For it was you who formed my inward parts; you knit me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works; that I know very well. My frame was not hidden from you, when I was being made in secret, intricately woven in the depths of the earth. Your eyes beheld my unformed substance. In your book were written all the days that were formed for me, when none of them as yet existed.” Psalm 139:13-16
First and foremost, I want to say thank you to all of the ladies that take time out of their days to read our devotions and utilize them to build a stronger faith and connection with Christ. I’m truly humbled to be a part of that journey with you.
With that said, I felt called to share a rather personal story with all of you today. When I was asked to write about the preservation and sanctity of life, I felt as though my faith wasn’t strong enough to provide any sort of guidance or strength due to recent events. However, as I mulled over the topic for a few days, I kept coming back to my experience and how it really showed me the wonders of creating a new life, and how beautiful and amazing creating a new life can be.
Several health issues plagued me shortly after the birth of our child and I was in constant pain. After a year and half of enduring multiple tests and procedures, it was determined a hysterectomy was needed. The incessant pain was crippling emotionally and physically so, I begrudgingly scheduled my surgery. I prayed and cried night after night as I rocked by baby knowing this would be the last child I would have the privilege to rock a baby.
Two months before my scheduled surgery two pink lines changes our worlds. We were pregnant.
WOW! I was so excited, and felt as though we were given an opportunity and gift. God knew my heart. We told my parents. I began a baby registry, and started looking for a larger vehicle to accommodate 3 car seats. Unfortunately, a mother’s greatest fears were realized 3 short days later. I had last our child. After the shock wore off a few days later, grief crushed my soul and with it, my faith. How could something so wonderful be ripped away?
I often envision my faith as a brick wall, something that has been built over time. After this event, the wall was knocked down in one fatal blow. I continued on with the surgery, knowing my body wasn’t healthy enough to sustain a life. As I laid on the operating room table, I asked the surgeon, “Am I making the right choice?” He nodded, and pressed a rosary into my hand. In my darkest hour, Our Mother was with me. Weeks passed and I started to heal physically. Emotionally, I was a mess. Pamper’s commercials made me cry. I was drowning in waves of grief and regret.
With all of that said, in the moments where the waves of grief receded, I was able to rebuild my faith wall. One small brick at a time I rebuilt it. We, my husband, Christ, and myself, had created a life. Even though I wasn’t able to carry to term, a soul was created. After some time, I was able to find joy in that. A friend who had similar experiences-yes, several, provided me with this advice, “Remember, your baby is a saint in God’s Kingdom.” While I knew that, hearing it from someone else really helped me imagine my child praising the Lord. Once I was able to see that image in my mind’s eye, I had something more positive to reflect on in my dark moments.
This rediscovered truth provided me with somewhat of a revelation. If I live my life according to God’s plan, I will be reunited with our baby. When I leave this earth, knowing that I have raised two beautiful, God loving humans, I look can forward to being reunited with our third.
Conception, to me, isn’t the word people are searching for when a baby comes to be. Creation is. I’m in utter awe and disbelief, that with the help of the Lord, my husband and I were able to create something out of quite literally nothing not once, not twice, but three times.
I would give my right arm to have my baby on earth with me. I often think of what his features would be and I often imagine what it would be like to rock him in my arms and lay him in the crib our other two babies have slept in. However, we were always open to the idea of life within our marriage in accordance with Church teaching. While it is literally the darkest day of my life, I am still blessed to be a mommy to a beautiful soul. I wouldn’t give up that life in exchange for relieving my grief, because, I’m a mommy and I would never wish away any life God has helped me create. Remember, all life is precious, even the little ones that you cannot see, or do not get to bring home with you.
I continue to rebuild my faith, one day at a time. I like to think, while slow and difficult, I’m rebuilding it to be stronger than it ever has been. My wall isn’t as tall as it once was. But, the mortar and bricks are stronger than before, and eventually, it will be taller than ever.
TO Jesus through Mary-Anonymous