An open letter about our journey to parenthood

What you’re reading now is possibly the tenth version of how I’ve considered starting this blog. Maybe because it’s been so long since I’ve posted, maybe because this very post is the one I’ve been thinking about for almost a year, maybe because I haven’t even decided if I’m going to publish this yet at all…maybe.

Football season started today, and right on queue, this beautiful open-window-worthy weather has rolled into east Texas reminding us all that Autumn is on her way. This is typically my favorite time of year. I zealously bust out thin sweaters and cute scarves to wear if for no other reason than to will the cool weather into town. But this weekend I’ve felt what I can only equate to an emotional bracing taking place. A breath being held. A stiffness in my heart.

This time last year my world was so hopeful, so full, and above all so excited for the future as just mere months prior Justin and I decided after four years of marriage to go ahead and start trying for a family. I gleefully removed foods from my diet, added books to my nightstand, and documented small moments of the journey we were embarking on. I was certain that in no time at all we would be well on our way to parenthood and these treasures would warm our hearts down the road.

And really, it didn’t take long. On a chilly October afternoon, after four months of trying, that second line showed up. Justin was working late and I somehow managed to contain myself long enough to surprise him the next morning with the news.  We were over the moon.

Sadly, this pregnancy, along with the two after in the following six months, had gone almost before they’d come. And now I sit almost a year later still grieving these losses, desperately wanting to be a mother, and overwhelmed by the change a year can bring.

Scripture often follows the plees of the afflicted as they fall into desperate cries for healing and acknowledgment and as they rise into songs of praise. And as I’ve learned to identify with the lost, the defeated, the barren, and the heartbroken, God has also taught me to see myself in the redeemed, the comforted, the forgiven and the freed.

This letter will be messy, it will be imperfect and scattered, but it’s the best I can do and I’m all right with that at this point. I have been so overwhelmed with encouragement and a sense of community as I’ve seen so many reach a place of vulnerability and share their struggle with a seemingly invisible audience. It takes a lot, and it’s possibly why it’s taken me so long – but the tugging on my heart has grown far too strong to ignore anymore. Why? Because that audience is real. Because for those of you who are friends with me on social media, family to me, and who are even perfect strangers who have allowed the world into your circle of grief and loss – I am grateful.  It was the realization that I wasn’t alone in all of this that helped me through restless nights. It was the understanding that what is happening to me, isn’t so unbelievably rare that pressed me towards hope. It was the knowledge that I was comforted by your story, that has pushed me to share mine.

The amount that the Lord has taught me through this journey is vast, and the fact that in His goodness He’s allowed me to see these lessons, is awe-inspiring. I hope to post more in the future about these things. But for now this letter was about ripping off the proverbial bandaid and allowing you into my mess. It was about being overcome with a need to tell someone out there reading now, that I understand.

The one bit I’ll leave you with is this…regardless of how cliché or how many times you’ve heard it-and regardless of what season of life you find yourself in- the beautiful truth is that God is Good. That His timing, friend…is GOOD. With tears streaming down my face I can attest to the fact that it may not always feel that way, but this is the time that we are pushed to a place where we rely on the creator and not our emotions to trust in the truths we find in scripture. Never more than this day have I yearned to be a mama. Never more have sweet cries of little ones reached into the depths of my heart and pulled out more sorrow and more joy at once than I ever thought possible. But friend, never more has God ever comforted me, and never more has He made himself known as the stronghold in the storms of my life.

Though I run the risk of this sounding like some horribly predictable awards speech on cable television, I’m going to ignore that possibility and close this out with a few thank you’s. To my husband, who has held strong against the ups and downs of the roller coaster we’ve found ourselves on and who's embraces persisted stronger than the tears late into the night. Babe, you will be an amazing daddy someday, and never when I said ‘I do’ did I realize the valleys we would travel through hand in hand, but the gratitude I have that it is with you and no one else is unimaginable. My Parents, who have truly met me where I am –wherever I happened to be- in this process. For pouring love, prayers, and understanding over me, for asking the hard questions, and for being the grandparents to my unborn littles. My sister, Rebecca…for coming alongside me mere months after an unimaginable loss of a newborn, and allowing me a safe place to grieve while constantly reminding me a life is a life, no matter how small. My sweet Grandmother who, second only to myself, was the first to know the moment I learned I was going to be a mama – and who has never once stopped praying for my heart, holding me near in thought, and interceding at the cross for my future.  And lastly my friends who have surrounded me with support, tears, laughter, and love at every step. I am humbled by the fact that God has found me worthy of your friendships, and I am so grateful for your prayers, encouragement, listening ears, and support over this last year.

For those of you wondering, YES we are still trying! Yes by the grace of God and our availability to both traditional and alternative medicines we know what may be causing these losses physically. Yes, I have an incredible OB, RE, and staff of nurses who know me all too well and are doing everything they can to walk us through this process medically. And Yes, we are okay. We covet your prayers as we enter our third round of treatment this next month, and we simply cannot wait to tell you when we are expecting again!

I can feel a weight lifting from me as I near the end of this letter. Not because this has been some secret I’ve felt I had to hide, but because it’s felt like a burden that I needed to share. Thank you for reading, thank you for listening, I’ll post again sometime soon.

With love,

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