Genesis 3:16 - To the woman he said, “I will make your pains in childbearing very severe; with painful labor you will give birth to children. Your desire will be for your husband, and he will rule over you.”
They say that the pain in labor is forgotten the moment after the baby is born, because love fills your whole being.
But what about the woman who also battles chronic pain? This pain is not just for a moment. It’s here to stay.
And as your baby grows you pick him up throughout the day to care for his needs, but all the while pain grips you as you do so.
They grow from baby to toddler and the child wanders around oblivious to the tears his mother sheds of joy to have a child, but also tears of pain. You begin to wonder, as the child grows, how you will keep up while raising him.
Time marches on and soon that toddler is walking and getting into all kinds of mischief. But you don’t mind, because you aren’t able to care for him and keep up with household chores even though you feel guilty because you can’t.
Before you know it, your child is ready to start kindergarten. It can be hard to watch your child walk into school with enthusiasm, but now you have a chance to rest while he is gone.
Things begin to change in elementary and middle school. Your child loves school and wants to be involved in sports or music. There are games to watch, and concerts to hear, but unlike most parents, you aren’t able to attend all of these important events. And there is also something else – your child notices. He notices your absence from events. He also begins to resent you as he is limited to after school activities, because you have no strength to drive your child to them.
In high school, as it happens in even ordinary cases, your child becomes ashamed of you. Oh, they don’t say it out loud, but you know it’s there as your child no longer cares if you attend events and in fact asks you not to bother to be there.
Your heart hurts
And bleeds with shame.
How do you cope with chronic pain and raising your child? What are some things that can help you? Scarymommy.com provides some ideas in their article, “6 Things to Know When You’re Parenting Through Chronic Pain.” Their ideas include understanding that you’re not alone and you don’t have to parent the same way other parents do.
The Bible verse above talks about having pain in childbirth. You’re chronic pain in a similar way will be terrible, but raising a child has so many beautiful memories that you can choose to try. Don’t feel limited and think you can’t enjoy your life as you raise your child because you can. There is going to be pain no matter how you wish there wasn’t, but just as the article above writes about don’t give up.
Karen Dalske is a freelance writer, public speaker, is active in her church and writes her blogs out of her own experiences of pain, illness and loss.