Loss, faith, and a birthday

by Trillia Newbell

When I was in college I remember telling a friend that I had no desire to have children. I was studying abroad at the time and just really thought being tied down to a child was a miserable option, plus what in the world do you do with them? I was young and though I was generally an upright citizen, I wasn’t a Christian.

When I became a Christian, a testimony I hope to share one day, one area God began to change was my desire for children. I’m not saying everyone should want children, but God began a work of grace so that I saw the value of children. You could say, I began to see how God viewed the “least of these” (Matt 25:40).  God loves children, they are a blessing, and He delights over them.  So, when I got married in 2003 I was quite excited to have a baby.

My husband and I decided we wouldn’t wait too long since he was a little older and we weren’t really sure how many we’d want to have.  Just like you see in movies I figured, getting pregnant was pretty stinking easy. No one warned me that it might actually take time.

After a little while of “trying” we finally got pregnant! It was such an exciting time. I remember deciding I wanted to go to our local birthing center because I wanted to give birth without drugs. I immediately started thinking about all of the things we’d do: the nursery, register, buy bottles, think of names. It was just so exciting. Then one day I started to cramp. I knew something wasn’t quite right because it was accompanied with spotting. Later in the week, I miscarried.

This was very difficult. Thern and I were so sad. But God gave me great faith pretty immediately to try again, so we did. I was nervous and really had to trust God. I worried, but my mid-wife assured me I’d be okay. Unfortunately, we miscarried again. This time, I wasn’t as full of faith. I was heart-broken. Would I ever be able to have children? I often thought. My body and soul were tired. Why would God give me such a great desire for children then not give me the desire of my heart? I guess you could say I was tempted to charge God with wrong doing. It was confusing at times.

This miscarriage was the most difficult one. We had a name picked out and the doctors told us the sex of the baby. The baby girl had a heart beat, she was only 8 weeks old (gestation age). She was my little girl- gone. It seemed so odd.  It also seemed like everyone around me was pregnant. Actually, everyone around me was pregnant! So, as I experienced yet another miscarriage friends and friends of friends were having babies. I was so healthy. It seemed like it should be much easier for me.

After my second miscarriage, I decided I needed a break to just enjoy marriage and get into the Word. I wanted to learn more about God’s sovereignty, His thoughts on suffering and grace.  Scriptures like these served my soul:

“The steadfast love of the LORD never ceases; his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness. “The LORD is my portion,” says my soul, “Therefore I will hope in him.” (Lamentations 3:22-24 ESV)

The works of his hands are faithful and just; all his precepts are trustworthy; (Psalm 111:7 ESV)

Know that the LORD, he is God! It is he who made us, and we are his; we are his people, and the sheep of his pasture. For the LORD is good; his steadfast love endures forever, and his faithfulness to all generations. (Psalm 100:3,5 ESV)

After several months we decided to try again. I went to a different doctor who helped by putting me on a natural hormone called prometrium.  We gave it a try but after 10 weeks had a scare. My heart broke. I had a mild placenta abruption- it didn’t fully abrupt but there was a clot. I was sure I was going to miscarry again. We prayed and prayed and cried out and had friends and the church praying. The clot slowly shrunk as my baby boy grew and grew. I was so thankful. We had a few hiccups after but Weston was born in 2006.

Besides salvation and marriage, that was the best year of my life. I just can’t express how thankful I was to have a son. He was (and is) such a delight. Now I will also say, I’ve heard he was an “easy” baby. I joke that God gave me an easy baby as a gift for having such a hard pregnancy. Regardless, he was a gift. A sweet mouth to kiss.

After a year we knew we wanted to try again and knowing that 1) it took a while for me to get pregnant and 2) once pregnant  I had complications, we thought we’d try soon. I was really aware of everything going on with my body. I knew I was pregnant at three weeks each time after the first pregnancy! Mostly because of my anxiety about getting pregnant, I just paid close attention.  I did get pregnant and had yet another miscarriage. This time it was chromosomal defect- very humbling situation. But, my heart was calm and I was content with the idea that maybe God only had one baby in-store for Thern and me.  Then, I had another miscarriage. By this time, I believe Thern and I had settled on one child.

