To the Mom Who is Scared

As a mom of a one year old and three year old, fear has never been stronger. We need to talk about it. The enemy is attacking my heart and scaring me to raise these babies in a world like this. In a world full of so much tragedy, and so much pain.

Someone told me when I was pregnant with my first, “I don’t know why anyone would bring a child into the world we live in.” They didn’t know I was pregnant at the time, but I truly felt taken aback that someone would even think that fear would stop them from starting a family.

Now I am scared every day. The “what if’s” happen every time I leave my kids with someone else, every time we are out in a crowd somewhere, and every time I put them to bed. Fear is trying to take over my parenting.

All I can do is pray. I pray for peace. I pray for wisdom. I pray for protection. I pray for for the strength to tell fear that it is not welcome here. I will not live in fear. I will not be robbed of the joys that motherhood brings. I do not know what my children will go through in this life, but I know that if I live in fear, I will miss out on so much.

As a mom of two toddlers, I make a choice daily to focus on raising them well. Raising them kind. And raising them to know Jesus and His extraordinary love for us. There are things in this world I can’t control, but I am in control of how I raise my children and how I can love them well. I choose to focus on that. Let’s encourage each other to not live in fear. It can be tough raising babies, toddlers, teenagers. It can be scary. Let’s do our best to raise them well, raise them kind, and to tell fear it is not welcome here.


“But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.  Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.” Matthew 6:33-34


This calling of motherhood is not an easy one. But we need to remember that as we are doing dishes, picking up clothes, wiping noses and making sure everyone is fed, we are doing kingdom work. We are fulfilling the call placed on our lives to take care of our family. And what an honor. What a joy it is to be a parent. What a joy it is to have clothes to fold! And noses to wipe! Mamas, we are called to this. We can’t let fear take over our motherhood.

I will still worry, because I’m a mom and that’s what we do. But I will not let it take over my motherhood. I will do my best to focus on what I can control, rather than the things I can’t. We can’t control what is happening in our world, but we can love our families well. Let’s start there.

 

 

Miscarriage: 7 Things I Learned

Miscarriage: 7 Things I Learned

Miscarriage… this is a tough one. But I think it’s something we should be talking about. I currently have a one year old and a three year old. Very easy pregnancies, very normal births. At this point I never thought we would experience this kind of loss. We found out we were pregnant with our third and were ecstatic. I am one of those people that loves being pregnant. People generally tell me I’m crazy because of that. But there’s just something about it. Maternity clothes are my jam. Who doesn’t want to live in stretchy pants?

We had a dating ultrasound and found out that the baby measured at 6 weeks and 1 day. It took a while, but the ultrasound tech was able to find the heartbeat. It’s a feeling of relief that just can’t be explained. All signs pointed to a healthy pregnancy. Throughout the pregnancy I did have a feeling that something was wrong, but there were no physical signs of miscarriage. I tried to tell myself that I was just being paranoid. When we were 12 weeks, they were unable to find a heartbeat with a fetal doppler. Ultrasound showed that the baby had stopped growing at 8 weeks. To sum up how I felt in that moment – my world fell apart. I won’t get into the details of what happened next, but I do want to share what I’ve learned along this journey. Just for a point of reference, it has been a little over a month since we lost our sweet baby.

*This is based on my experience alone. I realize that this is a totally different experience for those that do not have children. My heart aches for you.

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1. It’s painful

Emotionally more than anything. I am usually not a very emotional person. I’m not sure if it’s because I grew up with three brothers, played sports or if it’s just how I’m wired. I can usually get a pretty good grip on my emotions. Not this time. And it was painful for more than just me. My husband, our parents, brothers and sisters. Everyone was hurting with us and for us.

2. It’s eye opening

I always knew our girls were gifts from above, but this loss reminded me that they truly are miracles. I found myself just wanting to hold them and appreciate them so much more.

“Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shadow due to change.” James 1:17

3. I learned how to grieve

I used to think something was wrong with me because it took so much for me to actually get emotional about something. Everyone around me would be in tears, and I’d be the one comforting them because I was the only one that wasn’t emotional. Again, not sure where that comes from, but this miscarriage really did teach me how to grieve in a healthy way. I had some very close friends walk me through that. We are so thankful for the support we had and still have during this time. It’s made such a difference in our grieving process.

4. It’s ok to be a mess.

Along with grieving, I learned it’s ok to be a mess. Like a hot mess, not just a normal mess. Being as I usually held myself together, this was tough for me. I didn’t like not being in control of my emotions. I would be driving and out of the blue: BAM! Here come the tears. And when I would usually suck it up, I let them flow. And I still do. If I feel those feelings of disappointment coming up, I embrace it, rather than run from it. I loved that child and still do, and it’s ok for me to miss him/her and to think about what could’ve been.

5. This is not from the Lord

I know that this is not from the Lord. Without a doubt. Until we reach perfection when we go to be with the Lord, these things will happen. I am thankful for the trust I have in Him, and over the years I have learned that He ONLY wants good things for us. No part of this process is easy. Knowing that God wants to take my burdens has helped me remember that this is not for me to carry.

“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.” Matthew 11:28-29

I don’t know why this happened, or why bad things happen at all. Sometimes we will never get answers this side of Heaven. All I can do is take this experience to encourage others and give glory to God for the good things He has given us.

6. Grief and Joy can coexist

I never knew this until I experienced it myself. With all the pain that miscarriage brings, we can choose joy while grieving. Not the “I’m going to put a smile on my face even though I’m a mess” kind of joy. But the kind that says, “This hurts, this is hard, but I can choose joy because I know I will see that baby again.” It’s been this rollercoaster of joyful and tearful moments, that have all run together.

I have two toddlers, two beautiful gifts from God. My heart was broken for our whole family, and I knew one day I would have to explain this to them. We plan to tell them that there is another brother or sister in Heaven that can’t wait to meet them. I hope to make it a special moment for them and to use it as a teaching opportunity as much as we can.

7. There’s hope

When I was in the thick of this, it was very hard to be hopeful. It is a process and I’ve learned to give myself grace in getting through it. I was even at the point where I didn’t want to get pregnant again because of the fear that it would happen again. I don’t know what we would do or how we would get through this without Jesus. It stretched me and challenged me to lean on Him even more.

What helped me most was knowing that my baby was with Jesus. I pictured Jesus seeing that baby for the first time and gently saying, “Welcome home.” From perfection to perfection. That baby never had to experience any kind of pain or disappointment, he went straight to the One who created him. I still yearn for that child, and I’ll forever miss him. And that’s ok, because he deserves to be missed.

I would love to hear how you’re finding hope and joy. What helped you get through your miscarriage? Comment below!