I knew I wanted to be a mother for as long as I can remember.
With the news of being pregnant with our first baby, I just about lost my mind with joy. I told anyone who wanted to know…and even some who didn’t.
Just a few short weeks later, my baby died. I miscarried.
All the hopeful words and well-intentioned, but often ill-placed platitudes only intensified my grief.
So when I found out I was pregnant again, I told no one except my husband. When our second precious baby died just a few weeks later, I felt another part of me went with her. Yes, she was a she. After many tests and lack of explanations we found we were pregnant again. This time, we decided to tell only our closest friends; friends that prayed. We just needed support and prayers, that’s all. When our third baby died just weeks later I was at the end of my rope, literally. I couldn’t take one more drop of pain.
The explanation was that our child had chromosomal problems and was not healthy. I thought having an answer would help, it didn’t.
Grief is one crazy monster.
I needed help but withdrew from life and isolated from those I cared about most. I remember our pastor standing at the door with flowers and I shook my head no. I just couldn’t face anyone. I was angry that my body kept failing me and equally ashamed. I felt defective.
After some months had passed my husband and I went to a local adoption seminar and began the adoption process.
I knew we were meant to be parents and I didn’t think adoption would be the way, but who was I to second-guess God (anymore than I already had).
Weeks later, I drove to work and felt like my orange juice was like cement in my stomach. I pulled over to allow it to “exit” and got back in the car. I never had orange juice effect me like that before.
As I drove, I processed the morning events. No fever. Puke. WHAT DAY OF THE MONTH IS IT? I checked my calendar and “Aunt Flo”, as my friend calls it, was late. Moments later I was in a dirty gas station bathroom with a positive pregnancy test.
I cried out to God, “God, what are you doing to me??? We’ve done this before. I barely made it through my last miscarriage. Help.”
I went to my specialist who confirmed my test. Yes, I was pregnant, again.
Eight months later I held my healthy child, Jacob, in my arms. Two years later, I held my healthy child, Caleb, in my arms.
God used my motherhood journey to teach me what the word surrender meant.
There is a distinct difference between, “I quit” and “I surrender”. The source.
“I quit” – the source is self.
“I surrender” – the source is God.
The LORD gave and the LORD has taken away; may the name of the LORD be praised.” Job 1:21
God placed adoption in my heart years ago because God was preparing me. Two years ago, my husband and I adopted our oldest, Jayson. And what’s even more special is that Jayson, who is a grown adult, willfully chose to adopt us too. Jake and Cal didn’t get a choice whether they get to call me, “Mom” but Jayson did, and does.
I can’t imagine my life without my three babes in heaven or my three honeys here on earth. Being a mother changed me, in ways I never expected.
I wanted to share part of my story because I want to hear your story. If you struggle with infertility, I want you to know that you’re not alone. I also want to encourage you that your story hasn’t ended and even more importantly, share your story. Don’t quit, but do surrender your life to God. He’s the most reliable friend I’ve ever had.
Was it easy or difficult for you to become a parent? What’s your story?
**Steph can be found blogging at www.encouragedinheart.org or on Facebook at Stephanie Fink or on her Facebook page Encouraged in Heart – Stephanie Fink. She loves big hair, big cups of coffee and big bear hugs.