The Ups. The Downs. And Everything in Between..

I really should be blogging/journaling every day, but I either forget or just don’t want to. Procrastination is an ugly thing. But, I digress. 

The past several months have been a rollercoaster of ups and downs; not to mention a few loops. That being said, I have some things I need to get out of my head and heart, so here goes…

July 22nd, my husband’s birthday, I found out I was pregnant for the 3rd time since we got married in 2012. I had had three previous miscarriages (the first during my first marriage in 2003) and two in 2013, so I was cautious but elated. I found out while at work, and between tears and laughter, I let everyone there know we were finally going to have a baby. Jason started his buying spree again, which consisted of all things 49er baby. Onesies, outfits, accessories, you name it, he was buying it. I jokingly told him our children will only have 49er outfits if no one else buys clothes for them. As the packages poured in, I began to think it wasn’t a joke anymore. 

We discussed who to tell and not tell. I wanted to let everyone and their grandma know, but he wanted to wait. He did allow me to tell some people (all of work knew), so I told my closest friends and very few family. The weeks went by, and I was feeling pregnant, but not as much as I thought I would. I was ok with that, considering I had been praying that it would be an easy, complication-free, miscarriage-free pregnancy. I had my first ultrasound around week 6 – or what I thought was week 6. The ultrasound showed the sac, but no baby. The doctor (who is amazing) said I probably ovulated later than normal and to not worry (this is exactly what happened with my last miscarriage). I prayed and believed God that all was well. She had me come in the following week, and lo and behold, there was our little Peanut with a heartbeat! I’d never had an ultrasound where I saw a baby, let alone a heartbeat. It was game on, and I wanted to tell everyone. Again, Jason, in God’s Wisdom, said to wait. 

I had my big reveal for my mom and stepdad all planned out. I asked them to come visit me in early September. I was going to take them to the doctor with me for my appointment to hear the baby’s heartbeat. We made arrangements for them to visit, and they had no idea why. I was so excited. The doctor scheduled me for another ultrasound in 10 days, and it seemed to take forever to arrive. In the back of my mind, even tho I and several others were praying fervently for a healthy baby, I had a feeling something was wrong. I continued to have cramps that felt like I was going to start, but I was told this is normal. I went in for the ultrasound, and there was no progress in the baby’s growth or heartbeat. I was still measuring 6 weeks, and I should have been measuring around 7 or 8. I was devastated, but I refused to give up. I was called back to another room to wait for the doctor to come in and talk to me about the ultrasound results. I began to cry as I prayed to my Heavenly Father. I was alone, and I just said out loud, “Father, no matter what happens, no matter what she comes in here to tell me, I trust You. I’m choosing to trust You, even though I don’t understand. And I refuse to fear.” Dr. Olson came in, and she basically confirmed what I already knew. I was more than likely headed for my fourth miscarriage. She handed me a pair of latex gloves and a small cup to put the pieces of my pregnancy into for testing. I was numb as I reached for them, but in my mind, I remember thinking, “God is bigger. We have a heartbeat. God is bigger. We have a heartbeat.”

I left her office in tears, and I called my friend Tonni. I told her what the doctor said, again, in tears. But, we had a heartbeat. That was something! She immediately got a prayer chain going. I went home, and the spotting began. I called my husband, and he came home, too. That was a Thursday, I believe. In spite of it all, I kept telling God I trusted Him. A peace like I’ve never known came over me, and even tho I was heartbroken, I was ok, and I was ready to face the inevitable. The next day, I stayed home from work, because I was still spotting. I wanted to rest and a small part of me was holding onto the hope that God would give us a miracle. Jason came home at 11 or so, and it got worse. I knew then, I was in the throes of labor, but not to give birth to our beautiful baby. I was in labor to give birth to a baby that wouldn’t live on this earth, but who was heading back home to the Father to wait for us. A baby that I wouldn’t hold in my arms here, but Jesus would hold in His arms there.  

