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  • Writer's pictureJen Chappell

Share Your Story Tuesday- Thoughtfully Red

In January, 2016 I found out I was going

to be a mom. A couple of weeks later, I was praying and asked God to tell me what this baby would do, what he would be like. God responded, "A worshipper". He's going to be a worshipper. I can't put into words how excited I was to hear that. 

My husband, Joel, and I spent Valentine's Day weekend of 2016 sharing a special card with our families. Each one read on the front, "Roses are red Violets are blue" and the inside said "on September 6th our little miracle is due! Happy Valentine's Day". It was a great weekend finally telling those closest to us that we were expecting.

During that weekend, I started spotting. On Monday, the problem continued so I called the doctor, and they ordered blood work. We had one more family member to tell that day. Part of me wanted to cancel our lunch plans in case I got bad news from the doctor. But at the same time, if I was going to believe in faith that everything was going to be okay, I couldn't cancel lunch. So I didn't and all of our family knew.

We went to bed Monday night, and I woke up in the middle of the night to go to the bathroom. I woke Joel up and told him we needed to go the ER. As much as I didn't want to admit it, things were getting worse. The things the doctor warned me about were happening. We got to the ER around 2am. After more blood work and two ultrasounds, I heard the worst words of my life. The ER doctor came in and said, "I'm sorry miss, there's no heartbeat". We were devastated. By this point I was in so much physical pain, and he told me that it would continue for a while. They sent us home and just before 6am we were back in bed trying to get some rest after a physically and emotionally draining few hours. Less than a half hour later, I got up to go the bathroom to discover I had miscarried. My perfect baby lay there in my underwear. My sobs got Joel out of bed as he came to help. Eventually, we came to the conclusion that he was going to have to go to the store to buy some thicker pads because I literally couldn't leave the bathroom. No sooner than he left, I began to feel nauseous and extremely light headed. I called him and told him to come back because I was going to pass out and that I thought he needed to call an ambulance. The next thing I remember was waking up haunched over with my head between my legs and my phone on the floor. I heard Joel come in and he was on the phone so I knew he had called 911. The paramedics came in and asked how much blood I lost, but we really had no idea. However, their concerned expressions told me it was probably a lot. They took me back to the hospital where I spent a few more hours in the ER before being taken to a regular room for observation. As if this process wasn't emotionally painful enough, the physical pain was just as hard. I had had almost no sleep in more than 20 hours. Doctors and nurses kept poking at me. I had three separate blood draws and two IVs in less than 24 hours. I just wanted it all to be over. I wanted to be left alone to grieve. Finally, just before 10pm that night the doctor finally came back up to see me and told me I could go home.

During that week at home, Joel and I really held onto each other and to God. We prayed. A lot. I bought the book Mending Tomorrow. I can't even put into words how much this book helped me heal. Of course I was feeling completely heartbroken. I was mad at the situation, but I didn't necessarily have anger towards God. In Mending Tomorrow, Alyssa Quilala went through her experience of giving birth to her still born son. The two things that stuck out to me the most were that "Rejoicing and thankfulness are not emotional responses; they are acts of the will that turn your focus toward God and His goodness in your life." I was having a hard time with this. I knew God was good, but I couldn't see that in this situation. I couldn't bring myself to speak those words. That was until I continued reading. Her husband, Chris, wrote a chapter and in it he talked about how he's always sang God is unchanging and now he was faced with the question of will he believe it? Will I believe it? I've sang those songs and said the same thing. God never changes. He's the same yesterday, today, and forever. Will I believe it? I decided in that moment that I would. Regardless of my heartache and my sadness, regardless of my world being turned upside-down, I was going to choose to believe that God was still good and that someway, somehow this would work for my good and bring Him glory. That decision brought me so much freedom. A huge weight had been lifted off my shoulders I didn’t even know was there until it was gone.

As Joel and I returned to work, we continuously referred to Isaiah 26:3: "You will keep in perfect peace all who trust in You, all whose thoughts are fixed on You!" Every time I would feel something other than peace, I would remind myself of this verse. There really is nothing more valuable than His peace. Throughout the process I chose to seek God. I wanted to go through this process well. I knew that pushing others away, pushing God away wouldn't help me. That would only delay my healing process. But I also became intentional about who I talked to, who I sought for guidance. I realized that not everyone would speak the same life over my situation that I needed to hear.

God was right when He said my child would be a worshipper. That's exactly what he is doing now, worshipping God in heaven. All he will ever know is perfect peace, wholeness and health, joy and hope. Seven months after miscarrying, we finally got pregnant with our rainbow baby. He's now two and a half years old and is the light of our life. A year and a half ago, I revamped my pre-existing Etsy store (Thoughtfully Red) where I now sell handmade goods to encourage the mama experiencing miscarriage as well as celebrate the rainbow babies that come after loss. I wanted to offer products for both because Romans says to rejoice with those who rejoice and weep with those who weep. I also give all of my proceeds to families who are suffering pregnancy loss. 

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