I was really happy and content to only have Weston. We did everything humanly possible for our situation to be able to keep the babies after West was born. It was quite obviously nothing I could do. So, we laid it to rest and settled on just having our one boy. I’ve always wanted to adopt, maybe that was where we needed to focus our attention. So it was settled, we were done.

I remember teaching a group fitness class one day about a year after the decision and being a little winded. See, I am generally pretty fit. At the time, I barely got winded teaching so I knew something just wasn’t right.  When I got home I thought maybe I was sick. Then it dawned on me, could I be pregnant? I didn’t take prometrium, I’m not on vitamins, and I was exercising pretty hard. Surely not. After a few days I thought I’d check. I was pregnant!

I scheduled an appointment and not only was I pregnant but I was already seven weeks along. This was unheard of for me. I generally knew that I was pregnant way before six weeks and would have already been in the doctor’s office several times doing blood work. I hadn’t prepared, didn’t do one thing to try to make this pregnancy happen, not intentionally that is. And so, I was pregnant for the sixth time.

And today, November 8, 2011, I celebrate the birth of my baby girl. I am aware that she is a sweet gift from God. To me, she is a miracle and a sweet surprise. She is very girlie, laughs at everything we laugh at, tells us exactly what she wants when she wants it, points her sweet little index finger to fuss when she doesn’t get her way. She is Sydney Jean and today she is two years old.

Behold, children are a heritage from the LORD, the fruit of the womb a reward. Like arrows in the hand of a warrior are the children of one’s youth. Blessed is the man who fills his quiver with them! He shall not be put to shame when he speaks with his enemies in the gate.
(Psalms 127:3-5)

Pictures of Sydney with her daddy and her brother Weston.
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17 Comments to “Loss, faith, and a birthday”

  1. Gospel edGe says:

    Awesome Article, Keep doing the good work, God Bless..

  2. Terressa says:

    Love your story. Thank you for sharing a part of you with us. Blessings to you and all that is to come.

  3. Sherie says:

    That was a very touching story, thank you for sharing it! I count myself lucky to have the children that I have, they are a true blessing to me.

  4. Anita says:

    Wonderful work you do 🙂 Blessings.

  5. Wonderful story of faith and overcoming. Thanks for sharing.

  6. Edmund Lee says:

    Fantastic story. Thank you for sharing such a personal part of your life with all of us. It took a lot of courage to endure what you did.

  7. Stacey Myers says:

    What a lovely story! Thank you for sharing.

  8. What a great testimony of how God blesses the heart that seeks him. Life is exciting when we fully follow!
    Blessings, The LEARNED Preneur @NormaDoiron.NET

  9. admin says:

    Thank you so much for your kind words! -Trillia

  10. admin says:

    Children are a true blessing. I’m so thankful! -Trillia

  11. admin says:

    Thank you so much Anita!

  12. admin says:

    Thank you so much! -Trillia

  13. admin says:

    Thank you! God gave me strength. I am thankful for His grace!! -Trillia

  14. admin says:

    Thank you for reading!! -Trillia

  15. admin says:

    Life really is so fun when we follow Him! Thank you so much for commenting! -Trillia

  16. Thank you for sharing your story. It’s rewarding to witness our fellow sisters and brothers continue in Faith even during those hard times when we don’t have answers. A dear friend of mine calls it “trust mode.” I have sense adopted that term for myself and my family. And then again we’re always in trust mode. I celebrate with you. You are God’s trophy and I’m sure He enjoys the glory that you and your family have given Him and will continue to do.

  17. dave c. says:

    You have a beautiful family, Trillia. Thank you for sharing that story. Grateful to know you guys.