The Empty Womb The Empty Tomb
1.5 years. That’s how long we’ve been trying. I know there are couples out there that have tried for years longer. Does it get any easier? Does the heartbreak and disappointment that comes every month when it’s evident yet again, you’re not pregnant, does it get easier?
My arms are empty. There’s no pitter patter in my hallways. No stacks of tiny dirty laundry. No tears I’m wiping from plump cherub cheeks. I try to hush the dirty lying voices in my head; “this is what you deserve.”
See when I was a teenager I fell in love, like every teenager does. We planned to get married as soon as we turned 18. But what happened instead was we ended up pregnant at 16. Shame hung it’s flag of victory over my head. Me, the good girl, straight A honor student, talented with a bright future, who once wore a promise ring of purity for her future husband. Now a pregnant teenager.
People spoke, people we trusted who thought they were helping us make the right decision. They convinced us, they scared us. “You’ll be poor and destitute the rest of your life.” I listened to the voices of guidance, I chanted what they said as I lay on the table in the clinic. Tears streamed down my face, I don’t want to do this. I love my baby. I resolve myself to stop. As I will myself to get up off the table, it’s too late. I lose consciousness.
I wake up and it’s all over, 5 minutes. So quick and so easy to take such a bright life. I hate myself. My boyfriend who I thought was the love of my life, the one where we shared wedding and future life plans together, he left me shortly after the procedure. October 30th, I’ll never forget this day. I mourn the loss, I grieve uncontrollably. I decide to name my baby, the size of a pea, Faith. Because of my lack of faith that ended their life. Guilt joins the flag pole and waves itself proudly. I am wretched, I am a hypocrite, and I’ll never deserve to have a baby.
This is the voice that has always haunted me since I made the worst decision of my life. And it roared loud like a forgotten beast in the depths of my mind when Brian and I had our miscarriage. “This is what I deserve.” She would be graduating high school next year. I wonder what wonderful things she would have done in this world, had she been given the chance. My poor Faith.
Yet I know, that is not my God. My God, and my Faith, they have both forgiven me, and I’ve also learned to forgive myself. But then why do the voices still whisper? Why the taunting, the fear that my punishment for such a sin must be barrenness. It’s the enemy. He feeds on the seed of fear and causes it to grow until it drowns out all that is true and good. He pulls on the flag pole chain, higher, higher, his flags fly. It’s a daily battle in my mind. Silencing the hiss of lies that I’ll never be granted the gift of a child.
Every month I cry. I sit and I wait in hopeful expectation, and then cry when it’s evident. Not this month. I wonder though what the reason is. I trust Him. I trust His perfect timing. I know there is a reason.
Just like when the women went to visit His tomb, they were grief stricken when they found it empty. They were expecting someone to be there, and He wasn’t. Was their grief like mine? If so then what joy they must have felt when He arrived in an unexpected way. The tomb was empty, but life reigned. And so I wait.
In my expectant waiting, I buy baby clothes, a crib, a bassinet, just hoping I’ll need it soon.
I wait for life to reign. Whether it happens in my womb, in a child waiting to be rescued in Africa, or a baby in Texas waiting for someone to tell them; “You are loved, and you are mine, let’s go home.” My God is faithful and He is good. There is a lesson to be learned in the waiting and in the wanting.
I will not leave you as orphans, I will come to you. John 14:18
I have prayed for the souls of my future children for over 2 years now. I pray that God would make me the mother I need to be in order to help them become all that He has destined for them to be.
And so this morning, another month with a sorrowful empty womb. I hit my knees, bow my head, and raise my hands. A sign of submission. “Lord, burn the flagpole in my heart. Tear it to the ground. And wave your banner of love high over me. I love you, and I trust you.”
To my future babies. I love you, and I can’t wait to meet you.