Viewing: Pain and suffering - View all posts

What was it like? 

"Just look into the camera when you're ready."  
I had been over the dialog a thousand times in my head. I knew what I held in my heart to say. Suddenly all of the words blurred together and it was as though my mouth couldn't work. Which, if you know me, is completely unlike me!  
Inwardly, I prayed.  
'God, speak what needs to be spoken. Help. I can't do this with so much swirling around my mind.' 
Thoughts spun around hurtful events that had taken place over the last couple of weeks. It was a certain attack from the enemy. Pain as I was desperately seeking words for pain. 
Here I sat, perhaps one of the most important events of my lifetime, unable to release the message in me. I searched for answers as I stared into the fibers of the carpeting. 

 

"I'm having trouble putting this into words." 
"Just tell us what it was like losing your babies." 

What was it like? My heart palpitated. Flashes of gore replayed through my mind. Physical pain, emotional pain, and confusion passed through my heart, remembering those fateful moments when I knew another child had died and was leaving my body. I saw Niklas in my arms, lifeless and still. I remembered the silence. the stillness of the birthing room. Visuals of the dim-lit birthing bed waiting for me. No life in that room, only death. Suddenly, the emotions flooded my heart... and words began spilling through tears. 
What was it like? It was like being shredded in a way I'd never been ripped apart before. It was like torture. Being forced to participate in confirming a life ended that you wanted to continue. Pain. Physical, emotional, and spiritual pain and confusion. I wanted no drugs. I wanted to feel every ounce of physical pain. I needed something to push against in the middle of my emotional pain.   
Tears continued. I stared intensely into the camera lens. I wanted to crawl into it, cover up, curl into a ball and hide from the world for just a second.

I worried that they wouldn't be able to capture the words through my blubbering, and yet a part of me didn't care. I needed to say whatever it was that ended up being said. 


1 in 4 women experience pregnancy loss and stillbirth. The tears streaming down my face weren't just for me... they were for my sisters and brothers forced to walk this road in their lives too. They were for my dear friends who sat in the next room who were sharing their stories.  They were for every person on the planet who has been forced to say goodbye to their sweet child before they could say hello. Planned or unplanned, early loss or full-term... it makes no difference. Pain is pain... loss is loss... and your grief is your grief. If you know me well, you know that I feel deeply. Likely I feel more deeply than the average person. The stories of the hurting ache my heart and light a fire to continue to create and put to words pain for those who are not bent this way. The song, Before We Said Hello, I pray, opens a door for us all to heal and begin an open conversation as we traverse a path that non of us would have chosen and none of us want to be on.  

I thank God for the gift of dear friends and family who come to communicate and share their losses with the world for the benefit of others.

I thank God for a sister that has walked closely with me through this entire journey. She has loved me in my darkest hours. She is that person who takes me for a pedicure to ease the difficulty I face during this time of my life and allows me just to sit silently.

I am grateful for a daughter who sobs with me and gets the sorrow of the moment.

I am grateful for my precious husband... my best friend... who knows me, understands my deep feeling heart- and loves it. I am thankful He is the one God chose for me to walk these roads with.

 

I am most grateful for a God who never fails. Who loves me regardless of my pain, questions and failings. He is my greatest treasure and highest dream.

 

