The test was negative.
We were not surprised. Despite continuing medication as advised, by today my bleeding was very heavy, and had been so for a good 48 hours. I think we both still had a tiny glimmer of hope. But for me at least, it was more like the hope that, actually, unicorns are real, they just haven’t been discovered yet.
I’ve been sad and coming to terms with it for the past few days since bleeding began on Saturday. We were encouraged by lovely friends who had more hope than us, and this drawn out process seemed unnecessarily cruel to all of us, but ultimately I knew. And in a way it has definitely made seeing that negative test easier today. It was just confirmation of something we already knew, rather than a slap in the face.
I thought I’d feel angry with God, disappointed with him. But I don’t. Perhaps that’s by his grace. We are both actually feeling closer to each other and closer to God than we have done in a long time. So there’s that. John reminded me – and it’s a hard truth but he’s right – we weren’t promised a baby by God. He made no commitment that this cycle would work. We merely asked, and it didn’t happen. I don’t even begin to understand why, and glib apologetics are just a bit grating at times like this. Because ultimately, no matter how sure you are of your justification, we just don’t know why bad things happen. Free will, predestination, God’s perfect timing, sin…I just chose to believe that God is “good,” that his definition of “good” might not look like ours, that the pain and suffering in this world is not his best for us, that he grieves too, right alongside us, and that this is a consequence of living in the grey. In the not yet.
I honestly don’t know why I still believe. But I do. A friend recently told me faith was stubborn. Perhaps that’s why. I’m too stubborn to let it go. But the longer I hang on by my fingertips, and the greyer things become, I can’t help but feel that perhaps in the letting go of black and white, and the surrendering of core beliefs and theology that no longer stand up to scrutiny, perhaps I’m somehow moving closer to the truth. And the merciful, gracious God at the center of it. Who is way bigger and more complex than I ever imagined.
It’s not wishy washy. It’s not emotional and I haven’t had any “moments” of revelation or being “bowled over in the spirit”. This new faith is made of grit and hard choices. Stacked upon disappointment and grief and tiredness. Perhaps more realistic foundations in our fallen world? My biggest battle right now is for my mind. To not get envious of those I love who have what I want, to not slip into self pity that blots out all the love and compassion they are showing us. So, my friends, you know who you are – if you are pregnant then I am praying for you. For your beautiful unborn babies, for your born babies, for your families and anxieties and for protection and joy. Because I really want to win this battle for my mind, and I really want you to be blessed, and this is the best way I can think to keep my heart soft.
I am now sat in the coffee shop where we took the pregnancy test that confirmed we were pregnant with Toby, where we were when we found out John’s dad had died, and where the staff have loved us and supported us through the last two tough years in that way that only people with a bit of distance from the situation can. And I am waiting for a call from the clinic to discuss what happens next. We could start a new cycle again in 19 days time, now that I’m having a period. But it might be better to wait, to lose weight, to have ovarian dithermy again (burning holes in my ovaries), or some other not yet disclosed option. But for now a latte and croissant are the best tonic for a bruised heart.