Alone and Hurting

The very first thing I am going to do when I get to Heaven is give Jesus a gigantic hug.

And then I am going to meet my daughter. (Or son.)

It was over 11 years ago now, yet it still feels like it was just yesterday. My husband and I had tried for over a year before we finally found out we were pregnant with our second child. It was a long, dark road paved with heartache, tears, and desperate prayers. We were ecstatic when we found out we were finally expecting. Since we already had a boy, I thought it was going to be a girl and was busy picking out names for her.

We were so happy.

But our joy quickly turned to fear when one day I noticed that I was bleeding. I prayed the whole way to the ER. Once there, I was sent for an ultrasound and I noticed that the technician was eerily quiet as she worked.

It wasn’t long before the doctor came in and told us, “Your baby has died.” 

His words hit my heart like a two-ton brick. I burst into tears and clung to my husband. I wanted to scream, “You’re wrong! There must be something you can do! You have to be wrong!”

He went on to explain that my baby had only measured 7 weeks and I was at 11 weeks, so something had gone wrong and my baby had just stopped growing. He then explained what to expect in the coming days as my body continued to miscarry, set up an appointment for an ultrasound a week later to make sure everything came out, and then they sent me home.

Just like that.

There was no information on how to process the loss of our child. It was a miscarriage, not a still birth, and I was only 11 weeks along, so we were left on our own. But even though I was still early in my pregnancy, we had lost a child. We had lost our hopes, our dreams, and all our plans for the future. We really had no idea how to move forward. There was no funeral to plan. No chance for closure. No chance to say good-bye. Our baby was just gone.

One minute my heart was busy planning for a new addition. The next minute I was busy trying to pick up the pieces of my shattered heart.

That Sunday I had a choice to make on whether or not to go to church. God had been preparing me for this very decision, because earlier that week I had heard a sermon in which the pastor talked about how during difficult or painful trials we tend to isolate ourselves and that is exactly what the devil wants. He wants us to hide so he can keep us from receiving comfort from God’s people, the church. The pastor’s words haunted me. I knew I needed to go to church, but I wasn’t sure I wanted to. 

What I really wanted to do was crawl in a hole and pretend the whole thing wasn’t really happening.

But because of that sermon I forced myself to go to church. I pasted on a smile and sat down next to my good friend. She immediately hugged me as tightly as she could and whispered words of encouragement. Everyone I encountered that day was very sweet and understanding. It was still hard but at the same time their encouraging words were like a soothing salve on my wounded heart.

Later that week I received a beautiful card from all of the pastors and leaders there. They had all written encouraging words and scripture verses for us to cling to in the days ahead. And throughout the following weeks other church members shared words of comfort and prayed for us. We had visits from family as well, who did their best to support us in our time of need.  

When I look back at that time, I feel that the biggest step I took towards healing was going to church and letting them know what happened. That step of allowing others into my pain, gave God the opportunity to work through those people to offer me comfort, encouragement, and words of hope.

It still was not easy. It still hurt like hell. But the pain was easier to handle with others beside us.  

“Odd as it may seem, personal trials and sorrows are rarely meant to be purely private matters. They are meant to make us vulnerable to God and others. Jesus said to his disciples, ‘You are those who have stood by me in my trails.’ (Luke 22:28) Jesus didn’t hibernate in his grief. He risked the vulnerability that could lead to deeper friendship, love, and trust. Jesus received comfort from his friends because he was humble enough to let them in on his trials.”

Invitations from God, Adele Ahlberg Calhoun

If the God of the universe sought comfort from his friends during painful trials, we would be smart to follow His example.

When a lion is hungry, he does not just go out and attack a herd of buffalo. No, instead he waits in the bushes and watches. He actively searches for the one who is wounded, sick, or all alone. And the animals know it, too. Water buffalo will protect the sick and old members of the herd by having the healthier animals surround them. They know it is not safe to be alone when they are hurting.

Picture by Pixaby, bible verse added by yours truly.

And isn’t it interesting that the bible says, “Watch out for your great enemy, the devil. He prowls around like a roaring lion, looking for someone to devour.” -1 Peter 5:8 NLT

Satan knows you are at your weakest when you are wounded and all alone. So he waits for that moment, and then he pounces.

Girl, I know it hurts. I know it is hard. But I promise you that seeking out others to walk with you through your pain is the smartest thing you can do. And I know that sometimes people don’t handle grief well. They may be well meaning and yet say things that hurt. If they do, just remember we all make mistakes and then seek out someone else. Or look instead for a support group. Whatever you do, don’t stop seeking companionship. Because the devil is actively prowling around, waiting for you to be alone so he can attack.

Don’t give him an easy target.

***

October is Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Month. This post is in honor of all those who have ever lost a little one. We will never forget them. We will always miss them. And we will keep looking forward to the day we will finally be reunited again. If you are suffering from a loss, please feel free to comment here so we can encourage you. Or you can email me from my contact page. We are here for you! You are not alone!

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10 thoughts on “Alone and Hurting

  1. Sorry, you went through this, I too did on a number of occasions but the worst of all was at 16 weeks when the sonographer just announced there was no heartbeat, how can they even be allowed to do that? I then got an appointment to go back in the following day for a DNC that turned into me having to give birth, it seemed all very cold and heartless.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I am so sorry for your loss! And I agree the whole experience can be so cold and heartbreaking. Sometimes people just aren’t good at giving bad news to others. Your experience sounds awful and my heart hurts for you. I hope that as time goes on you find peace and healing and know you are not alone. Wish I could give you a hug!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. So heartbreaking. As a Mother of two, I can only imagine how hard it was for you and your family. Although I’m not religious, it’s good to hear you had a safe outlet to help you process your grief and find a way forward x

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Oh, your sweet words brought tears to my eyes. Thank you so much! That is my greatest hope: to share my story and point people to Jesus. I am so sorry for your daughter’s loss and the pain that your family is going through right now. My heart just aches when I hear these things.

    I kept going to church after my miscarriage but I did refuse to sing lines like “God is faithful” for a long time. I struggled to understand how he was faithful when he allowed me to lose a child I had thought was an answer to prayer. It took a long time, but His love and the support of the church really helped me finally get to a place where I may not understand, but I have accepted His will in this. I will be praying for your daughter and for you. It is very hard to lose a granddaughter as well! I pray that your daughter’s heart would soften and that God would reveal Himself to her even in her grief. That he would comfort her and hold her close during this difficult time even if she is pushing him away. That he would heal your heart and show you ways to encourage your daughter. But most of all, I just pray for His strength and peace to carry your family during this trial.

    I like to picture my daughter playing with all her friends in Heaven (all the children that have been lost-my good friends who had miscarriages, my mentor mom who lost 4 babies at all stages of her pregnancies, and even a few whose moms aborted them and regret it). All of them are all up in heaven having a blast with Jesus. And that makes me smile. Even if it still hurts that they aren’t here with us.

    Sending a virtual hug! And prayers!

    Like

  4. I hung on every word—for your words, your story is one that hits incredibly close to home for my daughter (and for me, but on a secondary level)! She recently lost her daughter at 23 weeks, but unlike you she has retreated from the church, isolating herself—blaming God.

    Your line, “That step of allowing others into my pain, gave God the opportunity to work through those people to offer me comfort, encouragement, and words of hope.” That is absolutely every, every, everything! I am so entirely sorry for your loss. I know that unparalleled heartache and wish I could hug your heart!

    Know that as you share your story you are meeting a need the world has—and that is to point people back to Christ in the midst of despair. We need that reminder. We need that example. You are it. Thank you for being so vulnerable.

    Karyn

    Liked by 1 person

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