Where do I begin? I’ve been a bit radio silent. Perhaps that’s the understatement of the century. My instinct and my nature is to apologize, but I am learning it’s not necessary, especially here.
If you’re new here, you can read about how this past Spring rocked our family’s little word. May 2018 came and went; thanks to miscarriage so did a piece of myself that I’ll never know. For a while I felt I might not ever be able to breathe quite the same again. Thank you Jesus for breathing for me when I forgot how.
The month after all of the appointments stopped, we found out that we were in fact pregnant again. Instantly I felt relief, but somehow simultaneously felt more guilt and fear than excitement. That in turn led to even more guilt. Not only did it seem too good to be true, but I felt unworthy and unprepared. I felt that the baby that we had just lost deserved more time, more mourning…more of me. I don’t feel that I had adequately processed all that had just happened in such a short period of time. I wasn’t ready. Yet it was exactly what we had been praying for, begging for.
I’ve been grasping for straws, trying to figure out exactly why I haven’t been able to write. After all, writing is how I process, so why not now, when I need it the most?
Guilt. Fear. Anxiety. Sorrow. Joy.
In my mind it wasn’t possible to feel all of these things simultaneously. At least not in a way that I could adequately process. How in God’s name is it possible to be so sad, so fearful and yet SO thankful and so hopeful all at once? I had convinced myself that this wasn’t in fact possible. I convinced myself that I was only allowed to feel happy, excited and optimistic about this pregnancy.
Here is what I am learning:
Guilt is powerful and it is a thief. Guilt has robbed me of a lot of excitement this pregnancy. Guilt because I didn’t understand how I could experience life after loss while others still sit waiting.
Having close friends that are in the throws of processing their own miscarriages and struggles with infertility left my heart aching for them. How could I possibly continue to walk beside them if this pregnancy was in fact viable? How could I stand there and say that I understand while my growing belly showed signs of our answered prayers?
I am learning that it is possible to still mourn, both for myself and for friends and fellow women who are walking through pain and loss. To women who are waiting for an answer, waiting for your chance, waiting for your miracle, I see you. I am still with you and am for you. I know how real that pain is. Believe it of not, I still cry for you and pray for you, for the babies we’ve lost and the babies that have yet to be.
Anxiety and fear are real. Every time I go to the bathroom, I pray that I don’t see blood. With every cramp, I force myself to breathe and to believe that this pregnancy is outside of my control. However long I have with this child, I am confident that God is and will remain greater.
Joy and hope do not suddenly erase or undo pain and sorrow. The feeling of loss is still real and perhaps always will be. But I am learning that it is OK to rejoice in the gift that I have been given and the life that God has created in me. With every kick, I wonder what would have been, while also finding immense comfort and encouragement in what I have right here, right now.
Several weeks ago we had our 20 week anatomy scan. The doctor was thorough and allowed us to soak in every sweet view of our growing baby girl. Never have I appreciated something so deeply. Each appointment I pray that my fears and doubts will be erased. Though they never fully go away, each appointment leaves me more thankful for each passing week.
I am learning that there is life after loss. Our story doesn’t end here.