Thursday, June 9, 2011

Being Vulnerable

I'm grateful to have a good support system of friends and family.  I've had a group of people who have really walked alongside me through my infertility and IVF journey - people who have been faithful to pray and encourage me.  I have no trouble asking people for prayer.  But when I received news that the doctor couldn't find the baby's heartbeat yesterday, I lost it emotionally.  I didn't want to talk to anyone, not because I didn't want them to know, but because I didn't want to be out of control emotionally.  I think I've cried more yesterday and today than I have in years.  I know that's good for me, but I'm not used to letting people see that vulnerability in me.  Why is that so hard?  I don't know.  I've wanted to isolate myself, not talk about things with anyone, because it's easier to be "okay" emotionally if I'm not thinking about or talking about the baby.  But avoidance isn't good.  Why can't I just "lose it" in front of people who love me? 

Follow-up sonogram

Yesterday was our second sonogram.  The doctor said the blood buildup was gone, and the baby and sac had grown since last week.  However, he couldn't find a heartbeat.  He told us he is 99% sure it isn't a viable pregnancy.  I have to go back on Monday for another sonogram so they can double check.  At that time, they will discuss options with me if my body doesn't miscarry on it's own. 

I tried holding it together at the center, but I just broke down crying.  How could we so easily hear the heartbeat last week and this week there be no heartbeat?  I asked the doctor if the blood clot could have affected the baby, but he said he didn't think so because there was obvious growth of the baby. 

I've cried many times since yesterday, which isn't like me.  I like to have my emotions under control, but I don't feel like I have anything under control right now.  Last night, I thought about the baby all night long and why he/she couldn't have lived?  God brought life to this little one only to not survive?  I don't understand. 

It's hard to comfort my husband, who I know needs comforting, when I'm so emotional.  I feel sorry for him.  He is trying to be present for me and comforting while dealing with his own grief and sadness.

My loved ones tell me there could still be a heartbeat on Monday found, and I know they are right.  I know God can do a miracle and breathe life into my baby.   I want to believe for that and pray for that.  I also want to trust God ultimately.  I know His ways are greater than ours, and I know He doesn't make mistakes.  I guess I'll keep telling myself that.

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Another lesson in trust

I went to the doctor yesterday for my first sonogram - I am 6 weeks pregnant.  The fertility specialist monitors the pregnancy more closely through the first trimester, which is good.  Because we had three embryos implanted, this was the day to find out if we were having multiple babies.  Fortunately, we are having one baby!  We were able to hear the baby's heartbeat, and everything seemed to be good.  The doctor did see some blood buildup, which he said he thought it might be from implantation.  The hope is that the blood will just be reabsorbed into the body without growing.  But, when he shared this news with us, I was instantly concerned about whether this blood buildup would/could affect the baby.  I wanted assurances from the doctor that I didn't really get 100%, probably because he can't give those type of assurances.  Anyway, I came away from that appt with the reminder that I have so little control of so many things in life.  Ultimately I must choose to trust God with this precious life he has given me.  I must choose to trust God with my concerns and my hopes. 

Sometimes I wonder,does it make a difference at all if I pray and ask God for protection of this little life, since God has the days already numbered for all of us.  But then I'm reminded of stories in the Bible where God was moved because of prayers of His people.  So, I will continue to pray for this healthy growing life in me.  I will pray for increased faith and trust in Him.  I know that I don't want to be anywhere other than in God's care and provision.  And my baby is in  God's care and provision too.  I find comfort and hope in that. 

Monday, May 16, 2011

And the pregnancy test result is....

POSITIVE!  I went to the doctor this morning for a blood pregnancy test.  They called me with the news that I was pregnant!  I started crying on the phone...I was so happy - for about 30 seconds - until I started to worry.  The nurse told me any level above 60 is considered pregnant.  My level was 90.  I go back on Wednesday for another blood test.  The nurse says that my levels should increase by 60% if all is progressing normally.  After my initial happiness, I started to worry that my level wasn't that high.  What if the second blood test shows a decrease in my levels?  What if the baby initially implanted but I miscarry?  My mind just started going with worry.  Why can't I just be happy and excited?  That's what my husband wanted to know when I got home from work tonight.  Why can't I just be optimistic?  I don't know.  I don't want to worry.  I don't want to have these sinking feelings.  I guess I just feel so fragile and vulnerable. 

