Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Secrets Unveiled

**this was written one month ago**

I don't know if I'll publish this yet. Or ever.

It's July 12, 2015 and we've officially been "trying" to get pregnant since the end of January.

A whole slew of things led us to start (for those of you who have already put on your "You just got married: WAIT!!!" hats).  For one, we were both excited about the possibility of having kids that were similar in age to their cousins. So, when my last brother to have any children announced their pregnancy at Christmas, our timeline sped up. Also, I'm old-ish. Oh, and my husband LOVES kids (you can testify to this if you've ever seen him interacting with them). And, for you nay-sayers of quick pregnancies in marriage, by the time we would actually give birth, it would have been at least a year of marriage (that's something... right?!). The list continues...

And so we started trying.
And I've humbly realized every four weeks how I can't just decide to create a life. It's not up to me.
There's been a lot of freedom in that realization, but I can't deny that there's also been disappointment.

The thing about "trying" is that people don't really announce it. I don't know why (despite the intimacy of it), but it seems more socially acceptable to just tell all your family and friends AFTER you're pregnant. There were a few times early on when I thought about asking my family and close friends to journey alongside us in prayer about the whole process... but I think my pride prevented me from actually doing so. It seemed more fun to spring a pregnancy announcement on them than a "we're TRYING to get pregnant" announcement. And it seemed pretty contrary to anything "most" people do. And so we've kept mostly quiet-- dodging pregnancy accusations right and left while secretly hoping and talking and praying in the privacy of our own home. I've been a little surprised at how isolating it can feel.

But fortunately there's this thing called the Internet. In the process of trying, I've discovered a whole world of women who are also, anonymously, trying. I've discovered a world of acronyms that stand for things that I've had to Google many times: TTC, DPO, AF, BFN, BFP, HPT, etc. etc. etc. (I actually didn't know how to read many forums because they were so littered with letters that I didn't understand).  So many questions, so many women hoping, so many women waiting and wondering if their symptoms might actually result in a BFP (Big Fat Positive.... I don't know who came up with these). So many stories...

I've discovered that it's absolutely normal for women to sit anxiously every month in the "Two Week Wait" as they twiddle their thumbs hoping that they timed/charted/planned ovulation right and that it led to conception so that "Aunt Flo" won't appear on its normal due date.

Only to do it all over again, praying that this time, it might be different. And then still trying being okay when it's not. Most days I feel like I'm hiding, only really divulging my roller coaster of thoughts and feelings to my husband because of this secret path we've chosen for ourselves.

There were lots of things I didn't know.
I didn't know how expensive pregnancy tests were.
I didn't know ovulation predictor tests were a thing.
I didn't even know you're not supposed to drink coffee if you are trying.
I did, however, find out that pregnancy tests should not be left in the glove compartment of your car for many months. I also found out that my husband has no problem buying pregnancy tests at Walgreens (while I bolt to the car ahead of him to avoid any possibility of judgmental or curious eyes from the cashier).

I still sometimes think I can control a LOT of things.
But I cannot create life, and I most certainly cannot dictate when it shall spring forth.
Most of the time I'm glad it's not up to me. I'm glad that the Lord's timing is perfect and that He is Sovereign in all of this. In fact, our prayer each time has been to continuously trust the Lord and His will for us, whether or not that ever includes biological children. His timing is greater, and I must remind myself of that daily.

There's a little bit of shame attached to this feeling of being unable to conceive. A little a bit of feeling like something is wrong with me and how could I ever admit to others that we've tried and seemingly failed (especially when it SEEMS like everyone on Facebook is pregnant or has kids). I've read enough to know that we fall under a category where it's perfectly normal to not conceive right away and you should only go to a specialist if you try for a year and there's no pregnancy. I've also discovered that every month, I really only have a 15% chance of getting pregnant.

Pregnancy is a miracle.
I'm learning that more and more.
My brother and sister-in-law taught me several years ago that children are a blessing-- not something that we deserve and not something that we've been promised. Something that we are uncommonly blessed with. It's a beautiful reminder for me, even still. Especially now.

My life now, just as it is, is great.
I can't complain.
I can't want.
I can only trust.
And ask that He might sustain me.
And ask that He might continually remind me that the Gospel is sufficient. In all things.

I have already been given incredibly more than I could have ever thought possible.

So today, even as I write... knowing that I am in fact, NOT pregnant... I am content. Satisfied. Maybe still slightly disappointed from time to time, but learning to trust in a new way.

Maybe some day there will be reports of BFPs, ultrasounds, doctor's appointments, baby rooms and gender reveals...

But, for now, we live fully in our present circumstances, seeking opportunities to be obedient to Jesus no matter the cost. Because my purpose will forevermore be greater than being a wife, a mother, an employee... and right now we get the seize the moments more quickly than we ever might if we had children.

There's our secret.
Apparently we aren't too good at it...but we're trying.
Instead of journeying through this life-altering thing alone, we're deciding to invite others in. We don't want this to be a sensitive, hidden thing that we're going through any longer. We're asking you to pray for us, to ask us about it, to be excited for us, to remind us of the Lord's goodness and faithfulness in all things.

Let's rejoice with those who rejoice and mourn with those who mourn.
Love in action.

(Don't worry, we've told a lot of our family/friends before posting this. We both, on the same day, thought to ourselves: Why are we keeping this a secret? It's sort of felt like people either get pregnant immediately after starting to try or they get pregnant without even wanting to. I know that's not really always how it works out, but that's more of how it feels based on when things get revealed. So we're breaking the mold a bit. We're going public. We need people to walk with us through the good, the hard, the disappointing, the waiting, the trusting, and the hoping. We need people to know what's really going on with us. We also need you to know that if you're pregnant or if you have kids, we are thrilled for you. Truly. Don't feel like you can't talk to us about it because you feel like you have something we don't. We're okay. Excited still... and completely at peace with whatever may come.)

Your entries will remain anonymous


  1. Check out Wondfu pregnancy test strips on Amaxon.Theyre like $10 for 50 and they are very sensitive and work great!!! We tried for 18 months to conceive our 2nd child so I know the rollercoaster you're on. Blessings on your wait and I pray God's continued patience.

  2. Also, the dollar store for pregnancy tests....
    It is a crazy phenomenon--creating a life. And amazing how many people come out of the woodwork who have struggled getting pregnant when they find out you're trying. Patrick and I were those people, and we'll be praying for you guys!