Redemption. It is a word we often hear, but frequently I think of it as abstract, a concept, a 'good idea.' I have prayed for redemption. I have thanked God for the redemption I received through His Son's death. But to really, in the moment one day, say 'Wow, this is redemption!' That has never happened for me. Until now.
Let me paint you a picture. March 1, 2011. A Tuesday. A week earlier we received the wonderful news that I was pregnant. If you have ever anticipated a baby, you know how quickly the wheels of your mind start turning. I was already thinking about names, planning a nursery, deciding who would watch my son while I went to the hospital to deliver. What would we need, what would we re-use from Jameson's babyhood days? Thoughts of this new baby, this precious addition to our family, filled my every waking (and many sleeping) thoughts!
But two days earlier, on Sunday, I had started experiencing cramping. And bleeding. Things you never want to consider when you are expecting. I researched online, and found that bleeding in pregnancy is very common. I prayed with family and friends. I beseeched God to protect this little life, this brand new person He was forming in His image. I felt a measure of hope. This happens a lot, people get scared, and it all turns out ok. So, that Tuesday morning, a sweet friend brought her son over to play, so that I wouldn't be alone when the doctor's office called. I thank God that she did.
I can picture exactly where I was sitting (on the loveseat in my living room) when the phone rang. I can picture the boys, playing side by side on the floor. I remember the nurse saying she didn't have good news. I slid to the floor, literally unable to keep myself in the seat. I zoned out what she was saying; I couldn't tell you the words. I started to sob convulsively as tears streamed down my face. I couldn't ask her my questions, or hear her advice. My friend wrapped her arms around me and offered me all the support she could as all of my hopes and dreams spilled to the floor with my tears. The boys looked up at me, confused, and I had no words to offer them. It was as if time just stood still.
I could tell you a lot about the following days, the months that followed, but that is another story. Recently, we again found out I was pregnant. We called the doctor's office, I went to the lab for the required bloodwork, everything came back great. My doctor scheduled me to come in for, in his words, a very early ultrasound. He cautioned me it would probably be too soon to see anything, but after 2 miscarriages and a D&C we were going to be proactive about everything.
I felt a lot of peace about this pregnancy. I had asked God, repeatedly, not to let me get pregnant again until I could feel excitement about it. As much as I wanted another baby, I didn't want past hurts and disappointments to cloud such a special time. And I felt that prayer being answered in big and little ways already. I prayed and prayed that we would see a heartbeat that day. I gave my husband the crossed fingers sign as the ultrasound tech got ready to start.
No heartbeat. No problem, she reassured me. It is very early. But everything looks good, nothing that shouldn't be there, and we recommend that you come back one week from today so we can look again. I wasn't worried. Sure, it would have been nice, but I will felt good about everything. So, we walked out, the receptionist put us on the calendar for a week out, and that was that.
One week later...
We came to the office yet again. The tech got ready to do her thing and POOF! There it was, the little peanut that is our baby. We could see the yolk sac, we could see the baby, we could see the tiny flicker that was the heartbeat, assuring us that this baby is developing well and doing great! We got pictures of our little peanut to take home and gaze upon.
And the date on those ultrasound photos is March 1, 2012.
Coincidence? Some might say so. I say: God. We didn't choose the date to come in. In fact, I didn't even realize the significance of that date until about a day or two before. For one long year I had thought March 1 was the worst day of my life. Doesn't God have a sweet way of redeeming?
Don't get me wrong. This baby will not take the place of my sweet Delaney, whom I never got to meet. Nor will this child replace Taylor, who went to heaven before coming to my arms. This child is all his or her own, newly being created in God's image, knit together cell by cell by His loving hand. I love all my babies, and I love God's timing, His promise, and His sweet redemption.