In October of last year, two little lines appeared on a pregnancy test. We were overjoyed, and oh-so-scared, as our last encounter with pregnancy had ended in loss, and physical and emotional pain. But we persevered in faith and hope. Those two little lines, in our mind, meant one little baby headed our way. However, there were other plans. There was not just one, but two. Twins, identical by the looks of it. And far behind in growth by the looks of it. Many of our family members prayed and fasted alongside us for the two little babes we desperately wanted, and still want. And still, there were other plans. An ultrasound showed a miscarriage was inevitable and pending. Two days before Christmas, they were gone.
I wrote the following short essay a few days ago. For those who've followed along on my Instagram, you know I've been on a search for a passion, a hobby, anything to do with all the time I currently have. But I felt so averse to embroidery, once so loved, as well as hiking and photography and all those little things that make me, well, me. And on my search I had a realization. It follows below:
My head feels like it’s about to explode. From the yellow and yellowed folder I have owned for four years, I pull a paper that is oh so familiar, yet forgotten. It is a map, hand-written, of my life’s struggle: a jack of all trades, a master of none. A power resides within me that expands the width of the universe. I don’t know everything, but I know that much. And the finite body that encapsulates this power, this desire to create, cannot hold it all in.
My mind is powerful, sometimes too much. I can feel it pulsing, processing, producing, peppering my consciousness with thought after thought after thought. Idea, urge, list, prediction, analysis, regurgitation, begin again. Neurons fire away. I am searching for a path, the path, where I will place my feet and pound them against the ground, sprinting. A path of passion.
That map, that paper I pull from the folder. It is dated the 7th of March. Probably 2015, three years ago. Before I met my husband, after I had taken a writing class, during a tumultuous time I searched for my path then, too.
The map is a series of notes, written with near complete disregard for the lines that are to contain them. Arrows point from phrases to questions to answers to phrases. Exploring my passions, my interests, my life. I asked myself, to find my passion, ”What are you willing to suffer to keep doing?” My answers then: creating, nature, writing, gospel truths, teaching, and learning, amongst others. I wrote, “To not do your passion is more painful than sacrificing for it.”
Back to the present. For weeks I have pondered what to do with this portion of my life, this now. I have no job, but not for want or lack of skills and opportunities. I spend my time at home, moving from room to room, lost. Lost in thought, lost in the battle of where I should put my time (Creating? Nature? Writing? Etc.), lost in the thick of a stream -no, a river- of thoughts that are ultimately distracting me from the pain that I feel when I find this paper, this map.
“What are you willing to suffer to keep doing?”
“To not do your passion is more painful than sacrificing for it.”
And then it clicks.
My passion, not yet realized or physically tested, is to be a mom. And to not get to do that right now is so much more painful than any ailment of the body or mind can be. It is an ailment of the spirit, an ailment of the heart. The one thing I most desire to do, I yet cannot. It has been taken from me by circumstance, by happenings of a mortal life, by miscarriage, by loss of three babies in one year, three babies I want all right now. In my arms. Held tight. Loved, passionately.
I move, room to room, lost. Lost in the suffering of a mother who has not even known her children. Lost in the frantic digging, searching for a replacement passion, as if I could so neatly order one and have it arrive on my doorstep. Lost. As if a map could get me out.
My head cannot keep up. My heart takes over, and I begin to sob.
Thank you for sharing this moment with me, for being here and reading. Yes, I am sad, and yes, I am healing. It is hard to look forward with faith and hope, once again, but I can do hard things, with help.