October is pregnancy and infant loss awareness month. This month is dedicated to remembering those short lives of our tiny ones lost and also breaking the silence and stigma surrounding such a loss. My front door and stoop get a lot of sunlight in the afternoon. In the summer, it's wickedly hot. I mean like so hot that when we had a dark brown front door it would become too hot to even touch. However, because it happens to be my front door, and I happen to feel the need to look like a domesticated home-owner, I always try to have some potted plants on either side of my door. They don't do well, those poor plants. They inevitably become scorched and shriveled. Dried up like basil and oregano. The little leaves fall into the walkway and end up in the house. My children play with the dead branches and remind me to water them (because twice a day wasn't enough for some of these poor dudes).
Back in September, I had a miscarriage. We found out at about twelve weeks that Baby didn't make it past seven. We had to tell many family and many friends that we had already told in our excitement. We had to try to explain to our three year old that "Baby Emily" wasn't here anymore. We had to pick up the pieces of our slightly shattered hearts and press on.
Miscarriages are tough, as unfortunately many of you probably know. Not only physically but the emotional rollercoaster you endure in the weeks following is hard to handle. Happy to sad to angry to peaceful to devastated to exhausted to right back to the beginning to start it all over again!
Back to my plants... (oh, it's not the first time they've been forgotten and certainly will not be the last!)
Our garage door broke at the same time we found out about our miscarriage (honestly, the same day). So for the next two weeks, until our new door arrived, I had to use the front door for my comings and goings as opposed to my usual garage entry. This meant that multiple times. Everyday. I had to walk past my dead. potted. plants.
I repeatedly thought to myself, "I can't keep anything alive."
Those are some pretty raw feelings. But I'm guessing if you've been through a tough time in your life, you've also had some pretty raw feelings.
My insides felt raw. My heart felt broken. Even my soul felt a little bit lost.
So here I am. Day in and day out feeling these bitter, awful feelings towards myself and towards my stupid flowers. Fortunately for me, the middle of September brought autumn and mums. Sendiks had a fine sale of potted mums for $4.oo a pop. I certainly could throw $8.00 at new plants for the front stoop and let's be honest, my soul.
While hands deep into fresh dirt and actually green stems, I came to this realization: That's not my job.
It's not my job to keep my babies alive.
Okay, really it is, especially from a worldly point of view. Yes, I need to provide and care for my children. But my main job, my real job, my most important job is to teach my children about Jesus. Jesus is our ever loving, ever patient, ever present and always forgiving Savior. It's God's job, not mine, to be in control of our lives, whether they are 100 years long or a short 90 days.
This realization hasn't taken my pain away. It certainly tears my heart to shreds to think about not holding that little child in my lap and reading Bible stories to him or her. But I know that God is here. I know that His plans for my life and my children's lives are the best plans. I know that God hears my prayers. And I know that God-willing, my little family will all be together in heaven one day.
2 Timothy 3:14-15, "But as for you, continue in what you have learned and have become convinced of, because you know those from whom you learned it, and how from infancy you have known the Holy Scriptures, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus."