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I love Jesus. I love my family. I love photography. I love books. I love thinking. Probably in that order. I have a wonderful husband, five beautiful daughters, a house, and a camera. I enjoy spending time talking to my husband, playing with my girls, redecorating my house and shooting things with my camera. In my spare time, I sleep.

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Turning my eyes upon Jesus...

I should be 12 weeks pregnant today.  But I'm not.

Last night I had a miscarriage.

And honestly I'm not sure how to speak of the whole situation.  I'm not as sad as I expected to be but I think that is because I dealt with the sadness and the depression two weeks ago when we first found out that our baby no longer had a heartbeat and had quit growing at 8 wks, 1 dy.  And I think that I can easily say that my current peace over the situation is due to Jesus' work in my life the last two weeks.

Romans 8:28 says, "And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose."  And I can say with confidence that good has already come from this unwanted & unwelcomed situation in my life. 

In  early Sept. we found out we were expecting.  We were excited but I was wary to get too excited or tell anyone.  I went in to the clinic.  Because of some pregnancy test confusion and elevated Hcg levels, the nurse ordered a ultrasound to confirm my due date.  I went in somber not wanting to get too excited almost as if expecting something to be wrong.

But there wasn't.  The ultrasound showed a perfectly healthy little fetus that dated right on at 7 wks, 3 days.  I came home happy & relieved.  A few days later (at 8 wks) I told my family the happy news.

Now that I had visual confirmation that there really was a baby and that it was healthy & fine, I began to get excited about the new little life that was to join our family in May.  I bought some new maternity jeans and began to reschedule my future to include pregnancy, birth & nursing.    Russ & I talked about making this our last kid and how we each felt about that.

On October 14th I had my first OB appointment.  It was pleasant with all the usual niceitys.  Usually in my midwife's routine she'll check for the heartbeat as one of the first things but I had a student this day instead and she said that she liked to save that for last, so after a really long appointment she tries to find a heartbeat and can't.  She gets my midwife and she can't find a heartbeat either.  They leave me and go see if they can get me in for an ultrasound right away just to make sure things are fine.  I waited for a long time...Russ is home with the kids and I'm beginning to think he'll be wondering about me.  But I couldn't call him because my cell phone wasn't in my purse.  Emotionally at this point I'm doing okay.  I knew there was a chance that there was a problem but I assumed that it was just a fluke that they couldn't find the heartbeat with the doppler since it was still fairly early and that the ultrasound would just ease my mind.

When I finally got in with the ultrasound tech and the picture was on the screen, I knew right away that the news wasn't good.  Having just had an ultrasound two weeks earlier I knew what a heartbeat should look like and I didn't see one.  After a minute the tech explained the baby was only measuring at 8 wks, 1 d. and there was no heartbeat.  She said, "I'm sorry." and asked if anyone was with me or if I wanted to call anyone.  I declined and followed someone back down to a room to meet with my midwife.

I was pretty numb.  I sat there while she talked to me about how this was sad and how it is normal.  She talked to me about how it wasn't my fault, how people would say dumb things, and about how my husband may not deal with it in the same timing as me.  She talked to me about my options...waiting to let miscarriage happen naturally or scheduling a d&c.  I chose the former.   I fought back tears...just hoping to make it out before crying.  She scheduled me to come back in a week and told me I could call her anytime. 

I cried a little on my short drive home.  I found Russ downstairs.  He casually asked me how it went.  "Not good." was my reply.  As I fell into his arms I explained what had happened.  It was just surreal.  I decided to call my mom before the reality really sank in.  I asked her to tell everyone else.  I couldn't bear to do that.

The next day was Saturday.  I pretty much spent the day lying around, watching tv.  Television was the only thing I could do to keep myself from dwelling on the bad news that my baby was dead.  Russ gave me food and I put it in my mouth.  If he hadn't brought me food, I'm sure I wouldn't have eaten anything.  I was in a depression.  I was scheduled to take engagement picture that evening for a couple I had never met.  When the time came, I forced myself out of bed and to that session.  It was a tough one.  I was so distracted at first, I felt like I was not even there and I was wishing I had cancelled.  By the end of it, I was doing much better and was glad that I went. 

My parents had attended a healing conference on Saturday and felt it was important that they come down on Sunday and pray over me and the baby.  I was grateful for this and had really wanted that but was also nervous because I am not comfortable being emotionally vulnerable in front of people (even my own family) and I knew that I nearly always break down when I am being prayed over and with this being an exceptionally emotional situation anyway, I was just plain anxious about it.  My whole family (brother, sister & their spouses and my parents) decided to come and intercede for this wanted child.  Before they arrived I took a walk to listen to worship music & talk to God.  I could feel hope welling up in me and yet I was broken inside.

