Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Seasons without rubrics

To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven:

A time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up that which is planted;

A time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up;

A time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance;

A time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together; a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing;

A time to get, and a time to lose; a time to keep, and a time to cast away;

A time to rend, and a time to sew; a time to keep silence, and a time to speak;

A time to love, and a time to hate; a time of war, and a time of peace. Ecclesiastes 3:1-8

This scripture calmed and strengthened me when I so desperately wanted to start my family. I knew the Lord could have blessed me with a baby, but he wouldn’t. Something told me that I wasn’t in that season yet. I felt stuck in one season and wishing for another. But then I started praying to gain a testimony of the fact that this is what God wanted for me, and praying to grow and learn in the way Heavenly Father wanted me to during this painful season. And, of course, praying to gain a testimony that the fruitful seasons of joy would follow those of growth and struggle.

I'm not saying that fixed everything, but it did teach me about timing, patience, and Godly parenting. He knows how to succor, and he knows how to teach, and he knows how to give me just the experience that I need.

(As one of my charming side-notes, I’ve really pondered the casting away stones bit, but it still doesn’t make much sense. I like the imagery, though.)

I've been thinking about the new season I've entered. Is it what I expected? Am I doing as well as God wants me to? Is he pleased? Am I growing and learning in the ways I should to be prepared for the next season?

It's not quite the way I imagined it. Some things are harder (i.e. being on duty all day long) and parts are easier (i.e. being in a BYU married ward with rabbit-like reproduction). I want to be the best mom I can be, and it's so hard to do that satisfactorily when no one agrees on just what good parenting looks like. I guess the teacher in me just wants a clear-cut rubric.

This is a season of fruitfulness -- years of waiting finally fulfilled. But it's also a season of planting -- forming habits and having adventures she'll never remember. It's a season of beginnings -- struggling to understand a new life, a new part of myself. But, it almost goes without saying, it's a season of slow goodbyes to my independence.

And I'm loving it. I'm not always sure I'm doing it right, but I'm definitely enjoying it. (especially the naps.)


Amanda said...

You say so eloquently what I struggle to find words for. What a beautiful tribute to struggles--whether related to motherhood or not. It is a challenge to plant seeds that won't be seen for 18 years or more...and yet, you keep planting because you hope that their eventual effect will be felt and appreciated. I am struggling in the process of learning to enjoy the journey--since nothing is clear cut about what's supposed to happen next. (At least not yet...)

BTW--I have an idea about the rocks part, (although you may not be looking for ideas). Usually when I think of casting away stones, I think how a gardener would toss away stones to make more productive ground. On the other hand, stones also make a firm base, (i.e. cornerstone), so if you are looking to build a foundation or strengthen a structure, those stones will serve the purpose of fortification. I guess it depends on where the stones are and what kinds of stones they are as to whether you keep them or not.

Ryan and Chelsea said...

Mickelle, you never cease to amaze me. I love your insights on life and appreciate you sharing them! You have a beautiful baby and are one of the kindest, most caring gals/moms I know! Thanks for letting me rub shoulders with you!

Carina said...

You are amazing! I just have to say, this is the first time I've ever *really* read through your blog, and like I said, you are amazing. I feel so privileged to know you. Granted, I know we haven't really kept in touch much since you got married and I went on my mission, but at least we'll always have good ol' New York, right? =)

I love your thoughts on motherhood. I had no idea that you struggled so long with wanting to be a mother until finally seeing it recently come to fruition. It seems like it was a very spiritual journey for you, and that makes me happy. It's all about trying to find out the Lord's will for you, isn't it? I'm so glad that you're so happy, and Betsy is SUCH an adorable little girl. My very best congratulations go out to you!

We should definitely get together sometime. I can't believe we haven't, and we live in the same...well, I guess we live in the same county, not city anymore... Our move to Orem isn't permanent, per se, as we're still renting, but we'll be here for awhile, I think. Cody's still in school and it's just cheaper, better housing out here. But I work at BYU, and I see Scott occasionally. Kinda cool. Anyway, message me on Facebook or email me or call me or something, and we should play! Love ya!

Anonymous said...

You are so great.
I am a Edward Fan. I think Jacob is young and selfish. I also am not to keen on Bella. I find she is to selfish too. But I sure love Edward.
Come over soon. We would love to see you.

Susie said...

I am such a dork- I've had the link to your blog wrong so I kept thinking you must have stopped doing one!! I finally linked from a comment you made on Jill's- one day I will not be inept! Love the pictures- you're so talented and I know you will an amazing adventure with your life!

Annie and Berkeley said...

She is beautiful and you are an amazing person. I really enjoyed that post and think it can be applied to so many situations in life. Thanks for the insight.

Chelsea said...

i can relate right now to the absolutely loving it, but not really sure your doing it all right. do you think that feeling ever goes away?! i know what you mean by the waiting so long for a baby too!

George and Jill said...

Beautiful post Mickelle! Thanks for your comment on my memory blog :) My favorite memories of you are from all the summer days in Oregon. Garage sales, berry picking, babysitters club videos, chasing a runaway Walter, and a musical performance of disney songs all come to mind. That day in the walking park with those mean boys and being saved by the missionaries is probably the most memorable from those days. I'm glad you were such a big part of my childhood.

Kirk and Cami Hull said...

Is this the Mickelle of Campus Plaza??? I've finally found you! This is roommate Cami of CP! You have a beautiful blog and a beautiful baby!! Congrats on that!! Enjoy every moment. Check out our picasa


Thank you for your testimony. I needed it! I miss having you as my visiting teacher. You're amazing.

Emily said...

Nicely put. :)

Michele Sekaquaptewa said...

Stella, you're just amazing! And don't let the teacher side completely take over; there's not going to be a clear cut rubric. I think as long as you are doing all you can to rely on the Lord and Scott to help you raise that DARLING baby, your parenting will be listed as "Exceeded Excellence" in God's book of judgment. Don't worry about being a good mom and let others help you out.

Chelsea Beauchamp said...

Mickelle, you are great! To answer your question, the new look was so easy I can't even tell you! If you click on the little "CUTEST BLOG" link in the corner of mine and follow to free backgrounds, you'll find out! Love ya friend!