Finding Faith in My Darkest Hour
This blog contains my miscarriage journey, it may be triggering to some. However, I feel that it is important to share what I went through, and how it led me to The Lord.
In February 2020 Sharif and I decided that we would like to add another child to our family. There was never a question in my mind as to if that would be possible for us. I had conceived and carried our 2 children without any issue or thought, and assumed that all subsequent children would be the same. When I found myself having a miscarriage in March 2020 I was confused and angry at my body, but figured it was the "1 in 4" that is so often talked about. I had no idea that "miscarriage" would become the thing that would break me, bring me to my knees, drag me through darkness, rewrite my story, and, in the end, lead me to God.
Soon after our first miscarriage we decided to pack up our lives and move to North Carolina. The world was in the early parts of the pandemic, we were fed up with the politics of our home state and looking for land and a new life. We figured that it was not an ideal time for another baby and put the thought on the back burner. Then in October 2020 we found out that I was pregnant again. We were not overjoyed, as out lives were in chaos, as was the world, but we embraced that we would again be parents and patiently waited for our first ultrasound.
On November 10 2020 I walked into an appointment that should have shown me a 10 week embryo with a heartbeat, and left being told that I had a "blighted ovum". I didn't know at the time what that meant, but essentially it means that we conceived a child, but it never formed. My body believed that it was pregnant, but our baby never grew. It is sometimes referred to as a "missed miscarriage". I was sent home with no information on what to expect, or what my options may be, and waited for my body to recognize this failed pregnancy. Over the course of 2 months, I miscarried our 4th child, and sunk into the worst depression of my life.
I was angry, and I was scared. Angry at my body for failing me, myself for trusting so completely that a pregnancy would result in a child, and the universe for being so cruel. I was angry at the responsibilities that I had and was drowning in darkness. I was terrified that I was dying as I lost what seemed to be gallons of blood. I had no established medical care as we had only recently moved to NC, and found little help from the physician that had diagnosed my miscarriage. I had isolated myself from my family by not telling them I was pregnant out of fear that I would "jinx" my pregnancy. I had no friends around me and my "faith" was placed entirely in myself. It was by grace, and the love of Sharif that I made it through that winter.
Once I recovered from my second loss I found myself desiring a more firm foundation. I cleaned up my health, and started to build a community in NC. We found friendship and in December 2021 we found out that I was pregnant again, and would be due within a month of two of my closest friends. I couldn't wait to share a pregnancy, births, and babies with them, and looked forward to my first ultrasound to confirm that all was well. I was not nervous or afraid, I assumed that my better health would change the outcome. So when the ultrasound date came, and they told me that once again I had a blighted ovum, I was devastated.
I didn't know God that day, but He knew me, and He knew His plans for me. I grieved the loss of my children for the first time. I was held by my friends who were also expecting (and went on to have beautiful babies) as well as those who weren't. I was held by a community that had been placed around me. I cried, and I talked, and I let all of the pain run through me as I miscarried my 5th child. I was never angry or scared during that loss. I felt held, and I surrendered to the knowledge that I had no control over whether I would ever hold another baby in my arms. We found a church during that loss, and I allowed God's peace to bring me through it.
We decided that we would not "try" to get pregnant again, but we would also not prevent it. We would give it to God in every way that we could, and by July I was pregnant again. It was short lived, and by my 6th week I miscarried that child as well. To say that I had become numb to it would not be entirely true, nor would it be entirely a lie. I had learned to love each child, and also know that I may never see it on earth. I had also come to know that every baby that I carried and didn't hold in my arms, would be waiting for me in heaven. Less than a month after that loss we were baptized, and I devoted my life entirely to God.
I embraced that my life was not my own, and that even when I couldn't see or understand His plan, that it was there. I had testing done to make sure that my body was healthy for my husband, and two living children, and began to take supplements that would better support my overall health. I prayed that if it was God's will that we would bring a child into this world. I accepted that it was possible that it would never happen. I shared my testimony, and spent my time further building it through my relationship with Christ. I watched both of my friends give birth to their babies, and pass by the day when I should have brought mine into the world. I grieved, and celebrated surrounded by people that knew my pain.
Then, on December 3 2022, I found out that we were pregnant. I had known if for at least a week, but until I saw the test I could pretend it wasn't real. Once you experience a loss, pregnancy becomes very different. What was once an exciting time, had become an anxious time of waiting and prayer. I found hope and peace in our church and friendships, but it was a daily battle over the spirit of fear. It was in that first 8 weeks with this baby that I drew closest to God.
At my 8 week ultrasound I could hardly breath for the anxiety. I expected the worst, but forced myself to believe with all that I had that there was a healthy baby growing inside me. When the ultrasound tech put the wand to my stomach and I saw for the first time in 8 years an embryo instead of an empty sac, I completely broke. I allowed the rush of joy, and sorrow as we listened to the heartbeat and measured a healthy growing baby. As of today I am 17 weeks pregnant, and still spend many days in prayer that I will be able to hold this child in my arms. The fear has yet to disappear, but I know that if I were to lose this child, that I would not be alone in my grief, and that I would be held, and I would heal.
I will never know why it took me four losses to carry a healthy pregnancy. No doctor can tell me, though some have speculated. I can only say that God has a plan, and that through that loss and pain, He drew me to Him. He let me shatter, so that He could rebuild me. He was there in my brokenness, and he put the pieces back together. I am a stronger, more complete woman, mother, wife, and I am a child of God today because of those four losses. My four babies wait for me in heaven, and it was their sacrifice that allowed me to be saved. I have no doubt that had I not walked through this valley that I would still be walking in darkness, and I stand in awe of His work.
If you find yourself in a place of complete brokenness, I invite you to seek Him out. What He can do with those broken pieces is more than any of us could ever imagine. If you are a believer, allow Him to bring you closer. If you have strayed from Him, allow Him to draw you back, and if you have never experienced the Amazing Grace of God, allow yourself to surrender, and watch as He builds you new.
This blog is dedicated to my babies in heaven:
Thank you my darlings.