I opted to stay home instead of going to the hospital, because I didn’t think it would be very painful, as I wasn’t very far along. I was wrong. As the day progressed, so did the pain. I knew I was getting close to passing the big pieces, because the pain was intensifying and becoming more frequent. In the past three miscarriages, I have never had to scoop the remnants of my pregnancy out of the toilet. That was one of the hardest things I’ve ever had to do. I was in so much pain, it was making me physically sick. By the time I realized how bad it was getting, it was too late to go to the hospital, because there was so much blood. I spent more time in the bathroom, because I was bleeding so profusely. Jason kept asking me what he could do, and I know he felt so helpless, because I wouldn’t let him come near the bathroom. I didn’t want him to see all the blood. I couldn’t protect him from another baby lost, but I could protect him from seeing it happen. 

Later in the day, the pain was almost unbearable. I asked him if he thought his mother would bring me something she had for pain. Since a bullet was out of the question, I opted for something else. He left to go to their house, and I didn’t want him to leave me. But, I knew if I wanted relief, he’d have to go. While he was gone, I got mad. Not at him, but at the pain; the situation. I began to speak to the pain, and I told it to leave. It had to leave. I am a child of the Most High God, and I didn’t have to take this pain; I wasn’t going to take this pain. The more I prayed, the more it began to subside. By the time Jason came home, I didn’t need the medication. They are still sitting on my counter. Thank You, Jesus!

I had such a hard time facing all of the people I told about the pregnancy. The person I had the hardest time facing was Jason. I felt like such a failure, and I felt like I had let him down, again. What could I have done differently? What should I have done? I didn’t eat healthy enough. I was overweight from the beginning, so I was sure it was my fault. The doctor assured me it wasn’t. She said sometimes, there are issues with attachment, or something could have been wrong with our little one. 

People kept telling me I was brave, but I don’t see it as bravery, because I had no choice. I couldn’t choose between a miscarriage or having our baby. All I can say is, it was the absolute grace and mercy of God that I got thru it all. I felt His presence with me thru the entire ordeal, and even tho I, to this day, don’t understand, I trust Him. And Jason! My goodness! He was so amazing and so loving thru everything. He was so tender, understanding and patient. I thank God for him, and I thank God he was there.

A few weeks ago, a very dear friend of mine messaged me regarding her sister’s pregnancy. She was two to three weeks from delivery when they discovered the baby had no heartbeat. This put me over the edge. I told my friend Tonni, I have seen so much death when it comes to pregnancy. Not only my babies but others who have suffered like me and my friend’s sister. I told her it just doesn’t seem worth it anymore, and I don’t even want to try to get pregnant. In fact, I felt it wouldn’t bother me if I never did again. I remember a time when it seemed no one I knew was having an issue, and people were having babies like there was no tomorrow. I just don’t get it. But, again, I trust Him. I don’t and won’t always understand, but I trust. I may be angry, hurt, confused and a host of other emotions, but I trust. He is a good God. He is a great God. I rest in that.

My doctor and I wanted to run tests to find out why this keeps happening. Once my HCG levels were back to zero, we took blood. A lot of blood, but I would have offered all of it to find out why I keep miscarrying our babies. Turns out, I have something called Factor V (5, not the letter V), which means my blood coagulates. There are two types: one gene and two gene. It is genetic, and I have the one gene, which means one of my parents has it. This is the better of the two, because those with one gene Factor V are far less likely to have a blood clot. The percentage is 3% – 8%, whereas those with the two gene type are highly likely (and usually do) have blood clots, pulmonary embolisms, etc. She told me to take 81 mg of aspirin every day, and she gave me a prescription for progesterone, which I started last night. I’m very encouraged, because now we have answers. I have prayed so hard that God will not allow me to get pregnant again unless it is a perfect pregnancy and a perfectly healthy baby (or babies. I’m believing for twins). I’ve laid this at His feet, and that is where it will stay. 

I had and have often thought before that day and after, why even let me get pregnant if it was just going to end in miscarriage? Why? But, I trust Him. Still. His Love for me never fails. His presence is forever with me. His peace is mine for the taking. He did not cause this, and someday, maybe not on this side of Heaven, I will know the answers to my whys. 

