Saturday, October 6, 2012

We Thought You'd be Here


So, October is Pregnancy and Infant Loss Remembrance Month.  Really, a month for this?  I had mixed feelings about it.  It's not like we can organize walks or 5K runs to promote awareness and raise funds for research and prevention.  I've always hated hearing this from well-wishers, but I guess "it just happens" and there is nothing we can do but remember and hurt.  Well, my baby didn't just happen.  We tried for a year to get that baby.  My baby didn't just happen to get stuck.  God wonderfully and fearfully made my sweet child and kept him tucked right where He wanted him so he could call him home.  Wives who lose their husbands are called widows.  Children who loses their parents are called orphans.  But we-the moms and dads who never get to hold their babies or have to say goodbye too soon- we get no name.  So, in a sense, I guess having our own month is, after all, a consolation prize at best.  The prize reserved for the losers that are pitied.  The prize no one wants, because it's a constant reminder that you didn't win.  Cool.

I decided this week I need to blog more.  I feel like the only thing I ever do is blog about how hard life is right now.  So true.  I guess this is just my safe place to grieve.  But, my life is more than that.  Waiting for what seems like forever for a baby you have never met is just excruciating.  Missing a baby you lost and never knew is confusing and deafening.  Through infertility, with its constant disappointment, and miscarriage, with its heart break, it feels like you are walking on glass.  The glass disappears but the wounds still bleed sometimes.  Yet, my heart is redeemed.  Even if it is a daily battle, I will live my life in reflection of what Christ did for me and the arms that hold us so tighly.

Life has gotten back to {somewhat} normal.  Fall and winter are my absolute favorite times of the year.  I was at Hobby Lobby this week and walked up and down all of the fall/Christmas aisles.  I touched everything.  I just love all things holiday.  Looking forward to pumpkin picking, family time at Thanksgiving, cooler weather, the way my husband looks in sweaters (agh, so good), Christmas, and our anniversary makes me almost forget the hurt of waiting.  When we first lost the baby, Daniel was worried about moving on and felt like doing so and getting better meant we had to forget our baby and leave him behind.  It felt like we were leaving him in a basket on someone's doorstep because we didn't want him.  Oh, how we wanted him.  I didn't really get it then.  I just wanted so badly to try for another baby as soon as possible.  But, now that we are really moving on, I know what that felt to him.  I have never known such bittersweet emotion.  I am glad we are moving on, and that, as time passes, the bad days are stretched further apart and we can love, laugh, and have joy.  But, at the same time, I know my belly isn't growing.  I know it's really over.  I feel like I have to forget it even happened.

We are happy for the most part.  We know God's plan is perfect and his timing is not a surprise to him.  Our marriage seems to get better and better every day.  I have read so much about how miscarriages and infertility strain many marriages, and I was so fearful of that.  I am such a terrible person, which means I can be such a terrible wife.  Daniel takes such tender care of me and I was so worried I wouldn't know how to care for him.  I have never wanted to love more than I have over the last few years. I am on my knees in thanksgiving for the answer to our prayer and desire to build a strong foundation for our family. 

Little things still get at us- baby Christmas stockings.  Knowing I would have been out of my first trimester last week.  Having to get my bridesmaid's dress for my sister's wedding taken in, having had it ordered bigger than needed, with extra length, to accomodate my pregnant belly.  Seeing weekly updates on Facebook of college friends who are due soon- or, even worse- 2 days after I would have been.  Funny to think God saw two precious children being formed at the exact same time, hidden in the womb, yet chose to bring one home to Him.  I just don't understand His ways- but that doesn't mean that they aren't good.  In fact, they are perfect.

He is perfect, but I am not.  It's a hard emotion to hold on to when a barren or empty-armed woman hears that someone else is pregnant or has a small baby.  Not one of us would ever wish this hurt on another person.  Not one of us would wish that person wasn't pregnant.  Not one of us would wish that mom would lose her baby, too, as if to make our pain hurt less (1 Kings 3:16-27 anyone?).  What's hard is thinking, "Why does she get to have a baby and I can't" and "What did I do wrong?"  I know the Lord doesn't necessarily work that way, but the questions are there and I can't make them go away or answer them.

I guess so much of the hurt comes with knowing what would have been.  We thought our baby would have been here by now.  We never thought we'd have to struggle with infertility.  We never thought we'd have to have an ectopic pregnancy. We never thought we'd have to wait even longer now.  Part of me feels like we waited forever to try and have baby.  Did we wait too long?  I have always wanted to be a mommy, but, honestly, early in our marriage I didn't feel like I was ready.  I didn't know how to be a good wife and didn't think I knew how to be a good mom then either.  I wasn't ready to share my husband with anyone else.  I wanted him all to myself.  Was God calling us to have babies then and we just were too sinful to hear it?  Has our time come and gone?

