Over the weekend, I had a conversation with a dear friend who reminded me that we can be as spiritual as we want to be but certain situations will test us and will sometimes break us (for the moment). As a counselor, I possess the tools to process grief but when I was the recipient of unimaginable pain, my faith was tested.
“I’m pregnant,” were the words echoed in our 800-square-foot apartment. I had just finished graduate school and he had just started undergrad. It wasn’t the best time for a baby, we knew this but the excitement and immediate love we felt superseded any doubt in our minds. My then boyfriend, grabbed my hand and we slow danced as we enjoyed our moment for the first time as three.
“I’m bleeding,” were the words echoed as I entered my second trimester in our 800-square-foot apartment. My then boyfriend, grabbed my hand, and rushed me to our doctor. Silence filled the space as tears were running down my face. He stayed strong but I felt his pain.
“I’m sorry, there is no heart beat.” Those words were not an echo but a stab to my core. The doctor tried comforting us with statistics and asked if I wanted to return for a procedure which would remove what’s left inside of me. I opted to let my body naturally release. No one warned us of the physical pain I would feel in the upcoming hours. My then boyfriend no longer took my hand but held my whole body as I cried uncontrollably.
“Let’s play racquetball,” were the words echoed in our 800-square-foot apartment. “Really?” was the question asked by my then boyfriend. Two months had passed and I had been stuck on auto pilot. I would come home and cry while he cooked dinner. Grief and depression were my reality and I hadn’t even noticed it. “Let’s play racquetball,” was our first step towards normalcy and our first of many steps towards healing.
Talking to my family provided me comfort. Prayer and meditation soon followed. Processing with a colleague brought me closer to the understanding of my lesson. Our miscarriage, shed light on many of my beliefs that masked themselves as fear. Beliefs that were so deeply ingrained that only this loss could uncover. My faith in people was strengthened. My faith in God was restored. And, the love for my then boyfriend was magnified.
My unborn child taught me that true joy requires an inward journey with less importance on outward accolades. Happiness is fickle; felt for a moment. Joy is constant. When we search for joy outside of ourselves, we will be disappointed. Experiences, when one is truly present can remain with you forever. In difficult moments, the memories keep you going.
Once I looked inward and challenged the stories that I told myself, my beliefs and perception changed. I was set free. Freedom is a constant choice and sometimes I fall short but I am reminded of my lesson and I stay free for a bit longer the next time.
- Which stories are replaying in your head that leave you stuck in a loop?
- When did you first come to believe this story?
- What evidence do you have that this story is the only truth?
- Does this story serve you?
Are you ready to create your own growth story?
One of my stories ended and began when I said yes to my then boyfriend and I do to my now husband. Our child helped us get to where we are now and he or she will forever be a part of our story.