Saturday, May 11, 2013

The childless Mother's Day

I have a confession.

Sometimes on Mother's Day, I have this really overwhelming sense of guilt. It's really bizarre and hard to explain, but I would say it is similar to someone who has survivors guilt.  You know...when there is a disaster and one person survives and the other does not, the survivor often feels this overwhelming sense of guilt for being spared their own life.

Having a child after infertility is sort of a similar phenomenon. There are so many men and women out there who are grieving that there are empty rooms in their home. They would give anything to have a child.

I used to be one of those women. Mother's Day was like salt in my wound. I know it is not the desire of every woman's heart, but it was the desperate plea of mine. All the moms would stand up on Sunday morning at church and get their round of felt like a dagger to my heart. I purposely avoided church on Mother's Day was just too much for broken heart, empty womb, and vulnerable soul.

I know I'm on the other side now. God has given me way more than I deserve and way more than I could have ever dreamed of. We will never stop thanking Him for His goodness. But, I still feel that pain on Mother's day...not for myself, but for that young lady crying in the church pew because she would give anything to just have one child. That woman who has to hear people constantly tell her "just adopt" if it is that easy. Even those waiting to adopt will tell you the pain of waiting is agonizing.

Side note: Can I tell you something? Even if you want to adopt, it's really painful to tell a woman to "just adopt". It's a normal woman emotion to desire to feel a child growing in her womb...and even when she is 100% excited about adopting, it doesn't change the fact there is a certain amount of grieving that transpires knowing you will never know the feeling of a baby growing in your belly. Let them grieve that. The barren woman should always be handled with tenderness. Their hearts are fragile. Please extend mercy and grace to them.

You may love your pets, nieces and nephews, and even your best friends children...but, that doesn't replace the desire in your own heart to have a child, yet your body continues to fail you. It is a pain that no one can understand unless they have walked that road as well.

So, this is for you...the woman who is waiting. The woman who feels like God doesn't hear her cries...

If you are waiting and wondering, do not believe the lie that God is withholding His blessings from you because of some wrongdoing. God has not forsaken you. You see, it's not about you. It's ALL about Him. If it was about us, no human would ever receive such a blessing. It's all about His kingdom. And God knows your pain. Look at how much Hannah poured out her heart. There is no denying she was in deep anguish. Yet, she still believed in His goodness. You don't have to hide your pain either. 

God adores you. He cherishes you. He can use anything for His glory, sure, but He does not like to see us suffer. You are His beloved.

So many women in the Bible and God did not leave them barren: Sarah, Hannah, Rebekah, Elizabeth. Elizabeth became my dear friend from the Bible. His timing certainly caused Elizabeth heartache, but she still believed He would fulfill His promise. Had Elizabeth had her own way, there would be no John the Baptist. You see, God was not punishing Elizabeth. NO! GREAT WAS HER REWARD! He had a great treasure in store for her and he must of thought highly of her to make her John's mother! Isn't that such a beautiful thought? That perhaps your wait is because God has such a special child that needs to born at a certain time in this world because of the influence he/she will have on it.

So, tomorrow, know that you are not alone. And know that it is ok to grieve this day. Whether you have no child and desperately are waiting on one...or have five and desperately want just one more...or if you are waiting to adopt and God still hasn't opened that door...or if God has given, but then taken away...

I am praying for you. Whatever your situation. I pray that those around you will extend compassion to you on this day and that you will feel a sense of peace that can only come from the Lord.

"Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls."
Matthew 11:28-29

Sunday, May 5, 2013

Happy 5th Birthday Ella!

Today, the one who finally made me a mother turned 5 years old! I know this does not seem like some big milestone to most, but I have been very emotional the past few days about this birthday. This past year with Ella has been so full of joy. She truly is such a joy to be around.

Despite the unseasonably chilly weather we had yesterday as well as the torrential down pour all day long, we had a wonderful birthday party with our little girl, family, and friends. We traded in the slip and slide and sprinklers for some arts and crafts. I'll have to post pictures of our Little Mermaid party another day, but for now, here is a little video montage of Ella's past year.

Ella's 5th Birthday Party Video from Sarah Antweiler on Vimeo.