Trusting God No Matter What

If you are reading my story please know that I have so much more to share with you than just my own experiences. God has shown me so many of His promises and has transformed my life in many ways as a result of this journey. I want to share those promises with you but first I want you to know my story so that you will better see how God led me to these promises and how He has shown me grace and peace in my life. And so today I would like to tell you about my struggle (though it is brief compared with that of many others) with secondary infertility.

After my ectopic pregnancy in October of 2009 I struggled to understand God’s will and timing for my life. I felt like this thing I wanted so much had been dangled in front of me and then ripped away. I prayed and begged God to give me a child. On Thanksgiving Day less than two months later I found myself taking a pregnancy test. I wasn't yet late; in fact it was two days before my cycle was supposed to start. But somehow I just knew that I was pregnant. I cried tears of joy as my husband hugged me and we went off to a family holiday gathering with this great secret that we had to keep for a month or two.

And then, nine months later, I became a mom. In that moment I felt as though I had finally found the thing I am truly good at. I loved and appreciated my sweet little girl infinitely more than I ever could have without the struggle and loss I had been through. I knew she was a true gift from God and have not once taken her for granted. Funny how losing something can make you appreciate what you are given so much more. And I knew that even if that was the only reason God had allowed my previous loss He had already used it for good in my life.

About nine months after my daughter was born, my husband and I started talking about giving her a sibling. Considering the nine months it took us to become pregnant with her, I didn't want to wait too long to start trying again. We agreed and I instantly began charting and keeping a calendar and taking notice of my body to learn when I was ovulating. I wanted to improve our chances and hopefully get pregnant before I had time to worry again. I have this terrible tendency to plan every little thing. I even make plans to make plans. It’s a sickness. So I had all of these plans about having my children close together and those plans involved getting pregnant in no more than nine months - as if I had control over my own fertility. God had different plans. After a year of trying, unsuccessfully, to get pregnant I went to see my OB/Gyn. I told her my fear - that I might have some issues with my fallopian tubes related to my ectopic pregnancy. She said that was a good place to start and that we would rule that out first. We scheduled my HSG test for the next week at the hospital.  

On my way to the hospital that day I talked to God, as I often have throughout this struggle. I told Him that I was thankful that He was sovereign and that I knew even though I cannot see the big picture of my life and I do not know my future, He does. I told Him that I would trust whatever He had for me. Secretly I was hoping to find a blocked fallopian tube. I felt like finding the problem would give me something concrete to deal with and finding the problem would mean finding something we could fix. I couldn't bear the thought of unexplained fertility. I needed something that could be 'cured.'

During an HSG test a physician puts dye into your body and watches the X-ray screen to see where the dye is flowing. The dye will fill the uterus and should then spill into the fallopian tubes. As the doctor began the procedure I watched the screen carefully. Before she could say anything I could see it on the screen. The dye flowed freely on the left side (ironically, the tube in which my ectoptic pregnancy had occurred) but did not even enter the tube on the right. The doctor said sometimes if she continued forcing the dye in it would push through the obstruction and open the tube. That was not the case with me. Still, I felt relief. I wasn't crazy. I didn't just need to 'relax' about conceiving. There was a legitimate problem - something I couldn't have known about - something preventing me from getting pregnant. I had such mixed emotions. Relief, yes, but also pain, shame, and loss. My body was the problem. No matter how much my head and my heart wanted a baby, my body was not allowing it. I cried.

Over the next few days I waited to hear from my OB/Gyn to find out what our course of action would be, but I already knew what she would say. We could do another surgery like the one I had had with my ectopic pregnancy to open the tube. It wouldn't be pleasant, but it would clear the way and allow me to get pregnant quickly. However, when the nurse called she didn't mention surgery. She simply said that although this meant getting pregnant would be more difficult and take longer it wasn't impossible so we should definitely keep trying. I asked her if surgery was an option and she replied that she would need to ask the doctor about that. She called me the next day and told me that surgery was not recommended because the blockage was most likely due to scar tissue from the previous surgery and that perhaps the ectopic pregnancy had even been caused by tissue build up of some sort. Surgery would likely only add to the problem and could cause me to lose the right tube altogether.

I was heartbroken. My body was not going to cooperate and there wasn't even anything I could do to fix the problem. Instead of surgery we started a fertility drug called Clomid. Clomid increases my chances of ovulating and even gives me a chance to produce more than one egg. Producing more eggs increases the likelihood of an egg being released to my left, or "good', tube, increasing my chances of getting pregnant.

Here is something I wrote in my private journal on July 23rd just weeks ago:

Yesterday I started my third cycle of Clomid. I was very proud of myself yesterday because when I started my period I did not cry; I simply went about my day. For me, that is a big step! I still don't know if God will give me another child. I pray for it every day. I want my daughter to have a sibling. But I also know that if God doesn't allow that, then it's truly not what would have been best for her or me. I try not to worry about what happens next if the Clomid doesn't work but still the questions arise. Will I try hormonal treatments? Will I see a fertility specialist and try IUI or IVF? What are the chances for someone like me to get pregnant? If I do get pregnant, will I ever want to take birth control again? If I don't get pregnant will I truly be content with the amazing child I have already been given? I sure hope so. Above all, I know that my God is sovereign and He is good. He is directing my paths and thank goodness He is, because He is the only one that can see the entire map of my life. And if one day I am able to be an encouragement to someone else who is struggling with infertility or pregnancy loss, I will praise God for the opportunity. He has sent some amazing women to encourage me and I would be honored to do the same for another struggling woman.

Little did I know what God had in store for me.

Jeremiah 32:17 says “Ah Lord God! behold, thou hast made the heaven and the earth by thy great power and stretched out arm, and there is nothing too hard for thee.” There is nothing that God cannot do.  Do I question God’s ability to give me another child?  Of course not!  He is the almighty Creator and can give me ten children if that is His will.  So the question is not do I believe that He can, but do I believe that He is sovereign and His will is perfect?  When I look at my path through the right lens it no longer has to be about what I desire but about what God desires for me.  My purpose should not be about making my plans happen but about making God’s plans happen.

Lord, help me to trust You in all things - good and bad.  Let me only seek you knowing that “all these things shall be added unto me.”  Please help me to keep my focus on you and your glory and let that glory shine through my life in whatever way you see fit.  You know the desire of my heart and I will never stop asking you for that child that I so badly desire, but I want to trust you and serve you whether you grant me that desire or not.  Not my will Lord, but Thine.

Nevertheless I am continually with thee: thou hast holden me by my right hand. Thou shalt guide me with thy counsel, and afterward receive me to glory. Whom have I in heaven but thee? and there is none upon earth that I desire beside thee. My flesh and my heart faileth: but God is the strength of my heart, and my portion forever.

- Psalm 73:23-26


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