Thursday, August 25, 2011

On Infertility and Strength

But they who wait for the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles; they shall run and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint.
- Isaiah 40:31

I keep this verse taped up inside my wardrobe. I have other verses in different places around the house, but those are stories for another time. Every morning as I get dressed, this is my reminder of Him in whom my hope rests. Most days do not start off badly for me, but there are some mornings where I desperately need that reminder of the strength that comes from God.

Everyone has their struggles, and one of the big ones in my life has been infertility. I've been married 10 years, and for at least 8 of those, I have so deeply longed to be a mother. It's not simply that most of my friends both online and off have children of their own. I've always loved working with children and being around children. For years I thought of how much I wanted children and how I hoped they would be raised. I had always envisioned myself as a mother someday and dealing with the idea that it just isn't happening short of a miracle has been quite difficult to me.

It's not a struggle I talk about often. What can I say? I come from a family of stoic and dignified Virginians who would never dream of airing their innermost sorrows in public. And yet, if I am to be real and authentic with my sisters in Christ, I can't pretend that I don't struggle with this issue or that that aren't days when longing just becomes too painful and I can't bear the thought of hope.

And yet, even on the worst days, those sorts of days when I feel horrible sadness and can't even come up with the words in my cries to God, I know He is there. His strength is what carries me through even though sometimes the way is very hard indeed. And I know He has a purpose for me. I may not know what it is entirely, and I'm certain I stumble along the way, but I know He is there. And I depend upon His strength and His saving grace as I walk this often trying road. I do not know where it is taking me, but I know who has me in His grip.

"my soul waits for the Lord more than watchmen for the morning, more than watchmen for the morning."
- Psalm 130:6


  1. Amy,
    Wow...a very heart-wrenching post, but encouraging at the same time - because of your complete dependance on the Lord. Thanks for sharing your heart.
    Blessings from a fellow Virginian,

  2. Amy-
    My heart ACHES for you! I have so many friends who are or have been in your shoes. As I was praying for one of them particularly in my bible study I came to this. (there are several off topic points in there so forgive me.) and I HATE putting my link on your blog but I couldn't find your email and I wrote this for a friend who was in your shoes. I'm Praying for you, and I'm Praying for your Samuel!

  3. Thank you for being brave and real, it's very encouraging and helpful. You're in my prayers! Blessings.

  4. So many ladies I know are in the same boat. I too am waiting...I don't know when He will give us a family, but I rest in knowing that it's all in His care. Love that verse.

  5. Thank you so much for sharing. Being so transparent is hard, but I think that many share in this struggle, and silence makes it worse (and makes us feel more alone in it). I am not married so have not actually been in a place to try to start a family, but according to health conditions and my doctors it is highly unlikely I will be able to do so. It has always been the desire of my heart to be a mother, and I am learning for myself that this may look different than I imagined, but just beautiful.

  6. You are not alone in this struggle, Dear Amy, for I too struggle with this situation. Although I have not been married for as long as you have, I married late in life. It is painful sometimes . . . thank you for having the courage to share your heart on this matter. It helped me to know that I am not alone.

  7. Reading your story and the ladies who have left comments I feel so sad. I am a mother of two sons and couldn't imagine not being a mother - so the pain you feel, I can to some extend comprehend. Nothing happens in our lives for no reason, the Lord has a plan for you, perhaps not yet revealed. He will also give the strength to get through each day. In my prayers and thoughts.

    In Gods grace

  8. Thank you all so much for your kind words. They mean a lot to me! And for those who struggle with the same situation, I hope that knowing we're not alone can be some comfort. I used to feel incredibly lonely in this, but I know I'm not the only one and I remember everyone I know who struggles with this condition when I am praying over it for myself. And no matter what happens, we are so blessed by the One who loves all of us as His children!

  9. Sweet Amy...I can feel the pain in your heart through your words. As someone who has walked in your shoes--and still does after almost 20 years of marriage--I can tell you there *is* peace,joy, and fulfillment to be had, even if you never receive the longings of your heart. (((HUG)))

  10. We have recently met two different families who struggled with infertility as well (one of the moms had 5 miscarriages and still no babies). God used both family's infertility to put a burden on their hearts to adopt. Each family adopted 2 children. Then, after they had totally given up the idea of giving birth, they were blessed with biological children! The one family has 2 and the other has one. I had never thought about God using infertility for His purposes before meeting these families. I'm not suggesting you adopt, just that I find it interesting that once these families gave up the idea of having their own children, that is when God chose to bless them.

  11. Sweet Amy,

    So many of our blogs focus on the "average woman" or the "normal situation". Married, with children, homemaker, etc... But it is so important to remember that most of us are not "normal" at all. We all have specific trials that the Lord uses in our lives to mold us into the image of his Son. For this reason I think that it is very helpful for you to speak out to your readers on the subject of infertility and God's goodness through his denial of your desire. Many women who I am sure feel neglected in the online community due to the focus of most blogs.

    Love you, and am thankful you shared this.

  12. Bless your heart. It is so crazy why some struggle and some do not. I have two dear friends in th same situation. Thank you for sharing your story. It helps so many!