i've known you both.

Sorry for any confusion, the picture below is not a current baby ultrasound, it's the baby we lost a few months ago. Not pregnant over here:) 

I went to bed the other night, clutching Arrow's blanket. 
I don't always sleep with it, unlike when we first lost him, when I looked forward (all day) to covering my face in it when I fell asleep. 

When people ask how I am after the miscarriage, how I'm doing now - I always answer honestly that I never imagined the Lord would heal so lovingly with time. I miss that baby more than any metaphor I could ever use, but the bitterness and the painful ache has surely been salved by prayer and praise and uplifted eyes to Him. 
I can have real joy in new babies and swollen bellies, in the hands of my children, because all life is created by Him. All life brings joy. And somewhere, deep in there, He has the ability to bring so much glory and praise from loss too. 
And time helps that. 

But the other night, I was just blown over by how excited I'd become for my birthday.
As soon as I found out I was pregnant, I realized I'd be exactly 20 weeks on my birthday! What a gift! Seeing if it was a baby girl or a baby boy! Seeing that sweet thing at all! And as soon as I found out I lost him, I just wept over that birthday. 
I never wanted it to come. 
But somehow, I'd gotten excited all over again. 
I've even gotten to the place that when I'm feeling really vulnerable and really faith-filled all at once, I'll beg Him to pour out His spirit and make this a year of harvest & blessing. 

And that night, I laid there thinking about both of you. 
The one of you who rubs her hand over her belly longingly. Or clutches the crib in grief. Or stares blankly into the children running around after church. Lost. Alone. Silent. 
Crying yourself to sleep or waking up crying or crying on the tombstone of someone who should've cried over you. I thought about all you gals who know me too. 

And I thought about you women with your hands full, who count your blessings and sometimes don't, who know that blessings can surely be hard to handle. The women that have been convicted for not being more selfless, and then being tested to the limit of selflessness before she stopped praying. The ones who. just. need. a. minute. I thought of my best friend, currently in labor at that very moment, probably pushing and fighting and dying to herself while gaining a blessing that words can't describe. And I thought about the women who see their children running after church, and see the women staring blankly, the ones that are caused to praise & ache all at once. 

I've known you both. 
I've been you both. 
I want to give you both a hug and love you better. 
And as I stare at my computer screen or place of worship, filled with both of you... or those of you who are like me, the combination women, and I wonder if we all couldn't take care of each other better. Push each other to Him better. 
Praise together. 
Because He's the giver of ALL good gifts.