“Aren’t you excited to take your new baby home today?” said the nurse. I managed a pathetic smile and lied, “Yes.”
We pulled up to our living space: a 39 foot fifth wheel camper parked on my in-laws’ property. And I burst into tears.
Bringing my brand new second baby into a camper was the hardest, most humiliating thing I’ve ever had to do. Harder and more humiliating for my husband, I’m sure.
But this is the season we’re in. My husband chased a dream and started a small business just one year ago and like so many small businesses out there, has yet to turn a profit.
So we’re waiting: striving to be thankful and content in a less-than-desirable living space that costs us next to nothing while we’re making next to nothing. It’s cramped and gets cluttered easily and our baby sleeps in the same room as we do–which is also our living room, kitchen and dining room–but it’s a place to live and I know that not everybody has even that.
We’re in a season of sacrifice, hoping to get to the next season soon, but learning what it means to wait well. And I realize that I’m not the only one in a waiting season. I see you there. I know that while I’m waiting on a home with proper plumbing, you’re maybe waiting for a positive pregnancy test or a call back for that job you desperately need or reconciliation with that family member who really hurt you. Or maybe you’re like me and wherever you’re living is just not where you want to be living.
It’s really easy to look at what others have and just ache. I see my friends’ nurseries, so adorable and thoughtfully decorated, and it just kills me. I’ve wanted that for both of my babies. When we had our first baby, we lived in a studio apartment as we finished college so our baby had a “corner” to himself. Now, our second baby has even less than that. I’ve always wanted the cute nursery with the pastel colors and the glider, but I can’t let that wanting get in the way of my mothering.
Because if you’re living in a “waiting season,” then you’re really not living at all. Life won’t start when you finally move into that house or achieve that goal or have that baby or earn that income. Life is right now. And you’re missing it if you’re waiting for the next season.
But I’ll bet you can find purpose in your season of sacrifice, just like I have. I’ve learned to be minimalistic and creative with how I fit four people and so much life into roughly 400 square feet. I’ve learned humility, patience, and contentment. I’ve learned that you can’t possibly be bitter about something and thankful for it at the same time. I’ve learned to encourage my husband better because he needs it if he’s going to make it through tomorrow. I’ve learned that I still wouldn’t trade my babies or put off their existence for anything–not the house of my dreams, not a flourishing small business–nothing. We’re living through this season together, and I know we’ll be a stronger family for it.
I’m excited to share more about what I’ve learned in blogposts to come.
Can you relate? What is it for you, what’s the struggle of your season? I’d love to hear.