Sunday, October 30, 2011

No Storm Can Shake My Inmost Calm

A week ago today, I began to face the possibility, now realized, that my seventh child would not be born into this world.  As anyone might expect, I was scared.  I prayed. I begged God to keep his hand on my little one -- to keep him safe.  I began to dread confirmation of what, somewhere in my heart, I already knew:  the life I had carried inside me was gone. But even as scared as I was of what was to come, there was a stillness inside of me.  I knew that regardless of the medical outcome of the pregnancy, my little one was in God's hands, as was I.  In the stillness, gratitude became my strength.

I am so grateful for my family.  I have a wonderful husband who loves and provides for me and for our children.  I have six beautiful, healthy sons who make me crazy, and bring me such joy.  I have an extended family that has always encouraged, supported, and loved me, even when I have worked at being unlovable.
I am so grateful for all the women in my life who have had miscarriages, and have been so generous with their support.  They have not tried to explain, distract, or comfort.  They have simply acknowledged, and let their own silent triumph be my encouragement.

I am so grateful for kind words from sincere hearts.

I am so grateful that medically, this loss was a simple one:  early, uncomplicated, and without cause to fear future complications.

I am so grateful that in all the ways this could have been worse, it wasn't.

I am so grateful that the sun is shining today.

No storm can shake my inmost calm
While to that rock I'm clinging
Since Christ is Lord of Heav'n and earth
How can I keep from singing?

I am so grateful.

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Into Thy Hands...

I think I knew that something was awry.  I haven't "felt" pregnant for a while.  If what I felt in the early weeks of my other pregnancies was anticipation and joy, then is this not feeling...dread? Emptiness?  And then when my body began to show the signs of what my heart already knew, there was no single event -- an infamous day from which I can move forward.  There was a twinge. A sensation. And then days upon days in which every time I move, my body reminds me of the child I will never hold.  There are familiar pains, but they have been soothed before by an infant nuzzled to my breast.  With passing hours, my eyes see evidence not of a child brought to birth, but of what remains of the child I will never hold, slipping away, lifeless.  How cruel, it seems, that they should look so much the same.

Truth remains, regardless of time or circumstance.  And this is truth:  Life is never an accident.  No matter how brief, no matter if it is lived in full view or passes unseen by any eye of this world, it remains a testimony of love and of divine life.  No life is without purpose. No human circumstance is beyond redemptive grace.  No suffering is without value when surrendered to suffering hands.

I murmur these to myself, gritting my teeth as the piercing pain in my body rises to keep pace with the one in my soul, aching for the child I will never hold.

Let reason speak truth to silence the senseless ravings of grief.  Let faith bind me fast to firm truth, lest I be engulfed by the sweeping tide of loss.  Let wisdom bring vision to clear my eyes of minute, agonizing detail and soften it to a single remembered moment of my time on this earth, when a child I will never hold burst into life from love, and was caught away into eternity, held here always, if only in memory, by the love that gave him life.