On Saturday December 27th while my sister was still sleeping and my Mom & Tim were out at the store, Joel and I slipped to the dollar store in town and bought a test. We usually try to avoid them in general but that’s a story for another time. We had avoided them on Christmas Eve & Day thanks to advice from infertility friends. The reason it was justified this time was that there were only 2 days remaining in VA for the holidays. Even though me being 2 days late didn’t trick us at this point, we still wanted to know before we left. My thought was if it did happen to be this month I would hate to leave and have missed our chance to share in person.
We paid the extra and got THE brand… ya know the one we won’t doubt if it’s negative.
We checked out feeling like the cashier was getting such a personal glimpse into our lives.
We drove to my mom’s house and I took the test.
I left the room and waited the 2 minutes.
I went back to find what I already knew….. we weren’t pregnant.
What I didn’t know was why I wasn’t crying.
For the first month… there were no tears.
Three days later we were at Joel’s brother's.
After dinner, the results of the test were confirmed.
I quickly returned to conversation with my expecting sister-in-law.
There were no tears.
Even that night as I went to bed, I tried to will myself to cry.
I eventually did… long after husband was fast asleep.
And again at 4am when I woke up with intense pain.
But the tears weren’t because there was no baby.
The tears were because there were no tears to start with.
(I know any of you men still hanging with me are laughing thinking that only a woman could cry because she didn’t cry. I would echo that with Only a woman dying for a baby could cry because she didn’t cry.)
You would think I’d be happy that it was getting easier.
You would think I’d enjoy the smooth landing let down.
You would think I’d count myself as “fully content in my season.”
I tried to blame it on the testing.
I tried to blame it on us not being at home.
I tried to blame it on “being in a good place.”
Deep down I knew all of that was bologna.
In all my efforts of not giving in to the hope of a Christmas miracle baby...
of not clinging to the confidence of 2014 being our year
… I had given up.
I had forgot to hope.
I had forgot to expect.
I had let myself go numb.
I didn’t plan to. I never wanted to. But it happened.
Why am I telling you this?
Because when I blog on this space, it can be really easy to show you the hopeful side of myself. You catch bits and pieces of my life. I know from reading other blogs that sometimes it seems as if the writer always has it together. (I’m sure you know from my posts that I don’t always have it together ha! Most days I’m crying and typing at the same time.) But some comments I’ve received make me wonder if I give you the impression that I never lose hope. That’s not true.
It’s somewhat like reading Abraham and Sarah’s story.
You can read the beginning that she was barren.
You can read the part when God promised Abraham an heir.
You can read verses such as "he believed the Lord and He counted it to him as righteousness.”
You can go on to read the part where Sarah has a baby at 90+ years.
You can even take it further and see Abraham having so much faith that he’s willing to sacrifice that long-awaited son.
If you look at the beginning and the end, it’s easy to feel like a failure.
It’s easy to wonder why can’t I have that much faith?
But what’s often left out is the time when they took matters into their own hands.
There was a day in the middle when Abraham and Sarah gave up hope that God would make good on His promise. With Sarah’s suggesting, Abraham took her servant and conceived Ishmael.
It didn’t void the faith he’d had before. It didn’t prevent the faith he had after.
But sometimes faith is hard to come by.
There was a moment when he didn’t hope.
And if every thought and conversation of the two of them were recorded, I would bet there was more than one moment.
This isn’t the part most like to think about. To be honest when we finally arrive at a family of 3, I don’t want to be thinking about months like December. But the reality is… they happen.
Because we’re human. Because we are imperfect everyday. Because we need Jesus.
It’s never too late to pick hope back up.
It’s never too late to decide that you are going to pray expectantly.
January, I vowed would be completely different. And it was.
I built up my hopes.
I let myself think of the perfect announcement.
I told myself that my cycle wouldn’t come.
I prayed and hoped and expected and waited.
The let down wasn’t easy and the tears came quickly and fiercely and repeatedly.
I wouldn’t trade it.
I’m starting off February the same way.
Despite the statistics told to us last week and the draining emotions of my devastating crash.
This week I’m smiling at the hope that this month could be the one.
Just this week I’ve read Emily Ley’s birth stories and watched What to Expect When Expecting.
I’ve thought of potential announcements and dreamed of a Happy Anniversary baby.
I’ve reread my post from September on getting my hopes up.
I’ve prayed and begged and believed that February…. it could be our month.
Today I ask you to do the same.
Don’t let yourself grow numb.
Don’t let yourself grow bitter.
Know that He’s listening.
Pick your hope up again…. and again… and again.
But I will hope continually, and I will praise You yet more and more.
Psalm 71. 14