Meeting hope incarnate

June 27, 2009

I had not seen my friend Maria since 2007. She just had a baby. Her baby was born the day after my miscarriage. She was in Atlanta with her husband to attend a mutual friend’s wedding. We hugged and chatted and in my most nonchalant voice I said, I hope I’m not prying but I remember you told me in ’07 that you’d been trying for a year. What did you end up doing?

She smiled, I had four failed IVF cycles since we last met. The day after my fourth failed cycle, we began filling out the paperwork to adopt a baby from Morrocco. We were in Paris, en route to Morocco to interview with the agency and I got pregnant naturally.

You must have been so stressed I said shaking my head Four failed IVF cycles, I don’t want to imagine. She shook her head, I promise you, I didn’t stress about it. I trusted this was God’s will. He tests those he wants to draw closer to him.

Infertility as a test from God to be borne with absolute strength and trust. I read a book recently in with the author, Steven Luxenberg said fear destroys trust. I am so afraid of the path ahead I have no room to trust. I look at Maria and I think, for 2.5 years she endured what I am enduring, and she took it easy and relaxed. The cynic in me shakes my head and wonders if she is looking back with rose colored glasses, I mean who can endure four failed IVF cycles and say Coolios no big deal? Granted she is filthy rich so affording treatment isn’t the issue . . . but regardless, I am sure she remained faithful during her struggles to conceive. I look at her gorgeous little girl. She is ten weeks old. I did not need to ask, because I know, I will always see her and know. She is hope incarnate. She is proof that I can wringe my hands and give up entirely, but its not up to me what the end result will be. I must move my feet and keep on doing what I must, but I do need to accept that despite my best plans, that I must accept when it comes to TTC, I am not behind the wheel. I want to be where she says she was, that good place where you trust completely and as a result remain stress free. I’m trying to get there. It’s an upward climb but hopefully it will get easier the more I climb.

Tomorrow we’re going out to dinner with a group of friends. One of those friends is my ex-friend who is loud and vivacious and quite pregnant. [I wrote about it here] I know it will be an evening of all about Tricia and I feel very uncomfortable about it. What makes it more awkward is we’re having the dinner folks over to our house for dessert after, and I’ve heard Tricia and her hubby may come TO OUR HOUSE. I hope she doesn’t have the nerve but knowing Tricia she just might. I’ll try to adopt Maria’s philosophy. These difficult times are there to make me stronger. I will sit and smile tomorrow, I will make it through, I will look at Maria’s miracle and remember that I am looking at hope incarnate.


  1. I promise you, I didn’t stress about it. I trusted this was God’s will. He tests those he wants to draw closer to him.

    Wow. That gave me goose bumps.

    I definitely agree that challenges are actually God tugging on the cord of love drawing us closer to Him, but it is tough to get to that understanding.

    Having been through this process with my illness, I can only say that there is a shift that occurs when the idea that God is loving goes from being theoretical to being experiential. Although I still struggle with ceding control sometimes, I’m getting better at trusting Him because I can base it on the fact that looking back at my life everything that has happened to me has been for the best (eventually!).

    I’m so glad that you met “hope incarnate” and heard those words from her mother. Sometimes people appear as messengers in our lives, giving us the inspiration & perspective we need to deal with the challenges we’ve been given.


  2. I’m so glad to see you regaining some faith … and hope, even! I hope ya’ll have a wonderful time with your friends and don’t even notice Tricia!

  3. What an inspiring story and a great message. Thanks so much, it’s made my day!

  4. i feel curious about grief piece. as in, we can believe or hope or have faith in an ultimate design for our lives, but this does not erase the reality of grief. the story of jesus in the garden comes to mind for me…crying and grieving and asking if the cup could pass…or at least that’s how i remember it. it’s been a while.

    i’m wondering about the place where grief and hope collide or co-exist or hear each other…or something like that….what do you think?

  5. Baraka, thanks for sharing from your own personal struggles and triumphs. I hope to talk to you soon about this in depth.

    Stacey, thanks 🙂 I’ll post about that when I wake up, the evening was . . . interesting.

    Astrid, I’m so glad. I hope it gives you hope. It did for me.

    Lilly, wow your thought is very deep and since I read it I’ve been thinking about it a lot. I think in some ways I’m struggling with that. Grief and hope. Today has been a roller coaster day that I want to blog about in the morning, but the essence of it is that I felt overwhelming hope punctuated by moments of grief. So yes, I think hope and grief do co-exist. Most times grief stays in the backdrop, a sheer veneer over my heart, but there are moments when it is all I feel and see. The moments are rarer but sometimes hope is all I see. Hope and Grief can occur simultaneously but I think I can only feel one at a time. Does that make sense? What do you think Lilly?

  6. i suppose we’d be close to losing our minds if we felt all of our feelings simultaneously, eh?! 🙂 i’m kind of relieved that we don’t usually…but there are strange or bizarre moments when hope and grief collide and words seem to fail us in those moments….for me, one of those moments happened as i sat on my bathroom floor holding the bloody little bundle of contents that was our first pregnancy…feeling full of love and grief and so aware of the sacredness of the moment…watching my huz reach out to caress the little bundle, as well…i remember feeling simultaneously in awe and enraged.

    these moments are few and far between, maybe because the complexities of holding such an intense cocktail of emotions is simply too much for me (or for people in general)? i’m not sure, but yes, i relate with your description of the rollercoaster, up and down experience of emotions…maybe it’s like grief and hope are dancing? or sometimes wrestling? other times strolling along, knowing a bit of peace?

    i have no idea…i’m just thinking out loud. it’s fun to dialogue with you about it. thanks for responding to my original comment.

  7. You are so strong. I am sorry for your loss. Try not to worry too much. I know it’s impossible not to worry at all. I tried for almost two years before getting pregnant. I hope you the best in your journey to thee wonderful land of motherhood.

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