Beauty In Ashes 

There is a bittersweet washing that comes over me as I glance in the rearview mirror of my life. I see the broken moments. I feel the fallings and failings. I hear the wounding words both spoken to me and those that have come carelessly out of my mouth. I gaze daily upon my need for the grace that my merciful God has poured over me and into me and continues to do so, even today. 
It's funny, looking back, the things we can see now that we couldn't understand at the moment. Dreams we thought were dead in the water, brought to life with purpose. Pain that seemed so wasteful and thieving, He now declares useful and purposeful. 
My heart has always wanted to be used by God. I have always felt that regardless of what I may go through or experience in this life, as long as He used it for a purpose, I would be ok.  He has proven so very faithful to do this. 
There is much to my story. Too much to go into in this post. I want to share some of it with you, in hopes that it will encourage you to remember that He is a God of mercy and grace, and it matters not where you have been or what you have done. He has the final say. Man can and will say, what they will. BUT GOD has the final word, sees the heart, and writes the plan over your life. 
I sat in the choir room that last day of my senior year. Pregnant, having kissed all of my music scholarships goodbye, my opportunities to attend prestigious New York music schools were flushed down the toilet. My director announced her farewells to the seniors, "Some of you will go on to lead choirs and bands, teach music, and record... and some of you will just be singing lullabies..." she glanced in my direction.  My heart sunk. I knew that I had chosen to seek fulfillment for my brokenness in things that led to the destruction of dreams and separation in my relationship with God.  
I knew that this had cost me a future I'd dreamed of since I was a small child. I spent hours listening to artists, working on my vocal technique. I dreamt of attending the Grammy and Dove awards, not even winning, mind you- just attending! I ached as I sat in the choir room that day, watching, as those dreams slipped through my fingers and into nothingness. 
Determined, I pointed my feet in the direction of God, himself.  He began healing my heart and renewing my mind as I surrendered to Him. As I slowly navigated through painful valleys, He showed me that He in my life was the greatest dream. 

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Divots in the Driveway 

Thrilled with his new bike, he focused on pedaling down the driveway. Other than an occasional, “Watch dis, mommy!” 

 I was pretty much just an object in the background of his mind. Back and forth on the gravel driveway in his brand new dinosaur helmet riding proudly atop his Hot Wheels big boy bike. I disappeared into the landscape, his eyes intensely focused on his activity. He forgot I was even outside watching his new ability to traverse this big two wheeled bike, nearly too big for him. My heart was filled with joy, my eyes on him, watching him breathe in this moment happily, though he had completely forgotten about me. Then it happened… a turn taken a little too fast, his front wheel stuck in a divot in the driveway. Over he tumbled. I gasped. An electric shock shot through my body. I knew I was too far away to prevent the fall.  Painful tears filled the air as he cried out for me and I ran to his side. I scooped him up, kissing his forehead. 

“Momma! I got a owie on my knee. I fell off my big-a-boy bike.” 

He managed to utter in between sobs. 

“I know, I’m sorry buddy. That looked like it hurt. We will get you a Band-Aid.” 

Carrying him into the house, he stopped sobbing for a moment and looked at me. 

“Where were you? I didn’t see you.” 

I’d been there all along. I’d seen the entire incident play out. I was fully aware of the joy he was experiencing, and the fall he took. I was completely aware of him, yet he had become unaware of me. 

Oh dear one, how we are the same with our Father God! We traverse through this life, focused on what is right in front of us. Our business, our enjoyment and entertainment. We focus on our earthly relationships, our ambitions, our ministries, and we lose sight of the One whose eyes are ever on us! Until our front wheel gets stuck in a divot in the driveway and we topple off course. 

I have always found that pain has been a gift in my life. A gift that causes me to shift my focus back to my God and the things that are eternal. It awakens me back to true life, life that is permeated by remaining in Him. I find myself tempted to embrace all that is temporary, instead of constantly placing my focus on Him as I traverse this journey here on earth. 

I love how God is faithful. His eyes ever on us, even as our eyes shift toward our daily concerns shift our focus off of Him. He holds to His promise to never leave us or forsake us in times of trouble. His salvation and deliverance is sure for the Christ follower! Over and over as we read through the old testament stories, we see how regardless how unfaithful people are, if they are willing to repent, humble themselves and cry out to Him, He comes.  

He doesn’t rescue from the circumstances of our choices, but He brings the eternal rescue through them. Just as He promises. 

 

“Because he loves me, I will deliver him; because he knows My name, I will protect him. When he calls out to Me, I will answer him; I will be with him in trouble. I will deliver and honor him.” 

Psalm 91:14-15(Berean Study Bible) 

 

“Pain points us to the One Who holds the promise.” 

I have found in life; it often takes pain to get me to focus on the only One who can help me through it. We so often want relief from pain, but He wants to be relief through it. As we come to see Him as the rescue within the storm, we come to see that the swirling wind and pouring rain are not what we need to rescue from. We need eternal rescue. We need His strength and wisdom and His eternal promises from within the center of the cyclone. As we rest in His rescue, fixing our minds on Him, His promise of perfect peace holds firm.