Meaningless

I woke up this morning and I did not want to get out of bed.  I did not have a lot of motivation or ambition for today.  I have to take a thyroid medicine every morning that forces me to wait a half hour before I can eat breakfast, so I often use this as an excuse to lay in bed for that extra half hour.  Yet, as I lay there this morning, I realized that I actually had a pretty busy day planned, so I got up and took a shower.   The shower is a good time to think.  I found myself feeling very depressed, and it bugged me, so I was doing some mental wrestling in the shower.  I have been depressed all week, and I do not really know why, but I wanted to figure it out.  If you think hard enough, all of us could probably come up with a significant list of things that could cause us to be depressed.  Today, I did not have any major issue that was causing me to be depressed.  I just felt down.  I felt like there was a constant cloud that would hover overhead.   In an attempt to try to motivate myself, I found myself thinking things like, “What is it all for?  What is life all about?  What’s the point?”  Life felt kind of pointless and meaningless, and I thought if I could remind myself of the answers to the above questions, then I would have the drive to overcome the cloud of depression.  Instead, I kept coming back to that word: meaningless.   I have always really resonated with the Book of Ecclesiastes.  A lot of the questions that Solomon (I think that’s who wrote it) asks are similar to the ones I have personally wrestled with.  If you have not read Ecclesiastes lately or ever, I recommend carving out a chunk of time to read it.  Solomon, who achieved all kinds of wealth and position in the world and was granted the gift of wisdom, wrestles through all of these “What is the[…]

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http://unwaveringhope.com/2013/04/12/meaningless/

Good Sport

I blogged a couple days ago about feeling like there are 3 paths presented to me (regarding infertility).  The path marked IVF feels blocked off, so I haven’t been giving that path much thought.  Originally, I thought the other two paths were:  “Continuing fertility treatment” and “Not continuing treatment.”  Now I think that all three paths can boil down to these two options:  “Pursue pregnancy” and “Don’t pursue pregnancy.”   I have had a couple different unsettling conversations over the past couple months.  The troubling part of the conversations centered around a message that all the interactions shared:  “You need to be okay if you only ever have a family of 4.”  I fully trust the hearts of the people that have said this.  They want my freedom.  They want me to be able to live each day without the burden of an unfulfilled desire.  And their advice seems like the right solution, but I left each conversation discouraged because the question of “How?” remained unanswered.  How do I live each day being okay if my desire is not fulfilled?  How do I surrender this desire for a child?  I have tried.  I have asked God to take away my desire.   Ultimately, only God knows whether or not our family will grow through a pregnancy in my womb.  I could pursue pregnancy and never have it happen, or I could stop pursing pregnancy and it could happen.  So how in the heck do I move forward?   I do believe that pursuing pregnancy is in alignment with the heart of God.  But how do I pursue pregnancy and still have a surrendered heart?  How do I pursue something and simultaneously be okay with it not happening?  If I was okay with a different outcome from what I was pursuing, wouldn’t I stop pursuing?   Think of an athlete.  The athlete gives their best effort toward winning, but sometimes victory is not the outcome they receive.  (Ask any Michigan basketball player or fan)  Somehow they learn to live with the outcome, but they do not start to live with the[…]

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http://unwaveringhope.com/2013/04/10/good-sport/

He Knows My Name

Last Fall I had a conversation with my kids about saving money to buy something.  The conversation went like this:   Alliyah: “I could save up to buy a kitten and kitten stuff.”    Joshua:  “I’d buy squitos (mosquitos) and dragonflies!”   Alliyah:  “Yuck!  I wouldn’t want that.  (Alliyah pauses for a moment)  I would buy a fly if it could say my name.”   I think that is just hilarious.  First of all, if my son ever pays money for a mosquito, we will have a serious talk.  Then there is Alliyah, whose initial reaction was spot on about buying a bug until an idea formed in her head.  If the fly could say her name, suddenly it would have worth.  In other words, if the fly could relate to her personally or be special in some way, then she would want it, even if it was a fly.   I don’t plan to over-spiritualize this interaction with my kids, but it did get me thinking about how we want people to know our name.  Our name is the representation for who we are.  We want to be known.   I will openly admit that for some reason the name of a person flies right in one ear and out the other.  Names rarely stick.  I will easily remember every detail of the conversation I had with someone, but for some reason, I can not recall their name.  This frustrates me.  It feels good to be remembered.  It feels good to be known.  Usually a person feels remembered and known if you can address them by name when you see them again.  I hate that I have a hard time remembering a person’s name.   Maybe that is why the song, “He Knows My Name” is so impactful to me.  The song says,   “He knows my name.  He knows my every thought.  He sees each tear that falls and he hears me when I call…”   It is easy to feel forgotten by God when life circumstances are less than ideal.  When the Author of Life is not[…]

