Today is February 1st, a day I have anxiously awaited. But only for a short time did I anxiously await this day in a good way. For many long months, I knew in the back of my head, that this day would be hard. Then, as soon as we entered January, I couldn't get it out of my thoughts. I honestly tried everything I could think of, but the approaching date, and my fear of it, consumed me.
Today is my due date with the first baby we lost.
I really haven't ever had a very hard time getting pregnant. Last Summer, after losing the baby, I clung to the hope that by the time I reached this day, I'd have another little one inside me kicking away. Yes, the day would still be hard, but the kicks inside me would remind me of God's ultimate plan and mercy, and would make the day a bit easier....bittersweet. I thought for sure this would be the case and sure enough, I was pregnant again a few months later.
With that pregnancy, everything seemed so right. Everything made sense. Yes, my miscarriage had been hard, but I knew God was extending grace and in some strange way, I knew that had I not miscarried, I'd never have had the baby I was then carrying. Mercy seemed so obviously handed down to us, straight from heaven. Though the pain from the miscarriage was still immense, in a hard way, it all made sense.
Then I lost that baby too. I can not even put into words how crushed I felt. Everything that had made sense suddenly didn't. I begged God for mercy when I thought I was losing the baby. And when I did lose the baby, I wondered what that mercy would look like, or if it would even help pull me all the way out of my sorrow. Yes, I did hope that I would be pregnant before my first due date, but now I had two lost due dates. And the baby that I thought was sent to fix my emotions, was gone. To top off the sorrow, the postpartum hormones I had after the 2nd miscarriage were overwhelming. I sunk into myself and I honestly don't remember much of October and November. I would "surface" every once in a while, which was good, but then I'd sink in again as the sorrow was just overwhelming. I know those feelings were exasperated by the constant medical tests I had for the better part of 3 1/2 months. I think there was only one or two weeks since October that I was NOT awaiting a test, or awaiting the results of tests. All seemed frightening as they were testing for things that would be difficult to deal with on top of the miscarriages, had they been positive. One test after another...labs upon labs, MRI, ultrasound....God showed His mercy and each test came back fine. That time was emotionally exhausting. I know that my exhausted state, and the worrying of tests, diluted my ability to wade through my sorrow. And as January wore on, it became evident that I would not be blessed with a positive pregnancy test before February 1st. I feared the date more. I wanted to sleep the whole first week of February away. Well meaning people have told me to focus on the three wonderful kids I DO have, as if that will take away my sorrow. I know they mean well, and I DO focus on my wonderful kids, as I think is evident on this blog, but loving doesn't heal sorrow. I grieve the love I will not get to shower on my babies in this life.
I went on a womens' retreat a few weekends ago. I was not prepared for it to be as emotionally exhausting as it was. Wow. I could go on and on about different lessons I learned, and how God spoke to me, but as this is long already, I will just focus on my fear of today's date. God showed me that I was letting my humanness get in the way of my healing. I knew what I needed. I needed to feel life in me by this date. I knew another pregnancy would help. Why wouldn't God allow that? It seemed so easy. Walking through this date "empty" sounds so hard. But then God spoke to me and I realized how petty I was being.
If I had been pregnant today, I would have had a hard time, but I would have clinged to the little one moving within me, and the hope that they would bring. Without that, I have nothing else but to cling to God and the hope that HE will bring. In my sorrow, I couldn't realize this. It wasn't until I knew I'd have an empty womb on February first, that I was forced to turn to the only thing left, my hope in God.
February 1st will never be an obscure date on the calendar I walk past each year. It will always be a day I will think about my lost baby. But I think it will also be a day I will think about how God was there for me in a way I didn't know I needed Him to be. How merciful.