I am bearing my soul today. I am sharing a story of miscarriage, loss, and what I found on this journey that so many have lived through.
I was on my knees, crying out with a pain I had never experienced before.
White knuckled holding onto the washing machine, I tried to push past the pain and lift myself back up but before I could completely raise myself, the pain came again and now I am lying on the floor.
Something was wrong, something bad was happening. I scooted myself to the laundry room wall and leaned against it as another wave of pain began.
Thoughts raced back to the night I had prayed and asked God to let me know the gender of my little one. It seemed like such an innocent request. I had prayed this prayer before when I was pregnant with my first child.
In the dream, God showed me a little strawberry blonde girl sitting at a counter and I was making her a peanut butter and jelly sandwich. My daughter was born with the prettiest strawberry blonde hair.
With my second child, I prayed the same prayer. That night, I saw my older daughter and the kitchen counter, and next to her was a sweet blonde little girl and again I was making peanut butter and jelly sandwiches. My second daughter decided to come early and showed up blonde and tiny.
To ask God this again seemed normal.
So, with this third lamb, I asked for the dream. I did dream. I dreamt of both my girls sitting at the counter and next to my little blonde cutie sat a little boy. A little boy with curly black hair and the most cherubic smile that you have ever seen in your life. I asked him what he would like for his lunch and he looked at me with that cherubic smile and began to fade away.
At the time I didn’t think much of the fading, I was focused on the fact that I was having a boy! But now leaning against the wall, I realized what was happening and that dream was to prepare me for heartbreak.
Understanding what was happening, I let out a scream and got to my feet then to the phone to call my husband to take me to the hospital.
Once at the hospital, the events started to blur until the ultrasound. The tech was moving the wand and making the clicking sounds as they do. I remember looking at her face it told the answer before I could ask. “Is my baby ok?”, I asked. Eyes averting mine, she said, “The doctor will need to speak with you.”
My baby was not ok. My baby boy had left this world. The doctor came into the room to confirm it. I was 13 weeks when he left on March 13, 2000.
A day later, I returned home in a daze.
I returned home to my sweet girls and I began to go through the motions of motherhood while my heart felt shattered. I was so thankful for my precious girls I knew I had to just move forward.
Guilt began to overwhelm me because I longed for this child that would never be. I wanted to grieve but didn’t really know how. I was afraid that once I allowed myself – I would not be able to stop it or control it.
I felt lost. I felt this void in my heart from this child I had never met. I did have the dream of who he was and I fiercely held onto him through that. Some days I moved through the day fine and other days – I just didn’t.
I couldn’t let go… why couldn’t I let go and just move on? Soon, I just began handling the days, I would imagine taking the hurt and guilt and putting it into a box that I would live on a shelf in my heart. Closed, locked, put away.
The days turned into months and soon our lives had the opportunity to make a move.
My husband received the opportunity to work in Long Beach, California. As difficult as it was to leave the friends we had made and our church family – we welcomed the adventure and the real chance for my husband to have a true father/son relationship with his dad who lived in Laguna Beach.
We set off for our sunny southern California and found a home in Huntington Beach. As the days and years went by, I found myself busy raising my daughters and volunteering at every opportunity in church and in the girls’ schools.
Life went on and I found myself dealing with severe pain in my knee from the car wreck I had when I was 18. It became increasingly more difficult to walk and through the help of a doctor who later became a friend, I went on a diet program and lost 50 pounds. Taking the weight off did help some but not enough.
Through a series of events, I found myself unable to get around without the use of a cane. I was 30 years old and relied on a wheelchair or cane to get around. This made taking care of my girls and having some sort of life difficult.
After searching for answers, I walked into the right doctor’s office. He figured out how to help me.
During the wreck, I broke my femur and it healed back with a 15-degree angle that caused my patella to ride to the lateral side. The doctor took off the femoral head and replaced it in a partial knee replacement surgery.
While I was in surgery, he also put a “button” on the backside of my patella to confine it to the artificial femoral head. The surgery was unique (at least at the time) because my tibia was not disturbed.
After a time of recovery, my thoughts went back to the idea of having another child. I shared my heart with my husband, and he felt the same. So, we prayed together and laid our requests before Him.
We went about life.
Months passed and it was Christmas time. I joined a sweet group of friends for a girls’ night out. As we dined and shared life, the gal who pulled the group together for this fun event stood up at the end of the table.
“I have a basket here filled with slips of paper. They are significant scriptures that surround the birth of Christ. The basket made its way around the table and I pulled my slip of paper out. We were to take turns and read them out loud once everyone received one.
I carefully unfolded the paper to see the scripture I would read. “Blessed is she who has believed that the Lord would fulfill his promises to her!” Luke 1:45
As I read the scripture in my mind, all of a sudden in my heart came these words…. “I am giving you what you asked me for. I am giving you a son. This is my promise to you.”
Finish reading the rest of this story next Sunday, there is so much more heartbreak and happiness to share.