I'm working from the kitchen table this morning. The centerpiece is simple: a little cutting board with three candles and a mason jar with tree clippings from our weekend adventure. This table holds memories of eating good food with good friends and recent candlelight dinners. It's finish includes marks from where my sisters have slid their plates away declaring that their bodies can't hold anymore food. I am beginning to learn to embrace the imperfection and value the symbolism behind the less-than-perfect details. People are the "things" that matter. And I am so thankful that Isaac and I have these people in our lives.
Today I want our children's sticky fingers on this table. I want their crafts sprawled out so that no wood is left to see. Oh, praise God that He has given us a child!
There is a story (and many others) that I have wanted to share with you for a long time. And it seems fitting to share today since Isaac and I will be heading to our second ultrasound in just a couple of hours to check on our sweet baby and find out if we should call the baby a he or a she.
Two positive home pregnancy tests, one negative doctor test and then a final positive with a blood test. All within a span of 24 hours. Talk about a whirlwind. Last April I blogged the beginning of a small story after the Lord prompted me in the early hours of that morning. Part of my story involves the Lord telling me what doctors would say and me responding, "But Lord, I don't believe what man says, I only believe what you say." I had been praying for months that if there was ever a positive result on that stupid-little-stick-of-sadness that I would believe. And surely when I saw that first positive, I cried tears of joy and Isaac and I were dance-hugging.
I scheduled the second doctor's appointment and first ultrasound so that, as one nurse put it, we could "make sure the baby is where it is supposed to be because sometimes they are not." And I clung to Romans 5:5. You might think that it was a little out of context, but the Lord had promised us this child so I was clinging to His words and hoping that any hope that could be mustered would not shame me. I was honest with the Lord and I told Him that even if He were to tell me that my child would survive, I would not believe Him. I wanted the doctors. I told Him that I needed to hear the doctors say it would be fine. I told Him that I wanted to believe what He says. And I told Him that I just didn't.
We go to the doctor and the woman takes me to the bathroom, tells me to pee in a cup and says we will start my well woman exam right after that. In an uncharacteristic move I pivoted to face her, "and an ultrasound." She told me that they only had me down for a well woman exam and that we would schedule the ultrasound for another time. Shocked, I just said "and my ultrasound." She repeated those dreadful words and I had tears streaming down my face by this point as I stammered through the words, "but the woman on the phone... she.... she told me... that we would do... do an ultrasound..."
I head to my well woman exam and lie on that cold table after nurse and doctor had tried to get me in for an ultrasound. The tears had stopped and I was staring at those florescent lights and wishing I could go home and wrap myself in a blanket. The doctor puts the gel on my stomach and pushes the doppler into my skin... no heartbeat... no heartbeat. In that moment, the one where they couldn't find my baby's heartbeat, the Lord's presence washed over me with an all-consuming peace and I was still. He didn't promise me life for my baby. He didn't give me a guarantee for this baby. He just gave me hope in Him... trust in Him.
He is all that Isaac and I have. Because the risks to this child seem even greater after birth. So we put our hope and trust in Him. And it doesn't mean that we are skipping around with huge grins when devastating things happen. No, it probably means that we are on our knees, pounding our fists on the floor and crying out to see Him. Because He is all we have.
Off to see our little baby!