This is a story of hope.
Josh and I always talked about starting a family when we purchased our first house. It just seems like the natural progression. Buy a house, fill it with babies. And six months after moving into our first home, we made the intentional decision to start trying for a baby. We were not one of those couples who just thought the word baby and got pregnant. I now understand that trying is often the operative word. At least for some. And when you are trying, you start to wonder how people get pregnant after just one time? And scary thoughts of something being wrong start to creep in. And you start to wish for all the money you spent on birth control back.
We went through several months of hope, anxiety, and disappointment - in that order. It felt like an eternity, but I am fully aware that many people try for years, so six months is only a drop in the bucket. But when that fateful day came and we saw the plus sign, we were overjoyed. I surprised Josh with the news - when he came home for lunch, he walked into the house to find this:
We were overwhelmed with happiness and anxiety all at once. We couldn't wait to share the news with both of our parents who we would be making first-time grandparents!
In an effort to make the news special and exciting, we sent out these packages:
I rigged the box so that when they opened it, a onesie pulled up that said, Please return to senders by 3.12.12. Congratulations, you're going to be grandparents!
Needless to say, our parents were surprised and thrilled.
The next several weeks came and went. I wasn't sick or nauseous at all, and I was loving thinking about our future family of three.
The morning of August 20th, I woke up and I was spotting. My heart pounded and my stomach sank. Bleeding during pregnancy is not good, I knew that much. And, on this day, of all days, I was hosting a baby shower at my house. My friend Jessica showed up early for the shower and could tell something was wrong. I looked at her and burst into tears telling her what was happening and through tears that, I can't do this. She hugged me and reassured me that I could. She also reminded me that she had experienced bleeding in her first trimester and had a beautiful baby boy to show for it.
Jessica's words of hope gave me the strength I needed to put on a smile and host a great baby shower for a wonderful friend. Never underestimate the power of a hug from a good friend.
As the day progressed, the bleeding increased. Josh finally made the executive decision to take me to the ER. There, our worst fear became a reality - we had our first ultrasound, but there was no baby on the screen.
The doctor that had seen me came in and put my fear into words, You've had a miscarriage.
With tears rolling down my cheeks, the doctor got down to my level and in the most gentle voice shared with me about how he and his wife had tried for a long time to get pregnant and when they finally did, they miscarried their first. He told me that he now has three beautiful boys.
This kind doctor took the time to share a personal account of how he and his wife had been where we were. They had come through it, and had a beautiful family. His words were a light beam of hope in an otherwise very dark night.
My best friend came over the next day with flowers and Ben & Jerry's Half Baked and cried with me. Because that's what best friends do. But that day, my friend sitting next to me was a beautiful picture of hope. She sat next to me 35 weeks pregnant and knew exactly how I felt. She had been there. She had gone through this grief and had come out on the other side. She had gotten pregnant again after a miscarriage the very next month.
As I write this, I am 19 weeks pregnant.
I share our journey because I know how much it meant to me to have others share their story with me and offer hope. The comfort of knowing I wasn't alone in my situation was indescribable. Being loved on by people who didn't diminish my grief was healing. I thank the Lord for placing these people in my life and carrying me through such a hard time. For whispering peace and comfort into my heart when I had none.
Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our affliction so that we will be able to comfort those who are in any affliction with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God. - 2 Cor. 1:3-4
I tell our journey because if it offers hope and comfort to just one person, it will not be shared in vain.
I also want to share this song, because it was shared with me and became an anthem of peace for me during my grief. If you find yourself with a friend going through this and you don't have the words to say, you can share this song. And our story.