Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Love, Faith, Trials, Blessings

Yesterday Clint and I watched part of the video of our honeymoon. Although it was only a little over seven years ago, I couldn’t help but think we looked so young.
young kids in love

honeymoon waterfall

honeymoon on carnival cruise ship
Amidst footage of us traipsing through island gift shops and aimlessly walking through the corridors of the cruise ship, there are actually a couple of nice candid moments. At one point I turn the camera on Clint and ask what he would like to say to our future children.

“I’m glad you’re not here,” he says.
What can I say? The guy has a sense of humor.

I ask him why, and he says he would most likely be spending a lot of time disciplining.
“Except for that one girl,” he says. “She’s probably pretty good. But the oldest boy…he’s like me. He’s a pain in the butt.”

It was such a great moment to reflect on because Hannah really is a sweet, well-mannered little girl (most of the time – she is a toddler after all), but since Daddy was right so far about her, his other prediction has me a little freaked out.
I know nothing about little boys.  Growing up, I was surrounded by sisters, so I felt pretty prepared when I found out our first was going to be a girl. Of course, it turned out that I was not at all prepared for the trials of a newborn, but that’s a story for another day. Luckily, I have no doubt that I will figure out how to raise a boy as I go because, well, that’s just how it works.

This pregnancy has felt so much different from the last in a lot of ways, and not just in a physical way, though the fatigue has pretty much kicked my butt this time around. I can’t decide if I feel more prepared now, or if I’m actually more scared because I know what to expect…round-the-clock breastfeeding, pacing the floor until the wee hours of the morning…basically, I’m terrified of the sleep deprivation. But at least this time I also know from experience the joy that lies ahead.
Whenever I start to feel a little apprehensive about what it’s going to be like to add another little one to the mix, I remind myself that there was once a time when I wasn’t sure if I would ever even get to experience being a mother. It took nearly two years of some dark, emotional days and a devastating miscarriage before Hannah came into our lives. I think back to that time and the fragment of a person that I became, and though I’m so relieved and thankful for the way things turned out, I sometimes feel a little guilty. I didn’t have to struggle through it for as long as some people do. My heart aches for everyone who is experiencing infertility or loss because it hurts on a level that, I think, others can’t truly understand unless they’ve been through it themselves. It feels so unfair to watch everyone around you get pregnant and wonder why it’s not so easy for you, why you don’t deserve to have your longing fulfilled too.

I know that God is big enough to give us peace and comfort even when we are filled with despair, and that’s my prayer for those who are going through such tough trials. His love is greater than any we have ever known, and that’s a reminder that often escapes all of us, especially when life starts to look nothing but cruel. I know there are times when it was sure hard for me to remember.
I look at those two kids on that video, so young and in love and unaware of the hardships that are in store for them, and I’m thankful that they started out with faith.

journey of faith
It has been an amazing journey, and there is so much more life to be lived. I can only hope that as new trials approach, I can learn how to face them with more strength and faith than I have in the past.

And I hope this baby boy is easier than his daddy expects, but no matter what, he is a blessing and a gift that I will always treasure.


  1. Kate Cunningham-BinkoSeptember 20, 2011 at 12:27 AM

    First of all, I love this!! It encouraged me most of all. Everyone seems to have their own oppinion on when to start a family and I suppose I am thankful for their advice, but I do know first hand what its like to try, pray, wish, hope, calculate ovulation and experience the longest three minutes of a womans life, only to see "NEGATIVE" or only One line on that stick.... Your words completely encouraged me to remain strong and thank God that I never felt the excitment of a positive test only to have a miscarriage in the end. That is somthing I pray to never experience, but also knowing if I do then I will still praise God! Im so happy for you, Clint and Hannah, introducing a precious blessed boy into your God centered family!!! I love you and thanks again for your encouragment :)

  2. Thank you, Kate! I'm so glad you were encouraged by this. I know exactly what you mean by the waiting, hoping, and disappointment, and it was something I definitely wasn't comfortable discussing with anyone. Although there wasn't anything technically "wrong" with us - it just took longer than usual - it still made me feel like a failure that my body wouldn't do what it was "meant to do." I suppose it was a lesson in giving up the control and timing to Him, but that is a long, hard struggle to go through! And I still don't think I've ever aced that test.

    Thank you for your sweet comment - it means a lot to me. And I pray that one day soon you will get to experience the joy of holding your own little blessing!