I have spent a lot of time recently thinking about the concept of hope. We are constantly told to "Hope in the Lord", but I have realized that it is way easier to say than to do so sometimes.
This past month, we were doing the first in a series of last ditch efforts to try to have a child biologically while still researching and praying about adoption. For the first time, because I was followed by ultrasounds throughout my cycle, I knew I had a follicle that was mature and I knew I ovulated because we did so with an HCG shot that makes my body ovulate.
I tried my best not to hold out too much hope. I told myself the statistics are against me. In peri-menopause it is possible to get pregnant but a lot harder. So, I tried to keep my hope at bay. In fact, I often do better to be a negative nelly and just assume it is not going to work. My husband, however, is full of hope. He gets excited and is convinced every month will be THE month.
I find myself trying my best to be a negative nelly but I can't help but let some hope creep in. I start to wonder what month I would deliver if I was pregnant. So, I look it up. I analyze any symptoms I have and more hope creeps in. The problem is all of this hope makes the disappointment that much harder to take.
This weekend, I started a new cycle. The realization that our efforts didn't work was hard. I couldn't help but feel like a fool for letting that hope creep in. "How could I be so stupid" I asked myself.
I had been feeling angry and disappointed all weekend and promised myself I would never hope again. Then, I went to mass. The Gospel reading was about a women who was looking for Jesus to cure her daughter who was tormented by a demon. Jesus dismisses her but she is persistent. Because of her great faith Jesus relents and heals the women's daughter.
Our priests homily hit me right between the eyes. I felt uncomfortable listening as I felt like he had known of my disappointment and doubt this weekend. The homily was totally God speaking to me. There was no doubt. He talked about how anyone reading this Gospel would think that Jesus was really, really mean. He said you would think that of course if you only read the first half of the story. He said but if you see the rest of the story you will see how Jesus rewarded the women for her great faith and blessed her and her daughter. The priest then asked "How many times do we focus only on the first part of our story? Often times we are disappointed by God but that is because we do not wait to let him finish the story."
I almost burst into tears. I have been so focused on the here and now I can't see how God may be preparing my heart and my life for a future baby (either biological or adopted). Or, he is expecting Jim and I to do many great things without children. So many times in my life I have not understood what God was up to until much, much later. In retrospect however, I could see it plain as day.
I can't help but feel that right now, in the midst of my struggles, I simply cannot see how God is working but it helps to know that he is indeed working in my life and that I can "hope in the Lord" while allowing disappointment to come, knowing that ultimately my hope is to live with God in heaven forever.