Archives for posts with tag: In vitro fertilisation

Most of us have heard the story.  Most of us have been annoyed with how simple it seems.  Many of us are just fed up with anecdotes that friends and family use as tools during the discomfort.

Maybe God put a fireman at our window.  Why turn it down?  Do we have more faith by staying in a fire or climbing down the ladder?

That fireman just so happens to have a bag full of shots, pills, appointments, and ultrasounds.  Is my desire to use a doctor out of less belief or out of gratefulness at what he has provided? So how does that fit with my belief that God will provide?  487fb1eac0d6825658bf69e2ed7849d7

I think it fits well.  God is big and has the capacity to move mountains.  He is the immeasurably more.  But the real question depends on what my faith is in.  Is my faith rooted in what my current situation is or in what he has already done?

True faith is rooted 100% in what God has done through Christ.  My redemption has been accomplished and my faith is that I have been saved.  I can have the richest of faith that does not depend on any current circumstances.  As I have come to make that realization I have come to accept that my faith in God is not rooted in whether or not we conceive.  It is rooted in the place that is being prepared for me.  If my faith waivers in times of infertility it is not a true faith.  It is a conditional faith that is rooted in  something that has not been promised.

So when it comes to anecdotes that question what God provides I can be confident that my faith does not waiver when I accept the hand of the rescuer.  I am reliant on a miracle to get me through infertility.  Only God can create life.  Science may be a tool he uses to do so.  That cannot lessen my faith in him………..especially if my faith is wholly in him.

-“Abram”

 

 

The more I read, the more I’m compared to a tree

The more I notice that my branches aren’t quite ripening

The more I’m told, the more I feel like no one knows

Simple lines of comfort sometimes cause more pain

Sometimes people try to tell me stories. Sometimes they try to tell me the easy cliches that everyone knows. Sometimes they say that everything happens for a reason or this is how God is growing me into a better person.

Don’t get me wrong, I am healing. It’s not because of your reasons.

Could you just be here, just be with me. Sometimes that is all that i need.

I wish I could communicate in an easy way that the best times I have had in dealing with infertility was when someone came along with me and did life. I knew they were with me. I knew that there couldn’t be some easy spiritual answer that would make me feel better about my pain.

Part of me wishes I could be that voice for you. An anonymous male knowing first hand the pains of infertility . Knowing first hand what friends or the church have done well and what they have done wrong in this situation.

Here is a video that I hope can be seen by more people and can be spread. While not specific to us, it gives me hope that we can just be there for each other.

What Not to Say to Someone Who’s Suffering from The Gospel Coalition on Vimeo.

to be honest I have come back to this blog every couple months and read through all of your comments.  they have given me the comfort that I need.  they have helped me know I am not alone.  i used writing as a way to hash out my feelings and hopefully bless other people going through a similar story.  infertility is a long hard road of feeling alone and overlooked.

growing up I have always been able to turn to music for help.  it got me through my “teenage angst”.  i always loved how an artist could speak the words I wanted to say.  i loved connecting with the singer and knowing i was not alone.

///through the dark skies and the stubborn clouds….

last month a good friend of mine was able to pass along a burnt cd with the title “stubborn clouds” on it to me.  he said that this artist knew my pain and my waiting.  he said that this artist was able to hash through infertility in a way that hasn’t been done before.

these songs tore me apart.  these words described me waiting with “Sarah” for the monthly phone call that let me down.  these words described this vision I once had of God having perfect plans for my life but not coming through.  they describe me looking up at cloudy skies hoping that sun would shine through; hoping I could sing again.

this e.p. I was lucky to run across went through a short story of love and hope of that “someday” we dream of.

I really want to share these songs with you and hopefully bless you.  I am inspired to write again and go through these songs and the feelings I have had that are now put into melodies.  the artist has not yet released the full cd, so I will start with what they put online.  I hope you take the time to listen to the full story and go through the journey of finding hope in a hopeless situation

Stubborn Clouds

Once again in the waiting room
The smell of fear fighting your perfume
And the Holy Ghost and the devil take their turns
One speaks of all that I deserve
The other speaks in simpler terms of a fierce love that cannot be contained

I say I know the man who gives and takes
I’ve done him some favors so maybe he’ll save the day
Maybe not
I know the man who can raise the dead
I haven’t been faithful but maybe he’ll be instead
I sure hope so

Oh, I can see it now
Through the dark skies and stubborn clouds
Somehow you will break out and cover us all in a song
Somehow all of this chaos makes sense now
The fiercest of storms bring out the best sailors

