Thursday, May 24, 2012

Bigger Picture Moment: On Being Ready

I fully expected the test to display one line.


No Baby.

Just a late period.

Fully expected.

But I had to confirm, what with not having taken a vow of abstinence while simultaneously taking herbal supplements that could be dangerous during pregnancy, when the days easily slipped past 30, 31, 32.

I'm not ready, I've shared with my husband at least a dozen times per month since we last sent a baby from the the womb and into heaven.

I'm not ready, I've declared and ensured we'd taken precautions so as to not find ourselves as surprised and with-child.

I'm not ready, I cried out to God as I looked at the end results of a positive pregnancy test.

I stared at the double lines before calling John into the bathroom to examine the test for himself.

He confirmed the reading, and we stared at each other incredulously.

No hugging.

No tears of joy.

No wide grins.

We just sat there staring at each other like two high school kids, air thick with shock and disbelief.

Quick to read my face, John gathered his mind and quickly shuffled the boys outside, left me and my positive pregnancy test in the bathroom alone to wrestle with each other ...

alone to wrestle with God.

I fully expected for my chest to tighten and my heart to thump wildly beneath my breastbone in a state of panic, my breathing to morph from deep breathes to short whisps of air sucked in through a straw, my mind to race in panic.

But I stood there

test in hand

Word in heart:

"Those who know your name will trust in you, for you, Lord, have never forsaken those who seek you."
Psalm 9:10

Nothing takes the Designer by surprise, and with plans to retest with first morning urine, I fell soundly into hard, deep, fast sleep later that evening knowing that if He wanted this baby to be here, even if I weren't ready, I would be ready when he or she arrived.


Again, in the morning two blue lines displayed across the test, this time smudged and faded and running from a line into a u-shape, alerting my mind to the possibility of faulty tests.

I cursed the invention of the early-detection pregnancy test as I fed the boys breakfast, preparing to make our way through the Target aisles for another box of tests. 

Irritated, I thought to God

What are you trying to do to me?

Haven't we had enough of the ping-pong emotions?

Could something just be or not be?

You know I've ached to stretch and swell again ...

my arms have longing to be heavy with drunken-nursing child dozing against my skin. 

You know, I whispered in my mind.

And then ... the question turned

on my own heart,

but did I know?

Am I really ready?

Had I really realized the depth of that ache, the lingering longing as I prayed and wondered what He'd have for our family

if we should grow in number or remain four.

Am I?



The early summer fields spread out before us, I watched two birds flutter and twist in the sky side by side while driving home from the store.

Gracefully, in confidence, they swooped and fluttered and dove and lifted higher and higher, like mirrors of each other.

My heart beat in time with their early-morning dance, knowing too well the fell swoops of low and the ecstasy of high-bright sky horizons.


Three more tests, all negative.

Relief and calm whitewash my mind,

only to be tinged with the color of disappointment.

My mind races to the birds and their early morning dance.

No turns have taken you by surprise, Oh Lord.

Not one.

You've been following along with each turn of my heart's wing.

You've been listening to my cries for guidance.

Am I ready?

I find answered prayers in the aftermath of two faulty pregnancy tests coupled with three negative ones.

And I know He's answered.

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  1. This is such a beautiful piece. Just beautiful.

    1. Thanks, Mary. An easy one to write, a hard one to publish.

  2. Oh Hy, my heart is with you on this journey. You are right, nothing is a surprise to Him, but it is still oh so hard. Love you.

    1. Thanks for affirming that He is here. I need that reassurance today, especially, and for unrelated reasons. Love you, too.

  3. I love that you are at peace, but honestly I would be wondering which pg tests were correct. A false negative is more common than a false positive. Maybe a trip to the doctor is in order?

    1. I spoke with the company who sells the tests that were positives, and they confirmed that when the test blurs and the line is misshapen that they are faulty tests. :)

    2. Ah, okay. Glad you thought to ask. How have you been lately? Memories have been flooding over me and making me so emotional lately. I hate that!

