I don’t think anyone has ever described me as a laid back person. Sometimes I dream about being a girl who can go with the flow, never wear makeup, and not worry about personal boundaries.
I have a tendency to set up a lot of boundaries around myself. And I'm not talking about healthy boundaries that protect my time and relationships. These boundaries are more like an impenetrable fortress around me in order to prevent anyone from genuinely knowing how I truly feel, how deeply I hurt, or god-forbid find out that I don’t actually have my life together.
In January of 2016, my husband and I found out we were expecting our first child. We were very excited and also nervous. We are both strong type A personalities and immediately started stressing about having enough money to pay for college or whether or not we should get an area rug for the nursery. As we started telling friends and family, our excitement just kept mounting. But when I went in for my first ultrasound, all we saw was an under-developed, sweet little person with no heartbeat.
I had suffered a missed, miscarriage.
Until then, I had never heard of a missed, miscarriage. I thought that a miscarriage was always accompanied by obvious signs and symptoms. This was a big surprise for both my husband and me. At this point, my doctor encouraged us to wait and let my body miscarry on its own. In the meantime, I was a nervous wreck. I had no idea when my body would let this child go, and every time I went to the bathroom I was checking to see if the process had started.
I was so ashamed to be in this position. We had to go back and tell everyone that we were no longer expecting a healthy baby, and instead expecting a miscarriage to begin any day. I have never dealt with shame well, and vulnerability is a four-letter word in my book. My automatic reaction is to retreat. All I wanted was to hide from everyone. It was beyond my capacity to share my hurt with those around me.
But as I hid at home, a beautiful and unexpected thing started to happen. My doorbell kept ringing and my phone kept buzzing. There were so many people in our lives who were reaching out and trying to love us through this. They were leaving thoughtful gifts and cards on our front porch, texting the sweetest messages, and furiously praying for us to get through this.
I have always strived fiercely to be as strong as possible. Relying on others was a sign of weakness. I had no idea how desperately I needed the support of a loving community until God handed us this particular challenge. This was the beginning of a new journey for me; one that would continue to challenge my concept of vulnerability and allow me to cultivate these precious relationships.
One day at a time, I am pushing myself to share and open up more. Who knows? With practice, I might even be able to ask for help one day! In the meantime, I am taking it slow and encouraging myself to break down my walls. In short, I'm trying to be “breezy.”
You never know where God is leading you, and the more you fight it, the harder it is to experience it.