Last summer I drove about two hours from home to a place of solitude. I needed solitude. Everyone does, and no one really has to go anywhere special for it, but I had felt a strong pull toward truly getting away to be with God for some time. I found a wonderful little place where I had my own tiny cottage for two nights, and Casey's full support made it possible for me to have this time away guilt-free.
While there, I spoke about twice each day with the lady who essentially ran the place. Clare is her name. I told her my very long story, going back to when Miles was born and getting to the place of grief I was currently in, the place where our dreams of more children had not been realized. I had been journaling during my solitude, and on the second day Clare suggested I write a letter in my journal to the children who had never come to be. I knew instantly that I didn't want to do that, and so it meant to me that I needed to do that. But it was going to be one of the hardest things I would write.
It just so happened that Casey and I, over the course of our four failed in vitro cycles, had each come up with a name we liked if we ever had a boy or a girl. He had a girl's name in mind, I had decided on a boy's name. We had talked about them through each cycle, dreaming that one or both of them might be ours one day. The names had come to mean so much that I decided to address my letter to these two specific children. Keep in mind that this was June of last year...we weren't even at a place of knowing if we would try in vitro ever again.
With all of that said, I feel as though tonight is the perfect time to share this letter, so here goes.
Dear Maggie and Moses,
I find it so very difficult to begin this letter. My fear is that I will cling to the hope of you even more, and that hope has been discarded and trampled over and over again for more than three years.
Instead of sitting here writing a letter to children who don't exist, I should be holding you in my arms. I should be listening to your laughter as your big brother Miles is his usual, funny self. I thought that one or both of you might be here by now. None of that has come about as I dreamed...it's only been one more heartache after another.
How do I miss a child that never was? But I do -- have seen you in my dreams, have imagined you coming home, have wondered what you would look like.
For so long, it has felt as if you were waiting for me at the end of this long journey; it was like I could see you as that light at the end of a torturous tunnel.
But now...now something I was sure would happen in time might never happen at all. Will I never know you? I struggle mightily to let you go.
If you are not to be, I need God to change the desires of my heart, because I cannot do it myself. This longing seems almost more than I can bear at times.
But oh, how you would be loved! And every day that you are not a reality makes me want to hold Miles that much closer. As much as I hope for you...well, he is here and you are not. God gave me such an amazing, beautiful boy in Miles Kendrick. I am desperate for him not to suffer because of my own grief. He is loved, he is precious, he is pure -- HE IS HERE. My love and delight need to be reserved for him, and not for a child that isn't.
I'm sorry, Maggie and Moses. Please come if you can. But if you can't, God will take care of us. I hate to say goodbye to you, but I need to lay the dream of you at Jesus' feet. He will know what to do.
I still want you...I do. But if my holding to the idea of you is futile, I am only doing a disservice to Casey and Miles. They need me, my heart and my nurturing. They are my boys.
If you come someday, you will know what I mean. The love you will find in our little family is precious. It is waiting here if God's will is for you to be.
Even now, that is a very hard letter for me to read. I don't feel the sadness as much, but I remember it. But my sorrow was turned to joy on January 19 this year when we found out our fifth cycle was a success. And then again a week later, the joy grew as we found out we were having twins! Then came April 9, the day we learned we were having a boy and a girl...our Maggie and Moses.
Tomorrow is the end of a long chapter and the beginning of another, because our sweet little ones will arrive in this world. We only just learned that this afternoon, since Moses' growth had dropped down a bit, so the safest and best thing to do is to get them outside my body as soon as possible so he doesn't lose any more nourishment. Having carried these two miracles for 36 weeks and 6 days by the time they're born, I am so relieved to be where we are. I am so blessed. Praise God for new beginnings!