it’s all a dream….

IMG_3359(photo credit: Christin Armstrong)

It’s easy to take this belly for granted or to complain about the daily nuances of a baby belly… It’s easy to get so used to it that you begin to believe that it is deserved.  That it’s just “normal”, a “regular” thing. It’s easy to feel far removed from a past that was still very much a part of who you are. Although, the evidence of this pregnancy has become my norm and is the very beginnings of being defined as a mother, I make sure to keep at the forefront of my mind how spectacular a blessing it is.

The saddest part of this experience is that I don’t feel as if my heart has completely softened or slowed yet… I don’t feel as if I’ve caught my breathe or truly grasped the reality or heaviness of this pregnancy – which is insane. And, truly heartbreaking for me.

But, infertility will do that to you. It has a way of changing your heart and the very essence of who you are, how you relate to others, and deal with life. Some lessons of this journey are definitely beneficial, others I can definitely do without. Like, the numbness that results from constant disappointments. The roller coaster rides. The ups and downs of medications. The never ending poking, examining, and prodding. The adoption paperwork, meetings, and packets. The anxiety, fear, and difficulty in trusting what actually is or your gut feelings. Never knowing what’s coming next. The heartbreak of every failed attempt to just breathe. The empty desire to live each day without the worry or stress or chaos… because you know that that’s just not a part of infertility-trying to conceive-trying to adopt journey.

While an upside of being on this journey lends itself to the possibility of growth; in the moment, that reality doesn’t seem to matter in the moment. But, if you keep moving forward you realize that it’s the growth that has kept you going.  You don’t immediately see how you’re torn down while simultaneously built up, reinforced, and strengthened. You are stripped of everything you “knew”or “wanted” and given (without permission.. rude) completely new perspectives and desires. And, that’s frustrating. On many days I was angered and frustrated at how these past four years of infertility have negatively impacted my life. Bitter towards the seemingly most insignificant and most glaring ways it has impacted my marriage and my relationship with my husband. The wasted money, the wasted hours at doctor’s appointments, pointless injections and medications. The guilt of the twinge of jealously and sadness felt when you’re out and about and it seems that every other woman on the planet is expecting; it forces you to reckon with your inabilities and circumstances. And, dealing with it is hard. Balancing the thin line between the unmistakable joy you have for friends and family who are expanding their families and the unmistakable pain you feel when the next cycle begins or you’re in purgatory wanting to just give up but still wanting to soothe that ache in your heart. Or, issues with an adoption agency slow progress or things just aren’t going the way you feel they should. It all seems purposefulness.

The disappointment, guilt, fear, sadness, and pain colors and consumes so much of your life…. It’s easy to lose hope, to accept that it’s “never” going to happen, and to begin to believe that “expansion projects” just weren’t for you. Easy to succumb to this inner defeat that you truly don’t want to give in to but seems to be swallowing you whole.

So, you let it go. You move forward and begin to revamp your life plan. You begin to hope for new things and believe that there’s more than one way to live this life with purpose and experience fulfillment in ways that didn’t include a house full of children, noise, and sleepless nights.

And, then…..IMG_3310-Edit(photo credit: Christin Armstrong)

…. you realize that every single moment you thought was wasted is redeemed…. the humiliation, let downs, and devastations of every experience are being traded for crowns of beauty and you see with your own eyes that God really does make everything beautiful in his own time. That all things truly work tougher for good, that our Father in Heaven truly is the giver of really good and incredibly perfect gifts.

…. you learn by experience (which they say is the best teacher!) that God’s plan for your life truly is much greater than anything you could ever consider. You’re able to look back and see the struggles you’ve gone though and it pales in comparison to what is coming.

…. you are grateful for every experience meant to hurt you and break you because they drove you to the cross and positioned you to be vulnerable and open to the people put in your life to support and love you.

…. you learn that God can restore. That He gives you the desires of your heart. That your soul truly can trust in the Lord and rest in his goodness.

…. most of all, you recognize that these experiences, these years were not wasted, the circumstances not created to break you, but rather to point to someone much greater than ourselves.

