Friday, October 3, 2008

The core of where we're at now.

Melissa's side:

The time Rachel told me about the despair she was feeling over her inability to have a baby will be etched into my memory forever.
We had just enjoyed a beautiful, sunny day at Waikiki Beach, HI and were now sitting in the grass outside the restaurant where we had shared a oober yummy meal.
It was dark and peaceful, the air was alive with Hawaiian music, the tiki torches lit and the breeze was soothing.
Our conversation was anything but. Although the day had been wonderful, we had wandered into a conversation that was laced with tension. I have no idea where it came from, but it was obvious. What was the conversation about? I can not even be sure. But suddenly, Rachel was bawling. Sobbing. Confessing that all they wanted was to have a baby and they had been trying for months and months to no avail.
I was shocked. I mean, I knew they were trying…but what did that mean? That they were just having sex! I had no idea that there were such emotions behind all the trying.
How did I not know she was feeling this way?
I told her that she had to share more of what she was feeling otherwise we had no idea what was going on.
That is all it took….a week later she had a blog and the emotions were uncontainable.

It helped in a lot of ways and was hard in more. She seemed so irrational and defensive and self focused and seemingly lacking in faith. How in the world, as her sister did I walk through this with her? I felt like I didn’t deserve so much of how she “treated me”.
Thus, my prayer journey for this situation began.

What I learned surprised me.
It turns out that really, I have no rights.
After all, Jesus, in all his glorious perfection gave up every single thing to take on all the sins of everyone who has ever lived just to die in our place. On the cross. For us. Just so we could know a life that was full of peace and joy and more extreme than anything ever imagined.
Surely I needed give up my rights.

What rights you may ask?
The rights to not have to feel bad about proceeding with my family.
The rights to not have to walk on eggshells regularly.
The rights to be able to talk about my pregnancies and children whenever and however I wanted.

It turned out that really, my only right was to take care of my sister. If she hurt me, I knew it was unintentional. And even if it was intentional, it did no good at all if I was hurtful and defensive back at her.

So this is what I began. Giving up my rights on her behalf.
Did I do this perfectly? No way
Did I do it alone? Absolutely not. It is purely and only through Gods grace that I was able to do this at all

As I share my side of the story, you must know that the only reason I am here now, without so much as a grudge or a hurt is b.c of God and all his wonderful willingness to give me the ability to let go of all I thought I deserved.

Rachel’s side:

There are some 800 things God taught me through my IF struggles. I don’t mean that as an exaggeration in anyway. I don’t even think I could make a list of all the things he taught me, because it’s too vast.

As I sit here blissfully 32 weeks pregnant, I am clearly on the other side of IF. But everything I experienced can be brought back to the tip of my heart and bring tears to my eyes in a moments notice. So just know that while I may not be in the heart of IF anymore, I will speak as real and honest as I can about what I experienced through those 30 months. Some of it will be good and some of it will be yucky, dark and dirty bad.

But it will be truth. That’s a promise.

The single greatest thing I have learned is that in life, I have no rights. As a Christian, I am taught this in the bible, that in Christ we have no rights. But before IF I had never even once come close to actually grasping this concept.

We currently go to an amazing church where every Sunday at some point in the service I hear God speak to my heart so intensely that I am usually brought to tears. Once upon a time I cried in church because of my ache. Now my tears are for something else completely.

Recently during church as I was taking communion, God was showing me over and over all the things in my life that I could easily take claim over: my house, my clothes, my dog, my husband, my baby, my family, my friends, my career. And then I was reminded that I deserve nothing. Not one single thing in my life do I deserve.

And yet God gave me everything. EVERYTHING he had. His son. He couldn’t have given us any more, because that was the ultimate sacrifice.

::Cue weeping::

It was at this point that I realized the single greatest thing I have learned through this process is that I have no rights. I didn’t deserve this baby. I don’t deserve my Savior. I don’t deserve my life.

So please know that as I am about to share with you through questions and answers how I dealt with certain things in my IF (some I am proud of, others I am not)…in the end, I have reached this conclusion. And it is a beautiful place to be. By getting here, the picture is so much clearer and the view, so much more Grande.

I love Ephesians 4:22-24, this is the message version:

“Since you have heard all about him and have learned the truth that is in Jesus, throw off your old evil nature and your former way of life, which is rotten through and through, full of lust and deception. Instead, there must be a spiritual renewal of your thoughts and attitudes. You must display a new nature because you are a new person, created in God’s likeness-righteous, holy, and true.”


Barbara said...

A verse that God has used over and over again in my life is Galassians 2:20.

"I have been crucified with Christ,
and I no longer live,
but Christ lives in me.
The life I live in the body,
I live by faith in the Son of God,
who loved me and gave himself for me.”

I had a lot of pride when I was younger. I still deal with it sometimes but not as often.

This verse gives me strength when I struggle to give up what I think are my rights.

The amazing thing is - no matter what I'm dealing with it ALWAYS turns out better when I realize I have no rights and give up the idea that I do.

Paige said...

it's so awesome that you girls have decided to be so honest. that is something we all struggle with. we never want to look selfish to others. i love the part about the "my right" i've heard that over and over the last year and a half. we have no rights but we belong to a God who is much bigger than us! Thank you girls!

Jesse and Mandy Peterson said...

I just came across your blog but feel overwhelmed by the hope and the love presented by this idea of a blog. You see, I went through 13 months (15 cycles) of not conceiving. It seems so minor to what others go through, but the pain I felt was equally as great. I went through the roller coaster of emotions from fear of the unknown to deep sadness to anger at God to giving up emotionally. In October, God gave me a wake up call, just as I reached the one year mark of not conceiving. I began to see that He could use my pain as a testimony and ministry to others who were going through the same thing. I began to use my blog as a way to share my fears and pain while continually pointing it back towards God. In November, after all of the infertility testing, myself (at 24 years old) and my husband (at 22) were diagnosed with unexplained infertility. Our age only made things worse as we weren't sure if it was really a clean bill of health or something much more wrong hidden deeper. I held onto the fact that God had told me to anticipate the work He was about to do in me.

I got pregnant that very month on my first, and lowest, dose of Clomid. I don't attribute my success to Clomid but to the fact that God had promised me He was doing something. I am now 6 weeks pregnant.

And while I am beyond thrilled at the gift God has given me, I never want to lose the soft spot I have in my heart for those who are still suffering through infertility. I am trying to find the balance between sharing my great news and being sensitive to those who are still in it.

When I saw your blog, I saw the balance that I am trying to find. Through Rachel's perspective as someone who has gone through infertility and is now on the other side (but maintains an open dialogue of the infertile perspective) and Melissa who has learned how to approach those who are suffering while celebrating her own fertility.

I look forward to getting to know you guys more and learning from your perspectives. God bless!

The Pifer's said...

Amen, God has taught me so much though infertility as well. I have not concieved yet, this March will be 3 years of trying, we haven't moved forward in IVF yet as it's not affordable...I want to tell you how inspring the both of you are and how much I love reading this blog, I am now a "follower" and really look forward to many more post!!!

Jenni / Jennifer Saake a.k.a. InfertilityMom said...

Wow! Truly beautiful.

And for a whole different journey now, thank you for bringing me back to the reminder that God showed me through infertility, that "I have no rights."