Well, actually, not really. I mean, we've known each other for 4 years now. And we've been married for almost 2. So I guess, more appropriate would be something like... So begins our quest to be parents! Yayyyy.
Although, that's not quite accurate either. Ya see, we've been trying for several (approx. 8) months to make this thing happen. And by "this thing" I mean pregnancy. Yep. Eight unsuccessful, heart wrenching, tear filled, prayerful, and trying-to-be-patient-but-all-the-world-around-me-seems-to-be-pregnant-right-now months. Oof.
We thought we had achieved status pregnancy after that first month of trying and were SO ready for it all. Heck, I had been ready since we said "I do." Or was it "I will"? Yes, I think it was "I will." Was it? I digress. Anyway, I read Pregnancy 4-1-1 cover to cover. I found some new favorite baby blogs. I started a list of baby supplies I should buy. I took a year off from work to prepare for momhood. I even started taking Jazzercise classes to get myself in tip top shape for baby growing. They say God laughs when you tell Him your plans. I bet He laughed pretty hard when we started this journey, our quest to parenthood, because our plans were soooo far off from what He has planned.
So what does He have planned?
... great question. Wish I knew the answer. But here's where faith comes into play.
Johnny and I are Catholic. We love being Catholic. We first met each other at a Catholic Speed Dating event. We bonded over our love of Catholicism. We go to bed at night talking about our Catholic faith and just how awesome the whole thing is to us. So, this faith thing isn't necessarily foreign to us. But when something rocks your world like infertility (ahhh! ... there, I said it... such a scary word to apply to yourself), after all the crying and yelling and feelings of abandonment and brokenness, you don't want to have faith. You can't. You feel like things are just never going to work out for you. Ever.
But then you go on a Women's Morning of Spirituality retreat and the keynote speaker says something that brings your faith back to life. One quick prayer, and my faith was restored... renewed even! This precious and energetic nun, Sister Mary Brigid, had each of us close our eyes and think of the thing we wanted more than anything. (Obviously, I was thinking of being a mom.) Then she said, "Know that God wants that exact thing for you more than anything." And that was it. That was exactly what I needed to hear. Because up until that moment, I thought God was against me. Why was he not listening to my prayers? Granting me my desires? Working on my timeline? It was all about me, me, ME. And then, as soon as I took a moment to stop and realize that God was on my side and had written the desire to be a mom on my heart for a reason, my faith instantly came back. It wasn't just me, me, ME anymore... it was me and Him. And that made all the hurt a little less crumby.
So, though some days can still be a challenge, at least I still have faith. I still believe that one day, whether naturally or through adoption, we will be parents, I will be a mom. And I believe that God wants that very much for us. And on the hardest days, when I'm feeling really low and broken, I just imagine Jesus holding me extra tight, giving me a big, loving hug, telling me He's working on it. It'll all be ok. And with faith, I can keep on believing that.
Let's end with a super awesome prayer. This is a prayer to St. Gerard, patron saint of motherhood. Let's say this one for all the want-to-be mommies out there. Women who have the desire on their heart but aren't in a place yet to be moms. Women who have been trying to become moms but are suffering the pains of infertility. Women who have experienced miscarriage. Women who are experiencing the challenges of adoption. Women who are considering abortion. May St. Gerard intercede and help us all become beautiful, loving moms some day soon. And may we raise our children to know, love, and serve God as he deserves :)
O glorious St. Gerard, powerful intercessor before God, and wonder worker of our day, I call upon you and seek your help. You who always fulfilled God’s will on earth, help those desiring to conceive to do God’s holy will. Intercede with the Giver of Life from whom all parenthood proceeds, that they may conceive and raise children who will please God in this life, and be heirs to the Kingdom of Heaven. Amen.