Central PA is gloriously “Springy” right now. All of the trees look fresh in their baby-leaf greens. The dogwoods are exploding with bloom and the azaleas and tulips are celebrating right alongside. This past week our family has been extremely ill from a vicious stomach bug, but I insisted that we take some walks by the river to enjoy Spring’s bounty. I love all that comes with Spring, the flowers, low humidity, sunshine, and sweet smells. But something strange about myself that very few people know is that I also feel this nervous sadness and anticipation about Spring. I know that it will all be over too quickly. I know that all of those flowers will fade and the days will become too hot. I enjoy everything about Spring and yet while enjoying it despair that it will not last. Whacked huh? So yesterday when I felt sad and my heart felt heavy, I just chalked it up to my whacked out dread of Spring’s death. Then it occurred to me that yesterday would have been our baby’s 2nd birthday.
Almost three years ago, I miscarried at 11 weeks. It was only 11 weeks of life within me and yet that loss was one of the most profound of my life. I am so very grateful for my two beautiful boys, but I still think about the one who came between A and Z. The picture above is of the flowers I planted in honor of that little life. It was amazing to plant these flowers in the dead of Fall and have them bloom exactly when the baby was due to bloom into the world. The following email was written the day I learned that my baby “was no longer viable”. I share my story in order to honor all that our Creator is about…grace, redemption, and LIFE.
Today is a gorgeous Pennsylvania day that celebrates the beginning of all-things-good-about-Fall. After leaving the hospital, Matt and I drove out to Valley Forge Park and spent the day reminiscing on our beginnings as a couple, dreaming about our future, thinking about our many blessings, and grieving the loss of our unborn baby. We are of course grieving on many different levels right now. We are grieving the loss of a little life, but we are also grieving all the plans, dreams, and hopes we had for our family in the coming months and years. We even just purchased a minivan last night in expectation of our growing family.
As a Christian and as a counselor, I know that when loss and tragedy happen, we are given a choice to fight and battle against our knowledge of the goodness of God or to surrender and accept life’s circumstances knowing that we serve a loving God who grieves along with us. I am in the process right now of fighting and surrendering. I know I serve a God who loves me and does not desire death, loss, and tragedy for me. I also have to trust, although I admittedly don’t understand, that the Lord truly will bring all things together for good for those who love Him. Please pray for me as I struggle to surrender and accept that which I do not understand.
I also know that many of you reading this right now have incredible testimonies of surviving your own personal losses and tragedies. Some of you have lost husbands, fathers, mothers, babies… When I made the choice to tell people so early in my pregnancy that we were expecting, many said to me, “Aren’t you fearful of miscarrying and then having to tell everyone?” My reply comes from the knowledge that miscarriages are the number one ungrieved, unrecognized loss of women in the U.S.. I said, “No, I am more fearful of not telling about this little life and having to grieve alone and in silence… should this life be taken from me.”
I am thankful to you all that I am not alone, and I am thankful that I do not have to be silent.
Thank you all for loving me and my family,