Lilypie Second Birthday tickers

Lilypie Second Birthday tickers

Friday, September 27, 2013

My Song Lately

I am so grateful that no matter how broken my heart is, I am fully & completely loved by a God who is working for my good (and I mean that word in the purest & deepest sense possible).  We will never know the fullness of the word good until we experience Heaven.  As I sit down every morning to marinate in Joseph's story, I am falling in more in love with my Savior.  I am clinging white-knuckled to a God who has my times in His hands (Psalm 31:15) and who is in perfect control over everything & everyone.  So while the pieces of my heart are still being healed by my Comforter, I will keep declaring that I will trust him.  Grateful for songs that so adequately express my heart:





P.S. This is not a place that I have come to easily.  It has taken YEARS of refinement for me to be able to get to this place of faith out of reflex.  So if you are walking through your own trial and wondering why you can't seem to trust God so quickly or easily, please don't beat yourself up.  And neither have I perfected my faith.  That comes in Heaven.  I am still very much human and very much struggle with sin, but God has used the trials of my past to produce Romans 5:3-4 in my life.

Not only so, but we[a] also glory in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope.



Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Tonight

Tonight, I miss my baby.  I have had several good days, but something (won't say what exactly because some of you may think it's too personal...just the absence of a certain pregnancy symptom) brought me face-to-face with our reality again.  And I simply miss my baby.  There are those certain symptoms that all of a sudden disappear, but you have been used to them for the last several weeks.  In fact, those symptoms have somewhat been of great comfort because it meant a healthy (or so you thought) pregnancy and a healthy baby.  And without those, it's just a daily reminder of what I've lost.  

You know, I even thought tonight, how foolish I was.  How did I allow myself to be fooled into thinking that I had a healthy baby inside of me.  Shouldn't I have instinctively known somehow that something wasn't right?  I thought how foolish I must look to other people now because all of those symptoms that were still very real even though my baby was already gone.  I know in my mind how stupid that is because there are so many uncontrollable hormones at work inside my body and I even met with my OB after my baby had already died (didn't know that at the time though) and he seemed to think everything was also fine.

Some people may think that these are very random thoughts to share, but I have been so encouraged by many precious women who have told me that they are so glad that I'm sharing because I'm putting voice to the "suffer in silence" grief that so often comes with the death of an unborn baby.  I think that we (myself included) expect people to quickly get over a miscarriage because it was a baby that we never even met and there's just not that same bond that a mother has when she's actually held & nurtured that baby.  I think, in certain ways, it's just as hard to mourn someone that you never even knew or got the chance to love.  You simply have to trust that the Lord's plans for your child's life were higher than your own.  So tonight, I will rest in Isaiah 55:8-9:
"For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways," declares the Lord.  As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts." 
Thank you so much for those who are praying me through the hard days.  You have several "good days" and then you are smacked right in the gut with the feeling of a deep longing for your baby.  And there is no other way to say it than it just simply hurts.  I appreciate those of you that have willingly boarded this emotional rollercoaster with us and have decided to keep going around until God has healed our pain.  

Monday, September 23, 2013

Perfect Timing

I have had a couple of "good" days lately.  That doesn't mean that I am not constantly reminded of the fact that there should be a healthy baby growing inside of my belly, but it does mean that my mind has accepted the reality of losing our baby and my heart's desire to see God's glory in the midst of my pain is growing deeper than the actual pain itself.  My questions have ceased to be, "Why us?  How will we get through this?"  They have become, "What are You going to do with our pain so that out of it blooms your glory, Lord?"  

There is no perfect time to have a miscarriage nor lose any loved one.  However, I feel like God has given me an answer as to why it happened in the timing that it did.  Let me give you some background.  I went off of birth control in June and found out I was pregnant at the end of July.  We have never gotten pregnant on the first try so we were surprised that it happened so quickly, but also very happy.  I never had the full onslaught of nausea that I did with the girls and at around week 9, my pregnancy symptoms began to come and go.  Therefore, I had reservations about my pregnancy for several weeks before I had any "diagnosis."  Our baby stopped growing and died around week 6 so why did it take another 5 weeks for my body to recognize that?  That is a question that I asked God the other day.  His answer to me was why His timing of my miscarriage was the perfect timing.  Here's several reasons why:

1) My family had actually been going through another very painful situation a couple of weeks prior to our miscarriage.  I started a Bible study by Aprile Sweers on the life of Joseph and what it means to live in the shelter of a sovereign God.  I really thought that what I would learn would apply to the situation our family was already going through.  I was completely unaware of what I really think it was intended for.  It was on the Wednesday of the second week of the study that we found out our baby was no longer alive.  It was a HUGE blow, but I had God's Word to shelter me.  Week 2 was even more encouraging.  I wish I could adequately put into words how much I feel like this Bible study is God's unfailing compassion wrapped up like a present for me.  It has been a balm to my aching heart.  I would not have been as emotionally & spiritually equipped to handle our loss if I wasn't presently marinating in the very subject that God was making us live through.  There are several verses that have ministered to me:

"For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all.  So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen.  For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal."  (2 Corinthians 4:17-18)
"He cuts off every branch in me that bears no fruit, while every branch that does bear fruit he prunes so that it will be even more fruitful."  (John 15:2)
"These have come so that your faith-of greater worth than gold-may be proved genuine and may result in praise, glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed"  (1 Peter 1:7)
"Now if we are children, then we are heirs-heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ, if indeed we share in his sufferings in order that we may also share in his glory.  I consider that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us."  (Romans 8:17-18) 
And probably one of my favorites:
"Yet this I call to mind and therefore I  have hope: Because of the Lord's great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail.  They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.  I say to myself, "The Lord is my portion; therefore I will wait for him."  The Lord is good to those whose hope is in him, to the one who seeks him;...Though he brings grief, he will show compassion, so great is his unfailing love."  (Lamentations 3: 21-25, 33)

 The one truth that I am really holding tight to right now is that God is going to do something great for His name because of our pain.  My desire is that not only is he currently planting seeds in our hearts, but in so many more so that out of those seeds of grief, we would become more fruitful witnesses for Christ.  I want this pruning to be purposeful beyond our grief.

