This Undeserved Life: Part 1

This two part series from This Undeserved Life is from Author Natalie Brenner. She is a fellow Mom of two babies who were born less than 5 months apart. I am so excited for you to read an excerpt from her book. She has generously offered a copy of her book to one of my awesome readers. So sit back and enjoy the first part of her story.

An excerpt from This Undeserved Life
(May 2016)

Life is weird. It just is, you know? People are weird. People look at me and stare. I’m wearing a Target maternity dress, revealing my rounding body, wearing a tiny Sage against my chest in the Moby wrap. Grocery shopping in Costco is an invitation to comments and questions. It feels like every eye follows me around the produce section. As my body appears more and more pregnant, I guess people stop assuming my belly is leftover postpartum flesh and more pregnant flesh; people started staring. It makes me giggle, really. Loren and I smile and wave. Take a picture, it lasts longer, I want to sass. I often wonder why people don’t just ask, but then when people do they say the most hurtful things or ask the most intrusive questions. I find my jaw drop a lot in shock. It seems to be a lose-lose for us all. I pick through the bell peppers, smiling, when a lady smiles at me and asks how old our son was.  “About 4 months,” I say joyfully.  She responds to my smile with a smile of her own and asks, “And when are you due?” I want to hug her so hard.  “I am due in about three and a half weeks. So, five weeks?” I laugh, knowing full well I’ll go past my due date.
“My daughter is due around that time too! So, did you adopt?” She asks gently with love. She cares. I can always tell when someone is kind and caring, and when they are not.
“Yes! We did. We were privileged to adopt this little one while I was twenty weeks pregnant.” I found the purest looking bell peppers and stuck them in the cart.
“My daughter and her husband tried for several years and endured many miscarriages. She is now in her last term and due in the next few weeks. I am happy for you. Two babies in one year, wow. What a blessing.”
I nod with tears in my eyes. I feel seen and safe. I feel loved. It may be the only conversation with a stranger about having two so close in age that feels so safe. Usually, people raise their eyebrows and say, “You’re going to be busy!” Or, “Oh yeah, pregnancy always follows adoption. People always get pregnant after they adopt.” Or, “Are you crazy?” Or, “You are super woman!” They even ask, “So was his real mom on drugs?”
Some of these are true and some of them aren’t. Yes, I am going to be and am busy; but what parent isn’t? From the beginning of becoming Sage’s mama, I told myself one baby was easy. I made myself believe caring for one baby was easy, and soon we would have two. That was going to be hard. Busy was an understatement, but we were busy when we were building a youth ministry. Busyness isn’t reserved only for mamas of almost-twins.

Come back tomorrow for the second half of this excerpt from Natalie’s book. We will be giving away a copy of her book to one lucky reader! 

NATALIE BRENNER is wife to Loren and mom to two under two. She authored This Undeserved Life: Uncovering the gifts of grief and the fullness of life. She likes her wine red, ice cream served by the pint, and conversations vulnerable. Natalie believes in the impossible and hopes to create safe spaces for every fractured soul. You can love Jesus or not, go to church or not: she’d love to have coffee with you. Natalie is a bookworm, a speaker, and a wanna-be runner. Connect with her at and join her popular email list.

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