I've been thinking a lot lately about the mother on my message boards who had the Trisomy 18 baby. The baby passed away on Sarah's due date. It was heartbreaking. She was such a precious little life, and we all had such hopes for her. She was being prayed for all over the world, including by me.
I made the mistake of going and reading her journal, which is posted and available to read and comment on. She had a number of incredibly harsh things to say about me some that she wrote while we were having our misunderstanding in the group, some after the loss of her daughter, most of them just as hurtful as she believed I was.
She wrote about our decision regarding Sarah, and how she didn't understand why I joined her loss group instead of the other which was for parents with a loss due to chromosomal abnormality. Well, honestly, it's because I didn't know if Sarah had a chromosomal abnormality. And because I didn't consider her death something that I chose. She was going to die regardless. She couldn't live outside of my body.
She commented on how I made many moms there uncomfortable because they hadn't any "choice" in the loss of their babies. Which is why I posted with my story at the beginning and begged anyone who was uncomfortable to let me know, specifically to avoid this sort of thing. And she said no biblical scholar could really support me, that they must be people who study things about the bible and not the bible itself. Which simply isn't true.
She went on to call me cowardly, and say that I would have to answer to Jesus for my stubbornness, continuing to excuse my decision instead of take responsibility for it. Well, gee, I don't know how I could not find that hurtful. Later she called me a boil on the bottom of her foot. That was actually a new one.
Why is it so hard to be a Christian? Why do I continue to struggle with the same selfishness over and over again? This woman is in pain. And it can't have been easy for her to have me in the group no matter what Sarah died from. I'm young, I have 3 healthy children, and I got pregnant again without difficulty! And yet every part of me wants to defend myself, defend my love for my daughter, defend my right as a Christian sister for mercy and compassion. But what's the point? She wouldn't believe me anyway. And she's in so much pain right now. She'll be in pain forever with two little girls together in the cemetery. How can I do anything but pray for her and love her?
Why is it so hard to be a Christian? Why do I still struggle to put others first? Why can't God just remove my faults and make me a better person? I find myself over and over again in tears just praying that He would fix me. Why does it even matter if someone I've never actually met face to face doesn't like me?
I suppose the answer to that is that she's a real person, in real pain. And it truly bothers me deeply that she'll never know that I'm not the evil person that she thinks I am. But then again, maybe I am. That's why I need Christ so much. It also bothers me that as a sister in Christ I want to reach out to her in comfort, but I know it would never be accepted. It just hurts.
I wish that I could see more clearly through my own pain at times. But grief has been a sort of frosted window, making everything else seem less real. Nothing as real as the weight on my chest and the emptiness of my arms. No matter what our decision, Sarah was a baby lost. And it hurt like hell. It still does.
I beg for prayer for her and her family. And for me and my stubborn heart. One day maybe the words of others will hurt less. But somehow I doubt it will be soon.