Reflective Meandering

Thoughts on faith, people, politics, travel, and transition.

A Peace that Passes Understanding

on April 17, 2017

Sometimes, I have no idea how people cope with difficult situations without the intervening work of the Holy Spirit. The hubs and I are pregnant (YAY!), but baby #2 has also brought a few scares. In fact, I found out I was pregnant because I thought that I was having another miscarriage and decided to get to the bottom of things by scheduling an endocrinology and ob/gyn appointment.

My endo did a test to see if I had pregnancy hormone (betahcg) present because I planned to go to the ob/gyn two days later, and she wanted me to be informed. The morning of my ob appointment, a Thursday, I found out that Tuesday my betahcg was 9. I had been pregnant. I was bummed with what I thought had confirmed not only a pregnancy, but also another loss, but I went to my appointment purposed in moving forward. When the ob came in, rather than discuss what was causing our miscarriages, my ob told me the urine sample I’d just given confirmed I was still pregnant, and sent me along to get another betahcg lab. A few days later I found out my betahcg that Thursday was 34. It’s only expected to double every 48-72 hours at that early stage (around 3.5 weeks), but it had almost quadrupled. A week later, the betahcg was 610. I was shocked.

At round 6.5 weeks we thought we lost baby #2 again when I passed several large blood clots. Shortly after I passed the clots, my husband found out his grandfather died, he was 92 and had lived a long God-honoring life. After attempting to navigate the logistics of when the funeral would be, and whether we’d be able to attend, we went to the ER for confirmation of our other bad news.

Ironically, we were actually scheduled for our first sonogram and appointment at our perinatologist that morning, but it was cancelled and the clinic was closed because of a snowstorm. That Tuesday night when we went to the ER, at 6.5 weeks, the sonogram tech confirmed that our baby was still alive inside me. He said its heart was beating at 145bpm, and despite the bleed, the baby seemed healthy. My husband held my hand as I wept. Just like I wept the Thursday the ob told me we were pregnant. At 7.5 weeks we had our first visit to the perinatologist and saw our little one for the first time. 169bpm that day.

The following Monday, at just over 8 weeks, I began to have light bleeding, which tapered off that night and then came back Wednesday, just two days later. I called the perinatologist’s office and she said to come in for another sonogram.

The sono tech was the same tech from the week before. My 8.5 weeks sonograms showed a uterine bleed above baby #2. She re-examined my 7.5 weeks sonograms to confirm she hadn’t missed anything else. I talked with the doctor and he said no vigorous activity. He seemed positive about my situation and when I asked if it was normal he was quick to say it is not, but that there is a good chance everything will be fine. He told me to come back in two weeks for our 10 week sonogram, or to make an emergency appointment if the bleeding became very heavy before then.

Last week, we went in at around 10.5 weeks. Baby #2 is doing well. Heart rate was 165bpm. The hubs and I actually saw the baby moving – what a wiggle worm – and it was amazing! We even got a sonogram of baby #2 waving to us. We used it for our announcement on social media.

Unfortunately, we were also told at our 10.5 week appointment that there is a large clot in my cervix (presumably from the uterine bleed) that is even bigger than baby #2 at this stage. The doctor said that my cervix is dilated to around .5 cm, and that I may experience cramping as my body attempts to get rid of the clot. This means, because of these pesky bleeds, miscarriage is still a possibility, even though we’re almost into our second trimester.

I was in a bit of a shock as we left the doctor last week, trying to wrap my head around how everything was progressing, from the baby to the blood clot. I felt a little anxious, while the hubs was a picture of calm. In the drive between the perinatologist’s office and my work, a calm came over me, too. Perhaps it was the realization that the God who raised Jesus from the dead (happy Easter!) is also sovereign over my womb. Perhaps it was the recitation of the same verse that gave us comfort in the loss of baby Avery – the Lord gives, and the Lord takes away. Blessed be the name of the Lord. Whatever it was, I have no doubt that the Holy Spirit has given me a peace that passes understanding during this time of uncertainty with baby #2. It’s been a peace that has allowed me to hope and plan for baby #2’s future, despite the realist within me that has always planned for the worst and hoped for the best.

Truly, I’ve no idea how people cope with difficult and trying situations like this without the Father, without the Son, and without the Holy Spirit guiding, guarding hearts, and providing a peace that passes understanding in the times when it’s so desperately needed. On this resurrection Sunday, I remember Avery and am reminded that because Christ conquered death, eventually, the hubs and I will spend an eternity with our first baby, the hubs’s grandfather, mother, and so many other loved ones who have passed on before us.

In the meantime, I take comfort in the fact that the God who raised his son from the dead, and conquered death once and for all, also has the power to sustain the life within me. I take comfort in the fact in that God has promised He will never leave me nor forsake me.

He provides a peace that passes understanding, and at 11 weeks and 1 day, we rejoice that He is also the giver of life.

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