Monday, May 16, 2016

The Birth of Zachariah Lyle - Part 1

It's been almost two months already since God added another little boy to our family. One girl and five boys (six including Noah). As time usually does, it has flown by so quickly. We are back doing school at full force (Almost done! Just hang in there kiddos, and Mama!). It's so nice to have energy and a fairly clear head after the mental and physical drain of pregnancy. Chaos, snuggles, bickering, and uncontrollable giggles abound in this house from the hours of 6:30 am to 8:00 pm.

Sometimes I question God's decision to add one more to this crazy, energetic crew of ours. After all the kiddos are sound asleep and the wee one swaddled on the couch, bassinet or in Daddy's arms, I have gone into the boys' room and sat on the floor, praying for each one (including the girl in the next room). This parenting thing is an overwhelming responsibility. Most of the time I feel completely inadequate to love and discipline each one in the way that individual child needs to be parented. My only help and hope is on my knees. "'My strength is made perfect in weakness.' Therefore most gladly I will boast in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me." - 2 Cor 12:9. As I sit there, my prayer is not so much a simple supplication, rather I'm begging God to change me to be a better wife, mother, daughter of the king, to change Tom to be a better husband, father, son of the king, to fill in and make right all the holes and mistakes we have created in these kids, and to grab hold of the hearts of our children and claim them as His own.

Way back in July when I found out I was pregnant again, I was less than thrilled to say the least. In
fact, I was panicked. I felt like I barely had a handle on the five little souls we were already raising, and I didn't think I could handle one more. For months I mentally reminded myself of God's role in my life: giver of strength, never makes mistakes, totally trustworthy...I believed all these things on paper, but I really didn't want to have to live it out. I fought hard against God and His will. Tom, on the other hand, saw the possible hardship, but trusted (and trusts) God so much that he faithfully kept walking forward and encouraging me to do the same. He's got this amazing faith and hunger for truth that he truly desires to lay all things aside in order to follow Christ. He helps reel me in when I'm getting too emotional; and he challenges me when I am struggling. Sure he's admittedly far from perfect (like all of us), but he is perfect for me. Not many men are like him and I am honored to be his wife.

Okay, enough about my great man and back to the subject at hand.

Even though my two previous births had been at home, I started my prenatal care back with the OB that delivered our first four babies. I truly enjoyed the whole mid-wife experience with Jon and Danner, but because of several reasons that I won't go into here, though one of which is my need to have an empty house in order to relax and give birth - it seemed a little unfair to ask my mom to relocate five children at some random time of day so that I could have peace.

Once I entered into the third trimester and really had to face the reality of birthing in a hospital again, I couldn't imagine being back in that environment. I had had great birth experiences with Livvy, Sammy and Ben, no real problems to speak of, but I knew the hospital could not accommodate my desires and expectations for labor and birth. So, around 34 weeks pregnant, I switched my care over to a birthing center. It's the best of both worlds - care and delivery provided by trained midwives and nurses in a calm and peaceful environment where I could labor and birth in whatever manner felt best for me.

I look happy in this picture because I was laboring at the birth center, thinking
that I was going to deliver a baby soon. Turns out labor fizzled about 20 mins
after this picture and we were sent home. I was so bummed!!

Baby's due date was March 12th, my mom's birthday. I really thought it would be perfect to give birth then. Despite all my best efforts of walking, getting acupuncture, and having my membranes stripped multiple times, March 12th came and went. Not only did that Saturday come and go, but to my dismay a whole other week plus passed. I took castor oil twice and made every effort to go on long walks in our neighborhood, but was only able to get some mild contractions that stalled after a couple of hours. I was so bummed. Actually I was more than bummed. I was angry, grumpy, uncomfortable and it truly felt like I would be pregnant forever.

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