Have you ever dreaded going to the bathroom?
It’s bizarre how pregnancy can turn a normal bodily function into something you dread.
My first two pregnancies were straightforward. “Textbook” pregnancies, as they say.
My third pregnancy started off very similar to the first two. My period was late. I craved salty foods.
Before my first Doctor’s appointment, I started to bleed. Nothing major. It might have simply been spotting which isn’t unusual in early pregnancy.
When I finally went for the appointment, my Doctor was optimistic. Based on a pelvic exam, everything looked okay. However, within 24 hours she called me with the results of my blood test. I had been pregnant but it looked like I was losing the baby.
Miscarriages happen, I rationalized. I’d had my statistical 1 in 4 miscarriage.
Four months later, the same thing happened. This time I had an ultrasound along with blood tests. The ultrasound showed a fetal sac, but no heartbeat was detected.
I went home to my two healthy toddlers. The next day, I bled. Heavily. I knew it was over. Again.
Only 2% of women have two miscarriages in a row.
I wanted my Mom. I wanted to curl up and cry. I wanted to know why this happened to me, especially since I had carried and birthed two healthy children with ease.
My emotional response confused me. Why was I so upset? There was no real reason. My miscarriages happened early. It’s not like I had been 20 weeks pregnant.
Why couldn’t I be happy with the two boys I had? It should be easy to move past this. At least I had two kids, right? Some women go through this and never have children.
I began to doubt whether I had been pregnant. Perhaps deep down I thought that denying my pregnancies would help me overcome my grief. I had “gone crazy” to think of rearranging bedrooms and imagining my two boys with a new brother or sister.
The Sunday following my second loss, I stayed home from church and cried and journalled. I didn’t understand why my husband wasn’t affected.
I didn’t understand why I longed for my mother so deeply when a part of me knew that she wouldn’t have been reassuring. She never was a great one for comfort.
I felt So Alone.
Not long after, I came across a book entitled, “One Minute After You Die,” written by pastor and evangelist, Erwin Lutzer. Here’s an analogy from it by Dr. James Vernon McGee:
“…when a shepherd seeks to lead his sheep to better grass up the winding, thorny mountain paths, he often finds that the sheep will not follow him. They fear the unknown ridges and the sharp rocks.”
Isn’t that true? Many of us fear death because of the unknown and because it’s often preceded by illness, suffering, and pain.
“The shepherd will then reach into the flock and take a little lamb on one arm and another on his other arm. Then he starts up the precipitous pathway. Soon the two mother sheep begin to follow… Thus they ascend the tortuous path to greener pastures.”
Greener pastures. McGee is referring to heaven if you didn’t catch that.
As I pondered this, an image of my mother holding two babies, one in each arm, came to me. I immediately felt a surge of peace. I believe God gave me that image just as He has given me other images when I’ve asked Him for peace.
God was telling me that I had indeed been pregnant. Those babies were an important part of God’s plan in my life.
I’ve been reminded since then that God cares about the smallest detail; even cell growth is known and planned by Him.
Jeremiah 1:5 says, “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you…”
Each life God created was made on purpose. There are no accidents with God. There are no surprise pregnancies with God. Every life, no matter how minuscule, has a purpose.
Psalm 139:13 “For You created my inmost being; You knit me together in my mother’s womb.”
God not only plans our lives before we exist, He was a part of the tiniest details when He formed us. Those seemingly random cells that had me spinning in circles? They grew in my body because God assigned them to do so!
Another reassurance came from the New Testament gospels. Jesus’ disciples were asking Him questions about the end of the world as we know it.
Jesus spoke these words in Matthew 24:19: “How dreadful it will be in those days for pregnant women and nursing mothers.”
A little shocking? No kidding! Pregnant women were suddenly NOT pregnant after the rapture?!
The Bible does not specify how many weeks pregnant a woman must be in order to be deemed “pregnant”. All I know is that shortly after an egg is fertilized, cell division occurs as new life unfolds.
Life had begun to grow inside of me. I found comfort in the image of two babies being held by their grandma in heaven. The idea of my own death immediately became less distressing. I longed for heaven in a new way.
Have you experienced a miscarriage? Are you struggling to understand why God would prematurely snuff out the new life growing inside you? Can you be comforted in knowing that your unborn baby is in heaven waiting for you?
I thought I was too weak to handle two consecutive miscarriages. I thought I needed my Mom to get through my confusion and grief.
But it turns out that God was exactly Who and What I needed. I trusted that He had planted those life-cells in me on purpose. To work out His plan and to build within me a longing for my eternal home.