I was getting ready for church and something didn’t feel right inside of me. I went to the bathroom and saw blood.
I went to my husband in tears and crawled in his lap, fearful of what was going to happen next. I was only twelve weeks pregnant.
I remember crying and thinking, “My baby is going to die!”
When we went to the hospital, they couldn’t find a heartbeat. That was the first time I had ever seen my baby…
this little bundle on the monitor that I finally got to meet, was not moving and I was in disbelief.
We went home not knowing what to do or what to say, so we sat on the couch and Jason held me as I cried. I started feeling pain in my stomach that became so intense; my husband carried me to the bedroom as I cried out in pain.
I knew of people who had miscarriages, but it never really sunk in as to what truly happened, until now.
The pain became too much for me so Jason walked me to the bathroom. As he was helping me, blood fell all over the floor. Without missing a beat my husband held me and cleaned it up. I cried even more seeing that my body was literally destroying my baby and discarding it like it was trash. The only thing I could think was that there was so much blood.
I laid in bed the rest of the day, crying. When the pain finally stopped I remember that I couldn’t feel the warmth of my baby anymore. My baby was gone. I felt so alone. My baby- who I could literally feel inside of me like a fire; that radiated so much heat and abundance of light and life-was not there anymore. The life and light had faded and I was left with nothing.
I became angry, immediately deleting all of the baby and pregnancy apps from my phone, I hid my prenatal vitamins…disgusted to even see them, and I put into storage the little baby items I had bought. I thought to myself, “That’s it? I just put everything away like it never even happened? I just act like none of this was real? Just shove everything away?” My heart ached, everything was gone.
In the days to come I heard comments like, “I’m glad your baby died, it probably would have been born retarded anyway,” “Just be glad it happened now and not later on in your pregnancy because then it would really hurt,” “Maybe there was something wrong with it and that’s why it died.” The list went on. I couldn’t understand why people said such calloused things or why they even thought it was something that should have been said. But that became the norm; people said really crummy things-unloving, unhelpful, cold hearted things…because they didn’t know what to say. I just wished everyone would quite trying to “fix it” by telling me to get over it. Why couldn’t they just mourn with me or hug me?
My heart began to grow cold towards God. I believe at this time, I even hated God. He could have saved my baby; He could have brought it back to life; or we could have just not gotten pregnant in the first place. Because I mean really…God knows it all, He sees it all, so why even bother? I had so much anger and pain that it was causing ice to grow around my heart. I could feel it spiritually, every minute my heart grew colder and my bitterness grew thicker. I didn’t want to acknowledge God; I couldn’t pray to Him or even talk to Him. I told my husband that I didn’t know how to even respond to God and that I was ready to throw in the towel and walk away from it all. My faith was rocked and I was too hurt to pick up the pieces.
After three days I only felt that a small piece of my heart still wanted God, and that if I allowed it, my heart would completely turn away from Him. So I prayed the most painful, simple prayer through gritted teeth, “God help me.”
At that very instant and angel appeared before me. I didn’t see him as I would see a person, but there was a bright shimmering light before me in the shape of a very tall man. He bent down and held my feet for twenty minutes. I knew he was praying for me, I knew God was listening to my prayer but my heart was still so hard. I sat there with my arms crossed, indifferent. Shortly after, I went to bed but I couldn’t sleep. I knew this was it, either I surrender to God now or in the morning that ice would be impenetrable.
I prayed one last time for God to help me, and I wept and wept and kept repeating, “God please help me!” And He did, right then I felt the ice breaking away, I felt my God coming to my rescue; His love was covering me-healing me. I knew that I was going to be alright because GOD.
When I woke up the next morning and got in the shower I felt different. All of the ice was gone, the bitterness and hate had melted away and God had put a song in my heart. The song was, “It is well with my soul,” I truly believe that song was part of my healing and birthed hope and joy into my spirit.
Although God did make it well with my soul, I still felt broken and alone. I felt my husband and I felt the pain very differently and when it seemed like he was OK I was still in shambles. I was persecuted at work and endured much pain from my coworkers who enjoyed shaming me and the loss of my baby. Even at church I felt alone. I felt like Hagar cast aside; the girl whose baby had died and no one wanted to touch that.
I felt my pain was so open before everyone, but I was left to endure the pain alone. At times if someone came over to say hello they would ask how I was doing, but it seemed that no one ever really wanted to dive into those details, so I always said I was fine and God was good. I kept my face veiled, not wanting to seem weak, not wanting my hurt and pain to come to the surface. It was too real and I felt that I had been failed by friends and family so I veiled myself from them, from everyone. But inside I was dying to let the pain out, dying to have someone listen to me, to hurt with me, to just understand. When I did try to open up to friends, it made them really uncomfortable, they would look around, start to fidget, become impatient. So I stopped trying. Those things made me believe that no one cared, that I should keep my pain to myself because it made them uncomfortable. Their silencing was deafening and left me broken.
I began researching miscarriages and reading people’s stories online. There was one thing I found in common, all the stories had asked the same questions I had. I found not one story that praised God, that didn’t accuse Him or remained steadfast. This hurt my heart for many reasons, but the biggest being that it was so easy to “throw God away”. It was so easy to be like Job’s wife and “Curse God and die.” It showed me how little faith I truly had and that when my world was rocked, I walked away from the Rock of Ages. How saddening for a Christian.
I determined in myself that I never wanted to do that again, that no matter what was thrown at me it would be well with my soul because of my Savior God. How could I walk away from the One who gave me life? The one who never quits or gives up? Thus began a new journey for me: allowing God to carry my heart.
My story has continued on to healing and even being blessed with a child now. It hasn’t been an easy road-God is constantly pruning me and teaching me. In this new season I am now confronting my pain and fears and I hope that my story can bring light to yours.
I told you my story to be able to talk about this one: Silent suffering in the church.
All too often, our faces are veiled and we suffer in silence. We come to church manicured with everything in place, not a blemish in sight, when really we are so broken and defeated. Church should be the one place where we can come with our mess and not have to cover it up. Church should be a place where we receive healing and grace to carry on.
In this three-part series I want to talk about our veiled faces and how God is asking us to be unveiled.
I pray that whatever you are going through right now, that God at this very minute begins to lavish you in His love and you will allow Him to carry your heart. Grace and Peace to you, in Jesus’ holy and precious name, Amen.
2 Corinthians 3: 16-18
But whenever anyone turns to the Lord, the veil is taken away. Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom. And we all, who with unveiled faces contemplate the Lord’s glory, are being transformed into his image with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit.