I started my blog as a way to document my life and that includes the good, the bad and the ugly. I don’t want to give the impression that I only have good and happy things happen in my life…that would be misleading. I believe that most would agree that for every mountain top you reach, there was a long, deep and dark valley that had to be crossed first. I will warn you now that this post has not been easy to write and it is filled with all kinds of emotion. This is a post that I have been tinkering with off and on over the last six months. My intentions are not to be gloomy, instead, I want to show how God uses even our darkest moments to bring us closer to Him. My parents raised me to be mindful that even in bad times we are to praise The Lord just as we would in the good times. That is what I aim to do. I am not writing for sympathy or pity, I am writing to praise The Lord and to document this not-so-happy moment in my life.
I have hesitated to write this post for so long and for so many reasons. I realized by leaving this event in my life unwritten that I am denying God. You see, it has been by God’s never-changing promises that He loves me and has a plan for my life (Jeremiah 29:11) and He will never leave me nor forsake me (Joshua 1:5) that has allowed the Mr. and me to find peace and comfort.
I found out on February 27, 2013 that the Mr. and I were expecting our first child. An ultrasound confirmed that indeed there was a baby (measuring 7w 3d) and the doctor said the baby and heart rate looked great. Seeing the little life on the screen and hearing the fluttering heartbeat was probably the sweetest sight/sound I have ever experienced. I waited until I was in the car and called the Mr. to announce that he was going to be a Daddy. I could hear the smile spreading across his face as his heart swelled with joy. We were completely and utterly thrilled, yet scared about how this button-sized life had already and would continue to change our lives forever. We have prayed that the Lord would bless us with children and we were excited that He chose to do so.Over the next week or so we told our parents and siblings; however, they were sworn to secrecy as we wanted to get through the first trimester before making a public announcement. I wouldn’t be twelve weeks until the day after Easter (April 1st) so I knew keeping it a secret that long would be hard, especially on our moms. As we got closer to Easter, we began to loosen our lips a little bit and told our closest friends. They, too, were sworn to secrecy until after Easter.
I had my first “official” ob. appointment on March 12th and the appointment went well. I was excited to see and hear the baby again during the ultrasound. The doctor took measurements and said baby was measuring 9w 1dAfter the appointment I jumped in the car and called the Mr. I told him that the doctor gave a good report and was pleased with what he saw and gave me the due date: October 14, 2013.
A couple weeks later, just shy of 11 weeks, I started experiencing a low backache but nothing that I felt was alarming enough to call the doctor. However, by the time Monday rolled around I was concerned as the backache was consistent and I wasn’t feeling well. After talking to the Mr. and mom I called the doctor. They had me come in for a precautionary evaluation. My friend Becky happened to text me at the same time I was finishing up the call to the doctor and she said her office was empty and said she would ride with me for company.
Although spring was literally around the corner, it was snowing so it was icy and slick. As most of you know, we live in a mountainous area and I had to cross over a couple mountains to get to the doctor in Asheville, which is an hour away. Needless to say, I’m sure I scared Becky to death as I made it to the office in 40 minutes…in the snow…and ice. *sorry Bek*
On the drive to Asheville and while waiting in the lobby, I was trying to crack jokes and talk about random non-baby-related things to help keep my emotions in check. (I mean, who wants to deal with a blubbering, snotty crying woman?) All the while, I was silently
blubbering, snotting and crying out praying to the Lord with such a
frenzied desire that I knew only He could handle.
After waiting a nerve-racking 45 minutes in the lobby, I heard my name called from the hallway. Within minutes of the doctor coming into the room, my worst nightmare became reality as I was informed that a heartbeat could not be found. Becky had been standing beside me holding my hand, and at the doctor’s words I know I squeezed her hand hard. I guess I was hoping that the squeezing would take the pain in my heart away. *again, sorry Bek*
I have often found it crazy how so many thoughts and images can run through my mind in a matter of seconds. In those few seconds, tears silently poured down my face as my mind raced at full speed. I was one day shy of being 11 weeks, how could this happen? I was so sure that the closer we got to week 12 that we were golden, no more worries about the critical first trimester and all that jazz. I was so close to have it all taken away *snap* just like that. All I could think is how do I call and give this news to my husband? To my family? To my friends?
