How can I express the loss of a child that was never really “mine”?
We announced that we had been matched in July, and, for a lack of better words, were over the moon for this little boy due November 20. Every day, there were new little boy clothes, Swaddle blankets and crib sheets in the mail Kerry would just roll his eyes and smile at the sheer amount of time I would spend on Zulily every day preparing for this future tiny outdoorsman. The camo onesies, the “fishing with my daddy” footsies, and the custom “coming home outfit” with his name monogrammed on the chest. Our excitement, after all the years of failed fertility treatments and surgeries, could not be contained.
We were also preparing our 40 year old bodies for the arrival and stress of a newborn. My completely useless uterus was evicted and Kerry had lumbar fusion in preparation of hours in deer stands and bateaus.
And then we got “the other call”. Our attorney called this morning to break the news. “They have chosen to parent.” Of course, we were in shock. There is no word, no way to describe what we are feeling. There is no physical evidence that he was ever ours. Nothing to show how this tiny piece of our hearts, whose little profile has been taped to our fridge, will forever change us.
I’ve been asked if we are angry with his mom, and my answer is no. If we, who have never felt the kick of his little feet, seen him suck his thumb on a sonogram, or even his hiccups, can love him this much… how can we not expect the same from her. I was truly blessed to have experienced the feeling of a life growing in my womb. I have known the unconditional love from the second that child is conceived. I wish her nothing but love, joy and blessings from this little life.
I am glad to have met his mom and dad. I hope that the love that Kerry and I have for each other and God sets an example for them, since both of them come from families torn through drug and sexual abuse. Please remember all of them in your prayers, as well as my sweet Bear and I.
There is a wonderful lady that I follow on Facebook, who just posted something a few days ago. It really comforts me this evening. She says
“As I sit on my back porch this evening and read the countless emails I’ve received today, the tears won’t stop falling. People have poured out their hearts to me, confessed their guilt, revealed their secrets. Everyone misses someone, needs someone, remembers someone.
People are hurting.
In my attempt to be quick in my video today and avoid spewing salt and snot all over my camera, I failed to mention something that I had intended to share.
I do not believe in the saying that God never gives us more than we can handle. Nope. Negative. False. I know that He’s put more on me than I can take. He does this so that we will turn to Him and let Him bear it. There’s such comfort and peace found in sweet surrender.
“Come to me all who are weary and heavy laden and I will give you rest.”
Rest. That’s what He gives us when we are broken and battered and drowning in more depression and despair than we can possibly bear. That’s what He gives us when we let go of the rope. He catches us and gives us rest.
Your therapist can’t give it to you. Pills can’t. Your friend’s advice won’t do. Even the power of chocolate won’t work. You can’t find true, beautiful rest anywhere but in Him.
Many nights I stand in my backyard with my arms outstretched and I look up to the Heavens. I talk to my parents. I pray. I yell at my dogs to quit barking while I’m having such a spiritual moment. I ask the Lord for strength and wisdom and clarity. Sometimes I ask for a sign that I’m being heard. And sometimes a star falls. I don’t think that’s coincidence.
But most importantly, I seek and find rest when I stand there with my arms reaching high. I imagine myself at His feet. With one command, He lifts my burden and my sorrow. I say, “I can’t bear it anymore.” And He answers, “I will bear it. Rest.”
Each email I’ve received tonight– that’s my reply. Rest. Surrender. Bear the burden no longer.
He knows every hurt. Every pain. Every loss. Every tear. Every addiction. Every temptation. Every illness. Every injustice. Every desire.
There is purpose in all of it. There’s purpose and perseverance in that pain, that grief, that regret, that longing. Let him take the burden from you, whatever it may be, and turn it into a thing of beauty.
All you have to do is ask Him.
My thanks to Woah Susannah and her advice. For the next couple of weeks, Kerry and I will ask God for rest, and will continue to pray that somehow, some way, He will give us another chance.
To little Mason, which is what his mommy and daddy have chosen to call him, you will FOREVER hold that little piece of our hearts. May God keep you safe and may you always know Him and the love He has for you. You got this dude.