  4. Oh, the roller coaster. Hold on tight and know God has a plan. I know you do and that your faith has brought you safe this far.

    1. Holding on to the fact that He knows. Thanks, May.

  5. So hard. I have been there and it is such a strange emotion. I was confused at God and wondered why He wouldn't want Ceana to have a sibling. 3 years later, it seems so obvious. I can't imagine life with a baby right now! My illness, Rob's illness, losing both of our jobs and an infant????? I hope and pray that God either blesses you with another child or gives you insight into His perfect plan. Thank you for sharing! Beautiful words.

    1. His grace is enough for now ... and knowing that I don't know how life unfolds ... thanks for sharing more of your story here and showing me glimpses of His plan unfolded for you guys.

  6. And this is one of my favorite things about you, Hy: that in the face of confusing circumstances, conflicting emotions, and just real life, you persistently, passionately seek His face. My heart jumps at the hope and future I know He has in store for you family.

    1. Thanks, Lenae. And thanks for saying that you believe in the future goodness in store from His hand.

  7. i want to wrap you up, friend. your heart and your writing are so beautiful. xo

    1. Considering myself wrapped. Thanks, Suzannah.

  8. It seems so unfair that, on a day when I am rejoicing over a healthy, growing baby in my womb, your womb is still aching and your heart is still hurting. I wish I could envelop you in hugs, but know that my prayers are always with you - may they bring you the comfort of the only arms that can truly comfort you and the One who counts all your tears and will one day wipe them all away. Also, I love when you write straight from your heart like this - it is so beautifully vulnerable. And I just love you, so much. Keep running to Him, because He will never leave you or forsake you and will always be there to catch you.

    1. Ah! The empty space of my womb just makes me want to celebrate the growing baby in your womb all the more! I feel such joy and such peace when other women have the privilege of carrying a child; I love knowing that these small blessings will be on our world and that He brings forth new life often and abundantly. There's only celebration for your little seedling in my heart, and I'm so excited that he is a HE! Love you, Steph. Thanks for praying for us. I trust in His plan.

  9. That was very keen of your hubby to read your face and heart. My Nick would do the same for me. That is how you know that they are keepers. Words don't matter with our loves. They just know.

    Also, the Father does indeed have a plan for you, as you know. I also know that you are strong enough to listen. You are so wise and your strength in character shines.

    Love ya bunches. You guys are in my prayers.

    1. Thanks for the prayers, Alita; I know He hears them. I'm honestly so thankful for what we have and thankful to know He answers prayers even in unexpected ways.

      Thanking Him for our hubbies, too. Great men standing by our sides is much for which to be thankful.

  10. Wow! Thank you for sharing this beautiful, painful story. It really is just a part of the bigger story of your family. Praise Him for being the architect of all of it.

    1. Echoing your praise ... He is the master designer, and He knows.

  11. The expression of your faith in the midst of the insecurity/trial/doubt is very powerful. You have a rare gift...we often hear faith shared when all is well, when the lesson has been learned or the victory has been won. It's so very precious to see God and share God in the heart of the storm...and to take it even one step beyond and share Him {and your heart} with us. Thank you. So very inspiring.

  12. This is so beautifully written...

    There would never be a day that I wouldn't welcome another child, but I AM finally at a point in my life where I am expecting that I will never BE expecting again... It's a strange spot to be in. I can imagine that a false positive would turn my heart on end as well.

    I am hoping alongside you that you get to feel a child within your womb again.

  13. You are always so honest and poignant...I pray that when the time is right you will be blessed again, but I love your beautiful trust in God's timing and ways.

  14. Oh man, what a roller coaster of emotions! I really appreciate you opening up your heart and sharing these deep, private thoughts and hopes and fears. I do hope one day you'll feel life anew and that it will blossom and grow - but truly, when your heart, mind, body & soul are ready for it again.


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Thanks for taking the time to make these thoughts into conversation.