Faith

I don’t know how much I’ve written on this blog about religion. I try to stay away from topics like that because to me faith is a very personal thing. I’m writing this because God has been on my mind a lot lately and I really feel the need to let some things out. I should probably be doing this with a therapist but figured a couple hundred internet strangers will work!

Both J and I were raised LDS (mormon). Yup, one of those ‘weirdos’. Despite what some may think it is not a cult, and for the most part the church is made up of really wonderful people. There are things that I very much disagree with that the church teaches, but there are also some things that I really like. Despite that both of us have distanced ourselves from the religion and do not actively practice any organized faith. I’ve maintained a belief in God since distancing myself from the church. I’ve always subscribed to the idea that if you are a good person and try your best in this life, that you do not necessarily need to be a part of a church in order to please God. My God is a loving God. Not one to be fearful of.

I was raised with the idea that we are all give ‘trials’ in this life. That we will struggle and that by overcoming these struggles we will become stronger and better people. I was told that God would never give us a trial that we were not able to overcome. That right there is where I lost my faith.

I’ve only ever wanted to be a mother. I never had plans of college or career. I was going to be a mom, end of story. Convenient then that my trial in life seem to be infertility. Infertility killed my relationship with God. If He thought I could overcome this and become a better person than He was wrong. I’ve come a long way with accepting my situation since Muppet was born. But I am far from over it. I don’t think I ever will be. The bitterness resides within me and every so often it bubbles over, despite how hard I try to suppress it. And most of that bitterness is directed to God.

WHY did this have to be my trial? Of all the things in the world, why this? Maybe that makes me sound like a horrible person because I know there are a lot worse things out there than not being able to have a child but I can’t help but feel this way. It is the only thing I ever wanted. The only thing I ever asked Him for.

I’m especially bitter about my 2nd pregnancy. The other 3 were hard to lose, it is never easy to lose something you want so desperately. But I lost them early, early enough that I hadn’t become too attached. I still was able to maintain some sanity afterwards. But that 2nd one. It still hurts. I saw that heartbeat THREE times. If He was going to take my baby away from me why did He leave it long enough for me to see that? Why did He let me come to love that baby so much? I still have my ultrasound pictures. They are tucked away in a drawer and I still haven’t been able to bring myself to throw them away. I don’t think I let on to anyone how much that loss damaged me, even you guys. There was a very real time that I was suicidal. I was so hurt that I just wanted it to end. I thought it would be better for J, he could find someone else that wasn’t so broken. I don’t really know how I over came that, but I did. I now realize how scary my life was back then. I should have reached out to someone but I didn’t.

We had some missionaries from the church visit us this week. They are nice boys and we hold no grudge towards the church so we always let them in to chat. During our discussion they talked about answered prayers and the whole time all I could think about was all the nights I spent on my knees praying that my baby would survive. Obviously those prayers went very much unanswered. It almost made me mad at these two boys. I know that they are young and that their life experience is rather limited so I didn’t mention my anger. I know they wouldn’t have the answers for me anyways and it wasn’t their fault. They are just doing what they believe is right. But ever since they left I can’t shake all these thoughts that are running through my head.

I hate living with this hanging over my head. I can feel the bitterness inside me and it almost disturbs me. I am not an angry or vengeful person by nature. I like to think the best of people and the world. But the longer this goes on the more I question if I will ever be able to get past it. For some people living without faith might not seem like a big deal, but to me it is. It scares me more than I think I’m willing to admit out loud. It has always been a part of who I am and even though I have distanced myself from organized religion, my faith has always been something that I have used to help guide me through life. I want Muppet to have a belief system. I don’t care which one, she is free to choose, but I want her to believe in something. Right now I feel like I can’t expect that of her though, because I’m not sure if I believe anymore. I want to get past this, but I just don’t think I’m strong enough.

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10 Comments

Filed under Depression, Infertility, Miscarriage, Motherhood, RPL

10 responses to “Faith

  1. Though I don’t comment often, I am reading.

    But I do wish I was there to wrap my arms around you now. All you’re feeling, I’ve felt too. The idea of a benevolent God has completely died for me after this experience. To lose all my babies, especially when there was so much hope, torn my hearts into a million pieces. And though it is mending, the scars remain.

    I wish I had answers for you. I wish I knew what to tell you for all that happened. But what I do know is that a major part of healing is revisiting the pain. Asking those questions and finding peace with the trauma. All of it is far from easy. But I’m here listening and supporting you.
    Much love to you, J and Muppet

  2. I could have written this post word for word. My faith is totally failing me .. and I hear you, re: the later miscarriage. Breaks my heart constantly. I think we’re off His radar, to be honest. Sad, hey? You’re not alone. x

  3. Trisha you are not alone. I hope Im not overstepping by what Im about to say but I pray my words reach you in a good place. First off I want to say I also believe in a good God and I also believe (to an extent) that one does not have to go to church to believe. But I’ve learned lately that it helps. I’m fortunate to have found a church that helps me grow in my faith which has taught me the importance of community. For me, and many I am close to, church is about way more than worship. Church for me is almost like a hospital. Or at best, a spiritual mirror. I go there to help me learn what Im doing wrong in my life and to get help fixing it. I go there because when Im walking through something difficult, I have people, friends I can rely on to help me through it while helping me keep my eyes on God through it all. So no, those young missionary boys may not have had a lot of world experience. But maybe there’s a ladies group at that church (or any church) who might be able to help you. And don’t stop looking until you find it.

