Finding Compassion

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Pregnant! I excitedly drove to my doctor’s office for my first ultrasound — eager to get a glimpse at the new life growing inside me. I knew the office staff well; my son was only a year old. I happily greeted the ultrasound tech and lay down on the exam table.

“How far along did you say you are?” There was a hint of concern in her voice as she stared at her monitor.

“8 weeks.”

Silence. Deafening silence. The joy that I had felt was instantly sucked out of the room; replaced by a knot of anxiety.

After another minute the tech looked at me and said, “There’s nothing there.”

How can there be nothing there? The pregnancy test said I was pregnant. She had to be wrong.

“Either you’ve already had a miscarriage, or you’re going to have one soon.”

Numb, not even able to cry, I got off the table and walked out of the exam room. My doctor spoke with the tech and then turned to me.

“Either you’ve had a miscarriage or you have a molar pregnancy. Either way we need to schedule you for a D&C as soon as possible.”

Minutes before I had planned for another child and now they were telling me I needed surgery to remove it?

My head was spinning and I had no idea what to do. What I did know was that I wasn’t ready to give up hope. My God is a big God and He could fix this. I told her that I needed a second opinion and to speak with my husband.

It wasn’t until I picked up my son at my dad’s that the reality of the situation hit me. Instantly my dad knew something was wrong and his concern broke the dam of emotion inside me. Like a little girl I sobbed out my pain and fears to him, wanting him to make it all right.

As much as he would have liked to, there was nothing he could do. It was all in the hands of a different Father now.

I don’t remember telling Josh; everything over the next week was a blur of sleepless nights, anxious days and constant questions. I was scheduled for a second ultrasound at a different office. I prayed that God would repair the situation before that appointment. I went in, hoping for good news and dreading the worst. This time there was no hesitation in the ultrasound tech’s voice. “It’s a molar pregnancy. See that cluster of cells there that look like grapes? That’s it.”

So matter of fact. So non-negotiable.

That night Josh and I talked, cried, and wondered why this was happening to us. We knew people had difficulties in pregnancy, but we’d already had a successful one. We were shocked, in our naïvety, that anything could go wrong.

Calling my doctor to schedule my surgery was one of the hardest things I’ve ever had to do. I had to admit defeat. My God had not come through in the way I wanted Him to. I was angry, hurt, and scared. On August 25, 2005 I was no longer pregnant and I didn’t have a baby to bring home when I left the hospital.

The next few months were very hard for us. We were leading a college age ministry at our church and our faith in God had been shaken to the core. How could He allow this to happen to us after all we’d done for Him?

It took months for us to get over our feelings of entitlement and pride. We struggled to keep up an appearance of faith on the outside while everything within crumbled. Separately we both came to a place where we were able to trust in God again; in His love for us.

Josh’s breakthrough came one day as he struggled to prepare a sermon. He was lashing out at God, explaining his anger at the injustice of what He had allowed to happen to us. In response, Josh heard God say, “I saved you from hell.” In that moment the pain and anger that had built up inside him crashed down as he realized the sacrifice God had made for him. God had also lost a child.

For me, it was unexpectedly getting pregnant again. I turned to God, seeking peace because I knew I would be worried the whole time. Not only did God give me peace, He told me that I would have a little girl and her name was Cora Elyce. Nine months later a beautiful, healthy little girl was laid in my arms.

Why have I told this story? Not so you would feel sorry for me. It’s because this week I was challenged to define my life story statement. It’s times like the one I just detailed that confirm what I feel mine is:

“To comfort those who are in any trouble with the comfort I myself have received from God.”

The only good thing that has come out of this story is that Josh and I now have a greater compassion and empathy towards people in similar situations. It was hard; I’d rather not have gone through it. Having lived it, I now know better how to come alongside others. I’ve learned that sometimes that’s all the answer we get.

**This post is linked at Heart to Heart with Holley for “Rest of Your Story” round-up
***It’s also linked at Mylestones for Flaskback Friday

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22 thoughts on “Finding Compassion

  1. The verse from I Corinthians has long been a favorite of mine, but only after enduring the trials life has brought to me. I so relate to this post. Nice to find you in blogland.

    • Thanks for your comment. Isn’t it interesting how scriptures can take on different meanings at different times in our life? It proves that it really is the *living* word of God. Glad you found me! :)

  2. Wow. Thank you for sharing your story. Even though what you had to endure was hard, to say the least, you found purpose there and are motivated to comfort others…defining your life story as you said.

    • God definitely used others who had gone through a similar experience to comfort me when I was going through this. The best thing I could figure out to do was to offer an understanding ear and hug to those who are going through it after me. Even still, I feel like I’ve been so blessed that that was all I had to go through. So many people I know had to endure multiple losses and are still struggling to start their own family. My heart breaks for them.

  3. Read this through my tears. After struggling with infertility problems for 6 years, I also had to learn to trust my Father in heaven in a way I never had before. It’s so hard to understand why some things happen the way that they do…but I’m always amazed how God can use these situations for His glory. Thank you for sharing this story. Love ya roomie! ;)

    • Oh Dana! I’m so sorry…
      I have to tell you that I can see how you took that hard time and turned it into something that is so loving and wonderful. Look at the beautiful family you have now! I know it can’t replace the loss you went through, but God has blessed you and you are such a blessing in those kids lives.
      Love you too!

  4. I’m thinking of Romans 8:28 and how He will use all things, in His ways for good.

    I’m sorry for your pain and rejoice in your victories.

    Thanks for sharing!

    • That verse was one that I clung to as well. I knew that although I couldn’t see the immediate good that could come from the situation, God had a better view than me. As long as I was doing His will He could bring redeem a painful and difficult situation. First on my list is my beautiful daughter, Cora…she wouldn’t be here if that pregnancy had lasted-which is a weird thing to say-but I’m blessed to have her.

  5. Melissa, I relate to so much here in this journey of faith (and in understanding God’s love). Simply by rescuing us from destruction, from ourselves, God has done all that we need and infinitely more than we could ask.
    Thanks for sharing this post with us today at Flashback Friday!

    • I was hesitant to link it up because it’s not blatantly a love theme…but I felt like it showed God’s love for me in His ability to walk us through a tough situation and show me the positive that came of it. Thanks for providing the opportunity to share it!

  6. Melissa,

    Your courage and willingness to share your journey in this way is a blessing. While I’m sure that no one would ever choose the path you & your husband have walked, it is still a gift. The painful journey back to a peaceful place in your faith can help so many.

    Thank you for sharing HOPE today.

    Paula

    • That means a lot. This story has become a pivotal part of mine and my husband’s walk with God. It matured our faith and for that we’re grateful. Thanks for commenting!

  7. Thank you for sharing your story…your mission statement so resonates with me and I am so so glad that you are there for those around that need to experience the comfort of God. praying for you.

  8. Wow. That was great for you to share this story. We can all relate to that feeling of pride and entitlement and not understand why God allows certain things to happen. Thanks for sharing your story and your heart.

    -FringeGirl

  9. Thank you for sharing this. I don’t think it is ever an easy story to tell, but seeing others come through tough times offers hope.

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