My prayers have changed through infertility, and have been a big part of the healing process. In the beginning I simply prayed for a baby. After time passed, and no pregnancy occurred the pain really set in. I found myself becoming angry and bitter, and my prayers turned more into questions and pleas. Many were simply asking God why, and pleading with Him to grant me this one desire. My biggest struggle with not conceiving was wondering why God would give me such a strong desire if He never planned to fulfill it. It seemed like everyone around me was getting pregnant, but I continued to be barren.
The truth is wanting to become a parent can be the most exciting and most difficult time in a couple’s life. Everyday there seems to be a different emotion. First you’re excited, then you’re sad, then you’re frustrated, then you’re angry, then you’re depressed, and then you’re simply just tired…. at least that’s how I’ve experienced it.
So as I went through the process of each phase, a new way of praying seemed to go with it. Looking back now I can see how my prayers went from selfish to finally just desiring whatever God wants. I first prayed for a baby. Simple, straight to the point, thankful, and excited about the future. Then as time passed, and I had to go through fertility treatments, I prayed for wisdom, clarity, a short treatment process and of course a positive result. But as the negatives continued I then moved to more direct prayers. I started to just honestly spill my guts. I told God how I felt, why I was becoming angry, and pleaded with Him to let me conceive. Everything would physically line up perfectly, but as I continued to be barren I let God know I was not happy with Him. I pleaded that He grant me my desire, and asked Him why He was allowing me to be in such pain. Then as time passed I finally grew depressed and tired. I finally got to the point I just couldn’t carry the heartache around any longer. As we continued our last IUI cycle I prayed that God would just make my desires His, and if He didn’t want me to have a child then to just remove the desire from my heart. If becoming a mom was not for me, then I didn’t know why He would allow me to want it so badly.
During that last cycle I stopped ovulating. The doctor continued to increase the dosage of my daily FSH shot, but still nothing happened. Finally after about a week I began developing back pain. As the dosage continued to be increased, the back pain continued to increase. Finally one night I came home from work, sat in a chair, and could not move. I couldn’t get up to call my husband, I couldn’t take our dog out for our regular walk, I seriously could not move. When my husband walked in from work, he could tell something wasn’t right. He got me to the couch, we searched the internet for answers and talked about what to do next. We decided I’d head to the doctor the next day, but ended up at the hospital.
I was admitted immediately for testing, and after a pregnancy test, x-rays, and a number of other tests I was told they didn’t know what had caused it, but I had sprained my back. I hadn’t done any heavy lifting, and we determined it most likely was caused by the medication. One of the very rare side effects is back pain, and though it only happens in like 2% of all cases, it does actually happen.
So this is what I consider to be my non-birth story, and as I can see it now, an answer to prayer. Most women get pregnant, go through regular doctor visits/examinations, experience contractions, head to the hospital, give birth, and finally welcome a child. For me, I went through the doctor visits/examinations, experienced the worst pain I had ever felt, headed to the hospital, and left knowing I would never become pregnant. I remember laying in the hospital bed, looking over at my husband, and finally just laughing. I told him if this wasn’t a sign that the fertility treatments weren’t going to work then I didn’t know where else to look. I left the hospital with a little slice of peace, a little slice of sadness, and even more curiosity as to what would be happening next.
It amazes me how many times God answers our prayers in a way that we don’t expect or when we expect it. I’ve learned for me, He usually allows me to go through a process of revealing only glimpses of His plan one step at a time. Then once I finally reach the answer, I can see how each step was preparing me for what He had planned all along. I know now that by going through the fertility treatments, they were actually preparing me for the final answer of no. He used them to bring me peace about not conceiving a child. I still don’t know what the future looks like in terms of adoption, but I know He’s given me the strength and peace to just enjoy the blessings in my life today. I had prayed for contentment years ago, but again, it’s only been in His timing and by walking the road in front of me, that He’s finally granted me that answer. My desire to be a mom’s still there, and really a day doesn’t go by that I don’t think about being a mom. But that desire just reminds me that He’s still working, and allows me to release it back to Him. It’s still an ongoing process, but I find comfort knowing that He’s taken me this far. I don’t know when that next answer will come, or what it may be, but I do know that no matter what the future brings He’ll continue to be with me each step of the way.