Friday, December 18, 2015

My Christmas Wish List

For 4 years, I have had only 1 thing on my Christmas wish list: a baby.

It's what my heart wants more than anything right now. I would trade all the gifts in the world for the rest of my life to have that one thing.

I have shared a little bit about our journey here on the blog, but have only really shared bits and pieces here and there. Partly because it's a personal journey, partly because it's often hard to find the words. But I just have to be honest with where we are right now, at least in this moment. Because the holidays are hard. Really hard. For those waiting to grow their family, grieving the loss of a loved one, or facing the season alone, the holidays can be such a difficult thing to face. I have tried to keep myself busy, not wanting to completely shut off and hide from the season {though it has been tempting}. But I have really had to fight for joy, more so this year than in past years. To be brutally honest, I just want the holidays to be over. I want them to go ahead and pass and for things to go back to normal, every day life.

Christmas is usually my favorite holiday season. There's such a heightened sense of joy and celebrating and anticipation of the coming of our Savior. But when you're a mama grieving the loss of your child{ren}, Christmas can be such a minefield of heartache. There is so much emphasis on family and celebrating, and that can be tough when you don't feel much like celebrating. When a family is the one thing you desire and are still waiting for, wondering if you will ever have one. I'm trying so hard to focus on our Savior's birth and what that truly means, but even that centers on Christ coming as a BABY. {The Lord knows I am not comparing my own desire for a baby to the coming of His Son...but He also is grieving with me, knowing the difficulty and triggers that the Christmas season can bring}.

This will be our 4th Christmas that we have prayed for and hoped for children. Every year I think, "next year will be different; next year we will have our baby for Christmas..." And yet, another "next year" is coming and going. And it can be hard not to let that panic moment take over, when you wonder how many "next years" there will be. Because I certainly never thought we would already be at 4...

This year, the heartache is compounded, knowing that we should be celebrating a milestone, but instead are continuing to grieve our loss. I would have hit the halfway mark in our pregnancy today. I should be headed to see family with a growing belly and the joy of celebrating new life. Instead, I fight back the tears as I try to push through the heartache and smile through the pain. I try my best to prepare myself for whatever will {inevitably} come...the probing questions, other pregnancy announcements, babies in adorable Christmas outfits...

Please be patient with us if we have seemed distant or uninvolved, if we have not reached out or joined in on the celebrations. Please give us grace for slipping out of church service early on child dedication Sunday, or for not wanting to hold or talk about your baby. We still love you {and your baby}, we are just trying to figure out what this whole grieving, and waiting, and trusting thing looks like. And we're having to do that while navigating grandma's probing questions, every other Christmas song about the BABY coming, and all the emphasis on the child-like joy of the season.

I came across this quote from Tim Keller yesterday:

"Job never saw why he suffered, but he saw God, and that was enough."

This Christmas, in addition to having "baby" on my wish list, I am also adding that I can see God. Despite our heartache, we have seen God, over and over. He is our strength and comfort, our sustainer and refuge. And the reality is that He is enough. We just get lost in the grief and the waiting, and sometimes we forget that. We pray constantly for our baby, because we know it is a good and godly request before the Lord. But we also pray that we never want our baby more than we want Him.

While this season is hard for us right now, we know it is just that: a season. The holidays will pass and the Lord will continue to bring healing. We are reminded of our Savior's birth, and all the joy, hope, and healing that His coming represents. We continue to fight for joy, even when it's difficult. We allow ourselves grace when it's just too hard, and we need to just grieve. And we continue to pray that next year will be different, as we trust and wait on the Lord's timing for our family. 

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