Friday, September 10, 2010

Miscarriage: Two Years Later

Unless you've read every post in this blog or I've shared it in conversation, you may not know that I am in my third pregnancy, carrying our second-soon-to-be-born child. What? Why, that means we lost a child along the way. It was our first pregnancy and our loss happened two years ago.

Two years ago means I have a bit more distance and perspective on it, I guess. I went back and re-read my October 8, 2008 post and couldn't help the tears that rolled down my face. It's sad. It was. It will be.

My hope in writing this is that other couples may be comforted a bit by our story and that I won't forget what I learned through all of it.

At the time, I felt very alone in our loss. Miscarriage isn't a topic of common conversation. It never comes up in mixed company and I've mainly only heard it discussed post-loss, when prayer requests are being shared for someone. But, many times when a loss happens very early in pregnancy most couples may not even have shared their pregnancy publicly, so to share the news of a miscarriage may feel incredibly awkward... hence, there ends up being a good bit of isolation.

If you're reading this and have had a miscarriage or are in the midst of one, please know you're not alone in your loss. Many women and couples have experienced what you are going through. Our stories and pain are different, but you don't have to be alone in your journey. And its okay to talk about your loss, even if you cry or you think other people may feel "awkward" hearing you share.

I talk about miscarriage now. Not like a public speaker or anything, but I bring it up in conversation. I mention the fact that we experienced miscarriage. I talk about how common it is. I say that my first child was lost and it was a deeply painful experience that changed me.

I'm not looking for a "Girl Scout" badge on miscarriage or pity or anything. I just want people to know its okay to talk about.

So, two years later...

I would never a million times over chose to have had a miscarriage. I believe in the providence and sovereign control of God, but even so I don't begin to think I can explain God's purpose in miscarriage. My only comfort is that this same God willingly allowed His own Son's sacrifice for the redemption of all humanity, so he knows a thing or two about loss and grief.

I did receive a gift from our miscarriage, though. A priceless gift about motherhood. It was simply this: The fear that overwhelmed me in the face of losing my child could either grip me for the rest of my life or I could chose to overcome it. Because, honestly, motherhood allows daily, even hourly, opportunities for fear. The worst and greatest fear is losing a child, whether in utero or at some later point.

Faced with the reality that from here on out I could be constantly consumed by fear and the "what ifs" that motherhood brings, I chose to not let fear win. I'm so grateful for the opportunity to have learned this. I can't imagine how much joy would be robbed from my life if every day was a struggle with fear.

Are you struggling with fear right now? The "what ifs" of motherhood? Whether it is an unborn child or a teenager heading to high school, may I encourage you to do all that is in your realm of responsibility as a mother and then step back and trust the sovereign Hand of God? Liberate yourself from the shackles of fear. I know you won't regret it.

Philippians 4:4-7

'Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. '

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