A little over a year ago I was called to be the primary chorister in my LDS ward (the congregation family of the religion I practice). In my religion, we are encouraged to accept all callings on the understanding that they are extended to ward members based on divine inspiration in the part of ward leaders. I have been raised with this belief and expectation - so even though I did NOT want to be the chorister for the children's classes AT ALL, when my Bishop asked if I would take this calling I said "Yes."
It was the most challenging calling I have ever had. And I was an absolute whiner about it. I don't know how many nights I cried to Trevor, or how many Sundays I am ashamed to say I woke up and thought, "I wish I didn't have to go." It was hard - I am not a huge kid person, I am not really musical - and I was horrified at having to sing in front of a room full of people by myself (even if most of them were under the age of 12). But I went, and even though the calling got better, and I felt more comfortable in the chorister shoes - I spent many nights and mornings in prayer, asking this question of my Heavenly Father over and over again, "Why did I get called as the Primary Chorister?"
I never really felt like I knew the answer - and nine months later when the Bishop released me from that calling and reassigned me to teach the 17-18 year old Sunday School class (so much more up my alley) I was incredibly relieved - even though I did come to miss the kids. I said goodbye to the Primary President, an older woman named Darcy, and simply went bopping along on my way.
And then, I had Ivie.
I love being a mom, and I love my baby - but I am going to come right out and say that postpartum depression is a nasty bugger - and I think it effects many women in different ways - some are lucky enough not to get any of it - I am not one of them. Most days are great - but there are bad days (usually about one every two weeks) - and thanks to my amazingly kind, wonderful, understanding and patient husband I get through the bad days while I wait for my hormones to even out. It is just something I have to deal with and work to overcome right now. (Don't worry Grandma & Grandpa - I really am OK! :) ).
Several weeks ago, I ran into Darcy at church - I don't see her often anymore - because the children's classes meet entirely separately from the adults, and so our paths rarely cross. Now, to be honest, I never felt incredibly close to Darcy while I worked with her. But I knew she loved the children and really respected her for that. She often has other people's children and all the kids in the neighborhood simply love her. When Trevor and I bumped into her with Ivie-in-arms, Darcy said, "You know you can always bring her to me to watch. I would love it. And you don't need to dream of even offering to pay me to babysit."
Last Friday was one of my bad days - Trevor wanted to go out on a date - and so we asked Darcy to watch Ivie. By the time we actually finally got ready to go (after some crazy drama) I was feeling wound up and frazzled. In all honesty, I was ready to just stay home and crawl in bed and never come out. But Trevor insisted we go. Se we dropped Ivie off up the street at Darcy's and went to see Robin Hood (LOVED it BTW).
Being out for a few hours, just with Trevor was relaxing and so good for me. When we came back to pick up the baby Darcy had her bathed, in pajamas, fed and just ready to go home and go to sleep. We had the nicest visit with Darcy and her husband, Gordan, who asked us to bring Ivie back anytime, he said, "we will pay you to let us watch her." I felt so at peace to see my baby so happy and so well taken care of.
As we walked out of Darcy's house a sudden thought popped into my head, as if a voice clear as day said, "This is the reason you were called to the Primary." If I had not been called to primary I never would have met Darcy in any way more than passing - and even though there are other wonderful people in SG willing and happy to watch little Ivie, I feel so confident and secure leaving her with Darcy. And on Crazy-Mom days that feeling matters a lot.