Holding on to Jesus during my postpartum recovery

The moment I gave birth, my postpartum recovery began. Little did I know that postpartum, while it is considered on paper to be 6-8 months, truthfully, it can be longer than that. Perhaps no one talks about it because they don’t want to scare new moms or deter them from having children, it’s understandable, but I believe that’s a complete disservice. There should be more counseling and preparation for future moms on what to expect. Not to cause fear or doubt, but to give every woman a chance to succeed and be equipped if her recovery is more complicated than most.

The first three-four months of recovery are grueling, you’re indeed an athlete in recovery. Your entire body has undergone trauma and hormones are raging, you’re hardly in control of your body and thoughts. You’re bleeding for nearly 40 days and stitches are healing, your pelvic bones ache, and your baby is crying. This is to put it at a minimum, there is more, sometimes you’ll get the occasional panic attack, hallucinations, and the constant nightmares because of the lack of sleep. After all, baby does need to feed every 2-3 hours at night. No matter how you look at it, it’s not pretty and it’s excruciatingly painful. If you’re like me and your recovery is still in the process a year later, you’re not alone. I’ve dealt with severe pelvic pain for the past year and still waiting for the Lord to heal me. My ligaments and muscles went under severe trauma, I’d like to think it was due to the fact that I had an almost 9 pound baby. But this is just a supposition, giving birth vaginally probably also had something to do with it. At any rate, as an avid runner and missionary, this pelvic pain has been pretty disastrous for me and disappointing to say the least. I thought I would be up and running in 6 months or back in the streets sharing the gospel. But here I am, still walking very slowly and experiencing chronic pain. I guess when the Lord says to “be still” He really means it. Sometimes life forces you to stop everything you’re doing and be alone with God. These are the moments when God shows you that He is in control of your days and not you. When everything is stripped away, it’s just you and Him, like Jonah inside the belly of the whale. So many things come out, but the Lord prunes you and shows you His ways. He shows you what matters in life and what doesn’t. And in the end, you realize that you can indeed do all things through Christ, because he strengthens you. You learn to be content with a lot and with little. You learn that your joy doesn’t come from being 100 percent all the time, with no troubles, perfect healthy, but instead you learn that the Lord’s grace is sufficient and He indeed is enough. I know i’ll never be the same, my character has indeed been chiseled to be conformed to the image of God.

Through the tears, the emotional toll, my husband enduring this painful process with me, it has humbled me more than ever and stirred in me tremendous compassion for the disabled and sick. For me, knowing and hoping this is just temporal gives me relief, but what about those who don’t have that same hope? What do you tell them? How do you comfort someone with a lifelong chronic disease? All of these questions, I’ve had to ponder and wrestle with the Lord. And the Lord has showed me that He doesn’t forsake His children, He sees us through it, and He sustains us with His presence and His word.

So you’re probably wondering, does it get better, is my situation getting better? Yes, it is getting better. The hope is to be fully recovered and I believe I will be one day. The healing has been slow and I do believe that’s the way God wants it to be, so that I can glorify Him all the way through. So that I can appreciate the healing, one day at a time. Just like the blind man who wasn’t healed immediately, but instead saw people as trees and then was fully healed. That’s me right now. I see blurry trees and blurry people, but I know Jesus is right in front of me, “Do you see anything?” (Mark 8:23)

Throughout this journey, I’ve had to rely on Jesus more than I ever had in my entire existence. Which is not a bad thing, it’s a great thing. When I get to heaven, I know we’re going to talk about it, look back and smile. This trial has put me through the fire and it has made me stronger, and more confident in Jesus. I’ve had to learn how to be patient and wait for my healing. I’ve had to learn how to navigate life with constant pain, limited activities, and still maintain joy, while raising my child and being a wife. I can honestly say, I would not be able to do it without the Lord. So this is my post for today, sharing my journey, my struggles as I wait for the Lord to heal me completely. I leave you with this verse, so that you remember that waiting is actively exercising your faith. Waiting is extremely powerful and it will only strengthen your faith in the Lord more and more. And when He answers you, the joy will be that much sweeter.

Isaiah 40:31 says,

“But those who wait on the Lord
Shall renew their strength;
They shall mount up with wings like eagles,
They shall run and not be weary,
They shall walk and not faint.”

May this word serve to help you through your pain and struggle. Remember that the Lord has not forsaken you and He’s right there with you. He understands your pain, and He’s there to sustain you and heal you. Trust in Him and do not lean on your own understanding,; in all your ways submit to Him, and He will make your paths straight. Just patiently wait for those words, “Daughter, your faith has healed you. Go in peace.” (Luke 8:48)

God bless you and stay strong mama, keep your eyes set on the Lord and hold on to Him.

Sincerely,

Jennifer Flores

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