• Marina Magdalena

You are built for this!

I am mum to two children both of whom I gave birth to in Spain. I remember being 2 weeks past my due date, which if I’m honest, as a new mum, age 26, in a foreign country, was pretty terrifying and I had gone to the hospital with my husband Dominic for a last minute scan to see what was going on... > >

In Spain it was the ”festival of the kings”, the day they celebrate the kings giving presents to Jesus, so the hospital was very quiet and the staff were relaxed and informal. I don’t think anyone had really planned on doing too much work that day, but since I had convinced myself that being 2 weeks overdue meant there was a possibility my baby would actually never come out, I insisted on being given a scan.

So I hopped on the bed and the sonographer was doing her thing, when all of a sudden I heard her say “Madre Mia! Que Grande! Que Grande, Que Grande, oi oi oi!!!”

Now for those of you who don’t speak Spanish she basically said, “oh my days, this baby is huge! Huge I tell you, really, really huge!” She was a little less dramatic, but not really, not when this huge baby is one you are about to deliver. So, anyway, she kept moving the camera over me and muttering away to herself, "This baby is really big, you know, I don’t know how you gonna deliver her, I mean really!"

Now the thing to know about Spanish ladies is that they are more petite than us British girls, and so whilst their babies were coming out around 5 or 6 lbs I was managing to cook up a hefty 9lber - and it was really troubling the medical staff who would soon be looking after me.

All of a sudden the sight of my huge tummy, the stressed out sonographer, the sudden (and very intrusive) arrival of three men dressed as middle eastern kings offering me bowls of sweets, all became too much and I started to stress out. I looked at my husband and said in a panicky voice, “its not happening is it, the babies never coming out, I am actually always going to be pregnant aren’t I !?”

At this point the lady realised I was losing it and so, once she had sent the three kings packing, she got close to me, held my hand in hers, and then using her other hand to slap my thighs she said,

“Don't you worry, you built for this…no really, look, you have very big hips, you may have very big baby, but you also have very big hips, so you know…you gonna be fine, you built for this!”

Oh how my husband laughed! And I didn’t know whether to laugh, cry, breath a sigh of relief or jump down and do 50 squats! And yet, in all of that chaos and drama and concern - I felt deep down in my soul that Jesus had just whispered me the most wonderful promise,

“Marina, you are built for this.”

The phrase went through my head as I laboured and has stayed with me ever since. Because sometimes parenting is really hard. Sometimes you have days, weeks even, where you feel like you have reached your end, that the very best you have to offer is just not enough.

Whether its the needs of a newborn or an older child who is struggling, as parents we can so often find ourselves feeling like we are carrying more than we feel we can handle.

And boy is it hard!

You can find yourself searching google, reading books, asking everyone's opinion, convincing yourself that someone else would do a better job of raising your child. But the truth is, the child you are raising, however they came to you, whether you are their natural parent or not, the child you are raising is not with you by accident. They will go through hard times, they will struggle and at times completely confuse us, but you were built for this.

God chose you, made you and raised you to be the parent to your child. And the great thing is, when you do find you have reached your end, you have tried and tried and there is nothing else left in you - that’s when we can dip into our reserves, these beautiful pools of Gods grace, because whilst God calls us to parent, he doesn’t ask us to do it alone. So if you are having one of those seasons where you feel like your best just isn’t enough, I want to encourage you, friend;

YOU are BUILT for THIS !

by Marina Magdalena. x

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