Sweet, sweet boy, this is your story. It’s been a long time coming now. There’s so much to share, and I want to do it all justice, so it’s taken me a long time to get to a place of telling it. We’ve been learning each other for a while now, you and I (you are already ten months old!). God has used you mightily to change and shape me–through the waiting and the knowledge of miraculous you, growing; through the wonder of carrying you and the challenge and joy of delivering you into this world. I’ve learned to expect the unexpected on this journey together. You are one of the very best gifts: refining, healing, faith-inducing, freeing, peace-giving, grace-laced, merciful. I pray I’ll tell your tale well…
More than a year and a half ago now, I unfurled my hands. I’d held them clenched, wanting control, for so long. It was nearly Christmas when I finally gave in. Hoping for a new life that might never come, I realized I was missing some of the deep joy God had to offer in our two sweet babes and the dynamic He’d created of our family.
There were four of us. We didn’t feel complete to me, but month after month our story stayed the same. Had I been too greedy? We already had two beautiful children to love, and even on our worst days I could feel and see the good. Still, my heart was begging, pleading with God to meet the picture I had imagined for us. I wanted to trust that this was His picture for us, too, but I was less and less sure all of the time.
One day that in December, something in me broke. This isn’t a lesson I’ve had to learn just once, but many times, as my trust in God’s wisdom grows. How do I presume I know better time and again? I’d finally come to a place of peace about our quad. I gave up on clinging to the idea of you. I still hoped for you, sure, but my will had moved out of the way.
One month later, as it so often seems to be when we lay things down, I felt a shift. We were in Colorado visiting your aunt, uncle and cousins, and your daddy felt a world away as he traveled in Africa for two weeks. I waited extra long, not wanting to get my hopes up, but I could hardly stand it. I made up a grocery list and left Aunt Bridget’s house early that Saturday morning to head to the store, teetering on emotions.
Two lines. I’d journaled to you that morning *just in case* you were somehow already a little miracle growing. And then there you were. Suddenly the you I had dreamed about and grieved over and all but given up was my new reality: a quiet, secret, beautiful reality that came pouring out of God’s grace. The hope that springs up from such a spark, so tiny, carried doubt and pain and wondering away in one beat.
And so I carried you. You grew in my belly from January to September, teaching me all manners of things about trust and freedom and resting in God along the way. Naturally there were worries, but I had to keep falling back on what my heart said was good. In worship on a Saturday afternoon, only six and a half weeks pregnant with you, I sensed that you would bring freedom. You would be the means God wanted to use to draw me nearer, to drown out fear.
There was plenty of it, actually. That fear we’re taught not to carry, but we do anyway? It crept up at every turn as you grew, and God kept asking me to trust. I had to hold my hands open, even when all I wanted was to bring you close and know every outcome. Nine months is a beautiful amount of time. The weeks fly by, but the days stretch out like taffy. My pregnancy with you was just the same–stretching, yet sweet.
We arrived at September after squeezing in every possible family adventure and *last* as a family of four. Every weekend drew us closer to your due date, and I anxiously hedged bets on your arrival. How you came was the greatest, most stretching surprise of all…
more tomorrow, sweet love.