My Journey from Miscarriage to Motherhood Day 1: The Dream
It started way back in some of my earliest recollections—the desire to have my own children someday. I distinctly remember shoving baby dolls inside my shirt while pretending to be an expectant mom. I also remember the numerous times my siblings and I would play “church,” and my sister and I spent the majority of our pretend services tending to our baby dolls. We would rock them, feed them those fake milk bottles, and take them in and out, depending on their imagined behavior. Always the dream in the back of my mind was that one day I wouldn’t have to pretend anymore.
I also have early memories of fighting with my sister over who got to hold the baby of whoever was unfortunate enough to have us haggle over their little one. We would even use our watches and try to equally divide the time we got to spend with the baby. I remember walking around with babies perched on my little girl hips, and even sheepishly remember dropping one. Thankfully, the baby was just fine, but I’m sure I was trying to show off my motherly instincts, seriously lacking at the ripe age of seven.
But in my heart of hearts, I never even considered my journey to motherhood wouldn’t be easy. I never gave any thought to the answer of “three or four” when asked how many children I wanted some day. It never crossed my mind that maybe, just maybe, God would not make the path to my dreams easy and without heartache or loss. It’s perfectly normal to have dreams, but sometimes the reality is not what we had hoped for, and God’s story for us often looks different than we imagined.
Infertility isn’t a new concept; we read about it in the beginning of our Bible. The word we often read in Scripture for infertility is “barren;” it refers to “not reproducing”—much along the same lines as infertility. Many women in the Bible are referred to as being barren, at least for a period of time. Sarah, Rebekah, Rachel, Hannah and Elisabeth are just a few of those well known to us. Many of them waited until they were old women before God removed their barrenness and opened their womb. We don’t usually hear today of women in their 70s, 80s or 90s giving birth to a child. God allowed this at that time to proclaim the story of His faithfulness and display His power for people to understand that He alone was, and is, God.
Maybe you’re reading this and infertility isn’t a part of your story, but I am certain you know someone who has experienced it. Maybe they eventually gave birth to their own children, or maybe they never did, but God led them to adoption. Maybe you know all too well the hurt and disappointment that comes from getting your period, month after month with no hope in sight. Whatever your story is, our prayer is that through this study you may develop understanding and compassion for those called to wait or surrender their dream of having their own children. The hard reality is that God doesn’t promise us children, but what He does promise is to be with us no matter how hard our journey may be. This doesn’t erase our disappointment or heartache, but it does invite Him into those painful wounds of our hearts. Scripture makes this very comforting promise to us in Psalm 147:3: “He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds.” This is a promise we can cling to when life looks a lot different than we imagined. God is with us, friends, and He longs to walk through each part of our journey with us—even in this.
And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purposs. (Romans 8:28, ESV)
Delight yourself in the LORD, and he will give you the desires of your heart. (Psalm 37:4)
Now to him who is able to do far more abundantly than all that we ask or think, according to the power at work within us. (Ephesians 3:20)