Some of my earliest childhood memories are of me playing momma. All I ever really wanted to be was a mom. I spent my childhood playing with dolls, doing all the things that mommas do to care for their littles. The very minute I was old enough I began babysitting and I carried this on all the way into my early adult years. In fact, there were a few families I still babysat for even after I was married. As far back as I can remember, I dreamed and planned and prepared for this role. This deep longing to mother has always come natural to me.
Ryan and I decided to expand our family just a year after we got married. We conceived within the first two months of trying! We were elated to say the least. We heard the baby’s heartbeat, saw it on an ultrasound, framed the first picture, picked out baby names and dreamed of ALL things baby. My greatest, and most sincere desire was being realized. Sadly, at just 9 weeks, I miscarried my first sweet baby. Oh how my heart ACHED. A piece of me went to heaven that day. I had carried our baby for only 9 short weeks, but I carried him under my heart, he was mine, and the day he left for heaven he took a little bit of me with him. I ended up having to have a D&C and we were able to find out that our first child was a boy.
From before he was conceived I had wanted him, I had prayed for him, I loved him.
And yet my hands never touched his soft skin.
My arms never cradled him.
My voice never hushed his cries.
I never met him….
There was comfort in knowing that he had met our heavenly father, the very one who created him. Our baby never knew the pains of this world, but was whisked away for an eternity of glorious perfection. I always imagine that he will meet me at the gates of heaven someday. I’ll know it’s him the very moment our eyes meet.
Miscarriage was so hard for me to understand. People try to console, and they mean well, but comments like “it’s better off because there was something wrong” aren’t comforting to a grieving mother’s heart. I know he wasn’t perfectly whole, but he was mine. Created with me in mind. A mother simply doesn’t stop loving her child because something goes wrong. While there were moments when I felt very alone, I was continually reminded that God hadn’t left me. Yet the pain was real and raw. It was ugly and messy. I would wake up in the morning and want to quickly close my eyes tight in an attempt to fall back to sleep. Getting out of bed meant the heartache of what had been lost would again darken my day. Yet God was there, holding me, carrying me, collecting and counting my tears. I didn’t open up too much about the sadness I carried. Most of my friends were pregnant at the time, some without even “trying” and here I was, feeling alone and so desperate for a child of my own. I felt left behind. Of course I was so happy for everyone around me who was bringing new life into their family, but I felt all alone on this island I was so desperate to depart from. I watched as everyone else sailed away on their ships to motherhood and my feet were left sinking in the quicksand of infertility. I didn’t want to be left out of joyful announcements and celebrations but oh my did they sting something awful. I was also somewhat ashamed. My body had failed me in the worst way and it felt as if no one in the world could possibly understand. My womb was empty, my heart was limping, and most people probably never even knew…
The next three years were the hardest of my life as I wrestled with infertility. Such an uncomfortable season of suffering for me. How could this be happening? All I have EVER wanted was to be a mom. This is what I was born to do, or so I thought. I helped countless mothers care for their children. Would I ever have the chance to mother my own? I questioned all of my dreams. I felt almost like I didn’t know myself anymore. I wondered who I would be if I wasn’t going to be a mom. I hadn’t planned for this. I had spent my life preparing a place in my heart for the children that I now feared may never come. Countless nights were spent lying in bed with a tear stained pillow as I tried so desperately to pray away the hollow emptiness of my womb. I had never imagined life without children. There were days I felt I would drown in the “whys”. The ache of barrenness threatened to suffocate me. The hole in my heart was causing my most intimate desire to slowly cripple the person I thought I was meant to be. But sweet sisters, even in those times, in those desperate, painful times, God’s grace was sufficient. I wasn’t swallowed up. Sure, I often felt knocked down by the devil, and though he threatened to destroy me and my dreams, I wasn’t ultimately defeated by him. God went before me, walked beside me, held me up. If you’re willing to seek Him, you will find Him, even in the darkest valley.
