“. . .We are afflicted in every way, but not crushed; perplexed, but not driven to despair; persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed. . .”
1 Corinthians 4:8-9
So, there I am cruising down Rivers Avenue during afternoon rush hour on the first week of school being back in session. Okay, just kidding, I wasn’t cruising down Rivers. I was doing more of a sloppy salsa basic – you go forward, no I go forward, wait why are you actually backing up to me – with the truck in front of me, but you get the idea.
Back to it, I’m cruising and then the aha moment comes upon me. I’m doing pretty okay today. If you know our story, you know that we’ve had multiple miscarriages during our relationship and being okay is a pretty big deal. It’s not to say that I still don’t have moments of sadness or throw a pillow out of frustration at my husband’s head. Sorry, babe.
It does mean that embracing victories, even the smallest ones, deserves a satisfactory nod when I look in the mirror. Here are my recent victories. . .
And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.
It’s been two weeks. I’m still working through my grief.
The denial only lasted a few hours. Was she sure there wasn’t a heartbeat?
The anger still peaks it’s nasty head out every now and then. Why didn’t you intercede?
The bargaining mirrors an addict begging for one more taste. Lord, just give me a baby and we’ll share your good works with him. Just one baby.
The depression still lingers. I walk into the nursery every morning and just let the tears fall.
And, acceptance. There’s nothing I can do to change it, so I simply accept our loss and tuck away all baby items into a plastic tote until we see our future baby’s heartbeat once again.
While this is all still happening, I’ve asked him questions. . .
Lord, you are my God;
I will exalt you and praise your name,
for in perfect faithfulness
you have done wonderful things,
things planned long ago.
These last few days have been challenging. It still feels as if we are in a haze. In some moments, this entire situation feels so surreal that I think I’ll wake up in bed and see that the clock says it’s 3:30 a.m. Yet, I know it’s real. Reality strikes me when I least expect it. I find an ultrasound in my Bible. I see my internet history and find the baby registry we were starting. I find the pair of booties that we used in our announcement. Little reminders that lead to big feelings.
In it all, we have been held in the hands of our God by being lifted by family, church family and friends. In it all, we have found a new trust in God and his timing. In it all, we are beginning to see that He has taken this loss and turned it into a part of His plan.
Be still, and know that I am God.
Our baby’s heart stopped beating. We found that out at our 11 week check-up appointment with our doctor. We lost our baby. Baby looked strong. I was healthy. It just wasn’t our time, but I find some comfort in knowing that our baby is with God.
My heart is full of an anguish that I’ve known before. Yes, Matthew and I have previously experienced a loss and we sadly chose to walk through that alone. Our soon-to-be nursery still has items that we will save for our next baby – whether through creating one or waiting for God to call us to adoption – and I won’t be able to step in there for a little while. I need to remove some washi tape that has “baby” scribbled on it with a Sharpie marker from my planner. I have a mental to-do list for payments that I need refunded for prenatal yoga classes and onesies that need to be tucked away for future use. Yet, God is calling us to be still. . .
“For this reason, since the day we heard about you, we have not stopped praying for you. We continually ask God to fill you with the knowledge of his will through all the wisdom and understanding that the Spirit gives, so that you may live a life worthy of the Lord and please him in every way: bearing fruit in every good work, growing in the knowledge of God,”
Colossians 1:9-10 (NIV)
We’re having a baby, y’all!
It still doesn’t feel real. God is really entrusting us with this little life. God is letting us be a part of this precious baby’s life. God is answering our prayers.
Before I go on, I want to give a little insight as to why we didn’t wait for the 12-week mark to share the news. It’s our decision and only ours, but I still want to share the why.
We live in a sad world. A world where life is devalued. A world where babies aren’t seen as babies. A world that chooses to ignore that God has a plan for all lives. It is for this reason that we shared the news with family at 5 and 6 weeks. It is for this reason that we shared the news with the world at just shy of 8 weeks. Life is life – no matter how small it may appear on an ultrasound. God has chosen this little heart to start beating and we’ve seen it with our own eyes. Whatever may come and whatever may pass, we have faith that our God will bring us to it and through it.