Rachel Heath

Intentional Living: learning to be fully present

On Today

Today.  Sigh.

Today is a significant day.  About 40 weeks ago, Stephen and I were celebrating our second pregnancy.

Today a notification popped up on my phone and cheerfully reminded me “Due Date!”

Obviously, I’m not 40 weeks pregnant today and it feels like shit.

Thankfully, no one has been dumb enough to tell me that “God is in control” or that “The Lord has a plan” because I know, absolutely, beyond any shadow of a doubt, that God’s plan is not and never would be to snatch a baby from a woman’s womb.  Let me be unequivocal: God is good.  Satan is bad.  We live in a fallen world and the enemy comes to steal, kill, and destroy.  So when it happened, I knew exactly who to blame.  We prayed, we spoke life, we believed, but as I continued to bleed, in the midst of the fear and sorrow, I just couldn’t muster enough faith to stand up and trample satan’s wretched face.

In the months after, I processed the miscarriage in my own way and came to a sort of uncomfortable peace with it.  Not a peace that says, “It’s ok” but a peace that says, “I will NOT allow my circumstances to determine God’s character.”

As we’ve drawn closer to today, it’s become more real for both Stephen and I.  We’re feeling a tangible loss; a special member of our family isn’t with us, and can’t be replaced, and we won’t be meeting her for a very long time.

But God gloriously and elegantly takes what the enemy intended for evil and finds a way to bring us a blessing in it.  So right now I’m finding it important to stay in a place of gratitude for the good things, large and small, that I’ve been able to dig up in this season of garbage.

Happy Hour

Ok, maybe it’s stupid, but margaritas and summer evenings outside go together SO PERFECTLY.  Margaritas and pregnancy… well, they just don’t.

My Body

It’s mine again.  I’ve worked hard to get my groove back and I’m in the best shape of my life. It’s an inconsequential thing, but I’m thankful for it all the same.

Time and Flexibility

In the last few months I’ve been honored to attend 3 beautiful births as a doula, and have discovered a great passion in me. I wouldn’t have been able to pursue this in the late stages of my pregnancy and the early months of my baby’s life.

Summer in the Rocky Mountains

There’s nothing better. And I’ve missed it for almost 2 years- in 2010 I was pregnant. In 2011 I was nursing constantly. By the time the 2012 hiking season rolled around, I would have been in my third trimester already. This year I’m going to soak up some wilderness.

Stephen

I can’t imagine a better support and comfort in this season. We’ve hoped together, grieved together, cried together, prayed together, and recovered (ish) together. He’s patient with my wildly unpredictable emotions from day-to-day, always willing to listen to me vent and process and be honest, and totally willing to wait until I’m ready to try it again.

Isabella

This wasn’t my plan – we were going to have kids close together, but I love being able to give Isabella my full attention and I love all the things we can do that we couldn’t if I had a newborn as well.

I’ll look back at this quality time with my firstborn as one of the sweetest, and though I may not feel it now, simplest times of my life. Of all the things I can be thankful for, this is the most important.  Izzy can’t bring back the baby we lost, but she’s brought me boundless joy and comfort in the midst of loss.

I started this about a week after the miscarriage. We felt it was a girl, and Stephen got the name in a dream. I needed to commemorate her, somehow. I just finished it tonight.

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16 thoughts on “On Today

  1. Courtney on said:

    This is so beautiful, Rachel. A friend of mine just had a miscarriage a few days ago. I’m going to pass along your beautiful words and outlook to her. Thank you for being so open and vulnerable. It truly is lovely.

    • Courtney, thank you. I hope they’re a blessing to her… it’s hard, but it does get better, some days slowly and some days quickly. Here’s hoping there are more quick than slow days in her future.

  2. Dave Ellgen on said:

    This weeks marks the week that Devine, Matthews older sister would have turned 1. Megan and I feel your pain and heart acke. You will be in our prayers!

  3. Oh hon, I’m sorry. But I’m glad that you’re finding gifts anyway. I so dreaded my stillborn daughter’s due date . . . and then when it arrived, God blessed me in spite of (or even just through?) the pain. It ended up being a sweet (if also bittersweet) day.

    Also, I really love this: “But God gloriously and elegantly takes what the enemy intended for evil and finds a way to bring us a blessing in it. ” Yes.

  4. Daddy on said:

    I am frequently reminded of what a wonderful daughter God gave me, thank you for yet another reminder! The growth in your already awesome character is another example of how God turns ashes and heart ache into something glorious!

  5. Linda Heath on said:

    You are so wise. It is always best to look for something to be thankful for even in the midst of sorrow. Thanks for the reminder.

  6. Oh girl. I have been where you are. It’s been 16 years and every now and then the shock of it still takes my breath away. Much love to you & Stephen and Miss Isabella 🙂

  7. Wow Rachel! What an incredibly moving post and a beautiful tribute. Like the others that have left comments before me, your sentiments resonate so clearly as I too have been through a similar struggle. If only I could have bottled up your strength and wisdom at the time. Thank you so very much for sharing this.

  8. Pingback: On Expecting Goodness « Rachel Heath

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