Thursday, April 26, 2012

When, If and Done

Every time I walk in my closet, I see it. A clear box. Full of maternity clothes.  And for the first few years after Josh was born I would occasionally wonder, in that sleep-deprived and panicky new motherhood way, when I'd get to wear them again ("but please, God, not too soon!).  When I got pregnant in 2008, I pulled them out, gave them a good wash and hung them up, ready for the moment when I'd move from squeezing into normal clothes and back into their comfort, their sweet promise of new life to come.  

After the loss of that baby, I quietly packed them up again and put them away, certain it was only a matter of time before I'd pull them out. And pull them out I did, to loan them to pregnant friends. ALL THE TIME.  Don't get me wrong, I was happy to do this. Happy to help out friends who needed them. But they were mine. For my babies.  And every time I gave them away I always made it clear I needed them back when they were done.  Because my pregnancy was next. It was "when".

At some point thinking about that box moved from "when" to "if".  I kept them on hand for if I ever needed them.  It felt like the right spiritually mature word to use at the time. After all, didn't I go through counseling to deal with the miscarriage, even if it was a year and a half late? Didn't I talk through my infertility and get to a point where I was ok with not getting pregnant again, excited about the adoption route?  I could leave that word "when" behind, no problem.  But, so as to not rule out God's possibility of miracles, I kept that box. I held strong to the "if." Who was I to decide that God was beyond performing a miracle? And if He wasn't beyond that, I wasn't through waiting.

At some point though, "if" has become a poisonous word. It has given me permission to be selfish, to hold on to these clothes that could benefit someone who really needs them.  To always, every month, even though I promise myself I won't anymore, get my hopes up.   To be consumed by the possibility of a miracle, even though we are already waiting on a beautiful miracle to come through another avenue.  To buy into the ugly lie that if I would just get pregnant, it would be a better end to our story than adoption on its own.

So, it's time.  This morning, I marched into my closet.  For the last three and a half years of my life, I have looked at this box.  I have picked out my clothes for the day, glanced at the "if" box and went on my way.  No more. Today, the box becomes the "done" box.  There is now an empty corner in our closet.  Whether we get pregnant is a non-issue at this point.  Moving the box from "if" to "done" is my ebenezer, a stop on my journey to say God is God and enough is enough. I plant it in the "done" to say that I trust Him. Whatever happens. I don't trust in a box of clothes. I trust in a God who loves me, who is for my good, who has bigger and better things for me and my life than an "if" box in my corner.

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