Time is a funny thing, I remember being pregnant at 30 and feeling like I was in the prime of my life. As I type this, time seems to bend and I can hear the ding of the elevator that opened up in front of me to take me up one, two, three, four, five floors to the labor and delivery hall. I can feel myself sitting on that hospital bed, clammy hands on my knees, white knuckled and nervous, fighting back a bit of hysteria, excited and on the verge of a freak out. As it turned out, I had an incredibly easy day of labor, and the next thing I knew, he was in my arms and my whole world tilted in the most beautiful way. I can still feel the words fall out of my mouth as I said, still in the delivery room, that I wanted a dozen more of these little people.
I settled immediately into the new role of being a mama to a spunky, strong willed and extremely cute little boy. As far as my husband and I are concerned, our son is our favorite child (as much as my husband feels differently, the poodle doesn’t really count as a “child”).
Being a mom to this little man felt like what I was made for. The early years were filled with with excitement and planning. Looking full in the face of a future that seemed certain to be ours. Moving into a house with lots of rooms to fill with our children-to-be. Much has happened since those early years. A lot of waiting and disappointment. A lot of medication and hormonal madness because of them. A lot of mood swings and weight gain. A lot of shots. A lot of miscarriages. A lot of tears. You get the idea. Not a lot more children. Or any more, actually. When I think back to those years, I see my dream like a cloud. A cirrus cloud. A wisp. No substance, no rain filling it up, just air with a faint shape. Attached to it were tendrils that dangled precariously to that wispy cloud, shadows of my hope, my dreams, my heart’s desire. Some days I wished that His mighty breath would blow on those tendrils until they were no more.
Today, my son is almost 10. I am 40. How can that be? Time bends and I can picture that cloud like it was yesterday. I remember the day I cried out to the Lord, “Why is this my portion and my cup? I don’t WANT this cup!” But, it was with love that he had me hold this bitter cup of what became known as “secondary infertility.” Over time, He peeled back one finger at a time, releasing my grip on what I thought was the plan for our family. But old habits die hard. My fingers have muscle memory, even 10 years later they still clench unexpectedly now and then. His faithfulness is so dear, so sure, so steadfast. When my fingers twitch, His Spirit reminds me: My hands were not filled with more babies, He filled them with Christ instead. He is my portion and my cup.
I read something out of my journal that I wrote the month after our miscarriage in 2011, and I’m struck by how true those words have become. I wrote these words to the Lord:
“Lord, keep me from falling in the deep and hem me in, but may I stop again and consider your wondrous works. While the miracle was not birthed in the way I thought it would be, there is a seed that is growing in my heart. My love for You is growing, my awareness of You is growing, my trust in You is growing. All of THIS is a miracle of life.” Reading those words these years later is a balm to my spirit. A miracle was born in those dark and confusing days. That seed has grown into a tree planted by water that sends out its roots by the stream, and does not fear when heat comes, for its leaves remain green, and is not anxious in the year of drought, for it does not cease to bear fruit. (Jeremiah 17:8). He is my portion and my cup, and has shown Himself to be more precious than any “yes” that I could have received.