It’s a long title, I know. I can’t think of a way to shorten it.
It’s the Sunday before my 23rd week of pregnancy begins. On Tuesday, it is two weeks since the devastating news. Today was my first Sunday at church. Milestones, steps forward in this new normal.
I did a thing tonight. I am afraid of Google, lately. I mean, sure I use it for songs, facts, directions, phone numbers, word spellings but I cannot look up our baby’s diagnosis on it. I just can’t. So feeling brave, I typed it as a hashtag into my personal Instagram. And within moments, the tears flowed freely. There are realities about this situation that I cannot grasp, and probably will not realize fully until they need to happen. There are things I am beginning to allow to become “real” in my mind.
Let me back up.
Today was a good day. We came home after church and relaxed. A watched “How it’s Made” for awhile with my husband, while C slept peacefully. I watched a favorite show while I rested my aching hip and tired body. We have a Sunday night tradition. We eat our supper (leftovers from the fridge) in the basement while we watch and laugh at America’s Funniest Home Videos. Tonight as we were all in the kitchen, talking and waiting to use the microwave, a series of incidents happened that literally laid me out on the floor laughing. My youngest, C, has the gift of saying things that strike our funny bones.
My little unborn baby won’t ever meet C, hear his jokes, laugh uncontrollably, and have the memories we will in years to come. The little one won’t meet A, who loves machines and Legos and has the biggest imagination ever. EVER. This child won’t get to experience these moments, to grow up and develop his or her own unique personality in our home. These are hard truths to think on. And even as I type this, my tears are flowing freely and with no sign of stopping. This is stuff I don’t want to consider, to realize, to accept.
Before all this, I committed to a “one month of thankfulness” hashtag challenge in my blogging group. Finding these moments each day has been a challenge. It’s the 5th day and I used chocolate as my post for today. I am determined though. And maybe in years to come, this experience will be one I say “I’m thankful for this” but for now, in the thick of the pain and while I search desperately for my Father’s strength in each day, I can’t honestly say that. That’s pretty raw and honest.
I am not being negative. I am being real. Real is all I can muster right now.
C is sleeping peacefully now, sucking his nuk and holding tight to his blanket. I am grateful for this day. I am grateful for the laughs and I do treasure the moments of joy we had today. It was needed and a gift from God.
For right now, the tears come daily and often with no warning. The realizations of things we won’t experience are slow to dawn on my ever busy brain, and that’s yet another thing to be thankful for.
This stuff, it reveals one’s character. It shows where we search for our strength and peace. It hasn’t been easy, this road. And I am barely on it. I have my husband to lean on, he’s been amazing. My friends, they make life a bit more normal for me. My family, my church and small group are covering us in prayer, offering to help at every opportunity.
“God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear though the earth gives way, though the mountains be moved into the heart of the sea, though its waters roar and foam, though the mountains tremble at its swelling. Selah” Psalms 46:1-3
That’s my comfort. I can’t fix this. I can’t run from it, drown it with a hobby or sleep. I can’t change it or bargain with Him to earn favor and the miracle I so desire. I can’t. There is nothing that I, Rachelle Martin, can do.
But pray. In the nighttime, the noontime, the evening, as I drive, as I type, as I rock my sweet C. That is what I can do. I can pray.
Continue to pray for us, this road seems impossible. And without God to strengthen us, it really is impossible.