“Your heart will heal.” These were the words the nurse whispered in my ear as she wheeled me into the elevator. Hours earlier as I came out of anesthesia in the recovery room I asked her if it was over. After she confirmed the surgery to terminate the pregnancy of my very much loved baby was over, I tearfully muttered, “My heart hurts.” It hurt more than I can put into words.
It has been six years since that dreadful day and those words she spoke have stuck with me. Over the years I have waited for healing. I have waited for the gaping holes in my heart not to hurt so badly. I have waited for triggers not to be triggers anymore. I have waited, but my heart still hurts. There is still an emptiness. It is still broken.
Psalm 147:3 says, “He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds.” I have no doubt Jesus heals. But what is healing?
Over this past year, I have come to realize that healing as I imagined it (and healing by the world’s standards) is not going to come. For me, healing is not the absence of pain. It does not come tied up with a pretty red bow making everything better. Healing is messy. The holes left in my heart by the two babies I lost are always going to hurt…and at times just as badly as the initial pain of losing them. Triggers will always be present, although their intensity may fade. When I look at my family, two will always be missing.
I believe God leaves us a little broken so that we will always lean on His strength. If we were completely healed and whole, we would have no need for His presence in our lives. Jesus died on the cross so we can receive complete healing when we enter into eternity with Him.
My heart hasn’t healed and living with such a great loss is not any easier six years later. I made a choice to embrace a new normal. I let God bind up my wounds and hold them as I journey through my life here. I chose to let my loss make me a better person and give me a greater purpose.
None of this is easy. It is a fight to the end. I grow weary at times. Sometimes I want to give up. Yet I don’t give up. I put my hope in His unfailing love. I turn to God for strength and He gives me what I need to get through – every single time. And I wait expectantly for the day I enter heaven’s gates and receive complete healing.
My hurting heart has become one of my most treasured possessions. I wouldn’t be the person I am today without the hurt. God used the death of my son to bring about a new life in me (Isaiah 43:19).
On this day six years ago my baby, Thomas Roy, died and his broken body was made whole. Today I am sad he is not here, but I am praising God for the redeeming work He has done in my life since his death.
For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well. My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place, when I was woven together in the depths of the earth. Your eyes saw my unformed body; all the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be.”