- Stacey Darling
Beauty For Ashes
"The LORD is close to the brokenhearted; he rescues those whose spirits are crushed." Psalm 34:18
About two months ago, we were surprised (in complete shock) to find out that I was in fact pregnant. As it always does, the initial shock was quickly replaced with feelings of excitement, hope, and a love beyond measure.
I can't speak for any other mom-to-be but as for me I immediately start wondering, planning and trying to figure things out. Is it a boy or a girl? What if it is a girl this time? We will need all new clothes! And they will have to pink! Who will share a room? Oh no, I donated the newborn car seat! We will need a new car seat, a bassinet...
This pregnancy came as a shock to us because we definitely were not trying to get pregnant and in fact, we were taking precautions not to get pregnant. So finding out we were pregnant meant only one thing, this is a miracle. God has other plans for us. He wants us to have this little baby boy or baby girl to complete our family.
Last week I visited my doctor for my routine ultrasound. I knew something was wrong right away. My doctor was completely silent and honed into the ultrasound monitor as she moved the ultrasound device back and forth.
She then looked down at me and said, "I'm sorry, but I can't detect a heartbeat." She called in an ultrasound technician to confirm and they talked among themselves and sporadically both would pause and one would say something to me but I didn't hear anything nor do I remember what was said after, "I'm sorry, but I can't detect a heartbeat." I drove home in both shock and complete devastation. I then had to share the news with my husband.
In the summer of 2016, I lost a pregnancy which was equally as heart-wrenching. I remember the Lord prompting me to share my experiences. For me personally, I felt alone in my despair and struggled to overcome the roller coaster of emotions that accompanied the loss. I did not feel emotionally equipped to share something so personal and so tragic.
Months later, when I found the courage and strength to share, what followed was both an outpouring of love and support and a number of unexpected messages from other women who felt validated and comforted by my story. I understood that God was using this painful experience to comfort and empower others.
I loved my baby, who was now in Heaven, even more for being such a gift to so many.
Because of that experience, I feel like it is important for me to share this experience while it is still raw. By the time I shared my experiences after my first loss, I had entered a season of healing and of hope. I am still processing and navigating through all of the emotions that accompany the unexpected loss of a pregnancy. My wounds are still fresh.
My story does not end here and I do not want the story of this beautiful baby, who I will someday meet in Heaven, to end here either. This baby was and still is a gift and I share with the hope that someone else will find comfort, peace, and fellowship while reading my story but more than anything my prayer is that my little one can somehow be a gift to you, just as he or she was and will forever be a gift to me.
With that intention in my heart, I will continue to share my path to healing as it unfolds.
"He will give a crown of beauty for ashes, a joyous blessing instead of mourning, festive praise instead of despair. In their righteousness, they will be like great oaks that the LORD has planted for his own glory." Isaiah 61:3