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"Delight yourself in The Lord and He will grant you the desires of your heart." Psalm 37:4
It was only weeks before our wedding in the Bahamas when I made the decision to have laparoscopic surgery and was diagnosed with Endometriosis. My doctor at the time explained that this disease could complicate my ability to have children in the future. I never really desired to be pregnant before, yet the prognosis was surprisingly disappointing.
Endometriosis is frustrating, painful, complicated and often misunderstood. Would my husband and I be able to have kids? What if it took us years to conceive? Did I even want to put us through all the effort just to be left heartbroken?
These questions stayed with me and I constantly doubted my ability to get pregnant - even though we had never officially tried to have a baby.
Two years into our marriage, I was approaching my third surgery to treat endometriosis. I was driving to my hometown with doubt, fear and uncertainty festering in this hopeless mind. The Christian radio station blared with positive song after song, yet I couldn't shake my doubt that day.
Suddenly a voice came on the radio station with the words from Psalm 37:4. "God will grant you the desires of your heart" is what I heard as the tears began to fall.
Through all of my doubt, I couldn't even recognize my own desire to have a baby. It is through faith and God's promise that all things are possible!
That passage was all I needed. It was as if God himself reached down to earth and hugged me with His word. I knew that God’s promise was far greater than my own fears.
Last summer, my husband and I agreed that the time was right to have a baby. Despite my efforts to remain positive, I still had some doubts and honestly thought it would take several months to get pregnant.
There were a lot of uncertainties about my physical health and ability to carry a child. I deal with several chronic pain conditions; including Endometriosis, TBI, Degenerative Discs and Fibromyalgia.
Thankfully, the Lord has a way of defeating our deepest fears.
I'm humbled and blessed to now be pregnant with our first child. It happened right away and, frankly, I was shocked! Our baby boy is due to arrive sometime this summer.
One of the greatest lessons I have learned in this process is how much God truly loves me. Despite my fears and doubt, He blessed us with a baby. I am so undeserving, yet incredibly thankful.
In order to prepare myself for the worst case scenario, I would often say things like “I’ll probably be on bed rest” or “I probably won’t be able to have a natural birth.” I know this was just my doubt and fear talking - and it was wrong.
I am now in the third trimester and things are going as well as expected. My pain level has been elevated, but my doctor has been helping me manage it. The journey has been challenging but I am blessed.
There is a quote that has been enlightening along this journey. “Being a mother is learning about strengths you didn’t know you had, and dealing with fears you didn’t know existed.” (Linda Wooten)
God's word and promise is TRUTH. As the pregnancy progresses and the typical "new mom concerns" arise, I have learned to trust The Lord and give my fears over to Him. He has shown me love by keeping His promise - so why would I doubt him now?
Some important tips that I’ve learned through planning and pregnancy:
1. Anxiety is normal. This might sound odd, but early in my pregnancy there were so many unknown factors that I was constantly afraid of the “what if’s”. Fearing the unknown can seem overwhelming at times, but I have learned to give all control over to God.
2. Emotions are high. Between the constant remarks from strangers, inquiries from your loved ones and the everyday changes you will make in your home… you are bound to have a surge of emotions and hormones throughout the pregnancy. My advice is to go with the flow. The only thing you can control is how you feel. Take 5 minutes to yourself if you need to cool down or cry.
3. It’s not that scary. Honestly, there were so many things about pregnancy that seemed weird and scary to me in the beginning. Once you start to experience the physical changes, symptoms and baby movement, it all becomes normal and expected.
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4. Giving birth is just something you have to do. Believe me, I get it. As a first time Mom there is very little that I know about giving birth. What I do know is that the closer I get to the last weeks of pregnancy, the more comfortable I feel about delivery. Whatever happens…God is in control and I trust Him.
As a woman with Endometriosis, I certainly understand the fertility struggles that others may experience. Please know that you are all in my prayers. It’s a tiring battle and I pray the Lord will bless you soon.
Mara Rose is an up-and-coming author and Christian writer. She has endured years of chronic pain and strives to be a light for Jesus even on the darkest days. Mara works full-time, specializing in web content and marketing, but understands the exhausting process of finding the right job. Through the trials of life and career, she hopes to offer relational insight and encouragement. She lives in Wisconsin with her husband, Jonathan, whom serves in the military and is an OIF Veteran. You can read more from Mara on her blog, wordsbymara.com, or on Twitter @MsMaraRose.