Stephanie’s Testimony: When God Grows Your Family His Own Way

It had been two and half years of trying. Praying. Hoping. Testing. And nothing to show for it.

We made an appointment, and found ourselves in the fertility specialist’s office, eager for answers. It was there we learned of the obstacles standing in our way. Endometriosis, and multiple cysts in each ovary. I immediately began crying, upset at this first revelation that my body was not as healthy as I had always imagined it to be. The doctor kindly scolded me, telling me that our situation was completely workable.

A few months later, I left his office after our first IUI. I should’ve felt excited at the possibility that this might bring about our first child, but I didn’t. I knew it wouldn’t work. It wasn’t that I felt hopeless about the treatments. But, I felt peaceless. This wasn’t the route God was calling us to.  A few weeks later, the negative test confirmed it.

I couldn’t shake the feeling that we were supposed to build our family a different way. On a cold December night, my husband and I were on a date, and somewhere between the appetizer and main course I mustered up the courage to tell him what had been crowding my thoughts for the past three days.

“I know you wanna keep trying the treatments, but… I wanna adopt.”

I expected him to be my cheerleader, telling me that maybe one or two treatments would be all it would take. After all, I knew he wanted “one of our own,” as people like to say.

But he didn’t. He put down his fork, looked me in the eye, and said, “Let’s do it.”

***

A month later we were sitting in a foster care meeting, feeling led by the Lord to take that risky route (where adoptions are possible only 40% of the time) rather than go through an agency where we’d be guaranteed a newborn.

Four months, several home inspections, and multiple interviews later, we received news that we passed the review board, and we were approved foster parents. We also learned right then that there was a seven-week old girl that needed a new home by Friday.

Of course, we said yes.

We brought that 8-pound bundle home two days later, called her Sweet Pea, and immediately began to pray that she’d become our forever daughter. We asked our friends to pray the same.

Thirteen months later, she did.

***

A month after the adoption, I had an afternoon of excruciating pain.  An appointment with the fertility specialist was booked for the following week.

After his examination, he took off his gloves, defeated.

I hesitated to ask the question, but needed to hear the answer.

“Last time we were here, you seemed so hopeful, so positive that you could help us… now it seems like you can’t?”

He looked me in the eye. “Look, I believe in miracles, but… no. I don’t think you’ll be able to get pregnant. There is just too much scarring. I wouldn’t even recommend in vitro at this point. The odds are just not there… if I were you, I’d think about having your ovaries removed sooner rather than later.”

***

The rest of the year was a mess of emotions, both extreme bliss that we had reached forever with Sweet Pea, and yet also a deep sadness as I struggled to accept the doctor’s diagnosis. Even though I didn’t feel confident in the treatments before, it hurt my heart to think I’d never carry a child inside of me.

Six months later, I began feeling terrible. I scolded myself, wondering how on earth I could ignore his advice when it had gotten so much worse in just a year and a half. How could I not believe it would continue to get worse? Maybe I should’ve had the surgery.

Christmas was coming, and with it, a trip to my parents house in California, 700 miles away. I felt very off, and on the car ride out, I let my husband know how I’d been feeling. Weak, tired, losing weight unintentionally, yet somehow, more bloated than ever.

Christmas Eve, I was watching my mom play with Sweet Pea on the floor, and my husband announced he was going to the store. I motioned him close so no one else would hear, then whispered, “Get a pregnancy test. I know it will be a waste of money, but…”

He smiled sympathetically, and an hour later he handed me the box. I went into the bathroom with not even a hint of enthusiasm, knowing it’d say negative as had all the dozens that came before it.

After testing, I stuck the cap back on and walked to the sink to lay it on the counter where I planned to give it the recommended two minutes. Instead, as I watched the little line work its way across the screen to show that it was working, immediately there was the darkest, clearest, most non-vague plus sign staring me down.

Was this really happening??

It was.

What a Christmas gift.

Seven and a half months later, I delivered a miracle.

That miracle just turned two, and big sister is now four. They are my daily reminders of God’s faithfulness and that He does not work on our timetable. Had we gotten pregnant when we originally planned, we would have never gone the foster route and we wouldn’t have our Sweet Pea. God orchestrated our approval on the exact day she became available, not by chance, but by His divine plan. We were meant to be her parents.

