7 February 2011

The calm after the storm

Dear Lord, I hope that this is a boring, uneventful week.

I feel like I've spent the past week crying, and it has nothing to do with the state of my uterus.

Witnessing the grief of two families, two very different families, this past week, I have had a lot of time to pray and question God. I know that I have no idea what His plans for us are, and I can't possibly understand the logic of a 13 year old girl and a 32 year old mother dying of cancer.

All week I've heard about how Dalya and Danielle were such witnesses to their faith. They both believed in God's plan for them and at the end of their lives they were both more worried about their families, and not for their deaths. At the reception after Danielle's funeral her husband and father-in-law spoke (and my how brave they both were) about how she didn't want to give up, that she was willing to try anything to live. Danielle also went as far as to write cards to both her young children, from everything from birthdays to First Communion to their wedding days. She also wrote letters to her family members outlining what she wanted them to do to help out in her kids' lives.

I have no idea how she found that strength. But then again, she made her peace and she wanted to prepare her family for her eventual death.

Dalya was another amazing witness to her faith. Her mother never wanted to use the word cancer. She refused to acknowledge the disease in the hope of erasing it. It is too bad since her brothers were both refused counseling that was offered by the hospital and the school. We have another student who's cancer in currently in remission and Dalya was over the moon to hear that Nicole was beating her disease. Dalya would call the school and ask for more challenging work, and despite the fact that she was too weak to attend school on a daily basis, she would try her best to attend when she could.

Dalya, too, worried about her family and how they would be after her death. She didn't ask for her own comfort, but for the comfort, particularly, of her mother.

I feel so small in the face of these two beautiful women.

I have spent the better part of five and a half years feeling sorry for myself. Every month since we got married I have mourned the arrival of AF and the passing of yet another month without a baby. The disease that was growing inside me, although the cause of much pain, was not fatal.

I have seen my health steadily improve since my IF diagnosis. I don't know if I will ever conceive, but at least I am not adrenally fatigued, suffering from debilitating cramps every month, or crazy because of PMS. Although I know that I would trade any of these things to have just one child, I know that this journey has brought me health, something that Danielle had her husband remind us in his speech at the reception after her funeral.

It is so hard to look past the grief that I have held in my heart, the grief of the dreams that I thought were going to come true soon after my wedding. But I do know that if it wasn't for IF that my marriage would not be as strong as it is. I also know that when parenthood does finally come that we will not take one day for granted.

So Dalya and Danielle, thank you for forcing me to appreciate my life. I will continue to pray for your families since I have no doubt that you are both looking down on us from heaven.


  1. What a lovely reminder to think of the bright side of all this. Thanks JB!

  2. an emotional week for sure...IF tests our faith greatly, but it strengthens us in ways we never knew possible. As these two women were fighting to live, they were strengthened in their faith. We should be inspired by these women and build on the love they had. Thank you for sharing this...it's a beautiful reminder...

  3. Beautiful. They inspire us even just hearing their stories through your blog. Thank you for sharing.

  4. Wow. They sound incredible. I just shared this with my husband it was so moving!

  5. They are definitely inspirational. And your reflections were beautiful.

  6. Beautiful post. My heart and prayers go out to the families of these beautiful women. And you, JB, are also a very special beautiful woman yourself.

  7. Isn't this so hard? I feel the same way sometimes...other people are so much worse off than me. But it still shouldnt diminish our pain of IF. It's not like our pain isn't righteous.

  8. This post is so very beautiful as you are. So profound.

    Thank you so much for sharing.

  9. Amen to this and our marriage growths. Hugs friend:)

  10. Wait, I just reread my comment and laughed. Does marriage growths make any sense? haha. Growth of marriage!

  11. I hope that this week is really boring.

    It can really put life in perspective when you see someone leave it way too early.