May All That Is Broken Be Healed

Eight years ago.

Right now, actually.

Weekend nights in an emergency room are supposed to be busy, but all I remember is how I arrived to a hush. I don’t even think I waited, walking right up to the desk and spilling my trepidation.

“I’m 13 weeks pregnant and I have a doppler at home and even though I can usually find the baby’s heartbeat, I can’t find it tonight and I’m sure everything’s probably fine but I just need to be sure because I’ve never not been able to find the heartbeat.”

I think they took me back right away–me, Tahd, and Gabe. Why we’d brought our 5-year-old to the hospital in the middle of the night makes no sense to me now. But there we were, three anxious souls a little bit (or a lot) battered from years of unfulfilled dreams.

“Your labor is not in vain
Though the ground underneath you is cursed and stained
Your planting and reaping are never the same
Your labor is not in vain”

That night usually feels like a distant memory of something I witnessed happening to someone else. But occasionally the rawness and actuality of it all fracture my tender surface and grief takes up residence–like a hundred ton boulder–on my chest, and I can barely catch my breaths between tears.

“Your labor is not unknown
Though the rocks they cry out and the sea it may groan
The place of your toil may not seem like a home
But Your labor is not unknown”

Tahd is in Italy this week. I don’t think he’ll remember this today, which is okay. Everyone but me remembers it most on Mother’s Day, because eight years ago, May 9, 2010 was Mother’s Day, a far more memorable occasion than a random date in early May. Tahd remembers and is tender for us then. But in my own head, I keep them a little bit separate so I can grieve quietly on May 9 and still be mostly okay on Mother’s Day.

“The vineyards you plant will bear fruit
The fields will sing out and rejoice with the truth
For all that is old will at last be made new
The vineyards you plant will bear fruit”

I didn’t have anymore losses after that last loss, my third and most monumental in a string of years of infertility and miscarriage. I went on to be granted two sweet souls, Isla and Jude, who I think I’ll tuck in next to when I finish writing this. Isla will crowd me out, but Jude’s always up for a sleep-mate and a snuggle, and there’s little grace more comforting than to drink in the breath of an innocent, sleeping child.

I feel unspeakably, undeservedly lucky.

“I am with you, I am with you
I am with you, I am with you
For I have called you, called you by name
Your labor is not in vain”

Early May and Mother’s Day are strange times for me, but I know I’m not the only one. I know hearts break every year because they long for a child, for a miracle of their own. Maybe you’re one of those people. Maybe you long for answers or solutions or a diagnosable problem or money to pay for treatments or relief from your debilitating sadness or to finally be picked by a birth mother or for a sibling for a child you already have.

I just want you to know that I see you. That I hold you in my heart. That I literally pray for you–by name for those I know and in spirit for those I’ve yet to meet.

“The houses you labored to build
Will finally with laughter and joy be filled
The serpent that hurts and destroys will be killed
And all that is broken be healed”

I heard this song tonight for the very first time and wept while I read its words. For my baby, for my own heart, and for you. And that last line…it’s all, really, I can think to say. May all that is broken be healed.

Much love.

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  1. Amazing writing and song- what promises! I grieve with you today! Love you forever!!

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