We all have something in our life that we don’t trust God fully with.
For me? It’s infertility.
Shocked, right? 😉
As much as we have been blessed this past year with Josephine, I can see some old fears creeping back in. I need to admit it to myself and to all of you…
I am scared as hell as to how, when, or if our family will grow again.
Last year, I wrote about how becoming a mom changed our battle with infertility. I still stand behind the fact that I won’t completely “go back” to the darkest of dark days I once knew. Josephine has brought too much joy and light to our lives for me to ever get that low again. My deepest desires to become a mother have been fulfilled and I will never forget that.
Thankfully my jealousy of other families I once had is mostly curbed. I no longer get upset that God grows other families just that I don’t trust he will grow ours. I do find myself getting anxious again, though, and I can see the tidal wave of negative emotions beginning to form in the distance.
I am battling a deep seated fear.
Fear that we’ll never ever ever ever EVER conceive.
Fear that if I do conceive, I will miscarry.
Fear that I will inevitably be the last one standing on the island of infertility…that everyone I know both fertile/infertile/sub-fertile will get pregnant but never me.
Fear that we’ll never be able to afford adoption again.
Fear that if we try to fundraise to adopt again it will all fall apart this time and no one will support us.
Fear that Josie will grow up without siblings we so desperately desire her to be surrounded by.
Fear that all our friends who also have one baby will stop being our friends when then go on to have more babies and only want to hang around “big” families.
Fear that when we start trying to conceive again that it will be the same old crap we’ve been through a million times before filled with treatments and diets up the wazoo yet perpetually unsuccessful outcomes.
Fear that when we try and adopt again, somehow no families will like us or want us to provide a home for their sweet baby.
Fear, fear, and more fear.
On one hand I am so ashamed that I STILL don’t trust God fully with our family. He outdid himself BIGTIME on bringing Josie into our lives and showed us just how in control he was all along.
On the other hand, I am not shocked because I know me. I am weak, frail, and forgetful. Remember how easy it is to get frustrated and judgey with the Israelites in the Old Testament? They just seem to never get it. Well, now I am basically them. Ugh.
All I can do is take my fears to Jesus, acknowledge them, and surrender. I have to trust that he sees my fears and will conquer them.
In prayer he keeps reminding me of how Josephine came into our lives. It was all orchestrated so perfectly by Him. It’s undeniable that God hasn’t provided for us.
He keeps nudging me to trust that he WILL provide again…but unlike other families with healthy fertility, I get no control as to when or how that happens. (And even they don’t get total control) I am trying to be OK with that. Each day in prayer I willfully surrender these fears to him and cling to truth that, “All things work for good for those who love God.” Romans 8:28
In my core I know that we’ll be just fine. That God will not abandon us. That He will provide for all our needs and will grow our family. I have only to actively surrender myself to His will and the peace of God will fill my heart and soul.
I choose to end this post drenched in fear with a prayer. Through abandoning myself is how Jesus will conquer all my fears and grow trust in my heart. Think about something you struggle to trust God with and pray along with me…
I abandon myself into your hands;
do with me what you will.
Whatever you may do, I thank you:
I am ready for all, I accept all.
Let only your will be done in me,
and in all your creatures –
I wish no more than this, O Lord.
Into your hands I commend my soul:
I offer it to you with all the love of my heart,
for I love you, Lord, and so need to give myself,
to surrender myself into your hands without reserve,
and with boundless confidence,
for you are my Father.
Charles de Foucauld
Beautiful, Amanda. I share many of the exact same fears. And it’s kind of an amazing God-incidence that this post appeared in my inbox today, when just 2 hours ago I was at Mass and told God that I offer all this MRKH/infertility to him. I am so happy I read this today. Thank you for writing. <3
I am so glad that you read it too 🙂 And as much as I hate it…I am glad I am not alone in these exact fears. I am thankful to “know” you and to carry this cross alongside you.
