“Are you her grandma?” The thrift store employee asked me after admiring Elaina.
I picked up my dropped jaw from the floor and stammered out that actually I was her mom.
I suddenly felt very old but then laughed when I remembered that just a few days before, someone thought I was a 25 year old college student.
You can feel free to laugh if you actually are a Senior, but sometimes I do feel like I have lived a lot of years at 35 and I have gained some wrinkles.
Now that Elaina is 1, a lot of people are asking if there will be a baby #2. The answer is “yes, we hope so one day”. In tired moments though I sometimes think about my age and the risks past 35 and my energy level…
All of this is a segue way into mob (mamas of the bible) #2- Sarah.
If I think 35 is old try 90! Albeit I think people aged a lot better back then so maybe 90 was the new 70? 60? But still obviously past menopause.
When God broke the news to Abraham he responded as anyone would:
“Abraham fell facedown; he laughed and said to himself, “Will a son be born to a man a hundred years old? Will Sarah bear a child at the age of ninety?””
Genesis 17:17 NIV
Sarah’s response was similar:
“So Sarah laughed to herself as she thought, “After I am worn out and my lord is old, will I now have this pleasure?” (18:12)
Nine months later Sarah was laughing again, this time with joy as she held little Isaac on her knee.
I know some friends who rejoice in having a child after struggling with infertility. I can’t even imagine the shock and rejoicing as Sarah’s belly began to swell.
I enjoy this story because it shows me that doubt does not always cancel miracles. Sarah laughed, Abraham laughed. They did not have the faith of Mary who responded with immediate acceptance. They were more like me. And God chose to bless them anyway.
I never technically struggled with infertility but there were warning signs of hormone imbalances before we started trying and I had a lot of anxiety about that and whether I should take treatment or not. If someone had told me that Elaina would be made on the first go I would have laughed and say “no, it will probably take a year at least.” Even my doctor said it would take a while for my body to balance out and be ready after starting progesterone therapy.
Thus my tears of shock and joy with the positive test so soon.
Now similar fears pop up. Will we be able to have baby #2? When? How will Elaina respond etc.. etc… no matter how great the miracle there is always room for fear and doubt.
Sarah, the elderly mama’s story pushes the mute button on those fears because it points to the One who is greater. The one who is not hindered by my weakness.
Sarah’s doubts turned to faith because, well, making a baby takes a certain action that she and her husband had probably left long before.
In his letter to the church, Peter honours Sarah by saying, “lYou are her daughters if you do what is right and do not give way to fear.”
1 Peter 3:6 NIV
Sarah could have stayed in fear and refused to receive the gift that God was offering her. How differently the story would have ended.
I read this verse on a park bench a couple of days ago and felt my loving Lord speak to my heart,
Don’t worry. Don’t be anxious. Receive the gift of Elaina now and more children to come.
And I realized that I will have the strength and energy that I need, in His loving embrace, as each gift comes, and as each challenge arises.
I don’t have to be super mama. I don’t have to be anyone but me, wrinkles and all.