So, once again I'm reminded that I must trust God with everything - everything that I don't have control over and all the unknowns I face.  I must find my peace in Him and direct my thoughts to Him.  He will give me the courage and bravery I need. 

A lesson learned on a wife's role

Wow!  I just got challenged and convicted this morning during my quiet time.  Let me give you a little background first.  A couple of days ago, Adam told me he had trouble sleeping because he was worried about us having triplets.  He was saying how he didn't think he could handle it, etc.  He was just sharing his concerns, but I got defensive and upset. Then, yesterday, I asked him a dumb question (talk about setting him up).  I asked him if he would rather have triplets or no child.  His response was "I'd rather have twins than no child".  I knew Adam's anxiety about triplets, so it really was an unfair question.  We ended up having a slight conflict because he felt I punish him/get mad at him for being honest.  He's right - I tend to do that because I get mad at him for not having more faith or worrying about things I don't think he should worry about.  We worked through it, and it was fine. 

This morning, I was working on my devotional called Wisdom for Mothers.  The chapter I am on is about a wife's role with her husband.  Here are the things I learned this morning about a wife's role:
1.  a wife protects and defends s heart.  When a husband's heart is vulnerable or insecure or weak, a wife should protect and defend her husband's heart.
2.  a wife is called to submit to her husband completely - with a gentle and quiet spirit.
3.  1 Corinthians 11:7-11 talks about how we are to be the glory of our husbands.  We were created from man, and we were created for man's sake.    Man wasn't created for woman's sake!  This really challenged me that my role is to support and encourage and be my husband's help-mate. 

Sometimes I am selfish and get tired of feeling like I always have to encourage my husband or always have to say the right thing - I want him to encourage me.  But, God reminded me this morning that I was created to be my husband's help-mate. My role is to help him and support him. 

What changes do you need to make in your thinking and actions to reflect your role in God's plan?

Sunday, May 15, 2011

You are God

This morning during church, I was really moved during our worship time.  One of the songs we sang was You are God by Charlie Hall.  Part of the lyrics state "you fill our hearts with love and faith, you fight for us you make us brave".  These words, for some reason, deeply touched me.  I understood, at a deeper level, that God provides me with love and hope.  I can have courage and bravery because He is fighting for me.  How cool is that?  What is there to fear when you are under God's care? 

No matter what the outcome of tomorrow's pregnancy test, I know that it has been filtered through God's loving hands.  I choose to trust and believe in His grand purpose and will.  I choose to trust and believe God knows what's best for me and ultimately only His purposes matter. 

Friday, May 13, 2011

The waiting is almost over

It's Friday!  TGIF!  Mostly, I'm just ready to get through the weekend and get to Monday - that's when I get to take a pregnancy test and find out whether I'm having a baby.  My daughter Emerson asked me today if I had a baby in my belly.  I said, "I don't know".  I still try not to let myself think about it too much - afraid that if my mind wanders, it will just go places that aren't helpful.  So, I continue to challenge myself to stay present, in the moment, enjoy life and what today brings. 

I've had many people tell me or my husband how they are praying for us, praying that God would grant us another healthy baby.  I told Adam this morning that at least if God says "no" about having another baby, we know we had prayer support and God definitely has a reason for saying no.  I know he wouldn't just not let me be pregnant out of being mean.  That's not who God is.  If I'm not pregnant, I trust God and His grand purposes. 

I thought it would be helpful to make a list of the things I'm grateful for - that no matter what the result of Monday is - I can reflect and be aware of the many blessings.  So here's my list, not exhaustive by any means....

1. a wonderful husband and daughter
2.  great extended family - parents and in-laws
3.  a healthy mind and body
4.  the ability to be active
5.  my salvation - I serve a God who is gracious, and merciful, and forgiving, and perfect in every way
6.  I get to stay home and raise my daughter - my husband works hard to provide for our needs
7.  we have a great church community with great friends

Life is good - that won't change on Monday!