Matt and I discussed this before I had my tubes tied that if we felt my body could have handled another pregnancy we were gonna discuss that with you guys but the doctor told us if we decided to go down that path I would have a rough pregnancy with my back. :/ otherwise we were gonna discuss with you guys having another baby for you guys so Josephine would have a brother/sister that was related to her by blood. We know you guys will not have any issues finding another family. You 2 are amazing and very loving people. You guys deserve the best. Try not to stress on the future now and focus on the present. If it’s meant to be it will be. I’m always here if you want to talk about this. We love and miss you guys. 🙂 don’t ever doubt yourselves. 😉
Tiffany, thank you for all the kind words. Just hearing your confidence in us really does help and lowers my stress levels. Thank you for entrusting us with such a wonderful and beautiful gift. I hope and pray someday we will meet others who will do the same 🙂
Thank you for this, Amanda – it was what I needed to read today, especially the beautiful prayer at the end! Now that our son is 6 months, all the old fears have started to come back…we got pregnant once, but what if we never can again? I’m almost 35 and that’s when they say fertility starts to decline quickly…my mom went through menopause at 40…etc, etc. You guys have been through a whole lot more than we have so far, but the fear and lack of trust is still there for me. It’s comforting to know I’m not the only one with this on my mind…Thank you for the reminder to TRUST!
Your welcome. It does stink that the same old fears creep back in. You are not alone in this and I am here to walk by your side through it.
I LOVE that prayer and have prayed it almost daily for over 5 years! The part that jumped out at me last April was “I am ready for all, I accept all! I found myself staring in the mirror saying, “oh sure you accept all! Liar! I continue to yield to God’s guidance! It is so hard to Let go and Let God! Blessings to you!
Dear Amanda, I really enjoy your blog. Thank you. I say this lovingly and I know you already seem conscious of it but you need to take a deep breath and relax and count your blessings. I’m sure it’s occurred to you that many of us could be jealous of you if we thought about it enough. You had a baby almost fall in your lap and didn’t have to pay for it out of your own pocket (at least for a lot of it). I can’t even stop and count how much money my husband and I have spent on (licit) fertility treatments, on adoption attempts and still no baby. I know what we suffer is a cross and it’s still a cross even once you adopt like yourself but want to have more. But we can’t control all this stuff. What about the woman who has no fertility problems but has a down syndrome baby? A blessing but still a cross. Or the woman who has lots of children but an inattentive husband, etc., etc.
I know it’s easier said than done and a lifetime struggle that I also struggle with but we will always find something in life with which to be dissatisfied and have to totally surrender our lives to God. We know that he uses these crosses for an even greater good. Who knows what good will come from your suffering and waiting? Think of St. Monica who had to wait and suffer for Augustine’s conversion but not only did she get him to convert but she got a priest, bishop, saint, doctor of the Church! Or St. Joachim and Anne who had to wait and suffer for so long but then were blessed with the Mother of God! HIs plans are always better than ours. These are the things I tell myself when I struggle with the things you struggle with.
God knows you want a sibling for Josie. He will provide in his own way and in his own time. It’s your challenge to trust him (as you are aware) but also to just be happy in the moment and grateful for all you have and to let him provide for the needs of your family.
Anne, while I appreciate you commenting, I admit that it probably did not have the intended reaction you were going for. I will be the first to say that I am wildly THANKFUL for Josephine and how she came into our lives. It was nothing short of a miracle and I am still in AWE, truly. But this post wasn’t about that. It was about how I am STILL human. I still have doubts, fears, and struggles even IN THE MIDST of intense gratitude. I didn’t write this post to complain but to be honest. Your comment felt a bit shaming in its tone and that is not very constructive for anyone who was opening themselves wide and vulnerably. You shared many truths – God will provide and I know that to the core of my being. But I will likely doubt along the way as he transforms me on this journey and I don’t feel guilty about that. We all suffer but sitting around saying “look at this person who suffers more” is not helpful. No matter WHAT the cross is they are carrying. There will always be someone to be jealous of or who suffers more than you or others. Bringing that up to me to essentially negate the very real pain we have as a family in this area (amidst our blessings) makes me feel invisible. I know you did’t likely intend to more or less tell me to “shut up” but that is how your comment came across to me and I wanted to let you know.
I wasn’t trying to tell you to “shut up” and I’m sorry it came across that way. I thought I was being helpful and not hurtful. God bless you and your family.
I have to agree that it is amazing, given the constant provision that God gives us, how the fear and the lack of control still trip us up. I am there. I am struggling some with prayer and with my relationship with Him because of that fear. There is really no ground for it, except for my own brokenness, but I love that prayer of surrender. I have prayed it before, and enjoyed praying it again today. I’m not sure that I can truly say and mean all of those things, but I want to, and I know that is enough for Him. Okay, it’s not enough that we stay in the place of fear or lack of surrender, but trying is enough and He will help us all past that, even if it’s not pretty!