Laboring

I’m standing in the kitchen, holding my breath without realizing.  My daughter is in the other room sobbing over her math troubles.  It’s painful to watch so I try not to.  I’ve been struggling to help her “get it” for some time now and my husband has intervened.  She is very much like him, even when it comes to learning.  He knows how to help her “get it,” but I still doubt.  What if it doesn’t work?  What if her tears are exasperation?  What if it makes things worse?”  As if he could read my mind, which was probably plastered on my face, he said, “We’re doing the right thing.”  I was still in pain, but felt some tension release. . . Those words were just what I needed to hear.
 
It felt like hours watching her struggle to make knowledge her own, but when it was all over, she had a happy face shining through her puffy eyes.  The pain was an instant, and strangely almost fond, memory.
 
I was grateful and reminded.  I remembered the day she was born.  Boy was it a long day!  My husband was my faithful coach, following my every instruction as to where my back hurt and how hard or soft to massage the pain.  It was easy to let him partner with and coach me in the hours leading up to actual child rearing.
 
Back here in my kitchen, the western hemisphere and 9 years later, I realized that childbirth is only a small part of the labor of raising a child.  The contractions of the womb subside.  The contractions of the heart carry on.  I also realized that I had forgotten my coach through a lot of the contractions.  Math was a big one.
 
I’ve been amazed the past few weeks since remembering I have a partner and coach right next to me.  My Our daughter has probably made a 180 degree turn in everything academic and beyond.  And I’m sure she grew and inch from holding her head higher.  Thanks to my coach . . . and God for helping me trust.  We’re breathing easier again for now.  I’ll be keeping his hand close by for when the next one comes.