At some point late each winter I look outside and think that I should be starting my seedlings. Sometimes I do, but more often I put it off for a bit. Why plant seeds when I have nowhere to grow them? It’s hard to hope for life when the soil looks icy and barren. And yet I invariably regret it when the ground comes back to life in the spring and I don’t have anything prepared to grow in it.
Isn’t this part of the journey of pregnancy? Dealing with morning sickness and other discomforts, doubts on our ability to be a good parent, questions about the future, and changes to our relationship with our partner--all of this before we see signs of life and hope. Somewhere deep inside we may know that something good is coming, something beautiful and full of life, but we may not be able to make the connection yet between that reality and the one we see immediately in front of us.
I grow most of my garden plants from seed. I could buy bedding plants, but watching the little green heads spring out of the soil and break free from their seed casings continues to fill me with joy and wonder over the way life begins. Somehow the dried out little seed and the black earth combine with life-giving water to create the start of something that will soon be lush, fruitful, and able to nourish my family.
So here at the PRC, we work with women and their partners to sort through the questions and uncertainties one by one. If they choose parenthood then we educate them to become the best parents they can be. We walk with them, encourage them through hard stuff and provide what we can to help. And all the while, we try to help turn their gaze to the wonder of the promise of life springing up unseen inside of them. We remind them that winter will surely come to an end and the tiny life they are nourishing now will soon grow into something that becomes a beautiful gift and a source of joy.