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http://unwaveringhope.com/2013/04/08/he-knows-my-name/

Crossroads

In High School, I had to memorize a poem and recite it in front of my English class.  I knew nothing of Jesus at the time, but I was drawn to Robert Frost’s, “The Road Not Taken.”  In case you are not familiar with it, here it is:   The Road Not Taken   Two roads diverged in a yellow wood, And sorry I could not travel both And be one traveler, long I stood And looked down one as far as I could To where it bent in the undergrowth;   Then took the other, as just as fair, And having perhaps the better claim Because it was grassy and wanted wear, Though as for that the passing there Had worn them really about the same,   And both that morning equally lay In leaves no step had trodden black. Oh, I marked the first for another day! Yet knowing how way leads on to way I doubted if I should ever come back.   I shall be telling this with a sigh Somewhere ages and ages hence: Two roads diverged in a wood, and I, I took the one less traveled by, And that has made all the difference   I have always had two warring desires within me:  the desire to fit in, and the rebellious desire to not conform.  As I have gotten older, I am realizing that the rebellious non-conformist is the one I get most excited about.  It is the side that stirs my heart most, yet it is difficult, and often lonely to be different.   As Todd and I have been on this journey involving infertility, we have been the only ones of our friends who have not gotten pregnant from merely looking at each other.  Although our oldest is the same age or older than the eldest child of our friends, we only have two children, whereas the majority of our friends have 3 or more.  We are running a 2:1 ratio.  We have had one child for every 2 that our friends have had.  That has been tough for a[…]

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http://unwaveringhope.com/2013/04/07/crossroads/

Changing Seasons?

My last few blog posts have highlighted the struggle of having sick children – because that has been my reality lately.  It is easiest for me to write about the things that are currently happening in life.  God is faithful to speak to us as we journey along.  I feel most inspired to write about the raw, and fresh truths that God is teaching me.   I realize that as I have been sharing, I have kept the fertility portion more hidden.  I have no problem with being transparent, especially when it comes to fertility, but as I have blogged, I have sought to leave the lessons learned more general because I firmly believe that the truth God offers transcends so many of life circumstances.  I know that not everyone who will read these posts has experienced infertility.  This post, however, is straight from the heart of the one who is trying to conceive.   In all of the latest sickness and mental challenges therein, I have found my heart wandering a bit off its normal course.  I have allowed my mind to imagine what life would be like if we did not have any more children.  For so long, I have stopped my mind from wandering down that road because I felt like I would be betraying my desire or feeding doubt that my desire would come true.  However, lately, I have begun to imagine life as a family of 4, no more.   As I have done so, the realization that life can be good, whether things go my way or not, has been very freeing.  Having a deep desire creates an inevitable mental picture for the future.  Willing yourself to create a different possible mental picture brings the liberty to embrace something different.  The “different” that you free yourself to welcome is not a specific picture, it is the freedom to embrace different in whatever form it comes.  It is the liberation from the constricting hold that the specific desire has had.   As I imagined life as a family of four, I was not trying to[…]

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Welcome to unwaveringhope.com!  I am so glad you are here. This space was created when my life story was not following the path I expected.  For years, infertility was the main topic of my wrestle.  These days, I find myself sorting through the mental chaos of mothering, wife-ing, friend-ing, teacher-ing, daughter-ing and what-is-my-life-purpose-ing.  As I try to steady my thoughts and park them in a healthy place, God has made one thing clear:  maintaining hope in Him is the key. Check out my blog for a window into my story.

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