Three weeks before our biological daughter was born, God allowed us to move back to California, something we’d be praying and hoping for years. We lived with my parents that summer, which ended up being the biggest blessing as I had an emergency c-section followed by a really rough recovery. My mom was newly retired and available to take care of Sweet Pea 24/7 so I could focus on healing and our newborn. Looking back, it’s so evident all the ways God took care of us.

His timing really is perfect.  


God is so mysterious sometimes, espcially when He doesn’t answer the way we want Him to. But so often, that “mystery” we felt at the beginning is later replaced by God’s deep wisdom, as He had a plan all along. God is not anxious, and He always knows exactly what He’s doing, and why. To read more about Stephanie’s story, you can check out her blog, Thank You Infertility.

If you would like to share your testimony of how God has healed your womb, or how He has healed, or is healing your soul (whether or not you have a baby) please email me at [email protected] and check out the writer’s guidelines at “Want To Share Your Testimony?” You can also subscribe with your email address, or follow along on my Facebook Page.

Bethany’s Testimony

After being married for seven years, my husband and I decided we were ready to start a family. After three or four months of trying, we were thrilled to learn we were pregnant! Sadly, we miscarried at 14 weeks. I always pictured myself as a strong woman who wouldn’t be very emotional. So, I was surprised when I was devastated over our miscarriage, but I assumed I would move on easily and we would get pregnant again quickly.

After months and months of negative pregnancy tests, my husband and I decided to get checked out to figure out why we hadn’t conceived again. All the tests came back normal, and the doctors were unable to tell us why we hadn’t become pregnant again. For two years, I was on an emotional roller coaster. I found myself crying at unexpected times, and felt like the story of my life had been over taken by the pain and struggle of our miscarried and unexplained infertility.

As I talked about this with my spiritual director, she suggested I pray through a scripture in John where Jesus asked the disciples what they wanted from him. When I got to that part of the scripture, I asked the Lord to take away my pain and sadness from our miscarriage and infertility, and to give me joy.

The very first time I prayed that, I heard the Lord say, “I will.”

And honestly after that point, things that would have made me cry, didn’t anymore. I still longed to be pregnant but the overwhelming theme of my story was no longer pain and sadness. I truly believe God healed my heart at that point.

As we continued to try to conceive, my husband brought up adoption and foster-to-adopt. I wasn’t opposed to adopting, but I knew I couldn’t have my heart in both places and wasn’t ready to let go of my desire to become pregnant.

One Sunday my plans changed, and I was at church when I hadn’t expected to be. Our worship leaders sang Hillsong’s song, “Oceans.” During that song, I felt the Lord telling me that no matter how tough adoption would be, to keep my trust in him and He would get me through. I needed to turn all my worries and concerns over to him. I knew after that experience I was ready to move forward with adoption and put my desire for a biological child on the back burner.

We met with an adoption agency and turned in our application in September 2016 for private adoption and foster-to-adopt. They told us it could take years to be matched with a family. We completed our home study and all the required classes at the end of February 2017, and were cleared for adoption/foster-to-adopt.

Two weeks later, just as we were finishing putting together a crib in case we were called for foster care, we got a call telling us about a woman who was placing her child for adoption. We met with her and she chose us to be the family she placed her baby with! She invited us to come for doctors appointments, ultrasounds, and to be present for the birth of the baby – all things I never thought would be possible with adoption. At the end of May, our daughter was born and our family has begun to grow!

For those who wonder if God pays attention to details, He does.

In our state, birth parents have 30 days to change their mind about placing their child for adoption. The day that expired was June 30…the due date of our baby who we miscarried 3 years earlier! God is good and a day that once brought sadness will now be remembered with joy!

As I sit and write this, our beautiful daughter is sleeping on my chest. Although God’s plan for our family is not like I ever imagined it would be, I wouldn’t have it any other way. I have learned to trust God and have seen His love and provision in so many ways that would not have been possible if our journey to parenthood had been different. I don’t know what our future has in store – biological children, more adopted children, or both (my hope) – I know God is good even in our times of struggle and pain. When all I saw was sadness, God saw a beautiful story that had been yet to be told.

–Bethany


Thank you Bethany for sharing your testimony of longing, and infertility, and how God took your sadness and turned it into joy! It really is amazing how HE is working in every detail of our lives! What an inspiring and uplifting testimony, thank you for being so raw and vulnerable with us today Bethany!

If you would like to share your testimony of how God has healed your womb, or how He has healed, or is healing your soul (whether or not you have a baby) please email me at [email protected] and check out the writer’s guidelines at “Want To Share Your Testimony?” I feature a Testimony each Tuesday, you can also subscribe with your email address, or follow along on my Facebook Page.

