Sunday, December 20, 2009

From Triathlons to Trimesters

It is time for a different kind of transition--a life transition--one that will last for nine months:  Pregnanacy!  My husband and I are expecting our first child on or around July 4, 2010.  And in the spirit of tri, here are three thoughts regarding my first trimester (which, thankfully, ends on December 26!)

First is change.  Life as I know it will never be the same.  Some of the changes are bitter while most are sweet.  Since becoming pregnant, it's sort of like I've been given a new pair of glasses that enables me to notice things I've never really noticed before, things like how unique each person in this world truly is, or the miracle of a baby, or how seemingly significant things in my life really aren't as important as they once were.  And all this after just eleven weeks of being pregnant!

Second is humility.  This one actually makes me laugh at myself.  Before I even knew I was pregnant, I did exhaustive research on the effects of exercise during pregnanacy; I wanted to make certain I didn't hurt my chances of getting pregnant, or harm the developing baby once I did if I were to exercise too much.  I laugh at this now because once "morning" sickness (such a misnomer!) set in, the last thing I wanted to do was exercise.  I could barely even walk a mile without losing my breath!  Considering the amount of training I've been doing, this was quite humbling indeed.  It was a rather difficult adjustment, and I had to keep reminding myself that there was a reason for it and it would likely pass after the first trimester.  I just need to do the best I can in the circumstance I find myself in.  Plus, pregnancy is in and of itself similar to high-altitude training:  There's less oxygen to work with, and it takes time for the body to adjust.  But once my body does adjust, my lungs will be more efficient than they've ever been before :)  Also, even though much of what I do affects the developing baby, it's humbling to realize that most of the growth and development is beyond my control.  There is only so much I can do; the rest is in God's hands.

And third is fear--not the kind that frightens (though there is some of that, too), but rather the kind that leaves one in awe, blows one's mind, or take's one's breath away.  I am in awe of what's happening inside of my body, at the baby being formed.  In Psalm 139, David writes, "You [the Lord] created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother's womb.  I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well."  As I write, the fetus inside me is likely developing a unique set of fingerprints, unlike anyone else's in the world!  The things that appear ordinary--people, snow, sunsets, etc.--become extraordinary when we open our eyes to see just how unique God creates each person, snowflake, and sunset.  No matter how many there are, there is never a duplicate--even identical twins have different fingerprints (and no, we aren't having twins!)  Of the billions and billions of people from the beginning of time, we are each "fearfully and wonderfully made."  It blows my mind.