Tuesday, October 2, 2012

The Lord Gives and Takes Away

  This will probably one of the hardest (and possibly longest...sorry) posts that I will write, but I feel that sharing this will hopefully encourage others, and ultimately show how great and continuously faithful our Lord is.  If you are friends with me on Facebook, you may have noticed that back in May we announced that we were pregnant with our first little baby.  While we had talked some about feeling ready to possibly start a family, this was still a surprise, a simply wonderful surprise.  We would have never guessed it would happen so fast!

  It was on May 6th, while I was visiting Drew on a work trip in the Outer Banks, we found out we were going to be parents.  After deciding to take a test "just for fun," the positive results appeared in the window in less than 10 seconds.  We were both shocked, thrilled, anxious, scared, excited, nervous, and thankful all at the same time.  To truly confirm the test, I ended up taking 3 more tests and visiting my doctor for a blood test.  They all confirmed it was positive and that our little one would make his/her appearance right around Christmas Eve.

  We waited until Drew was back in town to tell both of our families, and then spread the exciting news to all of our friends.  Every night Drew would sweetly "talk" to the little one inside of me, and we would thank the Lord for this blessing of a new life.  We eagerly anticipated our first ultrasound appointment near the beginning of June.

  Finally the day had come.  According to both the doctor's and our initial calculations, I was supposed to be twelve weeks along for this first ultrasound.  Both Drew and I were nervous and excited to "see" the gift God had blessed us with.  Almost as soon as the ultrasound tech began, something did not seem right.  She called another nurse in the room, and we waited confused as she silently finished the ultrasound.  What we saw on the screen was not a twelve week developed baby, and there was not a heartbeat present.  Before leaving the room, the tech mentioned possibly I was really only six weeks along.  Drew gently comforted me as I battled the tears and emotions that were welling up inside of me.

  We were then sent to another room to wait (for what seemed like an eternity) to see the doctor and hopefully get some answers.  Finally she came in and explained that either one of two things were happening; either our baby was just six weeks developed, or I was experiencing the beginning of a miscarriage.

  The next week was tough and felt like one of the longest.  I kept thinking of Job 1:21 where Job says "the Lord gave and the Lord has taken away; blessed be the name of the Lord!"  That week I experienced no normal signs of miscarriage, but with doctor's blood tests every other day, it was clear to see my pregnancy hormone levels were dropping significantly.

  On the day of our next scheduled ultrasound, June 21st, the normal miscarriage symptoms finally hit.  The cramps got progressively worse and closer together throughout the day.  At the doctor's office, they confirmed what we had already accepted, that I was experiencing a miscarriage.  We had just enough time to pick up some dinner and head back home before I was in severe physical, and emotional pain.  While the emotional hurt would last many weeks and even months, the Lord graciously allowed the physical pain and process to last just a day.

 That was nearly three months ago, but the memories are still so fresh in our minds. We are still grieving and hurting at the thought of not being able to meet our sweet baby here on earth, but I can honestly say the the Lord has used this trial to draw us closer together as a couple and, ultimately closer to our Savior.  Our faith has been strengthened as we have developed a deeper knowledge of what it means to always and completely rest in Him.

  While it is still hard for me to talk about, we have appreciated those who have reached out with little notes, prayers, and comforting words.  That means more than you can know, and we are so grateful for the emotional support from our family and friends.  We are sorrowful that we will not be able to hold our first little one here on earth, but are rejoicing in the fact that a part of us is already eternally praising our Savior in heaven (2 Corinthians 6:10).  We rest in the hope that one day we will see our little one face-to-face.

  Throughout the pregnancy, I strongly felt that the little one I was carrying was a boy.  Drew and I have decided to name the life that the Lord briefly blessed us with here on earth, Benjamin, which means son of the right hand.  In the Bible, Benjamin, the son of Jacob, initially had a name meaning, son of my sorrow, but was later changed to mean son of the right hand.  While we dearly loved this little baby, we know that our heavenly Father loves him even more with an everlasting love.  Naming our baby Benjamin will remind us of the overwhelming promise that the love HE has lavished on us so we should be called children of God (1 John 3:1).

A friend gave me this figurine to help us remember the amazing gift of life that I was able to carry for twelve short, yet beautiful, weeks. 

  Thank you again to all of you who have supported Drew and I in different ways as we continue to walk through this valley.  While it continues to be a difficult time for us, the Lord's goodness, faithfulness, and love to us has been a continuing theme, and we are trusting and resting in His perfect timing and will.  Our Savior is unchanging, and we will continue to believe in Who He says He is.