Love, Rebekah

 

Kayla’s Testimony

My husband and I got married in August 2004. We turned our lives over to God in August 2006. After that we decided it was time to start a family.

After 6 months of trying to conceive, I was pregnant! We were over the moon excited. However, I sadly had a miscarriage at about 7 weeks. I was devastated. I didn’t understand why or how God would let this happen?

We went on to try several more months, then months turned to a year and I decided it was time to be checked by a doctor. My doctor suggested blood work–to which everything came back normal. We tried a few treatments, but nothing worked. We also did an exploratory surgery which showed everything was fine. We tried every treatment we could think of and spent lots of money in the process.

After several years of different doctors and procedures, we decided to take a break. My emotions couldn’t handle it anymore.

In the spring of 2010 we decided in the fall we would start treatments again and see where that took us. Well lo and behold God stepped in and on July 28th, 2010 we found out we were expecting again! And once again we were over the moon excited and in total shock since all the doctors had told us they were not sure what the problem was and we had spent thousands of dollars on treatments.

I successfully carried my beautiful 7lb 12oz baby boy who was born March 31, 2011. He is our miracle!

After he was born, I totally blocked out of my mind all we had went through. I thought, “Praise the Lord that part of our lives is over, and my body has healed itself.”  Well, little did I know, that was not going to be the case.

When our son turned 3, on March 31, 2014, we decided it was time to maybe try again. And just as quickly as they left–those feelings were back–and months passed, and months turned to a year.

I went to the doctor again, and we spent thousands again and no luck was to be found. In the fall of 2016, my doctor decided on a treatment course. We started it in August 2016 and finally in February 2017 is when I decided it was enough. I was blessed with one perfect boy and some people didn’t even have that, so I decided I would forever be thankful for him and cherish every single second I could and live the rest of our lives as a happy family of 3.

I decided to sell all of his baby items and just move on past that part of my life. Well, just a short month after that we had encountered a possible adoption. It didn’t work out but it did open our minds and hearts to adoption so we prayed about it and felt like we should at least check into it. So I researched and spoke with friends about different options and had my doctor give me some adoption agencies info and we filled out an adoption application! We knew it would be a long road and very expensive but we were ready. Then lo and behold God stepped in again… And on May 12, 2017 we found out God had did it again, and sent us a miracle. We were expecting.

Then at about 7 weeks the unthinkable happened…I had a miscarriage.

I don’t know what will be in store for us now. I have no idea where God will lead us–but I know I have to keep trusting him even when the path seems unsteady. Whether we adopt or have another baby, or if we are just to be the happy family of 3, I don’t know, but I have to keep the faith that whatever happens will be wonderful. I know that we have been blessed with the most amazing boy! Who will forever and always be our miracle straight from heaven.


Thank you Kayla for sharing your testimony with us–filled with both joys and sorrows. And isn’t that how life is? This ebb and flow of dark and light, but through it all He remains faithful. And we have to keep looking to Him. So, Kayla, we rejoice with you over your miracle, and grieve with you over your very recent loss. And pray comfort and healing over your womb and heart.

And dear ones, this is what this sisterhood is about. The joys and sorrows we bear, we bear together. And Jesus brings deeper healing as we share with one another.

I am so thankful for each one reading this blog. I know God has you here for a reason. And whether you have shared your story, or feel that you could never ever share the dark seasons you’ve been through–or are in–just know you are not alone.

If you do ever feel prompted to share your testimony here, please email me (Rebekah) at [email protected] ! To check out the writer’s guidelines see my page “Want To Share Your Testimony?”

At This Time Last Year…

At this time last year, I had no idea.

At this time last year, I was washing crib sheets in Dreft for a foster-baby we were making room for. For a foster-baby we were prepping our home for. Our daughter for. Our hearts for.

I was having my husband set up the crib. We were just about done turning the guest room into a nursery.

At this time last year, I was praying for a baby I never met. And I saw the words over the crib as I prayed for him or her, “Precious One.”

I didn’t know who the “Precious One” was, just that whoever would fill that crib–would be precious to us. And precious to God. And I wanted to speak that over this abandoned, neglected foster-baby.

Precious One. 

At this time last year, we were just days away from getting our Foster Parent certification. We only had one day of training left…

When my husband came home with a pregnancy test. And I rolled my eyes at him.

