Infertility and the Loss of a Pet

Infertility and the Loss of a Pet

It happened. I lost my pup and four-legged companion of over a decade. It was a sudden event and there was wailing. I didn’t expect it. I had all of about 3 minutes to say goodbye, most of which was spent moving through the initial shock… I went nuts. Crazy even. No time to prepare emotionally.

My Jack was completely healthy and of course, in my attempts to live life a little more carefree, had my guard down about losing him. He died in an accident on the farm.  Read more

Endurance Brought on by HOPE

Endurance Brought on by HOPE

I’ve often wondered why I try so hard. I mean, this general wondering can be applied to just about everything in life – work, marriage, child rearing. Anything. But, for me it’s mostly that relentless need to keep the pursuit of a growing family. I believe this is where Proverbs 30:15-16 comes into play.

I’ve failed at many things in my lifetime most of which I simply stand back up, brush myself off, and walk on in another direction. So, what is it that keeps me going in this relentless battle to have my babies?

In this journey, I’ve always felt like if I could just try IVF that’ll be all I need. If I can just do that, if it fails, I will finally have closure and can move on. Last year, we did IVF, had our first frozen embryo transfer, were pregnant with twins, and subsequently miscarried both. If you’ve been following our journey, you know that we’ve been spending these last several months healing. #miscarriageisnojoke Read more

The Pursuit of Thankfulness

The Pursuit of Thankfulness

I am not going to pretend to be an expert at thankfulness. I can say I’m pretty good at being an optimist and full of joy, but it’s hard to be thankful.

God expects nothing less. As righteous & blameless as this puny human would love to be, I’m still made of flesh. And because of this, thankfulness requires an enormous amount of effort on my part. It takes a response that can only be intentional. Read more

He Speaks: One Month Miscarriage Anniversary

He Speaks: One Month Miscarriage Anniversary

I just had to share with you something that happened this morning and truly blessed my socks off.

Over the last couple of days, I’ve found myself more anxious and physically tired than usual. I ran through the possible reasons why – too much coffee, an increased work load, unending demands of my time because of said workload. But despite all of that, it really didn’t make sense. I felt off and couldn’t put my finger on it.

The reason dawned on me this morning. My heart has been anticipating today, September 22, 2016. Read more

Grieving Through Miscarriage

Grieving Through Miscarriage

This is going to be a unique post. I am writing about something I know very little about. Infertility is known ground. I am confident in it. But now, I am navigating through new territory and am in a learning curve. At the risk of embarrassment, misunderstanding, and confusing all of you, I am going to attempt to write about and discuss this as I am wading through it. Read more

Happy Mother’s Day! ❤️

Happy Mother’s Day! ❤️

Mother’s Day. It’s an Infertile Myrtle’s most dreaded day of the year. It’s that reminder that you lack the very thing that consumes your every thought, inkling of energy, and penny of money. It’s an emotional day for those of us still longing for a house full of laughter and pitter-patters of feet.

If you’re a church goer as I am, it tends to be just a flop of a day because of the traditions many churches hold to celebrate motherhood. Often pastors will share a mother focused message and there are usually many baby dedications on this particular Sunday.

I learned a long time ago that my church celebrates our mothers in an extra special way. During the service all of our mothers are asked to stand. Upon doing so, every little one in our church pews runs to the front, grabs a fresh carnation, and starts disbursing them. It’s a lovely way to remember mothers in our church, many of whom serve in so many capacities outside of motherhood! It is also the most darling site to watch all of the children running about the sanctuary with flowers in their hands. The innocence is too much! Just precious.

But, what often goes overlooked are those of us women who, by no desire of our own, remain sitting during this time of recognition. You may think this a sad time for us. But I’m going to let you in on a secret. Yes, the whole day for us is depressing. But, moments like the one described above are more than that. It’s down right embarrassing and isolating to remain sitting in that pew. I look around and see virtually every woman in the entire church standing, except for me and just a couple of others. It’s like we’ve been singled out when we want more than anything to be like the others.

In years past, I’ve held back tears while I sit motionless feeling like a deer in the headlights. It’s as though I’m wearing a big bullseye on my shirt. ? Like every demon I fight in life is there in that moment. Those demons are like that annoying bully in elementary school saying “Ha. Ha. Look at you! Everyone is staring at you! You are not worthy to participate in this joyful celebration!”.

That’s why I stopped attending church on Mother’s Day. That’s the one day out of the year that I have no interest in entering His house of worship or even leaving the house for that matter. I love the sermons that talk about the ministry of motherhood. I can listen to them, learn, and receive encouragement for what I hope to be my next greatest form of ministry and life’s work. But, outside of that, the rest is just a good dose of reminder that I don’t have what my heart, mind, and body literally long for.

