Remember how I said the Catholic Church's teaching on birth control was one of the hardest for me? Sure I know all about NFP and I have no doubt that it would work very well, if one had a chance to learn it. I have The Art of Natural Family Planning sitting here waiting for me to learn the basics.
Unfortunately, I had barely gotten past the flipping through it stage when the natural child spacing effects of breastfeeding wore off and I started phase of vicious 15 day cycles. I hadn't even figured out how to track things when they were relatively normal.
I can't say I was shocked when the pregnancy test came back. I know how these things happen, after all. I will admit that I wasn't particularly enthusiastic about it though. After our conversion, I was pretty sure a fifth child would be in my future, but this certainly wasn't my choice for timing.
It's been difficult. A few weeks ago I had to go borrow a bunch of maternity clothes from a friend since mine were still buried in boxes. I haven't been able to help with a lot of the cleaning, painting and other things related to getting the new house ready. I'm already now flexible enough in the middle to do some of the things I want to do and because of the baby, I insisted we all move back to our friend's house yesterday for a couple nights because the carpenters poured a finish on our kitchen counters and I didn't want to be in the fumes.
By now, of course, the fact that the baby is hanging out in there is becoming more real to me and I am excited (and plumper around the midsection). As I learn to follow the Church's teachings with both my mind and my body, I am beginning to understand the call to be open to new life and welcome another of God's children into my family. It's not an easy vocation to follow, and I, who still like peace and quiet and sometimes can't handle a simple spill or pair of poopie underwear, am far from sainthood. Yet without the struggle and the trials, being called to do things I'd rather not, how would I ever get there?