Tuesday, June 26, 2012

When Things Went Dark

This post is going to get dark, but hang in there with me. I promise not all post will be this way but just as life is not perfect neither is mine.

Miscarriage is probably one of the cruelest things that a woman can ever experience. It can also be one of the most lonely. There are very few comforting things that you can say to someone who has had a miscarriage unless you have had one your self. It is a mixture of very dark and depressing emotions, not a happy place to be. If you read the last post, I left things feeling optimistic: this is not that kind of a day. I have struggled to maintain my composure most days although I felt like I was concealing it well with my faith. After all, I am a Christian, I'm supposed to be positive and not have doubts right?

Well, yesterday morning God called me out on my doubts. Again, one of those days where I felt like I was the only one in the room and God was confronting me head on. The sermon was on Habakkuk chapter 1. I'm going to be the first to admit I had never heard of or studied this book. The beginning of the story is where a man (Habakkuk) is confronting God and crying out to him and expressing his doubts. "How long, Lord, must I call for help, but you do not listen? Or cry out to you, “Violence!”but you do not save? Why do you make me look at injustice? Why do you tolerate wrongdoing? Destruction and violence are before me;there is strife, and conflict abounds.Therefore the law is paralyzed, and justice never prevails.The wicked hem in the righteous,so that justice is perverted."

That's when I started "silent crying" during the middle of the service. You know, the kind where you don't make a sound but the tears just keep flowing. I realized I was Habakkuk! I thought I was coping pretty well under the circumstances, but I was covering my feelings by hiding behind my faith. I kept my head down as they kept coming almost ashamed of myself for doubting God's presence in my suffering. I couldn't believe that I was breaking down like that. Everything that I had ever learned about God: that he was faithful, merciful, gracious, just, that's what comforted me in times like this. Why did I suddenly feel...... I couldn't even let myself say the words in my head, I couldn't let myself go there or I would fall apart. As our pastor kept going and it took a turn a didn't expect. Our pastor said, "God is big enough to handle your doubts." I I realized it was OK to feel that way. It was actually OK to question and have doubts. He said it was not only OK, but that you needed to confront your doubt before it becomes disbelief. And that's when I let it go and allowed myself to feel those things I was afraid of. Uh-oh ... here it comes ANGRY, JEALOUS, DEPRESSED, SADDENED, HOPELESS.

So through the next few days I allowed myself to feel that dark side. You might have been there before, that feeling that is like a black hole that just sucks all the joy out of life and leaves you feeling sort of numb?  I knew I believed that everything happened for a reason and that God has a plan but I didn't care about the plan then, I just wanted to be angry for a while. I was angry that this happened to us, I was jealous of the pregnant women I saw walking around because that was supposed to be me, I was depressed that our hopes and dreams for this baby had failed, I was sad that we couldn't give our daughter a baby brother or sister, I felt hopeless with no control over the situation.

On a side note: For those of you who have never had a miscarriage, there are certain things that have to transpire to have a miscarriage. In our case our baby did not develop, but my body has not recognized it as a failed pregnancy. The process of my body recognizing this and finally "miscarrying" can take weeks. Meaning no growing/living baby but still technically pregnant because my body it holding on to it and won't release it so to speak. I can have a procedure done to assist in forcing my body to "release" it, but we opted to try and wait two weeks to see if it will do it on it's own before we run a risk of infection. I will spare everyone the details of what most people are expected to experience during a miscarriage, but it's not pretty. I tell everyone this not to depress people but to inform people because until it happened to me I never bothered to think about what people who miscarried went through. So here I wait hoping that my body will now "release" the pregnancy before I have to under go a procedure for safety measures.

So yes, I felt all of those emotions as ugly as they were. Walking around every day with a constant reminder inside of you of what could have been made me feel very hopeless. I finally had an out loud emotional release with God where I prayed and cried my eyes out. You know the cry, it's what some people refer to as the "ugly cry". I told God about my doubts and how I felt. I told Him that I needed him to strengthen me and I needed him to show up big because we couldn't do this on our own. I prayed that he would somehow bring us closure to the situation and help my body do what it needs to do.

You can relax, this is where it lightens up. So what have I walked away with from this scripture and personal situation? Mainly like our pastor said that God is big enough to deal with our doubts and that its OK to have doubts every now and then. God doesn't say dig your self a permanent hole and wallow in your self pity, but that I think it's normal to questions sometimes because it forces you to dig deep in your faith "and ultimately draw you closer to God. Pray a lot and confront it when you feel it. As our pastor also said, "You don't always get what you want, but you get what God has planned for you." Right now that plan might feel a little ugly and imperfect to me because I can't see it and it's not my own, but he knows the end result and he has a better track record that I do. So whether you are dealing with something dark or you have doubts, take them to God and know that "God is moving even in the dark moments."I will probably continue to have hard days here and there, but as I said before, God loves us enough to never leave us where we are.

Advice if you ever know someone who has had a miscarriage
LISTEN: If they will talk, encourage them to talk about it is so important to deal with those feelings. Be willing to do this often because there is no time line on grief. If you have never had a miscarriage then there really isn't much you can say to comfort them. Be a shoulder to cry on and allow them to use you as a sounding board. What you have to say isn't going to be as important as just being there and being willing to listen or even cry with them.

For those of you going through it:
TALK: you need to talk about it as painful as it is and allow yourself to go there. Talk to your spouse especially and share your feelings repeatedly, but remember men handle things differently than women. I often mistook my own husbands optimism as not caring enough about the situation, but remember they are also trying to be strong for us,

1 comment:

  1. So good, Kristen. As hard and painful as it is, you are finding wisdom and meaning through it. My dad gets to meet him or her before I do. That's kind of cool.