2) God's compassion was shown in His perfect timing because George had the week off to work on our rental house.  He was able to go with me to the doctor's appointment so I wouldn't be alone.  We really weren't anticipating bad news, but I am so grateful I wasn't there to receive it alone.

3) The doctor who delivered the bad news was the same one who delivered Hannah and Kate.  He literally saved their lives and is the most compassionate doctor I have ever met.  I was scheduled with him and he grieved the loss with us.  It was also him that was able to do the surgery at such short notice.  We couldn't have asked for a better doctor to walk through that with us.

4) Just two weeks prior to our miscarriage, I found out that our neighbors' daughter had also miscarried.  I had thought about wanting to write her a letter, but I didn't.  With very fresh grief over our loss, I decided that that was enough motivation to share God's comfort with someone that I'm not sure even believes in God.  I have never met this woman and I don't even know her name, but I wrote a letter and gave her a book on knowing for sure that our babies are in heaven with Jesus.  I'm not sure what God will do in her heart, but I want to make the most of every opportunity to comfort those with the comfort I have received. (2 Corinthians 1:4).


I don't know what the Lord's plans are for our future as far as growing our family.  I try not to dwell on that as I don't want to enter a season of discontentment as we wait.  God has us where we are now and I can already begin to see tiny buds of the fruit that He is already growing out of our loss.

I would highly encourage you (especially you ladies) to at least watch the videos of Aprile's lessons.  I promise that you will be blessed by them.  You may not currently be walking through any trials, but when you do, I think that you will be so glad that you have a foundation for the truth of God's sovereignty over any situation in your life.  Her website is www.aprilesweers.com/fall-study-resources/ .

Thank you for allowing me to share what God is doing in our lives.  It provides me with comfort to know that a baby that I will never meet this side of heaven has touched so many lives.  God does have a purpose for each child He creates.  Until I get there, my sweet baby is resting in the arms of my Savior and there is not a more peaceful, perfect place for him or her to be.

Please keep praying for us.  It provides us with strength to know that you are going to the throne of grace on our behalf.

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Today

Today...

...I'm being honest & transparent.

...I'm not asking for pity, but just giving a glimpse to those who have never experienced a miscarriage what I'm feeling today.  A LOT of people have asked me, will ask me, or maybe want to ask me but just don't know how to do it in the right way, "How are you?"  I have become good at a simple, concise answer, "I'm okay, fine, good, etc."  And that may be the absolute truth in the moment you are asking me, but what I say usually differs from what I mean.  "I'm (my heart is breaking & I'm not quite sure how to grieve the death of a baby I never got to meet, I'm tired, I can recall exactly how many weeks I should be, but I am so appreciative that you took the time to ask & not ignore the elephant in the room, please don't pay any attention to the tears that might start pouring down my face because I've been faithfully wearing waterproof mascara, know that I will be) okay."

...is the day that I would have been 12 weeks pregnant and so close to the end of the dreaded first trimester.  You see, for a mom who has experienced a miscarriage, the first trimester is full of anxiety, fear of letting yourself get attached to a baby that might not ever be, and struggling with knowing that that baby is purposefully created by God so I just need to trust God.  It's full of extra trips to the bathroom to make sure there is no blood (sorry if that is too much information, but it's reality) and then having your world crumble in the instant that there is.

...marks almost a week that I found out that my baby had stopped growing at 6 weeks, no longer had a heartbeat, and would have to be surgically removed from my body.

...I wonder how my body can physically return to a pre-pregnancy normal so quickly, while I am still constantly reminding my heart & mind that I no longer have to operate under the restrictions of pregnancy.

...I woke up with the thoughts that we went one step forward (getting pregnant) to only fall bloodied & bruised three steps backwards.

...I thought I would wake up a little stronger than I was yesterday because I had what I would consider to be two "emotionally strong" days.  It's not starting out that way.

...I look at my beautiful daughters and know that they need me to be strong for them and that they want me to play with them.  I am grateful to my core over the privilege of being their mom.

...I feel like simple tasks (grocery store, laundry, etc.) seem overwhelming.  It makes me want to just crawl back into bed.  I am also grateful for these tasks though as they remind me that I have a lot to be thankful for and they are a welcome distraction.

...I'm not only hurting for myself, but also for two precious friends & their family as they endure the waiting of a 7 hour open heart surgery on their 2 day old newborn son.

...I am resting in the sweet promises of God's Word that, "Because of the Lord's great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail.  They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness." (Lamentations 3:22-24)

...I am asking for your prayers that God would not waste our pain, but that we would allow Him to turn it into a seedbed for His glory.  That His pruning in our lives would serve to produce more fruit (John 15:2).

...I know that I am surrounded by people who love me, who have practically shown their love, and a God who is intimately involved in the details of my life, but I am faced with the reality that I live in a fallen world. (John 16:33)

...I had planned to sit down & write to tell you of how I have seen God's hand in the midst of our pain & how His compassion has proved unfailing.  And I do have some exciting things to share with you, but that may come...

TOMORROW.