This dream…. these girls…. didn’t happen because we finally “stopped trying” or because I “did things God’s way”….. This happened in spite of us  with the purpose of glorifying God alone. Our story happened the way that it did because God planned it that way. The worst of it shows God’s goodness and faithfulness, the best his grace and love for us.

Infertility isn’t the easiest life experience to walk through. Treatments and adoption aren’t either. While neither brought us children, I know how difficult they both can be. The most comforting part of walking any road is that you aren’t the first nor will you be the last to walk that same path. You aren’t alone. Finding, building, and engaging with women who have and are experiencing what you have is a blessing. Being able to walk along side other women who know that struggle is the most encouraging and comforting opportunity.

Share your story in your own way, in your own time. Other women and couples need to hear your voice…. even if it’s a whisper.

 

These little girls truly are a dream come true and I’m so thankful for all of you who have come along side of us, who have stood with us, prayed with us, cried with us, and who are finally rejoicing with us. This is a big deal. I am absolutely looking forward to celebrating our children (whoa.) with our closest friends and family this weekend. It’s going to be so special.

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Comments

  1. Karena White says:

    Hey I hope you like the names Thalia/ tah-lee-a means (to flourish/blossom) and Analia/ a-nah-lee-a (means merciful)! I love to help pick meaningful baby names…mine girls are Akirra, Samira, and Mila! I’m so happy for your family!

  2. This is absolutely beautiful.

  3. Shanika Henderson says:

    (stand and clap) Beautifully said! I give God glory every time you post. I can’t help but praise him. I was brought to tears when I read this part “you realize that every single moment you thought was wasted is redeemed…. the humiliation, let downs, and devastations of every experience are being traded for crowns of beauty and you see with your own eyes that God really does make everything beautiful in his own time. That all things truly work tougher for good, that our Father in Heaven truly is the giver of really good and incredibly perfect gifts.”

    Love the photos and the dress!

  4. You look FABULOUS!

  5. Thank you so much for sharing your story!! I needed the reminder that this is God’s plan and that it will be okay! Growing that faith from a mustard seed…thank you! Congratulations and wishing you and your family well and many blessings!!

    • Thanks for reading!!! Everything really will be okay……. God is faithful and even though he may not always give us exactly what we want, what he does give is more than perfect!

  6. Thank you for sharing. This story truly touched me because I know the feeling and waiting on God’s blessings as well.. Almost gave up but still trying with God help.

    Stay blessed.

    • Thank you for reading!!! Don’t give up!!!! Do not! Even though I have definitely felt like throwing my hands up in the air and gave up (many times) on expanding our family by getting pregnant myself- hold on to even the tiniest bit of hope that you can!

  7. Erisha Reeves says:

    Beautifully said. I’ve followed your story for quiet sometime. Although I haven’t experienced what you’re going through, I have a few friends who have. I’m happy for you and wish you all nothing but the best. Congratulations, God is good!

    • Thank you!! I hope the best for your friends…… I’m sure they are appreciating your support and working to empathize with them!

  8. Well written. I love your testimony. To God be the glory

  9. Perfectly written!!

  10. keishondra turner says:

    Wow! Such a powerful post! Thank you

  11. Tomineka Whitaker says:

    Your story, your strength, and your faithfulness inspire me more and more each new blog. I’m so happy for you. Thank you for sharing. You’ve allowed each of us to witness an amazing blessing from God!

  12. I cannot express how much reading your blog does for me. I love reading about your strength and character in the trying of circumstances then seeing God be faithful like he always is to his children. I don’t know you personally but your testimony gives me strength on the daily and I rejoice with you every time I read about your beautiful girls. Thank you for sharing from another mother.

    • Tears!!!! You have truly captured the highs and lows of this journey!! Unless you have walked on this path you have no idea the emotions. Your heartfelt writing is just beautiful. To God be the glory for your two blessings!!!

      • Aw! Thank you so much!!!! I appreciate that so much!!! And, yes……. It’s a very very emotional experience and it is HARD!! To both go through it and write about it! Lol. But I’m thankful that my journey has been such a encouragement & eye opener to others!!

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