Sunday, May 10, 2009

beautiful memories of this day, 10 years ago.

I hope you all had a blessed Mothers Day. It certainly was nice here. We started the day with mass at which Alice and Emma sang in the choir, and Sam donned his First Communion suit once more and participated in the May Crowning. I couldn't help but get more than a little teary-eyed in the pew reflecting on how far we've come.
It was Mother's Day 1999...10 years ago exactly, that the real story of our family begins. I hope you don't mind if I share a bit of it.
At that time, John and I had been married over 4 years, and had been trying desperately, to have children. We'd sought treatment with fertility specialists that led us to try various surgeries and procedures, including several failed attempts at artificial insemination. (At that time, we just couldn't understand our Catholic church's teachings...wanting desperately to have children anyway we could.) Anyhow, this particular Mother's Day, 2 of John's sisters were having their babies baptized, and we were invited to celebrate with them (John being Godfather for little Ben.) I struggled a lot with my emotions then, finding it painful to see other families grow, while I seemed to be losing hope of ever having any children of our own. In church this day, as we gathered around the baptismal font, the combination of Mothers Day, babies, baptisms, etc just got to be too much for me, and I snuck away to the back of church to try to gather myself. It was this very moment, that I prayed to our Lord for peace. I didn't want to hurt anymore. I wasn't certain that He intended for me to be a mother, so I begged Him to help me find peace in what He wanted for me to be. I remember clearly asking Him to help me to be a good Godmother, a good wife, a good friend...whatever it was He wanted me to be, but to help me release my desires to be a mother, if it was not His will. I just wanted to accept it, and to not feel pain every time I was near a newborn that was not my own. I was given the grace to compose myself, and enjoy the day for what it was, a beautiful celebration of new life.
But more amazingly, within a few weeks of that day, we'd learned that I was pregnant. On Father's Day we shared our early news that we were expecting, and just days later learned it was to be twins. We managed to concieve on our own, although I had been started on a trial of Clomid which is likely what helped us to see double. We have visited our fertility doctor on several occasions since, only for social calls. He's now since retired, and we enjoy sending Christmas cards updating him of our growing family from year to year.
Certainly God has been kind and merciful. Often I'm reminded, although on Mothers Day in particular, of the goodness and graces that come from trusting completely in Him. How beautiful are His plans for our lives, if only we place ourselves in His loving hands. Ten children, plus one in heaven in 10 years time. God is good, indeed!

BTW~ Happy anniversary of your baptism Jenny and Ben. I said a prayer for you both today, thanking God for reminding me through your baptism, of the gift of His grace.


Bonnie Trzaska said...

Thanks for sharing this memory, Jamie. We were with Martha & Steve today (celebrating Kate's 1st birthday) but remembered Jenny & Ben's baptism of course, too. These were also the first grandchildren born after Mom's death, and I remember also praying for you & John on that day. My sister-in-law told me afterwards, "I've never been to a baptism with so many tears, but none were from the babies being baptized." Love, Bonnie

j,j,andhsmom said...

Thank you for sharing your story. My husband and I also struggled with infertility, and I remember praying for the peace you write about. We now have three beautiful children that we adopted as a sibling group several years ago. Because the youngest was already 2 years at the time, I still find myself occasionally longing for a newborn. But like you, I find peace in prayers and knowing that this is the plan He has made for my life. May God bless you!

Martha said...

I've started to comment a few times on your blog, Jamie, and worried that I would ramble too long and someone would think "What the heck, this isn't YOUR blog!?!" so I've never tried to figure this out... but I need to type one now and tell you how precious you are in all the roles you fill: mother, wife, sister(in-law), daughter(in-law), nurse, friend, neighbor, role model...we are just so blessed to have you in our family. I'll always remember that Mother's Day, too. I so wanted you and John to have children of your own, and I so wanted Mom to be with us that day, and to be with us on Alice and Emma's baptism day, too; and yet I so wanted to enjoy the day for sweet Jenny and Ben as they started their new lives as Catholics--it was an extremely emotional day and I know God was cradling all of us at St. Augustine that day.

I just love your blog Jamie; I love reading news of your family and your beautiful, thoughtful insights. Thanks for the gift of your blog! Thanks for being such a role model to all the moms who know you. And Happy Mother's Day!!!