Lilypie Angel and Memorial tickers

Lilypie Angel and Memorial tickers

Thursday, November 17, 2011


Last weekend I went to a women's retreat in Indiana.  When I was first asked to go, I was in a really bad place emotionally, so I talked myself out of it and initially said "no."  I thought:  There was no way that I was going to share my feelings and be completely vulnerable with a room full of women who would probably think I'm crazy.  I knew that what I was holding inside was ugly and once the walls that I so carefully put in place came down, there was no turning back and who knew what was going to come out.  However.  The night before going, I got serious in prayer and told God that I needed answers.  I wanted to know:  Why me? Do you not love me? and Is my daughter okay?  I also knew that I had lost trust in God and was holding in major anger toward Him and pretty much any one who was happy - especially those with kids.  So, even though I completely didn't want to, I told Him I would go.  I said "I will go to this thing in hope that you will meet me half way."  I promised myself that I would make every possible effort to seek answers and find healing because I truly didn't want to feel the desperate misery I was feeling.

This women's retreat, which was actually called "an encounter", was designed to "peel away the layers, like an onion, until everything you are harboring is dealt with and you can truly encounter God."  I think I cried so much that I was actually dehydrated for days after.  Everyone there was so genuine and non-judgmental... so completely real.  In my small group when everyone began to share what they were struggling with - I soon found out that 2 of the girls in my group had lost babies (one of them had lost 3 in a row!!!).  Unreal.  It was a comfort to see how those girls have come through those losses and are stronger now.  A lady who I had never met before prayed for me and she prayed the exact phrase that went through my head after Annalise was still-born and the nurses took her to be cleaned up and dressed.  It's the same phrase that was in one of the songs at Annalise's funeral service... and she prayed it over me.  "There may be pain in the night, but joy comes in the morning."  I think the use of that phrase, was just one of the many ways in which God showed his love for me that weekend.

It's difficult to describe all the ways God showed up and rewarded my efforts in seeking Him, but I will tell you that after that weekend I have a newly found, deep peace in knowing that God desperately loves me and that my daughter is in perfect peace and love.  God has been more real to me these past several months than He has ever been before in my whole life.  I think the only reason I feel this way is because I actually put aside my doubt, my criticism and my pride and desperately sought God out like I never have before.  He tells us that if we seek Him with our whole hearts, we will find Him.  I needed answers, I needed to know He was there and he cared.  I found that He certainly doesn't disappoint.  I walked away with all my questions answered and with a new found hope.

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Brutally honest

So... I am going to be brutally honest here... the past week and a half or so has been really bad.  It pains me to say that all of the strength and optimism I have shown in previous entries has been non-existent recently.  I know that these feelings have been the result of a culmination of several difficult situations these past couple of weeks.  First, our church had it's large "Harvest Fiesta" where we play games and distribute candy to appx. 1,500 cute kids dressed up in Halloween costumes.  That was difficult.  Then there was a wedding we attended where every woman I came in contact with talked constantly about their kids (no one knew my situation) and one of the bridesmaids was pregnant with twins.  To top it all off, the flower girl was a little blonde haired, blued eyed girl named Elise (much like Annalise).  I was in the rest room, and her mother turned to me and asked me to help fix Elise's hair.  I wanted to just run away, but I didn't want to be a jerk, so I quietly held her blonde locks and tried to hold back the tears.  As soon as she was done, I ran out of the bathroom and basically broke down sobbing.  To top it all off, the end of that weekend brought the beginning of my menstrual cycle -- Something I was hoping not to see again for another 9+ months.

This past week has been an exhausting roller coster of episodes of unrelenting depression, interlaced with some of the darkest anger I've had in a long time.  I am not proud of how I've acted this week or some of the feelings I've felt.  I feel further away from God than I have in a long time.  There is a part of me that is so deeply angry at Him and finally throwing blame on Him for all of this.  I even think there is a part of me that wants to hurt Him how I've been hurt.  I'm angry at Him for our daughter dying and for the fact that I have lost my joy and have been re-introduced to the dark anger I used to know as a child when my father left.  I'm also angry at the way it is affecting our marriage.  Then after all these thoughts and bad behavior, I go through moments of thinking that He allowed this to happen because I am a such a bad person that I don't deserve to be a mother and most likely will never get the chance to be a mother.  I am constantly and unreasonably angry at all parents, families, mothers or anyone around me that is happy.  I feel like I am about one conversation about kids away from having a nervous breakdown.

I tell you all of this to just be real.  I am in a bad place right now and am struggling.  If there are others of you out there struggling through situations, I don't want you to read my blog and see all this strength and courage and wonder what's wrong with you when you see nothing but pain, anger and depression in your own situation.  I want you to know that these feelings come.  However, I am determined to overcome this.  Right now, it feels like I can not and will not.  I feel like I don't have one ounce of strength or desire left to keep living.  Nothing in my life holds the same passion and desire it used to and I feel like giving up.  I HAVE to believe that this will get better.  I HAVE to believe that the storm will pass and clear skies will be in my future.  (It doesn't feel like it - but that hope is all I have to hold onto right now).  I've been down this road before and I don't want to go back there.  I know what waits at the end if I don't choose to turn this around.  If I don't choose to fix my thoughts and turn my life back toward God.  Please pray for me.  Please pray for my thoughts and my emotions and my sanity.