Thursday, September 23, 2010
Transition, though -- transition is just pure pain and terror, and I suspect there are few women who have any room for mixed emotions when they enter this phase: they're way too busy either wishing they'd never gotten pregnant or demanding that it be over. The intensity of transition is horrendously difficult, you have NO control over what's happening, and none of the pain of contractions can prepare you for what's to come: even if we've been through it before, we really have NO CLUE how life will change on the other side. We're birthing new life, after all: it's just never going to be like the old life again.
So why, I wonder, do we assume that any of the other transitions in life will go smoothly? The fact is, we are almost perfectly designed to resist change, and when it's in the wind we react as if it were a cold snap, pulling into ourselves, clutching our bellies, shivering, and praying it will go away. It's normal, it's natural, and it's damned unpleasant, and... well, there's really nothing we can do about it.
Hmm. Does it help to know that? I was thinking about it this morning, on my walk -- after spending most of my evening comforting first one tearful daughter and then the other. Because they're in transition -- the hard labor that comes with moving into adulthood -- and it hurts, and it's terrifying, and they can't run away, they just have to keep letting it move through them. And I can't go through it for them -- I can only hold them and reassure them, even though none of us has a clue what awaits on the other side. I suspect, of course, that when the wind dies down there will be lots to celebrate and enjoy. But that's later: first we have to deal with now.
Posted by Diane Walker at 7:52 AM