Just read this tonight:
"I would have despaired unless I had believed that I would see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living. Wait for the Lord; be strong and let your heart take courage; yes, wait for the Lord." Psalm 27:13-14
Here are the few pictures we have to remember this short pregnancy. I took several pregnancy tests, which all came back positive right away.
The picture of Joel shows the shirt he wore to tell our families (and how we were going to tell family members when we saw them in person.) It's his Gabe shirt and I wrote above "Big Brothers" with an arrow pointing to both Joel's head and Gabe. It was fun to have him wear it, because it took everyone a minute before they got it.
The third picture is of my tiny six week belly. Man, I felt like it popped out as soon as I peed on that stick! I guess that's what happens with #3. Thankfully, I think it's as flat now as it was a few weeks ago. Just wanted to share with you guys...
Hello dear friends. Well today Gabe is turning 11 months old in Heaven! I often wonder when I get up there to see him if he'll be just two hours old, a tiny infant I'm able to hold and cuddle - which would allow me to be there with him as he grows... Or if he'll be a mature young man, able to show me around and teach me all I know to know about paradise. Kyle often reminds me that it doesn't matter. I feel strongly that I will recognize him immediately, no matter what how big or small his body may be.
C.S. Lewis said, "You don't have a soul. You are a soul. You have a body." I think about that in respect to Heaven. And, the simple answer is, no one really knows what we'll look like in Heaven. But, I'm finally at the point where I can think about it and it makes me smile, not cry. I cannot wait to see my Gabey Baby again.
That's not to say we have nothing to cry about these days. We miscarried yesterday morning, a pregnancy we've only known about since Monday July 5th. We were so happy, full of a deep sense that God was showing us how faithful he really is. So, although the miscarriage was more of a shock to Kyle than it was to me, it's still been a rough and unexpected hurdle to climb. All I can say is, "We'll just try again." Now, I don't know how many more times I can do that, but one thing I know for sure is that I want a sibling for Joel. He deserves to have a playmate and a best friend. I think because Kyle and I are both one of three kids, we know how great it is to grow up with other children.
I pray that God is done teaching us lessons for awhile, ha. I loved being pregnant again. I immediately had heartburn, which has been my steady first symptom with all my pregnancies. Yes, it's annoying, but I still loved feeling it.
So far I can tell you that losing Gabe and having a miscarriage has given me additional perspective. Losing a child at five/six weeks along is not as painful and traumatic as carrying a baby to full term, delivering and burying that infant. No funeral arrangements had to be made. I don't have a face and a name to attach to these past few weeks. But, that's not to say that I am discounting this as a loss. It's just a different kind of loss. It's much more a loss of what we wanted, the idea of having another - if that makes sense.
I know God is faithful so I am confident that we will conceive again. But, let me tell you, I don't think we'll tell a soul until it's becoming obvious the next time around! It was so hard to try and remember everyone I had shared the good news with, only to have to send out a mass email informing them of our loss. And no one feels like talking after a loss. It's been hard to hear the phone ring.
Thank you for offering support and love during this time.
Oh em gee. I know I know I know. I haven't updated in forever. Well, it's coming to bite me in the butt, because had I been blogging consistently, you all would be able to see the obvious ways God has been working in my life, bringing a large theme to my mind over and over again. Now I'll just have to try to remember the sequence of events and hope that you are still moved. To tears. Just kidding. Maybe.
Okay, so I have found myself on this path of self discovery lately. My sister and I are reading Eat, Pray, Love which is all about a woman trying to find herself, find God, find spirituality, etc. It's all becoming the theme in my life right now and I'm not sure if it's because I'm getting close to 30, or if this is just another benefit of having and losing Gabriel: to examine my life, identify my flaws, make improvements, all with God's help and for the purpose to improve my personal relationship with Him.
So, last Monday at one of my Mom's Bible Study groups, one of my dear friends was talking about how she is more easily upset with/mad at christians and their actions than unbelievers. We talked about the example of the believers who picket abortion clinics with large pictures of dead fetuses and how we have more love for the woman coming out of the clinic. She doesn't know better. She is lost and broken. She deserves grace and forgiveness and unconditional love.
Then later in the week I found myself angry and "out of control" once again. This darn anger! According to everyone around me, it's been the obvious way my depression is presenting itself. No one wants to hear that, by the way. But, here I am, back on my meds for over a month, feeling so much better, and yet - "acting a fool" in front of some of my closest friends.
So, when I got home I was really trying to identify the "why" behind my anger. Why did I get worked up? Why did I (maybe) make a scene? Why did I not allow the comfort and trust I have in my husband to protect me, and shut me up?
I came up with the following: First of all, I suck. I am judgemental. I am not being empathetic. I am not putting myself in other people's shoes, yet constantly expecting others to put themselves in mine. Then I thought about the conversation from Monday. And, even if it's not right, I think it makes sense. I was getting upset, mad even, at friends of mine who are believers because I expect more out of them. Right or wrong, at least I figured out why I was so mad. The worst part is that I think of myself as a very empathetic person. I have a degree in social work. I have had formal training on the concept. But, my big "ah-ha" moment was realizing that I have great empathy for some (the abused, the homeless, the depressed, the addicts) and not for others (my own family, my friends, other believers.) Wow. A big pill to swallow.
So, then Saturday morning Kyle and I attend a wonderful training through our church about leadership and once again, I am bombarded with all my flaws. I even begin to make a list of them in my binder: judgemental, angry, heated. But, then we learn that God does not want us to concentrate on those. It doesn't even make sense to concentrate on those. The training is called "Living your Strengths." Ha. So, I begin to question my passions. Social justice? Check. Grief and loss? Check. Addictions and recovery? Check. Whew - I have strengths!! Loved this quote from our materials,
"God has created the one and only you, uniquely gifted with undeniable talents that are the foundation for your strengths. Claim who you are, listen to God, celebrate your talents, begin living through strengths. And start transforming your life..."
THEN!!!! (Yes, there's more.) We go to church Sunday morning. Have I talked enough about my church? I love my church!! If you are local and are in need to feel the Holy Spirit on a weekly basis, let me personally invite you to LifeHouse East. We meet at the Leitersburg Theaters on Leitersburg Pike. Anyway, back to me realizing how judgemental I am... So, we soon realize that this new sermon series is about receiving God's grace in your life and the opening video is talking about how judgemental we all are. How we take one look at a person and make a few assumptions so we can label them and make a judgement about them. I laughed when I heard, "Looking at me, you wouldn't think I was a judgemental person. Unless you're a judgemental person, too." Ha! I could've written the opening video. OKAY JESUS! No, really, I get it. I'm judgemental. Let's work on it together, shall we??
Hope you're all having a good week! Love you, dear followers!! :)