That afternoon with my family was fantastic.  We talked about the importance of praying and coming against the enemy.  We talked about having a faith in the God of miracles.  My parents shared passages of scripture with us (some of which my mom had read to me earlier that morning as well)  that they felt God had led them to.  And then we all came together and many prayed over me and it was a powerful unifying family experience.  Afterward, we all went out for pizza and I had a measure of peace that I hadn't had before that.

The next week is impossible to explain in a few words.  I had a renewed fervor for the Lord.  I tried to soak up as much as I could.  I watched a ton of sermons on tv, I read my bible a lot, and I listened to worship music in between.  Every lesson God brought me to seemed to build on the one before.  I was led to hope and then I was led to faith and I began to believe that Jesus would heal my unborn child.  I had (have) no doubt that he could (can) for he is a God that can raise the dead to life and that week, I began to believe he would.   I had faith.  This post gives more insight into where my heart was at this time.

Friday, October 21st was my visit to the ob.  I was nervous and excited because I expected to be presented with evidence that my baby was alive but I knew that it would be my responsibility to ask.  I was allowed to have another ultrasound and it showed...no change.

I was disappointed but not discouraged.  My walk with the Lord was growing enormously and I certainly wasn't going to let this set me back.  Jesus kept leading me and I began to see how I was still putting some of the faith in my own self...even in my own "faith" as if that would "earn" me a miracle.  I came to a place of saying to the Lord, "I know that You can give me a miracle and I'm still going to believe for one.  But if your answer turns out to be 'no' I will trust in your wisdom and sovereignty and accept that.  No matter what, I am going to walk with you one day at a time."  This week, the most prominent word from God has been to not dwell on the past or worry about the future but to just trust in Him moment by moment.  I spent the week in that state a mind and hoping that a miracle would be in my future but realizing that even if it wasn't I would be okay.

Thursday evening I had the very first hint of miscarriage.  In that moment I dealt with my sadness and disappointment.  For a half hour I let myself play with ideas of injustice and betrayal but then quickly spoke of God's goodness, sovereignty, & wisdom as I worshiped Him by singing, "Turn your eyes upon Jesus" and "Because He Lives"

Friday, my mom offered to watch the girls for the weekend so I got them packed up and sent them off to 'Meanma & Papa's" house with my sister & brother-in-law.  I was scheduled for two photo shoots on Saturday but knowing miscarriage was imminent and not knowing when or how it would play out I went ahead and cancelled everything for the weekend.

Russ & I spent most of Saturday wandering around Home Depot and working on our home improvement projects.  I pulled nails out of the side of our house and bagged up some old insulation.  I had some cramping all day but nothing too serious.  By evening the cramps were definitly intensifying.  By 8 pm I was pretty uncomfortable and decided to take a bath.  Just as I was finishing up and preparing to get out, I began to miscarry.

I'll leave out the details but things got very real up in here.  But I was completely calm and at peace through the whole experience and am blessed with a wonderful husband who was a great help to me as well.

Today I woke up feeling normal again.  I cannot say that I am happy but I can say I am at peace.  I know that there are going to many sad moments in the coming months when we reach days that should have been milestones for this baby and when there are reminders of what should have been. But right now...there is a peace.  I know that my baby is resting with Jesus in the heavenly places.  I know that this experience has brought me to a renewed relationship & reliance on God that I have no wish to relinquish.  And now that I have a firm 'no' from Him in regard to this miracle and I know that there must be a reason for it beyond my understanding, I can now move forward to the next step in my life and in my walk with Him.

It is not easy to lose a child, even one you have never held.  But today as I release this unknown child into His eternal care, I refuse to dwell on what might have been but instead I will choose to rejoice in how this child's short existence affected my soul in such a positive way.

Until we meet in heaven...


Angel Rogers said...

I love your faith.

Sandi said...

I'm sorry, Gina, but I rejoice in your faith. I know others have walked through similar paths, you and Janel almost at identical time.

fullofgracex7 said...

I am so very sorry for your loss. I will be praying for your family and for the healing of your heart. Your insight is beautiful. Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted...

Anita Johnson said...

Gina, I'm so glad I scrolled down past that sweet photo of your little girl with the sock monkey hat or I could have missed this post. Im so very sorry for your loss. I will add you to my prayers tonight and may you feel His love in the days to come.

thomaru said...
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Anonymous said...

I'm so sorry for your loss. My fiance and I will keep you in our prayers. May I suggest the song Blessings by Laura's Song? With your faith and trust in Christ I trust you know that this has happened for a reason and hope god has revealed the good in this situation. God Bless!