I am up to my eyeballs in babies. Suddenly, every girlfriend I have is planning for a baby or waddling around in adorable maternity clothes or staring wide-eyed at a precious newborn who reduces them to babbling murmurs and speech impediments I'd never noticed before. ("Who's my pwecious wittle wonderful? Are you my pwecious wittle wonderful?") Even my most baby-resistant friend has found herself unexpectedly expecting . . . and loving it. I'm enjoying the burst of babies, because I will get to hold plenty of cute, squirmy things and then bolt when the tantrums begin.
Even so, I feel like these girls are lapping me. It was one thing when they were all getting married, but now they're buying houses and starting families, too. I, on the other hand, make one turkey sandwich for dinner and offer my sweet "goodnights" to a terrified little mouse I've caged and claimed as family. Obviously, life is not a race. But I sometimes look at these amazing wives and mothers and I wonder if I've failed.
This is why I pray. I think each phase of our lives comes with a new reason to pray, and here, in my twenties—in this time of constant doubt and uncertainty—I know what my reason is. I pray because I connect with myself in God. Prayer reminds me to hold still, to center, to peer down inside myself for once and see who I am, rather than frantically spinning my head around to see who everyone else is . . . using others as a gauge for who I should be.
It is in prayer that God lays her hands over mine, smiles the steady, understanding smile of a fifty-something, and reminds me that I am who I must be, that I am where I should be, and that the only thing that matters is that the path I take is my own.
The fact is, I don't want to be a mother now. I'm not really ready to be anyone's wife. I only want the life I have. And I only want to be the steady, self-assured woman I am when God lays her hands on me.
Because You Are Right where I am is where I should be.
In the center of Your will,
the perfect place to rest and dream,
When I need to go forth You will tell me.
Your timing flawless, I will respond.
The path is not marked but I don't worry,
soon Your way will be known.
There's no explanation or evidence of Your existence.
I know simply because You are as constant as the sun.
All the glory goes to You.
Sustaining me, shaping me, guarding me.
You, who gives me direction.
Blessed are we who know You.
May our many voices be pleasing to You.
May the many become all and the all become one.
- Heidi Haller