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.