The other day I was chatting on the phone with my mom about all this pregnancy hoopla and she, understandably, was not too thrilled about the prospect of her own baby being away from her babies followed by the not-born-yet baby potentially getting off to a rough start at the end of the whole thing. I mean, the poo-ness of all this started when? At 9 weeks or something? So crazy scariness for over ten weeks already leading up to more scariness for maybe even MORE than then more additional weeks. It just seems so sucky and....unfair.
"You're such a good mama and a good person and this kind of stuff just...."
My poor mom. It must really, really suck to be thousands of miles away from your child, especially when they're going through something like this. But I couldn't let her finish that thought. It's easy to wonder why bad things happen to good people, you know? As if bad things are nothing but a punishment for bad deeds. But I dumped that philosophy the day I said yes to the Church, and I'm still clinging to that yes real hard.
The other day it hit me. Is anyone friends with any "bad" people? With the kind of people they would label "bad"? If someone is a friend of yours, I'm willing to bet they're pretty good- that's why you're friends with them! So when you hear about bad stuff happening, it's probably always going to be happening to a good person. You don't hang out with jerks, after all. But I can promise you that bad things are happening to bad people, too. You know why? Because bad things happen to everybody. This is a fallen world. It's full of struggles and challenges and disappointment. None of us is immune.
What I am striving to see in this badness, instead of a punishment for some wrongdoing as I may have seen in the past, is opportunity. An opportunity to grow spiritually and emotionally. An opportunity to model for my children the kind of spouses and parents I would hope for them to be. An opportunity to BE the kind of spouse and parent I OUGHT to be. An opportunity to think and rethink my life, to learn to live in the moment, to learn to really trust in God's will for our family. An opportunity for me let go of the idea that control equals happiness. I've got a lot of shortcomings. I needed a big ol' opportunity.
Bad things happen to every kind of person. But even the bad can be used for good if we so choose.