December 10, 2012

In The Land of The Living

It’s Christmastime and my mind keeps wandering to death.

I should be thinking about baby JESUS born in a manger and being born the hope of the world, but instead I keep thinking about death.  

The death of my six babies and the death of a dream that I had to be a mom in the ways I wanted to be a mom.

I hate death.  If I could, I would spit in its face and send it to its own grave.

Needless to say, going back to counseling has been a needed way to spend my time.  Each time I go I ask the question, “Is this normal?”  And each time Roger says, “It’s normal for you.”  He reminds me that this journey is complicated and taxing and could destroy the faintest of hearts.  

So often I would like for nothing more than to melt into my own tears.  To not feel.  To not know loss on such a level as this.  To walk away- not from my life- but from the pain of it all.  To lock it up in a box and sink it to the bottom of the ocean.  To wake up one day and not have a thought of death and go to bed the same night thinking only of life. of babies who live.

Right now I wish I could fast forward through this part of life.  I want to be out of the baby-making, family-building season and I want to know where GOD will land us in this area of life.  I want what feels so present and raw now to be distant and dulled like I hope it will then.

Through all of our losses, I have come to find that suffering is not equally distributed and that grief is a bittersweet way to connect with my LORD on a very intimate level. 

It’s not what I was hoping for and it certainly was not anything I was looking for, but here I am.  

I am in the land of the living amidst my thoughts of death.  And every year and month and week and sometimes day, I am learning what it looks like to walk in the land of the living while I mourn. to feel in the land of the living while I wish I could go numb. to have joy in the land of the living while my heart is breaking.

“I am still confident of this: I will see the goodness of the LORD in the land of the living.”  
Psalm 27:13

December 3, 2012

Our Sixth Glory Baby

Dear Baby,

It’s been almost two weeks since you were due to be here.  As I was busy in the kitchen on Thanksgiving day, I thought of you.  I could not help but think how much I wish I was laid up in a hospital somewhere reveling in your arrival and not thinking at all about food or table settings.

If there was a hallway that ran from my heart to my mind, it would be worn with thoughts of you. I do believe that one of the hardest points about being here without you is finding the time and space to grieve you.  Because all I wanted to do that day- and the days since- is stop doing all that is expected or needed of me and grieve you.

And to grieve this body of mine that continues to fail me.  If I were not grateful for my eyes to see, my arms to hold, my ears to hear, and all of the other things GOD has granted me, I would condemn this body and wish to see it go.

But I want you to know that even in your death I have seen the goodness of GOD.  For HE has not been slack in HIS promises to make much of HIMSELF while working for my good.  

I found my voice after you left and while I am still learning how to use it, so much good has come in the aftermath.  

Nearly two years ago, I began to piece together thoughts on who GOD is in my suffering and grief.  All that time I went back and forth on those thoughts- tweaking them here and there but still not sure how or when they would be used or shared.  And then after we lost you, I was flooded with GOD’s truth about HIMSELF and the words poured out of me until there was nothing left to be said.  Nothing left to write.  Nothing left to question or wonder about.  Those thoughts became the message I got to share with a room filled with women who were panting to know GOD’s goodness.

The week we lost you, we invited friends to come and sit with us and so many times they would say to us “There is so much peace in this place.”  How strange to find peace in the darkest of hours.  But I felt this peace too.  It did not make sense to me, but I was thankful for the gift of it.

I marveled to so many how good GOD was to me in the timing of losing you.  HE knew that my heart- and my faith- could not stand up to the despair that came had we lost another baby soon after a fifth.  HE knew that I would need the time to become well-acquainted with who HE is in our suffering so that when we did lose you, I could only point myself and others back to the truth of who HE is, even in the midst of our loss and despair.

I am more broken because of you.  And I am less hopeful because of you.  But I have tasted and seen more of my FATHER’s goodness because of you.

You have changed me.  For better or worse, I am not the same me I was nine months ago.  

Christmas will be here soon and while many will not know, I will know that you were supposed to be here with us.  

And I will wish that you were.

I always will.

With abiding love for you,