I don’t know what the future holds, but no matter what comes, the Father holds me. If He can hold the whole world in His hands, there is room for me there, too. I rest in His Love. I rest in His grace. I rest in His peace. I rest in His mercy. I rest in Him. I will be still and know He is God. Psalm 46:10 (Amplified): “Be still and know (recognize, understand) that I am God. I will be exalted among the nations! I will be exalted in the earth.”

I pray you have a beautiful, wonderful and thankful Thanksgiving holiday. 

Remember, the Father is in Love with you!

Blessings,

April

 

 

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Leave the Past Behind

About an hour or so ago, I was reading through my previous posts. *sigh* I started this blog a year and a half ago, and I have done nothing and accomplished nothing that I set out to do. In fact, I weigh more now than I did when I began. My sugar addiction is at an all-time high, and my exercising is nil. Through a friend, I recently found a wonderful new friend who is a personal trainer. She does classes twice a week as well as offers advice and recipes. I went to her class last Tuesday, and I loved it. The group is great and everyone was so encouraging and funny. It didn’t take me long to feel at home. I planned to go back (the cost is minimal), but money right now is really tight.

I struggle more with knowing I haven’t followed thru with all the grandiose commitments I made in past blogs. I meant them, and I planned to do what I said. Unfortunately, I didn’t. I can’t focus on the first thought that floated through my head after reading these posts: “Where would I be right now, had I done what I said I would do?” God’s mercies are new every morning. Lamentations 3:22-23 (Amplified): “It is because of the Lord’s lovingkindnesses that we are not consumed, 23 Because His [tender] compassions never fail.  They are new every morning; Great and beyond measure is Your faithfulness.”

Again, it’s about choices. It’s about choosing to do what I know is right and healthy to do. Not just healthy physically, but healthy spiritually. My body needs physical food, but more than anything, it needs the spiritual food of the Word of God. “He humbled you and allowed you to be hungry and fed you with manna, [a substance] which you did not know, nor did your fathers know, so that He might make you understand [by personal experience] that man does not live by bread alone, but man lives by every word that proceeds out of the mouth of the Lord.” Deuteronomy 8:3. For a few weeks, I was getting up early and having wonderful times with the Lord. But, like everything else, I quit doing it. I’m so frustrated with myself right now, because I still choose to keep my flesh a priority above the things I know my spirit needs. I NEED HIM. My flesh needs to have its way. I just heard the scripture “If it is unacceptable in your sight to serve the Lord, choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve: whether the gods which your fathers served that were on the other side of the River, or the gods of the Amorites in whose land you live; but as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.” Joshua 24:15. In my case, my gods are food, T.V. and my flesh. “For where your treasure is, there your heart [your wishes, your desires; that on which your life centers] will be also.” Matthew 6:21 (underline mine)

Where is my heart? It is in my choices. I thank God that He doesn’t see my faults, sins and shortcomings when He looks at me. He sees Jesus. He sees the Blood of my Savior that was shed on that cross. He sees me, as the Mercy Me song says, as flawless. I need to repeat this. I need to learn this. And I need to remember I’m forgiven. I need to forgive myself for messing up. And just like past blogs have said, I need to put my focus on Jesus. I need to leave the past in the past. That’s where it belongs. Yes, I haven’t followed through, but tomorrow is a new day. And when I wake up, He will be there.

And, He’s still waking me up in the morning. He’s still longing to fellowship with me. It’s His heart’s desire, and it needs to be mine. He loves me as much as He loves Jesus. As Jesus prayed in the garden before His death, He prayed these words in  John 17:20-23: 20 “I do not pray for these (the disciples) alone [it is not for their sake only that I make this request], but also for [all] those who [will ever] believe and trust in Me through their message, 21 that they all may be one; just as You, Father, are in Me and I in You, that they also may be one in Us, so that the world may believe [without any doubt] that You sent Me. I have given to them the glory and honor which You have given Me, that they may be one, just as We are one; 23 I in them and You in Me, that they may be perfected and completed into one, so that the world may know [without any doubt] that You sent Me, and [that You] have loved them, just as You have loved Me.” (comment about the disciples and underline was my addition).

Each day, I have to make that choice. It has to be one or the other. I will either live by the Spirit or I will live by my flesh. One leads to life, the other, certain death. When will enough be enough?