Photo courtesy of Bing Free Images
It is a beautiful spring day as I sit here gazing out on the landscape molded to fit the trees reaching high into the sky, limbs outstretched. The sun is just setting after glowing yellow from an almost cloudless blue, into the most dazzling goldenrod hue. The scene below my balcony is a perfectly arranged grassy field edging a small trickling river almost free from the frozen state of winter, lapping against the small traces of snow on the bank. Birds chirp, a squirrel scampers even in the stillness and quiet at the settling of a day. Every piece of creation speaks the artistry of our amazing God.
Our creative God, able to produce the most beautiful in nature stands in stark contrast to my own inability to create one small being. One small achievement for women has become something impossible for me. At times this thought saddens me to the deepest place in me and I wonder about this broken body.
I am the queen of “trying hard”. During the first years of our marriage, I had the hope that somehow if I ‘tried hard enough’ I would find the key to unlock this healing I craved, and was so desperate to achieve. I looked for solutions behind many book covers, changed my diet, charted temperatures, supplements, and even medication to bring about the wonderful marvel of pregnancy.
I added prayer to my “trying hard” regime, armed with bible verses and books on receiving my miracle, prayed, asked, commanded, trying with all my desperation to bend the hand of God, to my way. In my own error I thought that if I proceeded with all the things that worked for others, and did them all perfectly well, God would have to answer my prayers. If I did it all, THEN God would owe me a baby.
Each month, a tiny single blue line screamed that it didn’t work.
The day arrived when with a hopeful heart I sat in the office of my reproductive physician after undergoing many tests. My husband and I were hopeful that through modern medicine we could become pregnant through in vitro fertilization, or IVF. In this process several eggs are harvested and united with male sperm, outside of the body. This forced introduction is kind of like speed dating at a dinner party only in this case the guys get to pick. This appointment was to determine my eligibility.
I should have guessed something thing was wrong when my physician brought in a student psychologist to observe and assist in the appointment. The Doctor’s gentle deliverance of the news matched the gentle comfort of her assistant, “we’re sorry, no”. Due to complications of attempting pregnancy in my forties, health risk and a small percentage of success outweighing the incredible cost for each attempt, it was decided that I didn’t qualify. I couldn’t speak. A Tsunami of hot tears claimed me. I remember that accusing voice, “you’ve failed, you’ve failed, you’ve failed.” After several moments I was being ushered into a side room to gather myself before exiting the building. I would never go back.
Yet, I hadn’t failed. These pursuits were attempts to do whatever I could to achieve a goal. Each time, I got back up and tried again. My knocking on the door of heaven was not in vain. God was there. He heard every cry and bottled every tear and whispered, “Come to Me…” Somewhere between trying to use a ‘system’ I forgot that God works through faith and faith works by love and love is at the heart of true relationship with Jesus. In this process Jesus found me and I have begun to trust, not in a system, but trust in my Heavenly Father, who has created all things, and reminds me of that with each sunset.