    Now this next bit might be where I lose you because I’ll admit I don’t know too much about being a mormon. I do know your book differs from mine but I don’t know how much. And I dont want to try and fix your life in a blog comment so I’ll just say that there are two books I read that changed my life forever and helped me overcome pain in my past. The first was a book called The Shack by William P young. The second is the book of Job in the Bible. (If you find it hard to read, try the Message version.) But both are about reconciling your inner pain when bad things happen to otherwise good people. If you ever want to talk more about it, I will always be here. But in the meantime, please know I am praying for you. And I do hope you can find someone to talk to.

  4. Wow, I could have written this too. In fact, I did write something sort of similar. http://apluseffort.com/2011/09/24/the-bends/ I don’t have any advice because I’m still not sure I”m over it either, but hugs to you.

  5. The struggle to reconcile your faith with your indescribably painful experiences is, I think, completely normal and totally okay. When my sister lost her triplets, and she was so deeply angry with God and all things religion, a friend of mine at work said something very insightful: We often fight the hardest and get most hurt with someone we are deeply committed to. If she didn’t love God and value that relationship, it would be easier to just walk away from Him and not fight it out in her prayers everyday. You don’t usually argue extensively with a stranger who hurts you, only with the person who matters enough to fight it out with – because we all hope that at the end of the fight, there is reconciliation and deeper understanding. So keep fighting, because your relationship with God *is* worth it. ::big hug::

  6. Trisha, I don’t comment much here anymore, but this post really spoke to my heart. I have felt everything you are feeling, most especially after my miscarriage and in the months that followed, but sometimes even now. I don’t know that I ever stopped believing because I just couldn’t allow myself to go there since my faith is a pivotal part of my life as well and I know I would feel utterly lost without it. BUT I did struggle with enormous anger towards God and found myself in a place where I was unable to understand what kind of god would allow this sort of loss to happen to me, or anyone who was desperately wanting and deserving of a child.

    I don’t have many answers. What I have come to accept is that that’s okay. I’m just human. I can’t see the big picture. Maybe I’m not supposed to understand. I hope I one day will, whether now or at some point in my eternal life, but maybe I won’t and I just have learned to be okay with the idea that there are some things I don’t know, but God does. Somehow (and I’m not exactly sure how), I have just learned to trust that He knows better and while I still hate that I lost my baby, I trust that there was maybe a reason for it that I can’t see…and maybe never will. It’s not easy, I know that.

    I’m wishing you lots of peace, Trisha, and I’ll pray that you find your way on your own journey of faith. I believe in a loving God, too, and I think He understands faith isn’t easy for us human beings and I think He expects us to lose our way sometimes — as long as we keep seeking a way back to Him, however long it takes. xo

  7. Most of your commentors will make helpful suggestions on how you can reconcile your faith and hopefully those help you. If they don’t, here is my comment:

    If you cannot reconcile your faith with your life, then maybe take a break and stop trying. I’m not suggesting you become an athiest (although there is a freedom that comes from appreciating miracles and tragedies simply for what they are and not attributing them to any higher power and that higher power’s regard, disregard, or simple apathy for us as human beings).

    Maybe leave God out of your thoughts for awhile. It is exhausting, trying to find meaning in things over which you have no control and continuously questioning and wondering where to place blame.

    Try living without the concept of God and see how you feel. It’s just a thought, and perhaps my suggestion will be a challenge or a test to your faith that you can pass and feel stronger. Or maybe you won’t feel like you are living in a Murphy’s Law nightmare.

    Millions of people worldwide find comfort in a God or some type of faith and millions of others don’t. Don’t feel like you have to be the former if it feels right to be the latter.

    However this plays out, know that there are people in both camps who are thinking of you and sending you our best.

    Take care.

  8. Ah I’ve totally been there too. A few times. I’m so sorry you’re feeling this way, but proud of you for being honest. For me, ultimately, reclaiming my faith is what gets me through each day. I’m sending big hugs to you.

  9. Such big hugs to you!! It’s so complicated when trying to reconcile feelings from a trauma and trying to make sense of everything. We want to find a reason and someone/thing to blame when many times there is no reason and no one/thing to blame and we are just left holding the sadness and anger and have no where to go with it. I’m a huge believer in counseling when you have a therapist that you feel completely comfortable with I truly think the years I spent in therapy both before and after my loss saved me and my marriage. I was troubled by things that had haunted me since childhood and I was ignoring and fighting those scary feelings but they never went away until I faced them. And that was something I just could not do on my own.
    I can’t really speak to how to reconcile these feelings around your faith. I grew up in a Lutheran home going to church every Sunday, but during my time in therapy and after losing a pregnancy I found that God and faith and church really wasn’t what I believed in. My husband is an atheist and growing up I never thought that I would marry someone who didn’t go to church or believe in God and I certainly didn’t think that I would have a child who wasn’t baptized or going to church regularly but when I truly listened to myself and my needs and where I found strength it wasn’t in church or with God. It’s incredibly difficult for our families to understand but we are living our lives and raising our kids the best way we can and we are so happy. And for a very long time I wasn’t happy so that feels so very good.
    There isn’t a right or wrong way to navigate this you just have to find your way.

  10. 35life

    I feel the same way you do. I will never understand why certain people are blessed and others are not. I will never understand why certain people experience loss so deeply (not just ttc) while others do not. I have come to hate the word “blessed” actually. Especially when it’s used for successfully having children because it makes me feel like I’m not allowed to use that word. I go to church twice a year and can’t bring myself to do much more than that. I will never understand why drug addicts or others who don’t deserve children are so easily able to. When I pray, I feel like I’m begging and pleading, which makes me feel ridiculous. I guess what I’m trying to say is that you’re not alone.

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