“Mrs. Cline” the lady behind the receptionist desk called out.
I walked up and answered, “Yes.”
“Are you here for infertility?” I felt a verbal punch to the gut and I paused before answering, never having been given that label before.
“Yes…I guess I am.”
I was never the girl that wanted to hold babies. I thought they were cute and the idea of family seemed great, but it also came with deep-rooted fears and insecurities.
Three years into our marriage we threw caution to the wind and stepped into the we-aren’t-trying-not-to-get-pregnant arena.
Little did we know it would be nine years later before we looked into the eyes of our first child.
I’ll never forget that first specialist visit. The word infertileis a heavy burden to bear. The initial anticipation, wonder and possibility quickly turned a sharp corner into questioning, heartache and despair.
We like to plan things in life, don’t we? I know I did. I’ll get married at this age, I’ll have this career and drive this type of car and once I’m settled then come babies.
At least that’s how I envisioned it.
The longer I live this life I see more clearly the truth found in Proverbs 16:9: “The heart of a man plans his way, but the Lord establishes his steps.”
We can plan all day long, but God is in control.
His story we are lovingly brought into for His glory.
My story is one of surrender.
Throughout our infertility journey of doctors, plans, tests and procedures, the deep-rooted fears and insecurities couldn’t help but float to the surface. It’s the refining fire of life that purifies our heart to find our everything in Jesus.
We trust that He is good and working all things for our good even in the loss, the waiting and the realigned plans of life.
Infertility is an emotional and physical fire. You’re completely out of control trusting the process, which is nothing less than an emotional roller coaster, leaving your heart exposed. We walked each step prayerfully trusting God along the way yet still the enemy whispered the lie,
“You are not complete.”
As we walked our path, what happened in my heart was what mattered. The things I held so close like
my life plans,
my insecurities and fears,
and my brokenness
all became more evident, and through it all I had a newfound awareness of what I needed to lay at Jesus’ feet.
As I did, Jesus became all I needed.
I was complete even in the midst of my wanting when my identity was fully found in Him.
My heart that once was fearful began knowing true peace through the process and I longed not only for a baby but for what God’s plan was for me.
I stopped watching other couples’ stories and focused on my own and knew this was my story and it was the one God was writing for me.
In that heart place there is no room for anger, bitterness, resentment and jealousy. I experienced grace like I’ve never known, and in turn found myself giving it to others in a way I had never given.
One worship service with my hands raised and tears falling down my cheeks I sang with all my heart these words:
“You give and take away, but my heart will choose to say, Lord, blessed be your name.” That’s what life is all about.
I told him, “Father, not my will, but yours be done in my life. I lay this ache, this loss, this desire, this dream at YOUR feet and trust YOUR will, YOUR way and YOUR timing.”
Through the process of IVF we delivered our first daughter, Daisy, in January 2007.
Three years and eight months later we delivered our second daughter, Jovie, in May 2010. She happened all on her own through no added needles or treatments.
Both girls are miracles. Every child is a miracle. My husband and I breathe them in deeply on a daily basis.
Am I still infertile? Yes.
Am I a mother? Yes.
I can’t explain God’s timing or plan but I trust it more than I trust my own lack of understanding it.
The steps of my life are established just as Sarah’s were in Genesis when she birthed Isaac in her nineties. In gain or in loss I choose joy and give thanks in all things.
The label I wear that matters most on Mother’s Day or any day is “Child of the Living God.”