If I could only explain the agonizing, beautiful heartbreak I’m experiencing in this moment. We will be having a baby boy, and we are SO happy, thankful, and blessed beyond measure. The pain comes when we think about the fact that we won’t get to keep him with us for long. Faith at a time like this is, in all honesty, SO difficult. My incredibly wise husband reminded me this morning, though, that we think that everything we have on this earth is ours. In fact, it isn’t. Everything that we have, we are given by our Heavenly Father. This baby was never ours to begin with, it was always His. He created our son just as he is, imperfect for this world, but perfect for Him and His plan. While I believe in miracles, they come in all forms. Sometimes we think that miracles should only happen in the way we want them to, the way we request for them to play out. If we don’t get the miracle we’ve requested, we don’t think our prayer was answered. There may, in fact, be many other miracles that have taken place that we didn’t even realize, or have our eyes open enough to see.
Up until this week, many of my doctor’s (though not all) had all but placed me in the category of “miscarriage waiting to happen” because of the SIGNIFICANTLY large hematoma that had developed in my uterus. In their minds, I think they “knew” what was going to happen, based on what science tells them. Even in my deepest moments of doubt, I knew that our God was bigger than their science. I have not and will not ever expect complete “healing” of our baby, although I certainly won’t say that it isn’t possible through Christ. But I have always believed that our baby has a purpose, no matter how short or long his spirit is on this earth. Believing he has a purpose and understanding WHY this is happening to us are two different things. I still struggle with why this is happening, while still believing in God’s plan. I have prayed for God’s will to be done, but I would love nothing more than to be able to meet this baby and spend even just a few short minutes pouring my love into his living body. At our appointment today, they discovered that the hematoma had significantly decreased in size and have NO reason to believe that I won’t carry our son to term. I PRAISE our Lord for this miracle! Our son, Ethan Kelly James, is a MIRACLE. His precious, perfect beating heart, his ten little fingers and ten tiny toes, his adorable nose and lips; everything about him is perfect to us. His name means strong and long-living. Kelly is in honor of my remarkable brother, who is named after our precious grandpa.
I’ve realized more and more lately that it’s OK to be sad. I’ll be the first to admit that I’m not the most well-versed person when it comes to the Bible. I have yet to perfect the art of studying it, but I’m trying to read more and discover what is says about living life in Christ and having faith through trials. I have read many verses that tell us to not let our hearts be troubled (John 14:1), to be anxious about nothing (Philippians 4:6-8), be strong and courageous (Joshua 1:9) and they make me think I shouldn’t feel this pain. They have made me feel like if my faith is truly strong enough, and my relationship with Jesus is as full as it should be, that He will complete me and take away all of my pain and suffering. I may be wrong but I don’t think this is necessarily true. As I continue to read I also see that the Bible says that there is a season for everything (Ecclesiastes 3:1-14) and acknowledges broken heartedness (Psalm 34:18 & Psalm 147:3), and mourning (Matthew 5:4). I think this world is an imperfect place, and from the moment sin entered the world, so did pain and suffering. To hurt is to be human. I have come to realize that it is only natural, because of this brokenness, that we will feel pain and heartache, grief and mourning. I’m also learning, every day, that in the midst of this we need but seek His face to know that we will get through it. I was reminded of this verse at Pursuit Church this weekend… Matthew 11:28-30 says “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from me; for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.”
I won’t say that every time I’ve gone to Him to ease my heartbreak I’ve received immediate relief. Sometimes I think I am just so hell-bent on being sad that I refuse to accept His hand, and let go of my burdens. And I come back to His Grace! He doesn’t slap my hand, He doesn’t turn away from me because I refused Him. He waits. And when I am ready to hand it all to Him, He readily accepts every bit of it, with open arms. I’ve said it over and over again, and I apologize for this bluntness, but what we are going through SUCKS! And again I say, I don’t ever mean to make light of what anyone else is or has suffered. It’s all different. I wish so badly that this didn’t have to happen. I wish we could bring Ethan home when he’s born, and spend a lifetime loving him, raising him, watching him grow. Of course, none of us KNOW God’s plan, but I don’t think that’s part of it. I think our son is going to impact this world in ways I could never imagine, just by being who he is. I pray that our message of faith, and our battle with it through this time, will all be attributed to him, and my daddy and be used to glorify our God. My prayer is that it could touch just one person, enough to allow them to put their life and heart in the hands of Jesus.
I hope he doesn’t mind me sharing this, I should probably have asked first, but John mentioned something else to me that I think will stick with me forever. He said that he was a little bit jealous that my dad would get to hang out with our son in heaven, after we have to let him go. The beauty of that hit me so hard in that moment. I would have been thrilled with either a boy or a girl, but it’s no secret my dad had an incredibly special connection with his grandsons. He was a man’s man and wanted to make the same out of his grandsons. They’d shoot guns, go camping, skiing, fly helicopters, play basketball, football, and someday I knew he’d teach them to smoke cigars and drink scotch (at the appropriate ages of course). Unfortunately this all ended far too soon, but to know that my dad will have a little piece of what he loved so dearly in heaven with him, to enjoy these things with (maybe without the cigars and scotch) gives me a great deal of peace. Not that Dad would need any of this to be happy, but he’ll have Ethan there all the same.
So this day is a wonderful day, but a heartbreaking one. I’ve made a beautiful connection to our second son today that I’ll cherish for the rest of my life. I know that every day will be different, some good and some not so much. I know that there will be days that my faith is tested and that the devil will try his best to get to my heart and mind. There are some days that conversation and seeking God won’t come naturally, or perhaps even willingly. But I also know that without Him I am nothing. He has blessed me beyond anything I could ever ask or imagine. My list of blessings is truly endless. I am so grateful for the family and friends he’s surrounded me with. I don’t know how I’d make it through my days without my momma constantly giving me love and encouragement, my brother giving me strength, my sister-in-law sending beautiful cards and sweet messages- reminding us how often we are in her thoughts and prayers, my precious April sending me messages LITERALLY every day, telling me she loves me and giving me the encouragement that only she can… seriously… the list is never ending. To every person in our families, our friends, and even those that we don’t know well but that send us prayers. Thank you. From the bottom of our hearts. THANK YOU and God Bless You!