Then I broke my ankle. During the dress rehearsal for the Christmas show, I sailed across the ice to take a practice bow, stepped down and *snap!*

Five months off the ice meant my newfound love to worship God was again limited. As I hobbled around on crutches, my identity required a bit of reshuffling. I wanted to be grumpy, but I felt God call me to worship Him.

It was not graceful gliding. It wasn’t choreographed to beautiful music. Limping my way around for months hardly felt like worship. But I learned to make it so. I put on a smile and held on to gratitude. I became “gimp-for-Jesus” and, you know what, I flourished in that too.

Worship redefined:

Colossians says, “Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters, 24 since you know that you will receive an inheritance from the Lord as a reward. It is the Lord Christ you are serving.” (Col. 3:23-24)

Through figure-skates and crutches, God taught me how to offer a joyful sacrifice of praise to Him in all circumstances. Today, I am remembering to offer that same praise from the bottom of my heart… right next to my expanding uterus. A part of me wants to be free of the seemingly all-consuming identity I am diving into. I want to be more than “walking-uterus.” But just like that 14-year old girl learned to worship on crutches, I am learning how my waddling through the panty-liner aisle at Walmart can be worship too.

I want my pregnancy to worship God. I am striving for a birth that honors His heart. I want to parent in a way that exalts His name. I just need to remind myself that I’m not just a “walking-uterus”, but I am a “walking-uterus-for-Jesus!” And I am flourishing.

So bring on the questions and comments about pregnancy and motherhood. If I’m perceiving my identity in Christ correctly, I’ll tell you all about God’s goodness through it all.

How about you?

What season of life have you found yourself in? Do you find it easy to worship God through this identity, or do you resent being in such a season?

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Twins-in-Progress: Week 35-36

Been another whirlwind couple of weeks! I’d like to thank everyone who offered prayers and perspective regarding our birth decisions. I have deeply appreciated our relationship with Dr. Rice in Buffalo. With Lil-lefty consistently breech, we had to decide whether to have a C-section in Buffalo or find a new direction. Dr. Rice understood my wishes, and was gracious enough to refer us to a perinatologist in Billings who is confident about vaginal birth with twins. Our plan is to have a vaginal birth in Billings, with a breech extraction for baby B. As long as we go into labor spontaneously in the next week we won’t have to do an induction!

Even as we were meeting with Dr. Damron in Billings, I still wasn’t sure. All week long, I had been praying for discernment. The Holy Spirit never gave me a “this is the plan” moment, but He did lead my husband. As soon as we left Billings Clinic, Shane exclaimed, “we are going to have our babies here!” He was so confident about the doctors and facilities. My hormonal and wavering mentality desperately needed that kind of rock-solid assurance. I am so grateful that God works to meet my needs through the direction of Shane. What a blessed partnership.

On that note, we celebrated our 4th Anniversary of covenantal marriage, and couldn’t be happier! I’m sure you want to know the stats of the weeks, so without further ado….

35 36 week

35-36 Weeks 35-36: June 22-July 5

How far along? 9 months

Babies size: Honeydews.

What’s new with babies? Not much. Just chillin’ at around 5 1/2 to 6 pounds each

What’s new with Mama? I’m snoring now, which is new. My belly measures “42 weeks” but still doesn’t seem humongous. I’m beating the heat with lots of pool-time and relaxing in the air conditioning of our new home.

Weight Gain: none.

Sleep: I am getting used to the “roll over every 20 minutes to keep my hands from tingling” kind of interrupted sleep… not sure Shane is used to it yet.

Exercise: Been pushing myself a lot more these past weeks. Long walks with Mr. Darcy (when it’s cool enough), yoga and squats. Even if I don’t get these babies out sooner than later, at least I’ll have toned thighs!