At this time last year, I had no idea. God was working a masterpiece in the darkness. In the shadows of the unknown.

Inside me. 

At this time last year, I didn’t know the “Precious One” would be my very own son. 

But he was.

And God knew all along.

He knew all along who this nursery was being prepared for.

We didn’t. We just prepared it–trusting God would fill it with whomever He wanted to fill it.

And He did. 

 

I had no idea a miracle was right around the corner.

But it was. 

I write this for the Barren.

Not to cause you pain–or heartache. Not to remind you of a longing not yet filled.

But to remind you of something—God knows what He’s doing.

You (and me) we don’t always know what we’re doing, but God always knows what He’s doing.

You might not know where you’re going–but God does. 

You might not understand the timing–but God does. 

You might not know what’s taking so long–but God does. 

Because He’s forming a masterpiece in the darkness. 

I don’t know His plan for you. If you will have a child through your womb, or through another way. Or, at all.

But just because you don’t know something is coming, doesn’t mean it’s not coming.

And just because you can’t see Him working, doesn’t mean He’s not working.

Faith is trusting Him even when you don’t know what He’s doing.

And I am convinced He is always doing more than we could imagine or understand. In the darkness of the unknown. 

So don’t lose heart. 

Because David wrote,

“If I say, “Surely the darkness shall cover me,
and the light about me be night,”
even the darkness is not dark to you;
the night is bright as the day,
for darkness is as light with you.” (Psalm 139:11-12)

Even the darkness is not dark to Him. 

And what does it say next?

It speaks of the womb. 

“For you formed my inward parts;
you knitted me together in my mother’s womb.
I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made.
Wonderful are your works;
my soul knows it very well.
My frame was not hidden from you,
when I was being made in secret,
intricately woven in the depths of the earth.
Your eyes saw my unformed substance;
in your book were written, every one of them,
the days that were formed for me,
when as yet there was none of them.” Psalm 139:13-16

He works in secret. 

And His works are wonderful

My soul knows it very well. 

I am praying for you tonight. That you would not be overwhelmed by the darkness of the unknown. At this time last year, I had no idea. And at this time this year, maybe you have no idea. What He’s doing. But don’t be afraid of the dark. Because though it may look dark to you, and the night seems to cover you. Remember this,

The darkness is not dark to Him. 

It shines as bright as day. 

 

When Sirens Sound Like Cries

earth cries

I hear her crying. But find her sound asleep in her crib.

It was the sirens.

Outside.

We live in the city now,

and they are so frequent.

They blend.

The sounds.

Only young mothers can hear

how human they are,

the sirens,

like a voice,

crying out,

in the night.

 

Only young mothers can feel

the tension,

Of the sirens,

Sirens that make us catch our breath

until it passes. And quiets.

And we can breathe again.

 

Somehow when we became moms,

God gave us an ear for distress,

A keen sense of unrest,

Wherever it may be.

 

He gave us power within,

To listen and mend,

The fragile ones,

when they cry

for us.

 

I still pause when I hear it,

the sirens.

Is it her?

No. She’s here. She’s safe.

 

But many tonight, are not.

 

And when I hear the sirens,

it’s the earth’s cry.

Like a newborn.

Not able to find comfort.

And calling out for it.

Again, and again.

 

The earth groans and waits.

And cries.

The sirens keep on crying.

For some soothing.

For a Savior.

 

And sometimes only a young mother can hear it.

Sometimes only a young mother can feel it.

When the earth cries.

 

And sometimes only a young mother

Can soothe it.

 

He said He’s coming back.

But He didn’t say when.

And until He comes again,

Young mothers:

Listen for the cry.

Of the sirens.

You will know it when you hear it.

 

In that day,

Lean in and see with His eyes,

 

Be the soother of the cries.

The singer of the lullabies.

The wiper of the tears.

The quieter of fears.

Because you are a mom.

 

You are a mom and you have soothing powers. 

And your children have taught you well,

To know what a cry sounds like.

 

And maybe our world needs more police men,

And more politicians,

And more power.

But maybe the world also needs more

mothers.

 

If you are a mom,

Maybe you will be a mom to more,

than in your care.

Maybe you will be a mom to orphan children,

everywhere.

Maybe young, and maybe old,

Jesus’ story has to be told,

by mothers.

 

All you have to do is look around, and

Everywhere,

you hear the sound.

Of sirens.

 

And cries.