Once again waiting for the call
Trembling yet strong for her
The deceiver finds an opening
He speaks of all you haven’t done
He denies that the war was won
In the graveyard, through the veins of a King

And I say I know the man who gives and takes
And it’s not about favors, it’s more about His story
He is love
I know the man who can raise the dead
He has done it before and he’ll do it again in us
He is love

Oh, I can see it now
Through the dark skies and stubborn clouds
Somehow you will break out and cover us all in a song
Somehow all of this chaos makes sense now
The fiercest of storms bring out the best sailors

may your story
flow through my veins
let me sing again
may your glory
fill my lungs
oh let me sing again

here is a link to the album stream

Brad Atkin - Stubborn Clouds
 

– “Abram”

This past weekend was Easter, and if you’re a Christian you probably spent Sunday morning at church celebrating the Resurrection of Jesus. You also probably spent some time at church on Friday remembering the Crucifixion. The days are only 2 days apart yet they feel so different. One is quiet, introspective, and broken while the other is joyful, social, and, for many, full of chocolate. But until this year, I never thought about the day that falls between those two.

It’s easy to skip over Saturday. From our perspective of the Resurrection story, nothing happened that day. Jesus was in the tomb waiting for the next morning when He would rise from the dead. But can you imagine what that Saturday was like for the disciples? These were men who had quit their jobs to follow Jesus. They had left their homes and their families and their belongings to be a part of His story. Clearly, they believed in Him. What would it take you to give up your job and your home to follow a stranger? Now imagine the despair they felt on that Saturday. Everything they believed in had died. Their hope for a future was gone and the disappointment they felt must have been unbearable. They knew Jesus had said He would rise from the dead, but I’m sure the situation felt pretty hopeless on Saturday. Life didn’t go as they had planned.

Do you ever feel like you’re stuck on Saturday?

You know what God’s promises are, but they seem pretty impossible. You want to believe His words, but you’re overcome with disappointment.

Unlike the disciples, we know the end of the story. We know what happens on Sunday. We see that every word Jesus said was true. And in the light of Sunday, Saturday doesn’t seem so bad.

Maybe you’ve been stuck in this infertility journey for too long and you’re having a hard time seeing the hope of Sunday. Maybe you feel like you’re hanging by a thread. I’m there with you and I know how hard it is. Let’s continue to remind ourselves that God’s promises are true. In your hardest times and disappointing months, cling to the promises He’s made. He is the God of the impossible and we can trust that He won’t break a single promise.

Thanks to a song by All Sons and Daughters, I learned this Easter that God has a lesson for us about that Saturday. When you have a few minutes, listen to this song and their commentary about it. Be encouraged, Sunday is coming!

it was not easy, but it was progress

i am back!

please excuse my longest absence on this blog to date.  i hope you understand why.  i had quite the weekend last weekend and needed to pretend this was not my situation.

what a weekend indeed

for those that follow us on twitter (twitter.com/stillcountingst) or read this week’s post from “Sarah”, you may have seen that thanksgiving brought a very big announcement:  our sister is pregnant.  we knew the announcement was coming and knew that thanksgiving is going to be a celebration of new life and pregnancy; just not ours.  Wednesday night i was a bit of a mess.

this is supposed to be our announcement.  we are supposed to get everyone excited.

on Friday we had a close couple come in from out-of-town with their 4 week old adorable daughter.  let’s call her “wedding night surprise”.

on Friday night we met up with our favorite couple in the world who have been so supportive and prayed so much for us.  in between beers, BBQ, catching up, and laughter we started to discuss their recent miscarriage and how it is shaping their faith.

on Saturday my fertile brother came into town with four children under the age of seven.  him and his wife met about the time i was engaged and they are way ahead of the game

how this could have gone// what i could have missed

this could have been a weekend i totally missed.  if i thought internally, if i thought only about my current “crisis”, i could have been shut out from the world for three days.

i could have missed out on being excited to have a brand new niece or nephew in the family.  i could have totally missed how cool and fun it will be to play around with the little ones once our sisters start popping out kids.  i could have made it awkward so that no one was excited.

i could have been bitter about the “wedding night surprise” and not been totally excited that one of our friends is a mom.

i could have made my friends’ tragedy and heartache be about what i am missing.  my heart could have been hard and pushed them out rather than grieving with them.  i could have missed a chance to be there for two people i really care about and want to pray for.

i could have held the super fertility against my out-of-town relatives and ignored them.  i could have missed a huge chance to get closer to my nieces and nephews just because i am waiting to add to the group.

