You may remember me if you listen to the Chosen Girl Podcast…I’m Bethany Harrison. I spoke on Season 4, Episode 14 about mental health and my journey in motherhood so far. It’s been a wild but sweet, sweet ride, and I am so thankful Sarah asked me to contribute to the blog. Writing is my sweet spot and I am so happy to be on this platform with you!
If you listened to the podcast, you know that my journey to motherhood has been anything but easy. This last pregnancy was by far the hardest. I suffered a placenta percreta and endured a massive surgery followed by time spent in ICU on a ventilator. I didn’t meet my baby for a week following delivery and we both struggled through a long recovery. With a predisposition for anxiety, I feared that mentally, this whole ordeal would take me out. But instead, I have found myself full of joy in the months following. Weird huh?
I don’t mean this in a “Sunday School” way. In fact, I never really held onto the joy verses in the Bible much. In the past, the verses about joy sounded good in theory but never seemed to hold much weight when my circumstances were anything but joyful. But life since my surgery has been different.
The night that I delivered, I lost 26 units of blood. A massive transfusion is 10 units. I’ll let you look it up and do the math, but statistically speaking, I shouldn’t be alive to type this right now. My worst fear came true. And I lived to tell about it. It’s a weird place to be, and a lot to process, but boy do I have a lot of hope for the future.
With all that has happened to me in the last 6 years, I know what its like to struggle with anxiety. I know what its like to live in paralyzing fear. I know what its like to know I should trust God, but not really believe He’ll come through. The percreta was by far the most challenging and scary set of circumstances I have ever faced. I was overcome with fear and grief. But facing death-and maybe even being in the process of dying-showed me what a sweet, sweet gift life is…..and the truth is, we don’t have to be afraid of what’s ahead. I can tell you that honestly, because, well, I’ve been there. I’ve been in the worst possible set of circumstances, dying, on my way to eternity, and by the grace of Jesus, I’m here instead.
So how do you obtain this weird joy? Well, the great thing is, I don’t think you have to physically barely survive to find it. But, unfortunately I can’t give you a checklist or set of action steps either. This weird joy is organic. It grows in the secret places of your heart. It will take root and grow wild and permeate every aspect of your life. You simply have to invite Jesus in, and get to know his heart, to activate the growth.
About the Author
Bethany Harrison is a wife, mama, writer and show-tune enthusiast. She lives in the Nashville area with her sweet husband, Jon; twin boys, Jack and Wade; and miracle baby, Banks. Inspired to write after suffering a miscarriage, Bethany started her blog “Surviving Till Sunday” to outwardly process grief and preserve the life of her first baby. The blog has since evolved to encompass all sorts of topics, but above all seeks to offer a place of hope for women in every phase of motherhood. Bethany is a percreta survivor, women’s health advocate, and friend of Jesus. She enjoys long walks down every aisle at Target and can always be found with a Dr. Pepper in hand. She’s is still planning to make her Broadway debut.