Job 12:10 says “In His hand is the life of every creature and the breath of all mankind”
Hebrews 10:35-36 reminds us “Do not throw away your confidence, it will be richly rewarded. You need to persevere so that when you have done the will of God you will receive what He has promised”
Isaiah 30:18 promises “And therefore the Lord waits to be gracious to you; and therefore He lifts Himself up that He may have mercy on you and show loving kindness to you. For the Lord is a God of justice. Blessed are those who wait for Him, who expect and look and long for Him.
Wait for Him.
Look for Him.
Long! For! Him!
God allowed me to be barren for nearly 3 years. The devil tempted me to believe it was a punishment. I must have done something to upset God. If you happen to find yourself reading this today and are in a season of waiting, don’t let the devil lie to you like that. If I could sit across the table from you I’d take your hand and lovingly remind you that though it may feel like it now, this is not a punishment. You have done nothing wrong. I promise God will use this for good if you let Him. He keeps his word sisters, in this season of uncertainty, the one thing you can be sure of is that God loves you and will keep His word.
Isaiah 43:2 promises, “When you go through the deep waters I will be with you..” I so often wish the promise was “when you get to the deep waters I will build a bridge, your feet will never get wet”. But that isn’t what He said. In fact, He has promised that “in this world you will have trouble” (John 16:33) But the second part of that verse also reminds us that HE has overcome!
Girls GOD HAS ALREADY WON. Though you are in a time of suffering, He has gone before you. This trial has come as no surprise to Him and you are not alone. Jesus himself pleaded with God to take the cup of suffering from him. But ultimately He surrendered to His father’s will. He trusted the in the promise of redemption. Will you take that step today? Just to simply say “I trust you as my redeemer”. I am sure you have done it many times before but you will need to do it many times again. Over and over and over as it is a moment by moment decision we have to make. Will you allow Him to resurrect your dying dreams and breath new life into your broken heart? We are most often overwhelmed when we have picked up the burden of suffering with our own strength. It was never intended to be ours to carry. Pain doesn’t have to be the enemy. It is an indicator that we live in a very broken world. It is a constant reminder that we have an enemy of our souls and he wants to drown us in the deep waters of brokenness. But friends, pain can be a gift. Don’t let it sink you, but rather let it motivate you to fight with bravery knowing that there is the promise of healing…
1 Peter 5:10 “After your season of suffering, God, in all His grace, will restore, confirm, strengthen and establish you.”
Mark it down. In this life you will suffer. Jesus himself suffered for you and for me. He paid the ultimate price, with his life. He is in the midst of your pain. He sees your struggle. He mourns alongside you. If you remember one thing from this post, please remember this, oh how He loves you. Don’t let your bleeding heart cause you to question His love and adoration. Don’t allow the devil to deceive you into believing this is all for nothing. Your pain will not be wasted. God is tirelessly working in ways in which you can not see. Walk with the blessed assurance of His great love.
“The pain that you’ve been feeling can’t compare to the joy that’s coming”…
In His time, God chose to answer the deepest desire of my heart and has blessed me with two beautiful children. He made beauty from the ashes of my broken heart. They both came at the most unexpected time. Well unexpected for me, but perfectly planned by God.
Girls I know how weary you are. I know how often you want to stop running this exhausting race. I know how ready you are to reach the finish line. Don’t give up hope. God shows up in the middle of impossible. Your doctor may be giving you a prognosis that feels grim and I know how piercing that is but can I just encourage you to continually put your trust in the very One who gives life. Keep close to Him allowing no room for the devil. The enemy of your souls desires nothing more than to make you feel forgotten. But God knows your name. Just think on that for a moment. The God of the universe, who created everything from nothing, He knows your name. He knows your inner most longings. He will fight for you, you need only be still. (Exodus 14:14)
Let me leave you with this, my prayer for each of you…
“I asked the glorious Father and God of our Lord Jesus Christ to give you His spirit. The spirit will make you wise and let you understand what it means to know God. My prayer is that light will flood your hearts and that you will understand the hope that was given to you when God chose you. Then you will discover the glorious blessings that will be yours together with all of God’s people. I want you to know about the great and might power that God has for us followers..”
In His love~