Lately, I’ve been thinking about my biological clock. It’s ticking loudly, and the alarms are about to go off. Some would say I am still young at 41 and tell me how they knew of someone who conceived at 45. And while I can appreciate how amazing God is to have blessed that woman… I know the odds are not in my favor to conceive… let alone keep the child knowing I have all ready lost so many due to miscarriage.
The closer I got to day 28 in my cycle, I began to reflect upon my journey through infertility and loss. It was possible for us to have conceived, and I was eagerly waiting to see if I was going to start or not. This roller coaster is not fun for me as I know the day I start is always an emotionally sad and draining day. But I realized when I woke up on day 28 with cramping and spotting, that there was a small part of me that has become so afraid I will lose another child that I actually breathed a sigh of relief that I was not pregnant. I rationalized that the small ups and downs I feel month to month are nothing compared to what I could face when I see that pink line and miscarry several weeks or months later.
Wow! It’s scary the way the enemy works in our hearts and minds! I want another baby! I want to have a sibling for my daughter to grow up with! I desire that family of four! So I am fighting back. I will not let the enemy rob me of my dreams! I say with confidence that I will be thrilled to see a positive pregnancy test. I accept that there will be struggles, and I will have pray and lay down all fears to God and trust that whatever happens will be for my greatest good.
But to shift my mind into a positive place… I thought of some key things that miscarriage isn’t. Lord knows I have spent more time than I’ve ever wanted to learning about, thinking about and knowing what it is! I think it is time to focus on something good, so here is my list:
1. Miscarriage isn’t shameful. While you many not have experienced a loss yourself, you can rest assured that you will come across someone who has lost a baby. One out of four pregnancies end in miscarriage. It’s a sad fact. But what it isn’t is a tragedy that should inflict guilt and shame. I don’t know why our society refuses to speak out about this. It is the very fact that women are so tight lipped that causes it’s victims to feel such shame. When the truth is… none of us causes a miscarriage. The only one to blame is the enemy. So if you are feeling guilt or shame for any reason… don’t claim those thoughts! Don’t breath life into such negativity.
2. Miscarriage isn’t the end of the world. While we all know that a miscarriage means the end of a life, dreams, hopes and nine months of life changing planning, it is not the end of the world. I can say personally that for me… losing eight babies was no Sunday brunch… but I also look back upon the last five years and see that I am a much better person than I was. I have a whole new world available to me now… one that includes a relationship with Jesus. My miscarriages definitely changed me, but as a whole… I’ve changed into a woman that I am more proud of. I’ve become a better wife and mom because of my experience. My losses didn’t end the world because God will take any tragedy and turn it into a shining triumph.
3. Miscarriage isn’t a reason to fight with your spouse. If you are like me at all… you want your husband to understand and sympathize with everything you’re feeling. And when you experience a miscarriage, most often, it was never real to the spouse. Sometimes, he never even saw a heart beating on the monitor before the baby was gone. All there is to show for the growing baby was pink lines, blood work bruises on your arm and test results. While you are the one in miserable pain, bleeding, emotionally wrecked, the one you love is back to work… back to business as usual. That’s how it was for me. After losing twins in 2008, I grew jealous that he didn’t feel what I was feeling. I quickly grew angry and actually began to punish him. Desperate for him to show empathy, I lashed out. I hurled insults at him and pushed him away. I denied him intimacy because I felt alone in my pain. I did all of this until God showed me that Scott was grieving. My husband lost everything I did. I realized that I would be a horrible person to wish my pain and suffering on him. Our last several losses… I allowed him to grieve and placed zero expectations on him. I prayed for him to be spared any pain. I refused to be torn apart from him. God showed me that Scott could help me find the courage to keep trying. Ladies… lean on your spouse… don’t fight him! Remember that the baby was made in love, and in loss, you can and should keep on loving each other. Ultimately, showing love and respect to your grieving spouse is the best way to honor God and your child in Heaven.
4. Miscarriage isn’t defining you as a woman! God is the source of who you are… and only He defines us. Suffering through a miscarriage or stillbirth rocks you to your core. I know this personally as I was completely wrecked after our third loss. I drifted through months lost… not knowing who I was. I bought into the lie that if I couldn’t bear fruit then I was less than a woman. I was broken and defective. It took a lot of time sitting in the presence of the Lord before I realized the truth. I am not a victim. With God, I am a survivor!
5. Miscarriage isn’t the killer of your desire! One of the biggest things I’ve learned through my long journey to becoming a mom was that the enemy wanted me to quit dreaming, quit trying to conceive and give up trying to be the mother I knew God was calling me to be. There were months I thought I just couldn’t give it another go. I struggled to keep the faith and I would let fear stop me from dreaming. But one day… God instructed me to set my intentions. He asked me to journal to him every single day about the dreams I held on to. wilHe wanted to hear the desires of my heart. I began to pray for healing for my body. I prayed for the child to come. I prayed for our marriage to survive through this unbelievable struggle. For nearly four years now, I’ve set my intentions with God on paper. What I have learned is that suffering through the loss of child is enough loss. You do not have to also lose hope. I am here to say you do not have to surrender your desires over to Satan! Share your dreams with God! Write them on paper and take time to celebrate the little victories along the way to getting your end goal! Keeping your eyes on the future takes your eyes off the past! Keeping your eyes on the future means trusting and believing in the blessings God has in store for you!
6. Miscarriage isn’t a reason to give up on God! I am so thankful that we have such a forgiving and merciful God! There was a season in my suffering where I was so angry at Him. I blamed Him for my loss and I didn’t understand then why He was choosing me to loose so many children. I felt so alone in my despair and abandoned by the one who was supposed to love me the most. I wasn’t quiet about it either and I regret so much being vulnerable enough to breath life into these lies. What I have learned is God never left me. He held onto me with a tight grip, and He loved me despite my failings. When I finally took my blinders off and saw the truth… I realized that God is my number one fan. He is my champion. He spends every moment fighting for me.
As I suffered each loss God suffered with me. Every tear I shed… I began to see that He was crying with me. Every time I expressed anger at Him… my Father was comforting me. I can see Him brushing away a tear from my eye… telling me how much he understands my pain. I could feel His hugs as He whispered that everything was going to be okay. When I decided to release my pain long enough to stop blaming God, and I could let go of my anger… He allowed me to develop a relationship with him that is so deep and strong.
Today I know with certainty that I will have seasons in the wilderness. Whatever challenge it is that I have to face, I will trust God has a good reason. I will have faith that when the season is over… I will be wiser. I will be stronger. I will be changed. And most importantly, I will be closer to God.