I don’t know who reads this blog, I don’t know if friends from college read this, friends from Rosslyn, kind supporters in BV, or people that have found me after years on Facebook. I don’t know how to approach this or what to write about, do I disclose fully how I am how we are what is going on. Who needs to know? Who wants to know?
What makes me think of this is the recent phenomena of Facebook. Every page is full of smiling happy people. Pictures of people with their boyfriends, spouses, babies, all smiles all the time. I have one friend that I haven’t seen in years, I ran across her page curious to see how she is doing, what she is doing, how she turned out after all these years. What is she doing for a living? Did she leave San Diego? Is she married? I was pleasantly surprised to see that she had posted a poem that spoke of her trans-continental marriage and divorce. Not pleasantly surprised that she had been married and divorced at the age of 27, but that she was honest about it. That she was brave enough to put that out there in a forum that seems to be reserved for happiness no matter how unhappy you are.
Scott and I lost our first pregnancy a month ago. We landed on the ground in Nairobi in July and decided to start trying for a baby in August. I didn’t really believe that we’d get pregnant the first time we tried. But we did. Our first ultrasound (at seven weeks) showed that the baby was about two weeks smaller than it should be. We chose not to proceed with another ultrasound, because we felt it was too early to know what the exact size of the child was and if the pregnancy wasn’t viable we’d rather let nature take it’s course. Five weeks later I began to bleed, I bled for about ten days waiting for it to stop and not sure what was normal and what was not. We did choose to do another ultrasound, and the ultrasound revealed that the gestational sac was empty. A baby had never formed, but my body had gone and created a placenta which released hormones into my body that allowed it to continue to feel pregnant. So I held onto an unviable pregnancy for twelve weeks. Maybe that’s a good sign.
After that ultrasound we scheduled a d and c for the next morning. During the night I began to bleed profusely and we rushed to the hospital at four in the morning. Our doctor arrived and performed an emergency d and c. A few hours while on a gurney, coming out of anesthesia my husband told me of Obama’s historic win.
So far so many things in my life I have been able to make sense of, I can see where each tragedy and time of suffering have made me stronger or made me a better friend, comforter, wife, human being, child of Christ, etc. This one however I am left with a copy of an empty ultrasound picture and the question why? There are enough things in this world that are just hard, things that you just have to walk through, things that will always hurt. Shadows that are cast over our lives that never leave. For some medical files that follow us around for the rest of our life. For some the knowledge that alcohol can never pass your lips again. Wounds that heal but scars that never leave. Events that you heal from but something can bring it rushing right back again. A scene in a movie, a anecdote in a book, a friend’s tragedy, or something you see out of the corner of your eye that gives you a flashback and suddenly you are right there. I’ve had so many women come to me crying talking a about a baby that they lost ten, twenty years ago. Friends, acquaintances, women in my own family.
I think why Lord, ‘what purpose could you have that is so big that this baby had to go?’ I’ve already had suffering in my life, why more? I think of my friend who had cancer at the age of twenty and her amazing ability to empathize. I think of another friend and her troubled childhood and her quiet wisdom. I think of another friend who was left at the altar and the fact that I have never had to explain myself to her once. And I think of all the women who have cried with me in the past weeks. Maybe that’s why we suffer, to bring us together. The collective lowing of the herd can be heard over the world. I keep telling myself that suffering just happens, that it is not an affliction from God. That we live in a fallen world and there are no guarantees. I keep telling myself that my relationship with God helps me deal with tragedies, rather than him afflicting me because I didn’t do what I was supposed to.
So I read Job and after a few weeks of silence I am relearning how to pray. It is too soon to make sense. Truth be told it may never make sense. I think that’s why they call it faith.