There is a lot written about the happiness, joy and laughter that the holidays bring. Light-hearted articles that discuss particular baking methods for the perfect Christmas cookie. Radio stations playing non-stop Christmas music. Television commercials reminding us that happiness is just one gift away.
This Christmas is different for our family because of our blessed miracle. But I have not forgotten the pain of the past few Christmas seasons. Often times that pain would be multiplied at family gatherings when little ones would be in abundance or I would overhear someone else receiving the congratulations that I so desperately desired.
I recall sitting in our church auditorium last year, days before Christmas, with a good friend who had miscarried in December. What does one do with that pain during 'the most wonderful time of the year?'
Today I acknowledge my friends (both those I have met in person and those I have not) who are facing this Christmas with empty arms or an empty womb. Friends have recently miscarried and the healing has just begun. Others have only received less-than-stellar news from their doctor about their chances of having biological children. Others are just waiting to see what the Lord has in store for their future family.
While some might think it is depressing of me to blog about this topic or insensitive of me to acknowledge it so publicly, having walked the lonely road of infertility I know that you just want people to be aware of your pain.
I've been there: at the Christmas party, smile plastered on my face while inside I am dieing because the holidays mark another season, another milestone where my prayer had gone unanswered. People avoid the topic. They know you are childless (not by choice) and so they ask about your house, your work, your pets...anything but the topic of children.
Or people don't know and so they say, "Are you working on some grandkids (wink, wink)?"
This Christmas I am praying for those who will not have the gift their heart so desperately desires. I am pondering what it would have been like to feel a little life growing inside of me on Christmas morn - the day our Savior came to earth. I am asking God to be present and real in a powerful way and to give strength when the journey just seems so difficult.
Oh friends, please know that I understand. I care. And I have not forgotten.