How My Child Restored My Faith
This is probably the most personal post I’ve ever written but I’ve been wanting to share this story for a long time. I will apologize in advance for the length of this post.
Down and Out
I am just going to be honest. I had a difficult decade… or… two. There’s no need for me to go into the details of my childhood but it comes down to this: I grew up believing in God and had what I thought to be strong faith but somewhere along the way that faith became worn down. Unfortunately, by the time I was twenty-seven I was divorced once, had lost my mother to cancer, and lost two babies to miscarriage. All that loss left me feeling like a shell of the girl I had been. I was depressed, angry and questioning my faith. I hate to admit that but it is true; all the loss I had suffered had driven me to agnosticism. How could a good and reasonable God take everything from me? I couldn’t bring myself to answer that question.
Actually, to say I was angry is a bit of an understatement. After my mom’s death and the first miscarriage, I started having angry, emotional outbursts. If someone was rude to me in the checkout line at the grocery store, I would cuss them to their face just because I felt like it. Again, it’s embarrassing to admit but it’s true. In spite of all this, somehow, my new husband and my family still loved me. The second miscarriage was almost more than I could take emotionally. I drank more wine than was probably healthy. I allowed myself to feel sorry for myself.
The Smallest Things
By the time I found out I was pregnant for a third time, I was jaded to the idea and assumed this time would be like the others. I lived the first several months of my pregnancy in secrecy and fear. I didn’t tell anyone but Allen and a few very close family members. But baby Chase is a fighter and he held on. Slowly, my fear began to subside. I was halfway through the pregnancy when I made the announcement that we were expecting a baby boy. It was the most joyous week of my life up to that point.
Then, the bad news came. I got a call from my doctor informing me that they had discovered placenta previa. Not only that, but it was the absolute worst level of placenta previa that there is. What that means is that my placenta had grown over the opening of my cervix and when my cervix began to thin, and the two separated, I was at a high risk of premature labor, hemorrhage and in rare cases, it could even result in the death of the mother and/or child. Although placenta previa does correct itself in most cases, the more complete it is, the less likely it would correct, I was told. I remember not going back to work that day, after getting the call that the previa was in fact “complete.” Instead, I threw myself on the couch after Allen went back to work and cried until I was completely exhausted.
What Comes Next…
What happened next, I can only describe as my first experience with divine intervention. I remember feeling completely helpless. No matter what I did there was nothing that could change my situation. There was no scientific cure for placenta previa and next to nothing they could do to manage the symptoms. It had been years since I had prayed but for whatever reason, I felt compelled. As I prayed, a warmth came over me, like being wrapped up in familiar arms.
I heard a voice say, “Come back to me child and I will take care of you. I’m not angry.”
I cried more as I prayed to God to take care of me and my unborn child.
“Please Lord,” I begged.
“I know I have been so faithless these past few years but please be with me.”
The voice repeated, “I am not angry. I will take care of you. Just come back to me.”
Soon after, I fell into a peaceful, dreamless sleep.
Come To Me
The next day, I called my dad and asked if he’d like some company this week at church. He sounded a bit surprised, but of course, he came by and picked me up for church the following Sunday. To my shock, my church family welcomed me back, no questions asked. No one badgered me over my, literally, years long absence. I was met with warmth and hugs and comfort. Immediately I started making prayer a part of my daily routine again.
Six weeks passed like this, with me on modified bed rest. I had resolved not to be afraid anymore. At my next ultrasound, I was shocked to find that the previa had in fact, corrected itself. I was overjoyed at the news when I heard that voice again, “I said I would take care of you.”
I shared the good news and continued to give prayers of thanks.
Looking back, I do not know that I could have made it through that difficult time of uncertainty and fear without faith. When my son was born, safe and healthy, I looked at his sweet little face and I saw my faith. I made a promise to myself that I would never force religion on him but that I would do everything I could to make sure that he grew up knowing about faith. While I do not have all the answers, I do know that my son saved me from my darkness. He restored my faith.
“Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.” Hebrews 11:1