A Father’s Help
“I have cried out to You from Your holy presence. You send me a Father’s help.” – Psalm 3:4
This is a very fresh and vulnerable post. I am not scared to share it for what people might think of me because in this short time I’ve learnt one big thing – I am not alone in my feelings. And if this can help someone else feel the same way, then it’s done the job. You’re not alone. People have been there. And you’re also not alone – He is with you.
This time three weeks ago I was lying in a hospital bed cuddling our brand new baby girl. All of a sudden our world got very loud yet very still. I am sure many new moms and dads will understand this feeling. A baby makes a small world feel very big and overwhelming – crazy for a 3.5kg little being to do.
Fast forward to day four as we brought our girl home. We put her down in her cot and both just bent over the wooden frame in awe and my eyes welled up as we left the hustle and bustle of the hospital for our very quiet abode. That day felt surreal in all the newness and peace around us. I remember just holding Lee and crying as I was overcome with all the emotion I couldn’t display for the past three days. Letting it all out on him and marking that moment as a moment that I put a lot more than some wet tears on his shoulders – I put my whole world there and I didn’t know how to move it.
The two weeks that would follow wrecked me. I have never been so emotional and broken and confused in my whole life. I know I have had some serious moments that could feel close to what I experienced then but nothing could have prepared my heart and mind for what I had to go through in these long two weeks. I called on Lee at any moment to do most anything for me and for our baby. After having gone through a C-section I couldn’t physically do much but I could still mother my girl and sadly it didn’t seem to come as naturally as it felt it did while I was in hospital. All of a sudden, I felt lost and very unsure of how to be and I ‘needed’ Lee. I needed him to swaddle her. I needed him to put her to sleep. I needed him to bath her. I needed him to do anything short of feeding her and even in that one thing only I could do, I felt lost and like I needed someone else.
I cried almost every day and most of the times Lee and I would chat I just cried to him about how hard I was finding it to be a mom and how he was so much better at all of this than I was. I lay into every lie I could ever have believed and I soaked myself in doubt. I was doing the opposite of what I knew I should have been doing but I didn’t know how to get out. Lee was worried about me and rightfully so. How could he leave the house every day knowing that when that door shut, I would break down and our little one would cry and we’d be so confused? I felt so ugly knowing that I made him feel so hurt and confused – I didn’t want him to take my issues but we’re a unit and so it would be unless I changed something.
One day after taking our little girl for her weigh-in at the clinic, we drove back and I did the “wrong” thing. As Taylor started crying in her car seat, I took her out and held her because that would be the only way we’d get home sane. And in that moment I just felt God say to me, “just hold her”. As soon as we got home I went to the bed and lay down with her and just held her. I let her littleness tear through me and make me a mom. I let that moment make a way for me to feel like I could do this. I just held her. And God revealed so much more about the love of a Father to me as He showed me that even when we are like babies and we have no concept of the world and what to do and air is even foreign for our skin, He will just hold us. And in His holding us, He reminds us of who He is – our Father – capable, loving, secure, strong yet gentle. He is everything we need. And He was everything I needed. I lost sight of that on day four when I let Lee become the father to our daughter before I let God become the Father. And all of you who just judged that sentence – think about it again. Think about this fatherless generation we live in. Think about how they will ever learn to be good fathers one day if they don’t meet the Father and glean what it looks like from Him. This was something I had told myself time and time again when we were still pregnant, “she is His before she is ours.” I lost sight of this in the craziness of birth and taking in all my new responsibilites. I needed to go back to that revelation and have made it my aim to daily sacrifice her to Him before I take on my duty as her earthly mother.
So the past week hasn’t gotten easier, it just changed as I changed my viewpoint and looked to God for strength and for a Father’s help. I have been immersing myself in some of the Psalms and have found that David uses this term a lot too and it has given me a lot more hope as I know that there is a Father who can help me when I can’t help myself and when I am lost and confused, He is constant and saves me. So to any moms out there, doing this “alone” – I pray that you find a Father’s help in God. I pray that you feel covered in His glory and that you find a renewed courage in His strength. I have a lot to learn and this is not me saying I now have mommying down in week three – heck no! I know I am going to be unravelled time and time again as this little girl pulls away at the threads of my pride, selfishness and independence. I know I am going to learn a lot about myself in the midst of learning about her.
But I never want to forget who to lay my burdens on – it’s not my amazing husband who deserves that pressure. It’s God who asks for it (“Come to me, all who are weary and burdened and I will give you rest” – Matt 11:28). It’s God who can use it (“My strength is made perfect in weakness” – 2 For 12:9). It’s God who can be the best Father. So hold them, and let Him hold you and be the Father for both.