I've had ten days to prepare for this post. I had hoped it would be: "I'm thankful for the new baby joining our family." But that's not the case.
October 29 I had an ultrasound to check the baby and get a more accurate due date. Evidently, I ovulated really, really late this cycle so I wasn't nearly as far along as I expected. At our first ultrasound we couldn't get any dates because the baby was too small. But we saw the wee heart beating. The second ultrasound, the one ten days ago, started out bad. The tech suddenly stopped talking to us. You always know that's a bad sign.
We had to wait for the doctor to tell us that it looked like we lost the baby. She wasn't 100% sure, but she seemed fairly positive. But we decided to schedule another ultrasound for this morning to confirm everything.
Halfway through the week, I was sure everything was okay. My pregnancy symptoms continued and I just felt that everything would be fine.
I began spotting Sunday morning (yesterday), right before I headed off to church to help wrangle a bunch of Nursery kids. The cramps began that afternoon.
So, what am I thankful for? I could say something like, "I'm thankful that I get to start losing weight again" or "I'm thankful that I can try to run that half-marathon in January" or "I'm thankful we don't have to worry about the cost of childbirth" or "I'm thankful I can stop being so tired and sick now." And I'm sure I am thankful for those things. But I don't want to be thankful for them. Not right now.
What I'm really thankful for is the Love of God. Josh came home from work yesterday morning right before I had to run off to church. He used the power of the Priesthood and gave me a blessing, a direct message from my Heavenly Father. Things didn't work out the way I wanted, but He helped me know that it's all going to be fine. In the blessing I was told that if this isn't the time for our baby, that I need to know that I didn't do anything wrong. I already knew that. The Love of God had already testified that to me.
I've had faith that we will find comfort through this experience. And I think we have. But I've decided something. Just because I have faith in God's plan, does not mean that I cannot experience the human emotions of loss. I've lost the opportunity to love and nurture a child at this time. I'm sure I'll have another chance sometime, but for now I mourn my loss.
I used to think that mourning indicated weakness or a shaken testimony. It's neither. It's a natural reaction in our mortal lives. Even Jesus cried when Lazarus died. And I'm sure He knew He was going to raise His friend from the dead just a few minutes afterward.
Being sad doesn't negate my faith in God. I know He loves me. I know He has specific plans for our family. I know it is in His hands. And I'm thankful for my friends and family that personify God's love. He may not hold me in His arms, but He will send others to do so for Him.
I'm thankful for that.