There's something different about experiencing this for a second time. Part of it is simply because I have been here before. There is something about the unknown that is terrifying - at least for me. As our first baby's due date was approaching, I was afraid. I was afraid I would not survive. I was afraid of the emptiness. I was afraid of the sadness. I was afraid of the brokenness. However, once you've experienced something before, it's almost as if you don't have to be as afraid. You know you can survive because you have before. And that's how I've felt leading up to today. I knew it was coming, but I also knew God would bring me through once again. And He will.
I wrote a letter to Baby "J" this morning. I wanted Baby "J" to know he/she is not forgotten and that he/she is in my thoughts today. I wanted Baby "J" to know what today means to us - the day (or close to it) when we would have been able to meet him/her face to face and hold him/her in our arms. I told Baby "J" how deeply I miss him/her even though we've never met. And this is when I start to feel.
Today is so different than what I hoped for or imagined. I remember thinking about how my sister's graduation present would be another niece or nephew and how much I thought she would love that. I remember praying that our baby's birth would not conflict with her graduation ceremony so we could still be there to support her on that important day. I remember dreaming of holding Baby "J" and meeting him/her face to face. I remember my dreams of being able to be a mother in a tangible way.
This is the mourning, the grieving. For things are not what we hoped for or imagined. Our lives and our family are not what we hoped for or imagined. Yet even in the midst of this I am grateful. I am thankful for the blessing of being a mother even though it is in a different way than I hoped. I am thankful I have two beautiful babies even though I have not met them yet. I am thankful for family and friends who have and continue to support us on our journey. I am thankful that Hope is never lost. I am thankful that we will be able to see our babies and hold them one day. I am thankful we serve a God who cares.
The numbness is wearing off and many thoughts and feelings and memories are flooding into my mind, yet I know I will survive this day. I know God will bring me through the significance of this day once again. Whatever significant days you have yet to face, even though the fear or uncertainty may be great, I hope you can take some comfort in the fact that God cares and He will bring you through.
"For I am the Lord, your God, who takes hold of your right hand, and says to you, 'Do not fear, I will help you'." -Isaiah 41:13