This is a blog about the joys of living expectantly for what’s to come. The name I chose rings true of my heart. I truly love JOY! I have found it in all areas of my life. I consider Brooks and I to be a really strong couple given what we endure. That’s all thanks to the Lord for His new mercies afforded to us everyday, His grace, and His peace that surpasses all understanding.

But, Mother’s Day, I admit, is that one area of this trial that I have not learned to overcome. I don’t know what it is. I experience isolation, sadness, and disappointment everyday in this and am always able to overcome it. Despite learning to have strength in times of trouble, Mother’s Day and the days leading up to it get my panties in a bunch! I’ve been anxious for days. Even more so, because this year I HAVE to go to church because I’m supposed to serve as teller. Duty calls.

So, this year, God is giving me the opportunity to practice the strength that He so freely gives me everyday. It will be difficult this time. I’m out of shape on the Mother’s Day front. Thankfully His grace is abundant!

I have a request for the mothers out there and I think I speak for every one of us living the infertile life. Please, enjoy your day of recognition. We in no way want to rain on your parade. We only want to be understood. Don’t take tomorrow for granted. Don’t dismiss the love that your babies and husbands will be giving to you. Embrace it and cherish it because what you may see as just another Mother’s Day is truly the very joy that many of us are not afforded. If you are in the habit of taking this holiday lightly, wake up. You’ve been given a gift that so many cannot have. Lastly, I ask that you don’t feel sorry for us. We Infertile Myrtles are a tough breed. We’ve been called to bear something that you CAN’T even imagine having to carry. But, the last thing we want is sympathy. Understanding, yes. Sympathy, no. A simple hug and thank you for being a spiritual mother to your children is enough.

To the Infertile Myrtles, I will absolutely be praying for us for this weekend. You all have been on my mind for days and to be honest I’ve shed plenty of tears over the last 48 hours to fill a tub! If you are in the habit of skipping church on Mother’s Day, I challenge you to go. Let’s try to support those whose calling to motherhood came a little earlier than ours did. We all at least understand the hardship of being a mother. Those who are actually living it out right now, need our support just as much as we need theirs. So, just as we ask that they come along side us, let us walk alongside them. They need to be praised, celebrated, supported, prayed for, encouraged, and treated. They are our sisters, our friends, our pastor’s wives, our coworkers, and our own mothers, grandmothers, and aunts.

Be blessed, encouraged, and inspired this Mother’s Day! Be a bowl full of red gummy bears to a friend or sister today! Whether you’re already a mother or are still waiting to be one, bring hope and laughter to life of another woman in your life. Duty calls, right? As does the overflowing joy that we are enabled to live out each and every day. ?

An old pic but one of my favs.
An old pic but one of my favs.

Abraham & Sarah: A Testimony

Abraham & Sarah: A Testimony

As you know by now, the barren women of the bible are some of my most prominent mentors in learning how I am to lead a life with empty arms. I’ve spoken of Hannah before and today I want to begin walking with you through Abraham & Sarah’s journey.

They are a prominent couple in scripture with a powerful testimony of faith, as well as lack of faith. They definitely had their ups and downs throughout their marriage and most notable of them all was Abraham’s affair with Hagar… that, get this, was arranged by Sarah herself! What was that woman thinking!?! While barren women of today likely wouldn’t throw their husband to a mistress for the sake of obtaining a child, we can most assuredly identify with her desperation to have them. Read more

He Remembers the Broken-Hearted

He Remembers the Broken-Hearted

Sanctity of Life Sunday was January 17, 2016.

I would say, for me, Sanctity of Life Sunday is the second hardest Sunday in my calendar year (the first is Mother’s Day, but that’s a whole other blog post). With so much going on, it snuck up on me this year. I went to church, grabbed a bulletin, and saw it – a time allotment for prayer in remembrance of this tragedy infiltrating our world. Read more

When Silence is the Best Medicine

When Silence is the Best Medicine

Good morning world! I am blogging from my long-johns today as it is in the 30s here in Virginia. When it’s a chilly, fall day a wood stove and long-johns become the standard.

Last night, I was curling up in my oversized chair reading the story of Job. I’ve been a bit depressed these days and nothing [I mean NOTHING] has eased my griefs. So, into the God’s word I went.

Job’s testimony is one that should be read by all. It is about a man whom God allowed Satan to attack in order to prove his faith. God was using Job to conquer evil although he didn’t know this at the time. He lost everything except for his wife and a few servants, and developed painful boils that covered him head to toe. The whole book goes through this event, a dialogue between Job and his friends, and ends with teaching us the character of God and the relentless faith of Job.

As I was reading through, something struck a chord with me that I think so many miss. The BEAUTY OF SILENCE. Read more