Along the way, we’ve been so grateful to meet other couples who have fought their own battle with infertility. Some of these ladies (and guys) have been gracious enough to share some of their story with us. I know their hope, as is ours, is that you find encouragement and a renewed sense of strength to fight your own battles and your own wait. If you are a loved one, hopefully this person’s story will encourage you.
Today, you’ll be hearing from Nancy M. who has been a mentor of mine (Di) for over a year now. When you are going through anything that is tough, I highly recommend grabbing and holding on tight to a mentor, someone who has been down a similar road that you are currently going through. Yes, having friends that are in the same situation are awesome and comforting, but having someone that has been down your current road and is now on the other side of it can be uplifting and give you a sense of hope and perspective. Nancy has been a critical piece of my journey and is someone I can simply text “pray” when I have no other words. I truly cherish our time together and look forward to continue to share this journey with her.
sam & di: Nancy, thanks so much for sharing with us. Could you share a brief overview of your story.
Nancy: Growing up I was never regular with a menstrual cycle. In my mid 20s, I had some tests run to try to find out why. These showed that I would probably not be able to get pregnant. Because of these test, I already had an idea that I might have difficulty getting pregnant, but I always hoped that I would. Kent and I were around 30 years old when we got married. So within a couple of years we started trying to have a baby, but after a few years of “nothing,” we went to a fertility specialist. He looked at all the results of the old tests and ran a few others. He agreed that I would not be able to get pregnant. But I still believed that God could change that if He wanted. That door didn’t open and so in our late 30s, we started talking about adoption.
s&d: What was your darkest time during this journey?
Nancy: I don’t think that I consciously had a “darkest time.” For me it was probably more like years of “dusk.” A waiting period that at times seemed to go on for ever. During that time, I do remember not doing things around the house and other things with the thought of “Well, when we have children I’ll do…” Or “when we have a family…” I had put my life on hold.
When we did start down the road to adoption or should I say on the roller coaster ride of adoption (at least that is what it felt like it times). There was a friend of a daughter of a friend… That was going to have a baby that wanted to give her up for adoption. We had just gone to an information meeting at the Oklahoma Baptist Home for Children and had started the home study and interview process. Because we were not finished with this process by the time the baby was born and ready to leave the hospital and even though we were called when the baby was born and were able to give the baby her name we were not allowed to bring her home and she went home with another family.
We went to all of the court proceedings during the termination of rights process always with a car seat and other things ready to bring her home just to be let down. When the rights were terminated the judge told us that normally on the adoption side the courts usually go with the foster parents. She said that we were welcome to try to pursue adoption but that she didn’t want us to go through the whole process just to get let down again. I’m sure that the family that adopted her did change your name, but I still pray for her. That’s been 14 years.
A few months after that Kent who had already been looking at older children on the DHS website asked me again about considering older children. That is what started the process for me to be ready for what God had already had in place all along. Our children, now 20 and 17, we’re in a foster home that had been attending our church already for about a year before we even met them. If I had to guess, they had probably started attending our church when we started the process with that little baby.
s&d: What or who were some of your greatest encouragements?
1. My husband. As we would have the ups and downs of the roller coaster- many times when I was down Kent would be doing well and would remind me that God knows and has a plan and that He would work it out. And sometimes I was able to remind him of the same things.
2. Friends. I had one dear Christian friend in particular who was a few years older than me. She also was not able to have children and she helped me by reminding me that God has a plan and that I would need to grieve the loss of not being able to have children and to surrender that desire to the Lord and His plan for me whether that meant I would ever have children or not. I am definitely not saying that this is an easy process or that I did not take back that desire that I had surrendered from the Lord often. In general, we had many friends and definitely our family to encourage us.
s&d: If you could, what what you would go back and tell yourself?
Nancy: Live. Don’t wait to live the life that God has for you right now while you’re waiting for the life you think the Lord has for you. Don’t be anxious about how things are working out or not working out because God’s timing is perfect. He has a plan and it’s better than what we could ever come up with. Ephesians 3:20-21 says, “Now to him who is able to do exceeding abundantly beyond all that we ask or think according to the power that works within us, to Him be the glory in the church and in Christ Jesus to all generations forever and ever. Amen.”
This was made a little more real to me a few months ago at church when there were some couples in our church at the altar praying. One I knew was dealing with infertility and one I suspected was. As I was watching them, I was standing there with my daughter and I wanted to say to them, “See! Don’t get discouraged! Look at my daughter. God knows and has a perfect plan and a perfect timing on things!”
The next thing I would tell myself is to keep working on your relationship with the Lord and with your husband. You need that then and later when children come or don’t come, which ever the case may be.
s&d: What were some verses that brought you encouragement?
Jeremiah 29:11 “For I know the plans that I have for you declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not calamity to give you a future and a hope.”
Isaiah 40:31 “But those that wait upon the Lord will renew their strength. They will mount up with wings as eagles they will run and not get weary they will walk and not faint.”
At the time I looked at those verses more superficially. That God has a plan for welfare not calamity… That he will give us strength as needed…. But what I didn’t really realize at the time was that the verse in Jeremiah was for the children of Israel that had been taken into captivity in Babylon. They had been wrongly told that it would only be a few years. But God tells Jeremiah to tell the people that they will be there for the 70 years and that while they are there to “live” and that “I know the plans I have for you…”
In Isaiah, we are reminded that we will gain strength as we wait on the Lord. However, to get that strength we have to go through situations that are usually not fun and that make us wait on the Lord, where we have to rely and trust in the Lord and sometimes have to wait and wait and wait… Sometimes that waiting looks like soaring, sometimes running, but many times just walking.
Author: Diana Barr
I’m an energetic, outgoing, coffee-loving, dog mom of 2 (Tessa and Addie). I’ve been married to my husband Jeremy for 10 years. I enjoy working at a local showroom as an on-staff interior designer and working with my personal clients doing design work on the side. I love traveling, shopping, shoes, puppies, gardening, dark chocolate and cheese.