There was a time when I thought I would never have the opportunity to celebrate this special day (hallmark holiday as it may be). I got married young (I was 19) to Jonathan (who was 22). We knew we didn't want to have children right away- since we both wanted to finish our schooling. We said we'd give it 3 years, and then we'd start our family.
When I was 22, shortly after graduating college 2004, we decided to start "trying". It was 2 1/2 years since we were married- a little sooner than we had first talked about starting our family, but we felt we were ready. We loved each other and knew we would make fantastic parents to however many children God would bless us with. Little did we know what God had in store for us.
Month after month, and then year after year, still no children. Jonathan and I prayed fervently that God would PLEASE bless us with a child, but the answer always seemed to be "no". Frustrating doesn't even describe it. Angry doesn't even describe it. I felt like I was damaged, even though Doctors couldn't find the reason for our infertility.
I knew that I was really hurting inside when, in February 2006, I had planned a baby shower for my brother and sister-in-law's first child. I thought I was pregnant. I was over a week late, and felt sick. The morning of the shower, I knew I wasn't. Unfortunately, I took it out on Jonathan- I was angry and said some things that were hurtful. I got to the shower, and burst out crying. I didn't want to be there, celebrating the upcoming birth of my niece, when I had been trying SO LONG to experience what she was experiencing.
Things like that seemed to happen more and more- friends and co-workers getting pregnant "unexpectedly"- or "sooner than they had planned". Jealousy stepped in. I tried to be happy for them- and truly was at some points, but the Devil worked at my heart and I became very envious of people with children in general. I just wanted to yell "Do you know how FORTUNATE you are to have your children?!" But they probably wouldn't understand that question, since they didn't experience what I was going through.
Throughout this time, I was still constantly praying to God to please bless me with a child. Then I heard a sermon from Pastor Bill- about Jesus calming the storm- not just the waves and wind of the sea, but of life- the curveballs that are thrown at us that toss our hearts into turmoil. I knew I needed spiritual guidance.
In the summer of 2007, I opened up to Pastor Bill and to our church prayer group about what we were going through to try to have a child. Slowly, my prayer changed from "Bless us with a child, God" to "show us your path to how we should have a family". Adoption was always on my mind...I just knew that it would take substantial funding to begin that process, but I also knew that with time, We would be blessed.I suddenly had peace. Mind you, I still struggled with jealousy over those who seemed to conceive with such ease, but I knew there was a purpose and a plan.
I immersed myself in my artwork, had a couple art shows, and prayed ever more fervently with my husband our new prayer - "Lead us, Lord, to the right way to have a family- whether through having our own child, through adoption, or through some other miraculous way."
Life went on. I stopped using my ovulation kits, my calendars, and instead really, truly enjoyed my relationship with my husband. We grew closer than I thought possible- he really is my best friend and companion.
I had an art show the 3rd week of April in 2008- based on the life of Christ. In it was one of my favorite paintings "Jesus Calms the Storm"- a tumultuous painting where Jesus' arms are raised against the wind and waves, and prevails. This one I was sure to talk about during the show. Jesus calms my heart and my life- He is my Peace.
To say the least, I was a little stressed out (good stress:) that week from planning and finishing the details of the art show. Stress would often affect my cycle, so I didn't think anything of being a little late. The Sunday after my show opening, though, I decided to check. By this time I had probably taken around 10 to 12 pregnancy tests through the years. I had NEVER even had a false positive- I was used to seeing that single line. I expected only a single line.
But on that Sunday, the 20th of April, I got a double line. "Oh, God, You are AMAZING" and "HOLY COW" were some of the first thoughts that went through my mind. I never told Jonathan that I suspected anything or was going to take a test. I actually had to go wake him up (since he had just gone to bed after working third shift) and started crying before I could get the words out. He thought something was really wrong. And when I said, "We're pregnant" he smiled, and simply said, "I knew I'd knock you up sometime". Nice, Jon. Nice.
I remember going for a walk that day and having a smile pasted on my face- seeing the world in a new light- and how amazing this Creation is.
On December 19, 2008, Josiah, my son and Jonathan's son, was born at 4:20 am. The snowiest day this past winter. How do I even begin to describe how fortunate, how blessed, how happy I am to be a mother.
Happy mother's day- God bless you all!