Induction is not an option

As my husband and I travel ever more closer to the birth of Jesus through Scripture readings, hanging ornaments on our Jesse tree and moving the wooden carving of Mary on the back of a donkey, I pause, as a fellow nurse and I talk long together in the mini van last night before parting our ways after card making at another friend’s house. The subject was inductions. We are both nurses who work in the maternity department of our local hospital. She works primarily labor and delivery. I work primarily Level II nursery. Many pregnant women today want to have medication given to them to force the baby out before the baby is fully mature because they are uncomfortable. It is becoming  rare to have a women actually go into labor on her own. Beginning any time after 37 weeks, women are asking their doctors to induce labor so they can get the delivery of the baby “over with”.

In those fuzzy moments just before becoming fully awake, I was thinking about Mary this morning. She was in the last weeks of her pregnancy. She was on a long journey and she was on the back of a donkey traveling in a warm climate over rough terrain. She was probably torn between wanting the baby to be born and fear of going into labor out in the desert away from help. Unlike the women my friend and I care for, Mary had few options. She had to wait till her contractions began on their own. She had to feel those contractions. There was no ambulance to get her to her birthing place fast. Indeed she could not even picture a birthing place. She had no idea where that would be. There was no midwife/obstetrician to guide THE baby into the world, no pain medication to numb the sensations involved with Him being thrust from her body. Mary’s time is growing near.

Each breath is a little harder as the fetus is taking up all the room in her abdominal cavity. She has to stop to relieve herself often as He presses on her bladder. Her pelvis aches as His head presses on her pelvic girdle easing his way down to the way out. She may have felt sharp pains in her sides from the pull on the round ligaments of her swollen uterus trying to steady itself with each hoof beat of the donkey on the uneven path to Bethlehem. Ah, Mary, we who have carried a child in our own bodies have an idea of your discomfort, but we do not really know. Few of us have had to ride on a donkey, in the heat, and camp along the way at 9 months of pregnancy. Few of us have delivered in outbuildings of a strange town without help. Today I pray a prayer of thanks to God for Mary.

God, thank you for Mary. She inspires me with her faith and courage. We have little over a week to go till the Savior is born. Today we pause and give you thanks. Thanks for being willing to come. Thanks for coming in a way we can understand. Thanks for the example of Mary and her obedient, humble heart. Thank you for the story of her natural laboring, of finding the stable cave, of a manger bed and animals all around. Thanks for the story of a faithful husband, a real partner through all of it. Thanks for the shepherds and the star. Thank you for the angels and their joyful display for the shepherds. Thank you that we can be a part of it all through retelling the story year after year. Thank you for keeping your promises.

Amen, Dawn

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8 comments on “Induction is not an option

  1. Thank you!. I agree with you about inductions and then the thoughts about Mary. Also, it’s a good lesson and thought about the “pregnancies” that each of us carry. Often as the “birth” gets closer, it truly does become uncomfortable and seems like the waiting will never end. But the “baby” does come and the promise of birth is fulfilled. Soooo many times while I’m coaching and listening to midvives/doctors help women to birth their babies, the Lord speaks to me about my own waiting and birthings.

  2. Hallelujah, God very God , entrusting His Son to a young maiden and a carpenter… living a quiet life, working with their hands…. trusting God all along the marvelous way; Grace applied stone by stone along their paths…(candle upon candle with your advent candles)
    Immanuel; God with us: it is enough
    Reminds me of Psalm 1 The Lord is my Shepherd, “I SHALL NOT WANT”

    JESUS, is always … enough

    Love your candle photo!

    • Ah, Andrea,

      The birthing of an adoption is far more anxiety-provoking than the one from the natural body. I know both. While my sons took 9 months each, my daughters took 4 months and 13 months. The “not knowing” of adoption is much more anxiety-provoking. Perhaps it gives us a unique appreciation of Mary’s “not knowing”?

      Thank you, Dear One, for reminding me that not all mothers have children of their loins, but of their heart and mind and soul, yes!

      Praying for you and all of yours,
      Dawn

    • Dear Susan,

      Your words convict! None of us is immune. We are called whether living a quiet life working at small tasks or in the limelight fulfilling great missions. God is counting on us to take the next step of faith until…..we look behind us and see His one set of footprints that mark our path. God IS with us: it IS enough.

      Lighting my candles this Advent,
      Dawn

  3. Dear Dawn, . . . your posts these days are so thought provoking and deep and I find myself unable to respond right away. You have entered into the story in such a beautiful way.
    I do want you to know I stop by before hurrying off to physio and other appointments. I had another ultrasound this morning and my blood flow is excellent so that is good news.
    Love, Andrea Dawn

  4. What a lovely, thought-inspiring post. It takes me there, into Mary’s experience, leaves me quiet, reflective, appreciative of Mary, of all she went through, of the great gift God gave through her.
    Thank you.

    • Dear Sylvia,

      Thank you. You are quite responsible, you and Ann Voskamp’s and Nancy Rodden’s book The Jesse Tree, took me deeper into the journey to Bethlehem this year. Today the ornament for the Jesse tree was Bethlehem. The least of the cities of Judah, but the one where Jesus was born and then in a stable! Incredible story, and the more incredible it gets as we go deeper!

      Blessings!
      Dawn

  5. Dear Andrea Dawn,

    I am so happy about the good news on your post-op progress. I pray the pain of the rehabilitation is easing a bit and you are feeling it worth it as you see gains in your mobility. Thank you for your encouraging words here as you pass by on your way to therapy.

    God’s richest blessings,
    Dawn

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