Please don’t skip this post. I would like to take some time to encourage you because the Christmas season sucks to people dealing with grief, especially a couple unable to have children. After all, part of the magic of the holiday is seeing the joy and wonder on a child’s face as they celebrate the season. Plus, if you spend any time in church, you are reminded of a baby, and that can cause a bit of conflict in your emotions. Keep that in your back pocket for a bit…
This isn’t about my life right now. That might cause you more pain. Instead, I wish to begin with a story about where I was last year.
Last Christmas, I went to church with my parents and husband on Christmas Eve feeling low. I had just gotten my period, again, signaling I wasn’t pregnant. Again. But still I went, knowing that I needed to be there. It was rough–I had bumped into a friend who was pregnant via IVF with twins.
Before the service she came up to me to ask how I was doing and give me a hug. I told her I was “dealing with things” and to be polite asked how she was. Her response was “We’re just so blessed!” Did I mention she knew we were struggling? I held it together about three minutes until my dad, who heard the whole thing, leaned over to whisper to me “You’re blessed too, you know.” I felt so conflicted because on the one hand, I didn’t have the ONE thing I desperately craved and couldn’t feel my blessings. However in my head, I KNEW I was blessed because there I was, sandwiched between the two strongest men I knew–my husband and my dad–and surrounded by family that loved me and friends that encouraged me. I cried the rest of the service.
Maybe you are there this year. I don’t know where you are. But thinking back to my Christmas last year, the Christmas I was at my lowest, I felt like a failure.
Remember the movie “It’s a Wonderful Life”? It is a classic Christmas movie, but it really centers around the fact that George Bailey is suffering a depression and feels the only way out of his miserable life is to commit suicide. Clarence, the demi-angel, is sent to show him what would be had he never been born, and at the end of the movie, helps George to see that he has quite a bit to live for. The note he leaves for George is simple–it says, “Remember, no man is a failure who has friends.”
If you can, please look to the loved ones surrounding you this Christmas season, whether it be your family, friends, blogging community or a combination of the three. Also, please remember your ultimate friend, Jesus, who sees you and remembers you this time of year, and at all times. Peace be to all of you. You are not failures and you are well loved.