i could have put back on my “infertility goggles” (see prior post) and looked at how everything affects ME

my conscious decision to hit pause

i hit pause.  i told myself i had to.  it was extremely difficult to do, but i knew that this is a very exciting point in our lives that i might regret missing when i look back in 20 years.  i spent most of Wednesday and Thursday answering comments and emails and getting strengthened by this new community surrounding our blog.  i was amazed at us breaking 400 views 3 days in a row as a new blog and spent time knowing we are not alone.  i released as much of this pain as i could and then i looked at my situation and told it that the pain is going to have to wait until next week.

i spent time wondering what would have happened if Moses was so distraught over his flock or lack of eloquence that he never stopped at the burning bush and found God’s calling for an entire nation.  i wondered what it would have been like if David focused solely on his small stature and never fought the giant.  i wondered about Abraham, who could have only focused on the infertility and never truly trusted God with Isaac.  What would have happened if these people did not know the pause button?

and in the midst of the craziness i felt a little bit of joy

i actually was happy for my friends and family and made it a little more about them than myself.

it was not easy, but it was progress

– Abram

it has been very interesting in this long process finding out who my wife has told and realizing who i have told about what we are dealing with.  the random people who are keeping our secret are a unique mix of people.

we feel this overwhelming shame of telling people we can’t get pregnant.  there is a fear that they will judge us, tell us what we need to do, get weird around us, or keep secrets to protect us.

it is almost as if we did something shameful to put us in this place

but we haven’t done anything to put us in this situation.  this is the hand we have been dealt.

to be honest i am extremely scared of telling my parents.  i have let them in on glimpses of what we are going through, but i have always hated their reactions and it is putting a wall between us.  they tend to react with all the wrong clichés and do not seem to understand how hard this is.

my wife has told her mom but it seems like her mom, who is typically incredibly supportive and thoughtful, has no idea how to respond.  we get cards in the mail to get over colds or do well on tests, but never to tell us she is praying we get better.

i really wish infertility could be seen as a disease.  i wish people understood we are handicapped by this.  i wish people understood how many couples are struggling with infertility because their bodies aren’t functioning properly.

maybe then i could come out of the closet and let everyone know that our bodies need healing and that we are struggling to make this work.  that same confusion that people get when they find out they have cancer is the confusion that i live with; why me.

maybe someday this blog will not have to be anonymous.

but for now i want a get well soon card.  i want to be told it is o.k.  i want to be told that I am o.k.

until then i will continue to put up a wall and keep this secret to myself.

how have all of you decided who to tell and who to not tell?

– “Abram ”

 1-2 I cry out loudly to God, loudly I plead with God for mercy.
   I spill out all my complaints before him,
      and spell out my troubles in detail:

 3-7 “As I sink in despair, my spirit ebbing away,
      you know how I’m feeling,
   Know the danger I’m in,
      the traps hidden in my path.
   Look right, look left—
      there’s not a soul who cares what happens!
   I’m up against it, with no exit—
      bereft, left alone.
   I cry out, God, call out:
      ‘You’re my last chance, my only hope for life!’
   Oh listen, please listen;
      I’ve never been this low.
   Rescue me from those who are hunting me down;
      I’m no match for them.
   Get me out of this dungeon

      so I can thank you in public.
   Your people will form a circle around me
      and you’ll bring me showers of blessing!”

(from The Message)

I painfully prayed this Psalm this morning as we are going through another month of infertility.  I likened myself to David in the cave, crying out to God.  I realized three things from this passage that can really help me in this time:

The Cave

Image via Wikipedia

1. appeal to God – there is no one else to appeal to.  His plan is above all others.  He is above all things.  from Him, and through Him, and to Him are all things.  let yourself go before Him and lay it all out.  i know we live our lives against Him most of the time, but he wants to hear from us.  this is painful.  it is healthy to ask questions and be in pain before Him.

2. make it right – let go of your strength for a strength that is even bigger.  let it not be about you and let Him know how you have grasped on to these things and put them above God.  i have found that many times fertility has become an idol that i have placed before God and decided that everything else he wants to do in my life is put on hold until i can get this sickness fixed.  let these things go.  get right with Him.  confess how we have tried to be our own gods.

3. acknowledge that the only hope is in His grace – we are not entitled to children.  we are not specifically promised to be parents.  these miracles are His to give.  once we can make ourselves right with Him we can take note that it is His grace that we hope for.  our good works or religion will never earn us fertility or salvation.

I pray that when we are brought out of this prison we are excited to sing of His grace; to “thank Him in public”.

– Abram –

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