I heard on the radio yesterday morning a song by Wes King.  I have never heard of him- but I read he wrote it when he and his wife were struggling with infertility.  I was late to school because I couldn't see past my tears to drive.  I know it is from the point of view of a Dad, but Daniel would say every single word of this song.  I feel so badly that I have to make this man wait to be a Daddy- but, I know that he will be such a good one when we do have a baby.  In fact, the best there can be. I wouldn't say this song is one of those hit songs I want to listen to over and over again (and I actually just really love the melody), but it's just one that says everything on your mind.  Enjoy.

video


We thought you'd be here by now
Your mother and I
We're praying through our tears that somehow
We might hear your sweet cry
Have we waited too long
It's getting harder to be strong
Is there something we've done wrong

But if you like dancing
I'll make it rain rhythm, and rhyme, and melodies, child
And if you like dreaming
Your mother will make your imagination run wild
Somehow, we thought you'd be here by now

We have a room just for you upstairs
It's right down the hall
So we'll be close should you ever get scared
We'll come when you call
It's a room full of stories
Waiting to be told
Longing to behold

And if you like laughing
I'll paint you a circus of smiles and ferris wheels, dear
And if you like living
Your mother will fly you to worlds both far and near

Somehow...

I never knew the silence could make me so deaf
I never knew that I could miss someone I've never met
Miss someone I haven't met yet

We'll be waiting

But if you like dancing
I'll make it rain rhythm, and rhyme, and melodies, child
And if you like dreaming
Your mother will make your imagination run wild
Somehow, we thought you'd be here by now

October 15th is the official Day for Pregnancy and Infant Loss Remembrance Month and you're supposed to light a candle at 7pm local time and leave it burning for one hour- it's called the International Wave of Light.  The result is a continuous chain of light spanning the globe for a 24 hour period in honor and remembrance of the children who die during pregnancy or shortly after birth.  I suppose I'll light one.  I've got nothing to lose-it's already gone.
Gone, but redeemed.

3 comments:

  1. Katie,
    You don't know me and if we were to pass in a crowded mall you'd never give me a second glance but I too share your grief.

    My son was born in August 2002. He passed while at his baby sitter's house 26 weeks later due to SIDS.

    Two years later, I suffered a miscarriage and still, 10 years later haven't been able to conceive a child.

    I am a Christian but I often fight with my God because I don't think he understands how much he has taken from me. I have a hard time believing that a kind and loving God wouldn't know how badly I need to be a mother. A true and gentle God wouldn't snatch the one thing in my life that meant the most to me.

    I am vice president of H.A.I.L. (Healing After Infant Loss) - https://www.facebook.com/groups/healingafterinfantloss/

    I've been involved in this organization since my son died, even though I've known it's founder since I was 1991.

    In the past ten years I have come a very long way in my grief journey and my relationship with my God has been tumultuous to say the least. Reading your words these past few months has helped. Thank you for that. And please know that your candle will not be alone.

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  2. Katie, I am so sorry for everything that you and your husband continue to go through on your journey to be parents and I am so very sorry to hear about your baby. I'm 29, and my husband and I prayerfully/peacefully/painfully (depending on the day) hope to be mom and dad. We've been trying for our baby for 2 and a half years now. There is such a struggle with infertility, and I feel so blessed for what I do have (my husband, job, love and support of family, nieces and nephews to spoil and love), but I want to be a mom so bad. God has been with me on this journey, and with Him there is peace, but it is so difficult. Watching others (family, sisters, cousins, friends, co-workers) become pregnant and have healthy babies, and being so happy that they have this incredible gift, and knowing the true value, because you want it so badly. Knowing what an incredible blessing he or she would be. Reading your blog has helped me, just knowing there are other Christian women out there who put their faith in God amidst the pain. Thank you. Prayers for you both!

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  3. Katie, a friend sent your blog to me. I'm very thankful she did. So much of what you wrote is what I hold in my heart but try to battle those questions down. Especially when I question God and what was wrong with me I couldn't have my baby. I too had an ectopic pregnancy, which ruptured. This happened this past October 2012. In my Catholic Faith life begins at conception, and even though my child was only an embryo it was a life I held. Thank you for sharing something so personal. In prayer in faith we find comfort. God bless.

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