My best friends birthday was approaching, It was a significant milestone. I remembered planning ahead trying to figure out what we’re going to do for her.
I contacted her to find out what she had planned, I persisted in asking her until she said “I won’t be having any celebration”.
I sort of expected it because I’ve known for over 20 years and I have never celebrated a birthday with her or celebrated her birthday. I knew her reasons. However, I did not think that such a milestone would go uncelebrated.
She’s single and not currently in a relationship, she’s approaching the age where having children is considered risky, she’s premenopausal. She is in between jobs and between homes.
The last few years have been really difficult for her having lost her dad, which means both parents will not be around when and if she eventually gets married and have children.
Lack of success and achievement in certain areas of our lives, leaves us disappointed and robbed.
You too may be asking yourself as Christmas approaches, what’s there to celebrate?
There is a perceived natural progression of ones life, grow up, go to school, meet your partner, graduate, get married, have children and live happily ever after.
As I’ve come to know, life isn’t always a straight line from A to Z. Life will take you from N to B and, from S to W and back again from V to K.
Live doesn’t give you what you order, God does. Life doesn’t give you what you expect, faith in God does. Life doesn’t give you what you think you should have, trust and hope in God does.
And as a result of not getting to those milestones we decide what, when to celebrate and how to celebrate.
Celebration is not about things. We celebrate because we look inside ourselves and we know that regardless of where we are and how far we still have to go, we have a reason to be thankful because a lot of people did not get as far as we have come.
We are thankful because against all odds, are still standing. we reflect on the good we have in our lives.
I want to encourage you today, If you find yourself void of joy, void of any enthusiasm to celebrate let the births of Christ inspire you.
What is there to celebrate?
For starters, your health, Your amazing support group, The families in your life. For the strength to keep going, your nieces and nephews, for your job.
Count your blessings, and let your focus well on God’s goodness, not on the absence of should have been.
Our cup is not half empty but half full.
This Christmas rejoice in the fullness of joy that Christ brought when he came into our world. This is why we celebrate.
In most cultures naming a child involves having a sacred ceremony, and with good reason too.
That child will be known and identify with that name all their lives, so the choosing, pondering and meditation over that name is important.
The name will be used by everyone, It will become their identity. Sometimes a name informs others about the origin of a person, where they come from, their heritage and roots, so names are important.
Jesus name was also special. His names were chosen by God, His father, before he was born. John the baptist was also named before his birth.
God didn’t leave it up to Joseph and Mary to name Christ, because Jesus was God in the flesh and God needed a name which reflected who he is and will be for all ages.
One of his names which is comparable to no other names, is the name Alpha and Omega.
I have heard all kinds of names, similar names, replicated names, but not this. Simply because this name is God. Alpha and omega simply means “the beginning, the end and everything in between”.
Why this name? I believe God was speaking to humanity through this name, he was saying, look I know it all. I know what has been “the past”, what will be coming “the future” and everything in between.
In those trying times of miscarriages and failed IVF procedures, His name gave me hope. I was comforted in the knowledge that God knows why, and he is weaving everything in His perfect plan for my life.
I may not know what tomorrow will bring, but I know who does and know that He loves me and wants the best for me. His plans for me are good, not evil.
This knowledge was my solace and comforted me as the years rolled by I became secured in His all knowing nature.
I want to suggest some of God names which you can draw strength from as you wait.
In our previous posts I wrote about Rachel and how God remembered her. often we make statements like ”God remembered me”.
But does God forget? That’s the question. Has he forgotten about you?
God is not human and does not forgets like humans beings does.
But often we use the word “God has remembered me”. Usage of that word suggests there is a flaw in God. A human flaw of forgetfulnesses.
Man is fallible so, man forgets. But God is not a human that he should forget, right? Nor a human that he should lie, has he said it and will he not do it?
Let me Put it to you that God does forgets. Yes he does. He forgets your sins. He himself said “I will remember their sins no more”. So here, God deliberately forgets and erase your sins from His memories. So when He looks at you He sees you clean.
