I have always known that my fertility has been a gift. We’ve had so many friends who have struggled to get pregnant through the years. It wasn't until we entered into the season of life when everyone we knew started to grow their families that I ever saw the heartbreak of infertility around me.
Suddenly I was painfully aware of all the times I had wrongfully assumed people were waiting to have children to pursue other things or only wanted one child for whatever their reason. What ignorance on my part.
There is so often a back story to waiting, one child, or none — infertility.
It hurt my heart so much to see my friends go through the agony of giving birth to a child in their heart, but not through their womb. The picture of the child they hoped for was in their arms mentally, but not physically.
We’ve been blessed to never struggle with infertility. So why is a mom of five writing about infertility?
Maybe I don’t have the right to put my struggle down on paper — even digital paper. I’ve never had to experience the inability to get pregnant. When my husband was done having kids after our first two boys, I felt a twinge of how infertility might feel. Although I was capable of getting pregnant, I was still unable. (I wrote about that story here.)
Well, in a few days it’s final.
I’m facing the reality of never again being able to carry a child again. You kind of need a uterus to do so, and mine is being removed.
Coming to terms with this has been hard for me in so many ways. Yes, I’m an “old” mom. But I’m still capable of having more. I’ve always wanted to have more. I do know I’m blessed by the five wonderful children I have.
I had surrendered my womb to God. I told Him that if He kept changing my husband’s heart, I would endure the hard months of morning sickness and have as many babies as He wanted me to have.
So, what now?
I think because I had given this area to the Lord I really thought it was more about my husband saying yes than about the Lord saying no.
As I felt myself sinking into the pain of the finality ahead I heard the Lord whisper, “You’ve given me your womb, but will you let me take it.”
Tears — then surrender.
If you have struggled with infertility, I sincerely hope you know that I do not for a moment pretend to fully understand your pain. However, there is still pain in the hoping for a child who will never be a reality — physically fertile or not.
I have cried with so many moms through the years who have felt like I did back when I was praying for my third. It’s hard to get a “no” when you ache for a “yes” whether pleading with the Lord or your spouse.
I have peace, on most days about my upcoming surgery. As the date nears, I get more nervous. What is so funny is that I felt the most depressed as I had my last period. Why would I ever miss a period? Strange.
Like in so many things, I’m clinging to the joy I have in the Lord. Knowing that He is working all things together for my good. (Romans 8:28)
I actually feel like He may be opening the door to adoption in the future. I don’t know. Having my uterus didn’t mean we’d have more kids any more than having my uterus removed means we’ll adopt. But I cling to the fact that adoption is a beautiful way to have more children.
We were adopted after all — adopted into God’s family.
I’m not sure how my story will end at this point. I do know that another biological child is not in my future. I’m allowing God to fill me with His peace and joy as I focus on the truth that He is a good Father and has given me so many blessings for which I am so grateful.
However, my lesson in all this has been surrender. Accepting the “no.” Receiving His plan that is only revealed one day at a time is enough for me. I’m not promised His plan for tomorrow. I’m only given my manna for today.
“For the joy of the Lord is your strength.”
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*UPDATE: My surgery on Nov. 4th went well. I'm finally home and recovering! Thanks for all your prayers and well wishes!*
If you’d like to see the first part of this story, you can watch this video my daughter and I made after being diagnosed with my “polka dot” problem.