Do you believe in miracles?
I’m not talking the Santa Claus kind here… I’m talking real deal, real life, faith shaking miracles.
I’ll be honest…. if you would have asked me just a couple of years ago, I would have said no. Let me explain…
Most of you know my story… my health and body failed me for a while. It was painful; it was exhausting; it was emotional; it was ugly; it was just plain hard. Every day. I can’t begin to tell you the amount of times I asked “why?” or “what did I do…or what did my family do to deserve this?”
At one point, I had figured that my only way out was to end things myself. No one was helping me…. no one could fix me… Depression and suicide aren’t things that people talk about enough. You’ll be surprised to read this I’m sure. No one knew where my mind was taking me and how lost I really was. No one. And before you call me “selfish” for not thinking of my family or my children. I did… every second of every day. No one seen the pain on their faces like I did when they had to see me sick or at the hospital or heading to another doctor.
Don’t worry – I never followed through or tried anything… the big man upstairs saved me. It’s not a cliche… He really did. At my lowest point, I realized I didn’t really know how to pray. As a Catholic, I was taught to recite prayers by memory but I didn’t really pay attention and I didn’t really try to understand. I decided that instead, I’d just talk with God. Not just me… we all did. My husband and I prayed relentlessly. At first we began praying for healing… for answers… for ANYTHING. As a human race, we are pretty impatient – I wanted a response… fast. When I didn’t get it, I kept going back to that dark place.
Then I had this weird thing happen….. I was listening to a trial of Sirius radio and there was an ad for a Catholic radio station – EWTN. At first, I blew it off… I can’t handle talk radio…. I like heavy metal for crying out loud. But that stupid ad wouldn’t stop. So one day, I turned to the station and heard this little old nun, Mother Angelica. She was hilarious, yet faithful and sincere. Soon, I began listening to her program regularly. Then, eventually I started listening to other programs… mainly ones that talked about the faith and provided information – most of which I had no clue about.
One day, Mother Angelica was answering a caller’s question about ‘how to pray the right way’. Mother basically explained that there wasn’t a right or wrong way but suggested that instead of asking God FOR something, you ask Him to USE you for something good. It blew my mind. I had been essentially begging for a complete healing, yet failed to see the big picture. So that night, I asked Him in our nightly prayer to help me accept my struggles and use them for something better.
Guess what – the bakery was born…. which has been without a doubt my most successful accomplishment – outside of my family and I’m not talking financial success. Being able to interact with people who struggle with the same daily struggles that I do is so helpful for me… and I hope them! I love being able to use the knowledge I’ve gained to help someone get out of that rut or place their in and see the positive. Although, I’m pretty sure it helps me more than anything.
Now, the healing I so longed for didn’t happen in a timely fashion. It took years (and I’m still not quite there) but I kept talking with God and hoping He would help me accept it and move on. He kept doing that. My mindset changed and my world was bright again. Our family’s world was bright again.
Over the last year, my health has greatly improved. It started in November of 2016 when I had my port removed and was able to move on from that. I was showing some stability so it wasn’t until June that I had my next set of labs done. On my birthday, I was able to get the craziest news I had heard yet – most of my levels that we’ve been monitoring for the last 5 years were in the normal range. I couldn’t believe it. Also during that year, my female issues seemed to be getting better – I hadn’t ovulated regularly for 5 years as well. We were told by more than one doctor that kids were out of the question. If on the off chance I did get pregnant, I wouldn’t be able to maintain a healthy pregnancy. It was shocking and a little devastating but I just kept telling myself “we have two beautiful, healthy children. That’s enough.” And I truly thought it was…. until I started seeing babies everywhere and the pain that came with knowing that would never be me. I was just beginning to get back into a somewhat regular routine with all that lady business and come to terms with no more kiddos…. until July 21st.
I had this off feeling and thought, I better take a test…. just to be sure. Well sure enough – positive. I immediately did the most ridiculous laugh-cry-squeal thing that would have been hilarious to see. I then waited ALL day to tell my husband… because he was at work and that’s not a phone-call conversation. I was pretty sure he’d have a heart attack and I needed to be there in person when if that happened. Lane had baseball practice that night so Caleb had literally like 15 minutes at home before having to leave again. I originally decided that I would wait until they got home and we put the kids to bed. However, as soon as I seen his car pull in, I knew I had to tell him. I grabbed him real quick and locked him in our bathroom. I had made up a little gift – a box with the pregnancy test and a card with my favorite scriptures about having faith and trusting God. He read the card and looked confused. Then he opened the box and did the exact same laugh-cry-squeal thing and I laughed. He did get a little pale but we both had the same reaction – happy yet scared. We knew the possible consequence was having a miscarriage or having other complications with me or the baby.
We immediately decided to keep it to ourselves until we could talk with all of my docs. Those conversations went surprisingly well. My KU doc was pleasantly surprised but didn’t see a cause for worry and my OB was pretty much the same and suggested we just “limp along” the best we could. We told family and then told our kids at Disney World on our first ever vacation. Timing… I’ve been planning that vacation for YEARS and we finally get to go and I’ve got morning sickness…. all day long. Still totally worth it.
Today, we got to have our gender scan ultrasound for our upcoming reveal party. Today, I got to see the beautiful face of our miracle baby and watch it’s little body move around. I got to see it wave to the camera. I saw that same nose that Harper and Lane have. I saw something I never thought I would get to see again in my own body…. one of God’s greatest blessings. Today, I cried the biggest tears of joy my body could muster up.
Today, I had another one of those ‘ah-ha’ moments…. the ones I’m sure that God is looking down just giggling at me. Today, I felt a joy and happiness that I didn’t know was possible. Today, I realized that the last few years…. all of the ups, downs and in-betweens were worthwhile and meaningful. I could never feel the love and joy that I felt today if I hadn’t had those struggles. Today, the Lord brought me full-circle. He took me from my deepest, darkest place and showed me a blessing that I didn’t know I needed. This sweet little baby is a symbol of how far we have come and what can happen if we just trust in His path and have a little faith.
Being a mother is the best and strangest thing all at the same time. This third pregnancy/baby isn’t my ‘favorite’. I feel that you can have a different bond with each of your children. Lane is my sweetheart – we have a connection that no one could possibly understand and we rarely have to say anything. Harper is my outgoing, fun one – she can light up a room by just being there. And our newest little peanut – we have overcome odds together that some would call impossible and that’s definitely created a bond that is nothing short of miraculous.
I really think I’m starting to learn to just ‘enjoy the ride’. In fact, I’m kind of looking forward to seeing how God can make me feel stupid for not trusting His paths.