Our November Baby: When grief and peace kiss.

Sometimes I feel like I haven’t grown spiritually at all since becoming a mom. Actually, usually I feel dumber. Mushy-brained. I think back on my “glory days” and my ability to sling theology better than my seminary husband (his words, not mine!). Now on my best days, I can maybe remember the sermon from Sunday or the psalm I read that week, but can’t remember the last podcast I listened to or non-mommy book I read. Sometimes people use those big words that used to roll off my tongue so naturally, and have to really think about what that word means. I about gave up caring about sanctification all together until recently, when God revealed all that he was doing in the silent, mundane days of quiet faithfulness…

I experienced my second miscarriage in March. I was about 7.5 weeks along and we had JUST announced the pregnancy to EVERYONE that week. After my first miscarriage (in 2011), I didn’t want to keep my early pregnancy a secret. A life was a life and I wanted to celebrate my tiny, tiny babe in a pro-choice world that typically doesn’t acknowledge pregnancy until a heartbeat is heard or a bump emerges. I wanted to share that there was nothing to be afraid of. I knew that if I were to suffer a miscarriage, it would be an opportunity to share the hope I have and that women don’t have to feel ashamed or pretend that their baby didn’t exist. God answered my prayer and I was not afraid when I saw the first signs of loss. This being my second miscarriage, I knew exactly what to expect: I knew those lower back contractions beforehand, I knew what I would see during, I knew how I would feel after. There was so much calm surrounding the birth of this tiny, lifeless baby. I was able to focus in prayer, pleading and trusting that the Father was holding my child safe. I felt so honored that God allowed me to witness life and used me to bring another into the kingdom. There was just so much peace and so much assurance. Since I have two children, sadness was definitely different this time. Instead of grieving the unknown, you grieve the known. I knew the laughter and the sound of their voices and the sweet snuggles and all the milestones: things I would miss out on with this little one. But God was so good and comforted me in the sadness and has continued to be good to me since. I realized how Jesus has been growing my dependance on him and my faith in his word over the years. He shepherded me into a response that was so different than my response 3 1/2 years ago, and I am so thankful. Everyday, the Lord is continuing to align my heart with his and giving me a deep-rooted hope in his promises. It’s getting me thru each day way more than the definition of “Expiation” ever did. Praise God.

“Its been 11 days since we lost our November 2nd baby. Grief makes the days slower I think, so it feels longer than 11 days. But to the rest of the spinning-round world I’m 9 weeks pregnant. We still get lots of “congratulations!” or comments on the need for a minivan, and I entertain them for a second, saying “Thank you,” because I genuinely am so thankful for their celebration. (In an age where most of the world won’t attribute life and value to a baby the size of a blueberry, I praise God for the joyful response we got at the announcement of our teeny tiny babe.) But of course I have to gently correct them and assure them not to feel bad. How can you know to be sensitive in this sort of situation? And I assure them that we are doing ok, but usually there is so much more that is encompassed by the words, “we’re doing ok.” I want to tell them how we are so thankful for the life that God created and that we witnessed. I want to tell them how honored I feel that, even though I don’t get to be “mommy,” God used me to add another to the kingdom! I want to tell them how empty we felt when we dug a small hole to bury the one we were so excited to meet. And how we mourn not experiencing the joys of raising him or her. And I want to share how so many grieved with us. Watched our boys. Provided us with meals when I felt too numb to cook. Because its really true: we celebrate in community and we mourn in community. And I want to say how so very thankful I am today. Next Sunday is a reminder that our savior stands in victory over death and none shall be taken from his hand. Even my tiny blueberry is safe because of the Firstborn’s sacrifice. What is sown in weakness, is raised in the power of God! And so as I pack away the few special items I got for baby in the earliest days, I remember my hope, and its not here. And I remember my sovereign God, who is so good to me. Come and see what the Lord has done for us!” (March 29, 2015)

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