Everyone has a story. The beauty of that is, for the stories where we overcome what feels like an insurmountable problem, we can use our story to help those who share a similar fate.
Our story is one of infertility, miscarriage, early pregnancy loss, late-term pregnancy loss, surrogacy, and more. When it comes to people who’ve had a hard time having children, we’re at the top of the list.
My husband, Kevin, and I thought starting a family would be easy, but it would prove to be anything but that. Eventually, after years of heartache, disappointment, and loss of hope for the children we desired, through the miracles of God, modern medicine, and the generosity of a perfect stranger, we did finally have two boys whom we get to love and adore every day.
While our journey has a happy ending, it wasn’t a simple path, and the struggles we endured are not unique to us. There are women and couples all over the world who live through the pain of infertility and pregnancy/baby loss. For some reason, we are all expected to continue on with our lives as though nothing particularly significant has occurred. Maybe that’s because we’ve kept it quiet, and have been afraid to share our story. Maybe it’s just too painful to talk about the loss. Maybe we are embarrassed we can’t have children or don’t have the money for help from an infertility clinic or an adoption agency. Maybe we are ashamed that our marriage is rocky because of the tension it’s brought us. Maybe it’s because we feel like none of our family or friends can relate to us because they got pregnant quickly and carried a baby effortlessly. Maybe it’s because the babies we delivered died prematurely or shortly after birth, and now there’s no baby around for everyone else to remember.
But we never forget.
We never stop thinking about the child who would have graced our lives, who would have been crawling, walking, cutting teeth, entering kindergarten, and celebrating birthdays with all the other children. We long to hear our child’s name spoken aloud, recognizing his or her existence. The passage of time is an interesting thing as it relates to loss and grief. For me, it has never made the depth of my sadness any better. I have simply learned to live with it in such a way that it’s not as acutely painful on a day-to-day basis. I’ve searched for reasons to explain our tragedies. It was almost impossible to conceive that a loving God would cause us this magnitude of suffering. We wanted a baby so badly. What was wrong with us, or what had we done to deserve our situation?
This may seem hard to believe, but even after we had our two boys, I was left feeling angry and resentful about what we had experienced in terms of our pregnancy history. And after speaking with numerous women who’ve lived through stories like ours, I discovered I was not alone. Understanding that gave me comfort and made me realize I was not crazy for feeling the way I did. It made me want to help others.
I decided that sharing the raw, often unspoken truths that accompany such a journey might offer the beginning of the healing process we all need to survive such a horrible loss, whether that is the loss of a baby or the loss of hope for one.
To learn more about our story, I invite you to read my book, Making Angels: A Story of Blessings on Our Journey to Have Children after the Heartache of Infertility, Miscarriage, and Late-term Pregnancy Loss. My prayer is that it will resonate with you in such a way that you begin to know you are not alone.