Now, I didn’t expect to marry as young as I did. In fact, a part of me always thought that I would be one of the oldest of my friends to get married, maybe around 30 or 35, having enjoyed many glorious years of single and devoted service to God without a husband or children in tow.
But God had different plans for me.
He sent a wonderful young man into my life, and allowed us to fall in love. He paved the path to marriage for us with stone after stone of love, forgiveness, and peace.
Everyone that asked us about children were told that we had a 5- year plan. Birth control of some variety for 5 years, and then we would consider starting a family. In 5 years time, we would have a stable home, stable jobs, and I would be through with college.
I liked the sound of it because it made us sound a little less crazy. We were already getting plenty of raised eyebrows for choosing to marry so young. The last thing we needed to do was add a baby to the mix.
But as soon as I said the words “I do.”, and we were presented as Mr. and Mrs. Shawn Maynard . . .
Something I like to call “Baby Fever” started swelling up around my heart . . .
And I desperately wanted to be a mom.
After just three months of marriage, we were done with birth control. We both had peace from God about our decision, and were ready to start our family. Come what may.
Except nothing . . .
I wasn’t quite prepared for nothing.
Infertility issues run in my family, but I had prayed to God for years to keep that trial away from me. Was He going to stick me with the one trial I had asked Him to keep away?
At first, I wasn’t too concerned. We weren’t really trying for a baby after all, we just weren’t preventing one. And although we were doing well financially, a baby would have stretched us to our limits. It still would.
Yet, as months went by, I started to get more and more discouraged. I thought all sorts of ugly thoughts about the teenage mom down the street, the birth mothers who have children in foster homes, and even some of my dear friends who had children out of wedlock.
“We did everything right, God? Why aren’t you blessing us?”
After a while, I became more strict on our “schedule”. I started paying close attention to when I thought I might be ovulating, and would make my husband feel terrible if he “wasn’t in the mood” on that particular day.
I was in no state to be blessed by God.
I would read statistics that said it could take up to a year for a normal, healthy couple to get pregnant. So I watched the calendar with anxiety. I discovered that “infertility” was defined as not getting pregnant within a year of trying. I had twelve short months before I could self-diagnose myself as infertile. *cue the nail biting*
This month marks a year.
Along the way, God has shown me that He still loves me, and that He has not forsaken me. He has broken me, mended me, and broken me again, in order to show Himself to me.
One such breaking happened last week.
In a moment of desperation, I typed the words “what to do while you’re childless” into the search bar on Pinterest.
I was hoping to find a fun list of things to do, and places to go before you have children . . . a list of Master’s degrees that would lead to a good career for a mom . . . maybe some good pregnancy and parenting books for the waiting period.
But do you know what I found instead?
Pictures of Jesus.
For some reason, that particular string of words typed into the search bar on my Pinterest account brought up pictures of Jesus! There was a painting of Him stretched out on the cross, and another of Jesus surrounded by children and sheep.
I don’t know much about Pinterest’s algorithms. I can’t explain why that phrase brought back those search results. But the message was clear to me.
Keep going to Jesus. That’s always been the answer. And it always will be.
Going to Jesus is what to do while you’re childless, while you’re single, while you’re a mom, and while you’re married. He will never turn you away.
I would appreciate your prayers as I am having a small surgery later this month. The doctors are searching for any lurking endometriosis as it may be the cause of some serious pain I’ve been experiencing for the past two years. Endometriosis is also one of the leading causes of infertility, and I am hoping that this surgery will prove beneficial in all areas.
But in the meanwhile, I’m going to keep taking my pain to Jesus. Will you?
I understand that many women have gone through far worse pain than I have experienced thus far, and I would never intend to minimize your pain. Some women seriously struggle with the loneliness of being single. Some women have experienced the pain of a miscarriage or have suffered years of barrenness. If this is you, please know that God understands your pain as well. Nothing is too difficult for Him. May He cover you with His peace tonight. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
“Rejoicing in hope, patient in tribulation, continuing instant in prayer.”