Best moment this week: We celebrated our Anniversary, (June 25, 2010) while in Billings for the perinatologist check up. The OB appointment was LOOOONG and mentally exhausting. For whatever reason, I was craving a root-beer float, to which Shane whole-heartedly agreed. We found an A&W at a gas station on the edge of town, doubting it would have the old-fashioned “chilled mugs” we were hoping for. Alas, A&W came through and we were quite elated!IMG_5593

banjo loveAfterward, we visited the all-time-best music store ever, Guitars & Amps, like we do every trip to Billings. Shane played with the banjos and I purchased a replacement uke for the one lost during pregnancy-brain season. I love how the babies settle down to the sweet strums of this tropical instrument.

Finally, Shane took me to Ciao Mambo. This restaurant is life-changing (I’ve blogged about it before here). We ordered Italian nachos from heaven and went to town (ahem, the pregnant lady went to town, Shane was still full from the floats). A complimentary square of tiramisu to celebrate 4 years of married bliss, and we were off to our own bed and comfy new home. It wasn’t a grand honeymoon or anything, but I can’t express how blessed I am for little moments like those with my good-looking’ man.

What do you miss/NOT miss? I miss jogging and hiking and bike riding. I do not miss how frustrated I get at the beginning of every summer when I’m not as in shape to enjoy these activities.

Babies’ Movement: Turns out, the Right ninja has his little bum (not feet) in my right side ribs. He is one tall boy already. Lil’ lefty is still breech; I like to think that she simply likes to cuddle near my heart. I am so eager for those cuddles with her on my chest.

Food cravings: Found the holy grail of pregnancy food: raspberry-filled oatmeal cookies. After I posted their praise on Facebook, a very kind friend made me home-made raspberry oatmeal bars! I’ve also craved green beans, yogurt, and peaches these past few weeks.

Genders:  a Boy and a Girl.

Labor Signs/prep: No labor signs yet. I am now further identified as an anomaly because I have passed the most common week for twin birth (week 36). After our visit with Dr. Damron gave me something to prep for, and I finally wrote my birth plan.IMG_5601

My mom and I tackled a unique sewing project: a birth-skirt! I like the idea of feeling less like a patient, more like a champion-of-birth during labor and delivery. Birth skirts can be a little pricey online, so we made our own out of 3x men’s swim-trunks.IMG_5597

With a sports bra or bikini top, I feel a bit more like I’m gearing up for the sporting-event of my life (which is definitely how I’ve been “training” for birth this last month too).IMG_5602

Symptoms: Essential oils have helped my rashes, acne, and congestion. I am still not “super uncomfortable”, despite the sympathy comments I get from perfect strangers. I feel energetic and at peace with the current pregnancy circumstances and birth plan.

Mood: Blessed and at peace, but really ready to meet these babies!!!

Lullaby of the week: Giving up by Ingrid Michaelson (a favorite love song throughout Shane and my relationship.)

Truth I’m dwelling on: God always provides. I was so anxious about what direction to go regarding the birth of these twins. I have been working hard to have a medication-free birth, but that is not an option available to us. In the end, I was faced with a c-section in Buffalo, or a breech extraction birth, for which an epidural is required. From day 1 of pregnancy, I was determined to have as natural a birth as possible. I was confused that God wasn’t making this desire and conviction possible.

I come back to Psalm 46: “there is a river whose streams make glad the city of God, the holy habitation of the Lord Most High. God is the midst of her, she shall not fail…”

When my focus is on praising Jesus, failure is not an option. No matter what type of birth God brings me through, I will be praising Him the whole time. My existence, whether in pregnancy, giving birth, raising babies, writing, or scone-baking, is to make my Lord glad.

Looking forward to: Shane compares our extensive preparation, book reading, and packing to riding a bike: “you can read about how to ride a bike as much as you want, but won’t know what its like until you get on the bike. You have to learn as you go.” I am looking forward to “getting on the bike,” and seeing what God is going to do.

35 36 weekQuestions for the Mamas: As we finish up our last minute registry purchases/baby needs, we are trying to whittle down the list. So mamas,

How crucial are the following:

  • baby monitor (for a 1 level house)
  • high chairs
  • car seat covers?

Answer by commenting below!

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