The fertility journey… what a journey it is! Over the past few weeks, I have had the privilege of connecting with some amazing and inspiring people who have been and are still on their journey to parenthood. I remember when there were times that I felt no one could imagine the depth of my pain or how hard each day was… I was wrong because, there’s a whole community out there with so much love and encouragement to give – just like Sosina and Lee. Be encouraged and expectant by their story
I don’t like the word infertility. In my delay to get pregnant, the word “infertility” has never seemed to fit my identity. My identity is not who I am not, it is who I am & whose I am. For this reason, I dislike the word infertile. My identity is who I am: a woman made in God’s good image, destined to be a mom. And whose I am: the adopted daughter of a good good King.
My husband Lee and I started talking about adoption as dating college students. He was set on it and I was thinking we’d see about adoption after having our “own” kids. After a couple years of marriage, Lee still felt strongly but was okay with bending to my preference and trying to conceive first. After several months ttc, I knew something was up. My cycles were never consistent and all the physiological signs of ovulation never occurred. After lots of drawn blood and many investigative procedures, my RE diagnosed me with unexplained anovulatory cycles – meaning that for an unknown reason, I wasn’t ovulating on my own.
I began Clomid and Ovidrel therapy to make me ovulate. I was on this medication for 6 months and had 4 IUI procedures. During each IUI, I looked for God’s goodness. I prayed things like “You would get so much glory if I got pregnant on this first IUI” or “I see what you’re doing here! It was a 1 in 3 chance… so you’ll get me pregnant on the 4th!” Each time, the IUI failed, and I could not see God’s goodness in the mess.
I ovulated on my own during my last 2 IUIs so, my doctor suggested that I try to conceive through intercourse and Clomid. I was devastated that after all of the invasive procedures, I still wasn’t expecting and we were taking a step back. I opened a devotional for infertile women and began to read a page that had Job 17:11 “My plans are shattered. My heart is broken.” Even with my hurting heart, I knew that that verse did not resonate with me. God gave me a peace beyond my understanding. He reminded me that my husband’s plan, and His plan, had been adoption all along. That our plans had not been altered. I cried out to God, “I just want a baby so bad!” He replied with the realization that there were babies out there who just want a mama so bad; that there were birth moms out there that just want healthy parents for their baby so bad. So I said yes. I said yes to Jesus, yes to babies, yes to birth moms. I said yes because I was tired of no. My yes was uncertain, but it was full of hope. I knew that no matter how long, how costly, how emotionally taxing the adoption process would be, that it would end with my child in my arms. It was a freedom that fertility treatments could never offer. I did not expect the adoption process to be free from pain, but I knew I could position myself in the pain in order to see His goodness.
Thus began this wonderfully complex adoption journey. Our loved ones were thrilled and have been just as invested in our adoption as we are. We launched a fundraising campaign to raise $10,000 (about half of what our adoption will cost) and we raised more than that in about a month. Our communities threw us a baby shower to show that they are waiting with us. We’ve collected many stories about how adoption has touched the lives of people around us. Women have reached out to me on Instagram to say that our vulnerability has inspired them to return to their faith in God. Through our adoption, we have gotten to take a peek at what heavenly community will be like, where we all belong to one another.
But adoption has also brought me great grief. On September 11, at 6:30 am, a baby boy was born that we had known about and had been preparing for for 4.5 days. He had a name and we were his parents. But 6 hours after his birth, we learned that his mom changed her mind and decided to parent him instead. We are devastated. This was the heartbreak that Job had talked about in Job 17:11. I looked for God’s goodness… and I found it. His freedom, joy, and strength have been present even in the midst of pain and grief. We will have children, through adoption and I believe biologically as well. My encouragement to those considering adoption is that saying yes to adoption does not mean saying no to biological children. Saying yes to adoption means saying yes to allowing your pain and God’s goodness to coexist. It is a labour unlike any other, and I am grateful for it.
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Be Encouraged, Be Expectant