Earlier on in my quest for a child I went through various scenarios, of times when I may have done somethings for which I was atoning for. It could be anything but the guilt of it all stacks up even more when I couldn’t fall pregnant.
I knew I was forgiven, I knew the delay was not a result of things I may have done. I just couldn’t stop thinking there was something that is causing the delay. I wanted an answer and maybe you do too. It’s so easy to find a reason to hold on to. Hence we blame it on some past wrong doings.
We sometimes think that there is an underlining deep spiritual message that God was trying to send us?
God did not keep the receipt, He clears the hard drive and every backup copy, He destroyed them. He does not remember my sins. He Forgot.
So I want to challenge you today to take whatever mistakes you think you have made, use an erase-able pan or a pencil Stack them up.
write what you remember one by one,
Put a strike next to them.
Scribble over them.
Then use the eraser and rob them out.
Finally rip the paper.
Do the same on your computer/Ipad or smart phone.
start typing out all the things you think you may have done wrong,
then press the back button or highlight them and
then delete it all without saving.
This is what God did.
He deleted, he erased, then ripped up the evidence. He doesn’t remember your sins because when you ask for his forgiveness he just erase it. He wiped the slate clean, he cannot remember and see you as new when he looks at you.
So the next time you think the delays you are experiencing is because of some past sins, some jealousy, habits or other horrible stuff, Just Remember, He doesn’t remember your sins.
You are forgiven, washed and cleaned and you have put on Christ As Paul said, so each time you pray he sees Christ. Not your sins.
He sees His son whom he sent as a baby a long time ago to come and cover you, to come and stand in your place on the cross.
Now you are dressed in righteousness and faultless to stand before His throne. That’s who you are, faultless. So come boldly thanking him, for his forgetfulness.
In his book God came near, Max Lucado wrote. Do yourself a favour purge your cellar . Exorcise your basement. Take the Roman nails of Calvary and board up the door.
What would you consider the most memorable time of your life?
Was it when you got married, got your degree, moved houses, got a new job? received a long expected news?
These are all great achievements to be celebrated but cannot be regarded as moments of splendor.
Moments of splendor was when an angel appeared to Mary and the wise men to tell of the birth of Jesus. They fell on their feet and worshiped. As the songs “the angel of the lord came down and glory shone around”.
I sometimes wondered what that moment was like for Mary and the shepherds: Some described their reaction as one of fear, but I think they were dazed, speechless and yes felt fearful, reverential fear.
This advent as you wait on your promise I pray that you will experience a moment of splendor in the revealing of whom Jesus His. May the power which came upon Mary Come on you and strengthened your body to conceive.
Moments of splendor, released by sparkling lights, Of angel piercing the skies, announcing the birth of our savior.
Moments of splendour it was as the angel said Fear not, good news is come Of a saviour born today In Bethlehem.
Such splendour thrills my heart. O the wonder of his birth, to see the glory of Christ our king.
Moments of splendour which brings hope. To know He came to be bruised, to be scorned, to be wounded.
That I might be made whole. In this my faith rest and my heart assured of His promise to me.
Every year we celebrate all kinds of occasions, birthdays, anniversaries, graduations, halloween, thanksgiving and christmas.
These season can be triggers for the couple in waiting, because without fail, we see parents adore their young kids with outfit and proudly shows them off.
I did the same when my girls were still little. without thought for how my waiting friends feels. No one intentionally parades their kids to cause distress, we all do it from a place of joy.
But I understand the pain and agony these images can cause. The despair cause by your failed attempt to get pregnant, the repeated miscarriage and the loss of a child.
When I was waiting I discovered that more than seeing friends or pregnant women, the seasons of celebration is the hardest one to face.
There is no escaping the gaiety in the air as you watch friends, dress up with their babies, teens, sons or daughters in teamed outfit.
O the tug at your heart strings as you imagine how you will dress your baby. You build a picture and hold on to the hope that it will one day be you dressing up your child.
These image seems to diminish as the years go by.
And every year as you watch others with their tiny little babies dress up for school plays for halloween themed party for thanksgiving and Christmas dinner, you hide in floods of tears, loathing another celebratory season.
