a prayer and a new season
You are my portion, Lord. My rock, my strength and my redeemer. I come to You humbly, a faithful servant of Your will and Your Word. You are mighty and powerful and capable of the impossible. I pray for peace in my spirit, O Father God. I pray for clarity of purpose. I pray You give me the wisdom to speak life into others. I pray that You continue to use me as a vessel of Your Truth. Lord, thank You for giving me the words to soothe and comfort troubled souls. Thank You for equipping me with the mind, body and soul to skillfully perform works of Your hands. Thank You for the courage to stand in the Truth of Your everlasting and boundless love. I praise You, heavenly Father for I am fearfully and wonderfully made in Your image. You knit me together in my mother’s womb to be a loyal disciple of Your Word. I pray that anyone who encounters me sees You in me. I love you, Lord! In Jesus name, I pray. Amen.
I’m moving right along through this new cycle, with an unprecedented level of ambivalence towards the trying to conceive (TTC) process. It’s been a catalytic 180° turnaround from the past 6-7 months of anxiety-ridden, obsessive-compulsive-type behavior and, yea, I’m totally ok with it.
I’ve been filling my free time with prayer and Bible study. I’ve been loving on my family and working on my business. It’s been a wonderful, restorative, rejuvenating couple of weeks and I’m starting to feel more like my “normal” self again. Thank You, Lord!
When the hubs and I started on our TTC journey back in April (2019), I was 3 months into my new business as an independent personal trainer. I had a few clients and business was picking up at a steady pace. Initially, we were both concerned that pregnancy and the first couple years of mothering a new baby would interfere with my small business and career aspirations, but we knew we could make it work. I had four children (ages 25, 18, 16 and 9) and I’d done totally fine as a single mother for many, many years. With the hubs’ help and support, I would certainly be able to soar. At least, that’s what we thought.
(If you want to make God laugh, make plans!)
We began the TTC process full of hope and joyful expectation. I giddily informed the hubs that I was “super fertile” and would be “pregnant in no time“. And, I was right. Statistically speaking, we beat the odds and were in the 5% of couples over the age of 35 who conceive in the first cycle of trying. Unfortunately, we lost that pregnancy very early on. We experienced another early miscarriage just 3 cycles (2 months) later. Our second pregnancy loss was incredibly humbling and left me distraught and confused. Miscarriage was a foreign concept to me; it was something that happened to other women and I surely hadn’t anticipated experiencing miscarriages along this journey. I’d never suffered a loss before (let alone two in a row), so I had foolishly, perhaps arrogantly, taken for granted my ability to sustain a pregnancy.
After the 2 miscarriages, I became wholly consumed with the science of making a baby. I plunged, head first, into a Google-powered rabbit hole of “fertility after 40” research, which distracted me from everything that had nothing to do with conception, pregnancy and birth.
I woke up (usually with a start after a miserable, restless sleep) thinking about TTC. I obsessively thought about it throughout the day, often abandoning important work projects to spent an inordinate amount of time researching fertility-related topics. I was desperate to find “THE” supplement or food or complementary therapy (or combination thereof) that would encourage and allow my body to sustain a pregnancy. And, then, I typically fell asleep holding my phone while watching a YouTube TTC-related video. This madness went on for months.
[All the while, the hubs was clueless; he had no idea I was investing so much of my time, energy and money in the TTC process. I felt shame and embarrassment for being so consumed. In my mind, he was a guy and he just wouldn’t understand. Eventually, I did reveal everything to him but that is a subject for a future post.]
I’ve stated in previous posts about the illusory need to have a sense of control after a miscarriage, so I won’t be redundant here but I will say, again, that I lost myself in the TTC process. That is, until this last cycle (#8). Cycle #8 was a culmination – a perfect storm – of thoughts, actions (and inaction) that triggered the end of the road for my faulty navigation of our journey thus far.
It was time for Jesus to take the proverbial wheel. I’d had enough of all the craziness. I’d had enough of letting everything else in my life suffer because of my inability to see anything beyond the “need” to be pregnant.
And, so here I am. 10 days into cycle #9, reclaiming my joy one action (or inaction), thought and moment at a time.
Every time I open YouTube now, I feel a wave of anxiety rising from my belly into my throat, so I close the app and open my Bible. When I wake up before my alarm goes off, I don’t panic or force myself back to sleep or lay completely still for another hour, ignoring my parched throat and/or full bladder, so as not to affect my BBT reading. I just take my temp, record it and go on with my morning. Praise the Lord!
Cycle #9 will be different because I am different. I am smarter, wiser and, thankfully, I am calmer. I am hopeful. I am joyfully expectant.
At no point along this journey has my faith in the Lord wavered. Any disappointments I’ve experienced arose from my own impatience and unrealistic expectation that things would happen in my timing. God is so, so good. All the time.