Then, just as quickly as the tears started, they stopped. The doctor said that although I should be 11 weeks, the baby only measured 9w 1d. He then explained what needed to be done and I needed to make decisions. I was in a daze and was going through the motions without really understanding what was being said. The doctor kept repeating that he was so sorry and I remember telling him it was okay because God has a plan. The doctor agreed and said that God was most definitely in control. After a few minutes of discussion, I was scheduled for surgery the following morning. I called the Mr. and all I could say was I am sorry. As I left the doctor’s office, I felt defeated. I felt as if I had let my husband down, the grandparents down, the aunts/uncles down, but most of all I felt like I had failed my unborn baby.
Once at home, the day was on repeat in my mind. As a born again Child of God, I know that He is totally in control. I know that He has an awesome plan for the Mr. and me. I know with every ounce of my being that God loves me and only wants the best for me, I have to trust Him. But just as I know and believe all that to be true, I am human. This is where it’s difficult for our human self to grasp what our spiritual self understands. In my heart I knew God was in control, in my mind I felt I was solely responsible and could have done something to prevent it.
By nature, when I am worried or nervous I find myself thinking of worst case scenarios and then talk about it to whoever is around. Unfortunately for the Mr., he was the only one around that night. I was petrified about having surgery. I get real uneasy when I have to be put to sleep. Earlier in the day as I was talking to the doctor, he asked me if I had any questions or thoughts, etc. I told him no. However, I really wanted to ask him to not let me die during surgery but figured he didn’t needed the extra pressure. As I laid on the couch, I kept thinking about dying and finally I couldn’t keep quiet any longer. I blurted out to the Mr. that if I died during surgery I wanted him to get married again (after an appropriate grieving time, of course) but he couldn’t marry a supermodel-pretty woman because that would only make him look like a shallow loser. He just looked at me dumbfounded and told me to hush and that I wasn’t going to die. Listen people, this is how I deal with stress okay? Don’t judge me.
The Mr. was continuously checking on me and asking if I needed anything. He kept telling me that this is not what we had planned but that we needed to remember that God was in control and for whatever reasons, it wasn’t meant to be right now. He kept telling me that all will be okay and that we will be okay. He was saying exactly what I needed to hear, regardless how many times he had to repeat it. Needless to say, the night was not uneventful and it resulted in a phone call to the doctor around 10pm.
During the call with the doctor, I had a peace come over me like no other. The doctor explained that he felt the Good Lord was taking care of the miscarriage naturally so that I hopefully wouldn’t have to go through the surgery. After speaking with the doctor, he wanted me to come by his office before going to the hospital for surgery.
Mr. and I met with the doctor early the next morning. After an ultrasound, he repeated again that the Good Lord had taken care of this for us and surgery was not necessary. He went on to say that the Lord had me in His hands and that He was taking care of us. We received a plan of action and the doctor mentioned that although we may not understand why we were not going to be able to bring our little button into the world, The Lord knows and that He would bless again. I tell you, this doctor is Ah-mazing. The Mr. and I loved that he was giving us not only a medical opinion, but a God-fearing medical opinion. My doctor was not trying to take any credit in anything, he was giving it to the Lord.
Remember when I said that God has a plan for our lives – isn’t it amazing how in hindsight we can see His hand at work even when we were clueless??? I have no idea what God has in store for my life, my husband‘s life or our lives as parents…but I do know that He is never going to give us more than we can handle and He is never going to forsake us.
The night I lost the baby, I was lying in bed and tears were flowing without end. A Bible verse kept running through my mind on repeat “weeping may endure for the night, but joy comes in the morning” (Psalms 30:5). Then a few days later a friend of mine sent me an email that said: “it may feel like death, may smell like it and may hurt like it, but it’s only the valley and a shadow of death – there IS another side. If you keep walking you’ll make it through.” She couldn’t have been more right. The past six months has been a long valley that I have been walking through but this valley will only last a season and my soul finds peace knowing that joy will come. I would give anything to be able to bring a beautiful baby girl or boy into the world today. But I know and understand that God has a plan for us and I am okay with that.
It is crazy how even in our brokenness, God proves Himself true. He never left me, never forsake me. I have realized now, it was GOD who had taken the wheel of my car to/from Asheville – I only thought I was driving. It was GOD who had guided me from the lobby and into the exam room – I only thought I was following the nurse. It was GOD who had literally carried me out of the doctor’s office that afternoon – I only thought I was walking by my own accord. What I thought was numbness was really GOD’S hand of comfort as He was healing my heart. I did not do anything – it was GOD the.whole.time.
The Mr. and I know that God will continue to walk this valley with us. God is bigger than the little box that I try to put Him in sometimes. His promises do not and will not change and as long as we place our lives, hearts and souls in His hands, we will not be disappointed because “JOY comes in the morning.”