For those of you who know us well and have journeyed with us these last 4 years we have tried to add a new member to our family, you will know how hard it has been for us. You may have seen the tears, angry outbursts, hopelessness, and grief. You may have listened as we tossed and turned the different options for growing our family around from IVF to foster care to adoption. You may have held our hand as we lost another little life to miscarriage August last year.
I want to take this moment to say thank you. Thank you from the bottom of my heart. Honestly it has been such a long journey and I still have days where I can't believe we are here, about to welcome a baby into the world.
Thank you for the meals you cooked us.
Thank you for the play dates with James to give us some rest.
Thank you for listening even when you had no idea what to say in response.
Thank you for crying with us.
Thank you for encouraging us.
Thank you for distracting us when we needed time out.
But most of all, I want to say to those who are still on the journey, to those who are still waiting for their 'rainbow' baby or even their first baby, to those who have suffered loss through miscarriage, still birth and child loss - I want to say to you that I love you so much and my heart is so full for you. I have felt your pain. I have walked where you walked - perhaps not exactly the same steps but a similar journey just the same. I just want to be able to love you in any way I can and yet often I have no idea how, despite having been there myself.
I want to encourage you not with empty words and promises that it gets better or that eventually you will receive your long waited for child. The harsh reality is that sometimes this just isn't the truth of it. I want to encourage you to discover who you are in the middle of the journey. While looking back at old blog posts I found two that brought to light how I spent time doing this just before we found out we were pregnant this 4th time around.
One post I wrote was on Identity. It looked at where we get our identity from which is particularly relevant when we feel like failures due to our lack of being able to conceive and carry a child to full term. Another post was about Reflecting and making changes. I encourage you to have a read and perhaps take this time to really evaluate how you are doing and where you are going. I'm not talking about increasing your self image or trying to justify things. I'm hoping that you will be able to discover more about who God made you to be and who you are in Him. I'm hoping that you will draw closer to Him and get your needs met by Him and not by the flimsy things of this world that can fall away in an instant. I'm hoping that despite what heartache you are currently going through that you will find rest in this time of reflection, that you will find space to grieve and space to process. I'm hoping that by doing these things and taking the time to really look at your life that you will be able to come to a new understanding and a new hope for whatever the future holds, knowing that God's plan truly is the best possible for you no matter how much we want things to be different sometimes. It made me laugh seeing a post two months before we discovered we were pregnant this time around that I had written about putting a pause on our fertility journey and how because of what I had been doing by reflecting and looking at identity, that I was ok with taking this time out. I am not in anyway suggesting the dreaded "just stop trying to get pregnant and it will happen". I know this isn't helpful and don't believe it for a second! I just find it a blessing that when I took the focus off ME and put it on HIM that I became better equipped to walk the path we had to walk.
I pray that you will find some rest and peace dear ones. I pray that things happen for you as you dream they would. But most of all I pray for you to be able to still find the joy and blessing that life is even in the midst of the trials and pain. I pray that you will find there is still life to be lived and that it doesn't have to be taken over by your pain. There is a release waiting for you, a God who wants to carry that pain and burden if you will let Him. So take a leap and let go. Face it and then allow Him to comfort you as you mourn and deal with the hard times. I hope that soon there will be a time when you can look back and see your journey through different eyes, as a journey that built your character.
We also rejoice in our suffering, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope.
And hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us.
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