Monday, August 12, 2013

Through the darkness

Written February 2013 I prayed fervently on the drive to work this morning. I asked God to give me His strength. I told Him that I feel the aching reality of my humanity- of my limits. I am in the trenches and He seems to have withdrawn His consolation. The devil however, has reared his ugly head quite a bit lately.  

I received some particularly challenging news about my health this Tuesday.  I've been having quite a bit of pain along with other weird symptoms.  An ultrasound confirmed that I had 2 complex ovarian cysts and my ovary was enlarged to almost 3 times what it should be. I have a significant family history of ovarian cancer and the doctor was quick to inform me they would normally be quite concerned about cancer with something like this, but because I just had surgery it just can't be (apparently it doesn't grow that fast).  He did say that we need to repeat an ultrasound in 3 weeks and if things aren't looking better surgery will likely be necessary.  This would mean my 4th surgery within a year's time. I can honestly say that another surgery doesn't scare me all that much.  It would likely be a quick procedure and pale in comparison to the long long surgery I had in December.  What does scare me is that we will be in this state of limbo forever.  I had a knee-jerk reaction when he mentioned surgery. I told him to just "take everything" so we can be done with this and my husband will come to terms with the fact that we'll never have biological kids and we can finally move forward with adoption! 

Of course I didn't completely mean what I said.  If there is no medical reason necessitating the removal of "everything" then I would, of course, never pursue such a drastic procedure. The part I did mean was the part about adoption. I am so ready to adopt.  I feel like I have been ready to adopt my whole life.  Ever since I learned there were children without loving homes- and before I understood where babies came from- I reasoned that people shouldn't have anymore babies if there were babies without homes. I promise I was not a mini secular humanist, it was just my childlike mind trying to address the reality of suffering children. My husband is not opposed to adoption but is not ready to consider it at this time.  I have to respect where he is at.  I cannot pressure him to move forward with a life-changing decision he is not open to making.  God has put adoption on my heart and I have to trust that he will open my husband's heart to this miracle if it is His will for our family. It would however be "easier" if I could move the process along by "forcing" my husband to come to terms with our infertility- say through the dramatic loss of my reproductive system. There is just something so painful about ambiguity.  I grieve and then hope. Grieve and then hope. Grieve and hope. There never seems to be a moving forward- a moving beyond. 

And so this news from the doctor left me feeling pretty raw.  I was sad, discouraged and confused.  The rest of the day, for whatever reason, the raw hideousness and heart-wrenching evil of abortion was made clear to me multiple times throughout the day through various random and seemingly unrelated events.  It truly felt as though Satan was taunting me. The cruel irony of having my infertility weighing so heavy on me while also being bombarded by the cruel reality of "unwanted" babies being slaughtered.  I had already been feeling ill-equipped to serve the clients at my work since returning after my 6 week recovery.  I had been feeling brain-dead and incoherent.  Now I was feeling like God was allowing me to see in a profound way the dark reality of abortion.  He was allowing me to feel the weight of my cross, that of struggling with infertility and being surrounded by women who are pregnant with babies they don't want. 

I prayed fervently on the drive home from work today.  I told Him how tired I am.  I told Him how scared I am.  I told Him I just don't know if I can do it anymore.  

In many of the trials of life we are told by well-meaning people to focus on the light at the end of the tunnel.  Infertility doesn't seem to be a situation where that kind of advice is helpful.  There is no "getting through" this because there may never be an "end" to this trial.  We may never become pregnant.  We may never know that we will never become pregnant.  We may never adopt. We may never know that we will never adopt. There is no amount of work we can do that can bring this dream to fruition and there is little reason to expect the ambiguity we wade through at this time will be miraculously parted like the Red Sea.  I just don't know but perhaps that's what God is asking of me now. To sit in the uncertainty, like He did in the Garden of Gethsemane, praying, "Father, if it be your will, let this cup pass from me."  Even though Christ knew he was called to suffer for humanity, He experienced ambiguity in the garden. He had to sit in the uncertainty of God's will, while his closest friends simply fell asleep. I have to believe that this unknowing- this being stuck in the land of uncertainty is part of a call to union with Christ. There's something a little bit easier about knowing what pain is coming your way- it's the anxiety associated with the unknown that I find the most debilitating. If Christ was called to suffer this anxiety, than why not me?  


  1. Wow, you have an amazing way with words! Thank you so much for sharing! Lately, I have found a strong connection to Jesus and His suffering too. There's something special about this journey that allows us to connect at such a deep level with His suffering. Big things are coming our way. Praying for you!

  2. Thanks, S! I agree, he can bring so much good from our suffering. Looking forward to seeing the many blessings he has in store for you.:-)