Friday, March 7, 2014

For Those Who Fear the Unknown

Written 6 March 2014 and published as if I'd posted it in 2014. At the time I wrote this, I was pregnant, had just spotted a lot, and I didn't know what was going to happen. I freaked out and I stayed scared. On March 22, I did miscarry this baby. It was not an easy thing.

I hate not knowing in the big picture.

I've always wanted to be pregnant, but I never considered that it was a scary undertaking. There's unknown morning sickness that could strike at any moment, lists of foods and drinks to avoid, things you can't do... and sometimes even when you obey all the rules, things go wrong.

In my world, if you follow the rules, everything should be fine. People who stay on the path are safe, right?

Welcome to life, Lindsay.

There have been several sets of circumstances in my life that seemed like mountains, and right now, pregnancy is the one looming in front of me. I've already suffered loss, so my senses are heightened. Any pain I feel brings on the "certainty" that I will lose this baby. Any time I feel funny, or suddenly feel just perfectly normal, I assume the worst. In my head, this will change as time progresses and I pass the 13 week mark, but right now? Time seems to be standing still, just waiting for that one moment when... surprise, surprise, I lose the baby.

But the thing about pregnancy and the thing about life is that you miss out on a lot if you're scared about what's behind the bend. Yes, I could lose my baby (which to be honest feels incredibly real right now even though I wish it didn't), but if I don't or if I do, I don't want to live like I'm preparing for a trip to a funeral home. A child is a miracle. Pregnancy is a blessing. If I live in fear of what might happen tomorrow, I miss out on today.

 One of the things I remember from the first time I was pregnant was the absolute joy I felt. I was on cloud 9. I downloaded What to Expect When You're Expecting on my Kindle and read the whole thing (minus the post-birth stuff... whole other obstacle) on the plane to Ukraine. I thought about names, I planned how I'd tell my family and friends... and I don't regret those plannings and that joy. It helped me as I grieved, because it showed me how much I loved the little life inside me.

This time around, there's naturally heightened sensation. I wish I could shake the feeling of fear that I have, but I know that I can't. I wish I could speed up time, but the days are seriously d-r-a-g-g-i-n-g by.

Hebrews 12 begins with a reminder to lay aside "every weight, and sin which clings so closely" to run toward Jesus. Instead of focusing on the things that slow us down or might entangle us or get in the way, we are to look ahead -- "looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith". Why? Because "for the joy that was set before Him [He] endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God". It goes on to list other thing Jesus endured in His pursuit of the cross.

Though this passage isn't a perfect parallel to my situation, it hits the nail on the head for me. Instead of thinking about my fears and what might happen and what could be the eventual turn of events, I have to look forward. Thankfully I already have my hope in Jesus - I look toward Him, I run toward Him as my hope. If I were to put my hope in things on this earth, like feeling secure, I would be surrounding myself with my fears, allowing myself to be surrounded by them. Instead of that, in Jesus, I look ahead. I look to Him as my hope. I know that no matter what happens, He is the founder and perfecter of my faith and I can trust Him even in troubling times.

I don't have perfect faith and I don't think I'm guaranteed it in this life.
. I still get scared, but in Him I know there's more. He holds the future and has purpose, and though I may not understand it, I can give Him those fears and run unbound by the things I'm afraid of.

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