I am reminded by this passage in Psalm 143:8. Let the morning bring me word of your unfailing love.
Yes seasons may come and go and our desires tarries, but God’s word never changes.
Anchor your hopes to it and hold on, let each celebratory season remind you of His unfailing love and as we approach Christmas when you will have to face Santa and school plays, remember his birth is the reason we are here but his death and resurrection is a promise that we can hold on to his promise, that he will grant us our hearts desires.
For if he did not withhold his Son from us, he will give us freely our hearts desires.
One of the worse things a couple can learn is that they are unable to have children. This very discovery can either make or break a relationship.
Having spoken with so many couples about their experiences I have discovered that everyone is affected in a different way, but one common factor is stress.
This post brings you ways of coping with the stress brought on by infertility.
The feeling of helplessness and hopelessness is real to the infertile couple, this feeling if left unchecked can wreak more havoc.
The commonest forms of stress are depression, feelings of anxiety, and mental health problems.
Here are 5 ways you can adopt to deal with stress
1. Identify your feelings: Sometimes it is very difficult to know which feelings you are exhibiting so it is important to identify your feelings. It might hep to Talk to a professional to help you get in touch with your feelings. Identifying how you feel is the first step in dealing with other emotions like anger, guilt, fear, jealousy and shame.
2. Seek Help for your situations : there are a lot of resources on fertility options. (see sources below) rather than waste precious energy on negative emotions, busy yourself by seeking help. Find out all you need to know about your issues. Your doctor should be your first point of call as they will kick start the treatment process.
3. Consider the options available to you. Your research should include cost, the type of treatment available IVF, IUI, Intracytoplasmic sperm injection, other alternatives such as adoption, fostering, surrogacy should be considered also. Advancement in medicine has made possible the impossible.
4. Have a support net work. It is much easier to cope with a stressful situation by talking to someone than by coping alone. Your support net work can be a close friend, who will not be judgemental or a family member like a mum or sister. It can consist of a group or an individual. Be sure they they are people you can count on to be discreet and to always be supportive. There are lots of support groups on social media You can join but only share if you comfortable doing so.
5. Take on a hobby: Find something to do to take your mind off the situation. It can be a passion you had packed away, hiking, fund raising for a good cause, cooking or writing poetry etc. The very act of being engaged in something rewarding frees your mind from the stress of infertility.
Finally always look on the bright side. No matter how worse or bad a situation feels believe it can get better.
Chrissy and John Lenon lost their baby boy half way through their pregnancy and she’s shared her pain with millions of her followers. This has shed more light on the issue.
Miscarriage happens in 1 in 4 pregnancies, with lost occurring before 12 weeks. There are 250,000 miscarriages every year in the U.K.
She has been praised by charities for sharing her pain and heartbreak, even though she’s has been criticised for sharing so publicity. I think she’s brave and courageous, and I applaud her for her strength.
The pain of miscarriage is so heavy and No one should suffer alone, posting about her loss gave courage to millions of women who also posted comments about their loss and how her openness helps them relate and deal with their pain.
Her pain reminded me of the 2 miscarriages i suffered after 2 failed IVFs. I was numb for a few days each time as I bled out my babies. And the very thought of knowing it can happen again left me scared.
Miscarriage leaves a hole, a fear, an uncertain feeling deep down in ones guts..
Even after having two beautiful daughters, news like Chrissy’s always reminds me of those dark days.
Although i no longer grieve, I do remember.
Have you suffered loss, do not keep quiet, share your pain if you so choose, email us, leave a comment and we will lend a listening ear. We will cry with you and sit still with you. Grieve, don’t bottle it up.
Grieving is a natural way of reacting to devastating news.
Like a butterfly you flutter in my womb
like a womb you wriggle and turn.
I came to know you and love you so deeply
I saw our future as one big loop of love
your little feet truffled around
your little face as it filled up with a smile
i saw your face before you saw mine will lill hold that still still we meet again.
Holding out Hope to John and Chrissy and the milking who are grieving right now.