My littlest love is almost two months old. A few weeks ago when these photos were taken (by Renata Terra), I wrote him this letter.
My Sweet Angel Wyler,
You haven't had the best from me yet. After a month of doctor appointments, lactation consultations, cranial sacral work, chiropractic adjustments, and tongue release therapy for you, of blood-stained bras, pumping, clogged milk ducts, fevers and the onset of a breast infection for me, we tucked away our hope for a beautiful nursing relationship. I've unplugged the pump, put away my nursing pillow and stuffed cabbage leaves into my shirt. Yesterday I ate Advil and Sudafed and antibiotics for breakfast. You drank formula.
From our traumatic labor experience until now, there have been prayers that weren't granted and dreams unfulfilled. I've been confused and I've been scared...doubting God's goodness even while it surrounds me…untrusting all that I know to be true of His provision and love. He has furnished our home with blessing after blessing and yet I am tangled inside a curtain of fear and fleshy pain. So I let it bind me…swaddled like a baby within a blanket of weakness, expending all I have just to release my arms so I can hold you for a while. There are tears dripping from my cheeks to yours as you lie resting in my arms, as you sleep with your head on my swollen, throbbing chest. But you deserve a mother who says thank you more than she asks why.
Thank you Lord, for two healthy, happy boys and the joy they bring to my soul.
Thank you that there is still a way to feed my baby after breastfeeding hasn’t worked out long-term.
Thank you for increasing my empathy for those who live in chronic physical pain.
Thank you for strengthening my desire to adopt a child one day.
Thank you that my parents and in-laws are here to watch their grandbabies grow.
Thank you for friends who listen and understand.
Thank you for a comfortable home and bed to rest in.
Thank you for a husband who rubs my hands to help me fall asleep.
Thank you for sustaining me through this trial.
Thank you for your discipline and forgiveness and promise.
Thank you for the healing work you will do in my body, in your time, according to your will.
Just one month after writing this, I am in awe of how fast the seasons change…how faithful God is. I am healed from infection and freed from the burdens of pumping and painful breastfeeding, finally able to give my boys the fully present mama they need. THREE generous women I am so honored to call my friends have donated their milk, allowing us to continue to give our baby human milk during the first nine weeks of his life and beyond. Both labor and nursing didn't go as planned and yet I am so grateful for the ways these unmet desires have forced me to examine my heart-motives, release pride and depend on the village around us. There is nothing more to say but hallelujah and amen.
'Now I will walk humbly throughout my years
because of this anguish I have felt.
Lord, your discipline is good,
for it leads to life and health.
You restore my health
and allow me to live!
Yes, this anguish was good for me,
for you have rescued me from death
and forgiven all my sins.' Isaiah 38 15-17