When I thought about writing this post over a month ago, I had a very different theme in mind than the post I will be sharing with you today.
My husband and I found out at the end of March that we were pregnant! We were shocked and extremely excited! I had just had exploratory surgery, which found remnants of endometriosis explaining why getting pregnant for over a year had been so difficult. I had only been post-surgery for 4 weeks and the thought of getting pregnant had not crossed my mind, because surely it was too soon. I thought it would take much longer, but praise the Lord it had not! We were excited and told friends slowly and planned to tell our parents around Mother’s Day by giving them a gift with the 6-week sonogram, where we had first seen the fluttering heartbeat, tucked inside. We were over the moon blessed and in total anticipation for all the joys that come with having your first baby. I was also grateful that it was even possible after thinking for a very long time that biological children just may not be what the Lord had intended for us. And even now, we are still grateful. At our 8-week check-up, we were told to expect a heartbeat as before and for the baby to have grown twice the size. Unfortunately, we saw neither.
I’ve never heard a more silent room, and there were four different medical professionals, plus my husband watching in anticipation as the doctor searched. I could hear myself trying not to breathe as I watched a very still sonogram; no heartbeat and very little growth. Even now, I am shocked at how confident I was that this would not be our story. Many experience what a close friend referred to as “the result of the fall”; this is not how it should be. I’ve never seen my husband so shell-shocked. And very few times can I say we were both without words.
The feeling of loss is not new to my heart. I lost my father when I was 6 years old to melanoma cancer and have grieved alongside my mother throughout my life; my high school graduation, my college graduation, and my wedding day. I still miss him as I write this and grieve what could have been. Grieving truly comes in waves. Each time I learned how to grieve well and better than the last because of the work of Christ in my life. When I say this, please hear the truth. There is a way to grieve with hope versus without hope. I have done both at different times. Paul encourages us in 1 Thessalonians 4:13 that though we grieve our loss, we are thankful that we do not grieve as those without hope.
The thought of being a humble, unworthy and grateful parent of a child has produced more joy in my life than I have ever experienced. I am so grateful for the opportunity I had to be a mother for 7 short weeks, and though my baby’s life is over and his or her purpose complete, my baby’s life is still working out its purpose and completion in my own life. It has drawn me to overwhelming praise of a most trustworthy, gracious and loving Savior. I will praise Him as one with hope! I also know my story will comfort others (2 Corinthians 1:4). I have been entrusted with this story to show others how glorious our God is to us, how comforting His word is and how His promises ring true STILL. God is ever close and near to me and my husband as we cry, rest, read His word, mourn and praise His name. He never leaves us.
My encouragement to women who have experienced this loss is to never forget how much He loves us. Oh how He loves us! Jesus also experienced pain and therefore is equipped to carry every grievance that the enemy tries to creep into our hearts. Jesus is the ultimate protector of our thoughts and sorrows, meeting us even in the depths of Sheol (Psalm 139:8). Satan has not won the war. Jesus brings new life just like the turning of the seasons brings us new life in spring. He is worthy of every tear and all our rejoicing. Praise His holy name as one who is confident in new life.