Long-Suffering at 4:30am

It was 4:30am. Time seems to stop in the middle of the night. Everything is quite, peaceful, and dark. Her nerves couldn’t take it anymore. She lay there wrestling with the excitement and hope this would be the day; possibly one of the greatest days of her life. Finally, she couldn’t take it anymore. She took the test and waited and waited and waited. Why do those darn tests take so long to reveal the results anyhow? Her husband was awake with her, as he was always there for everything. “NOT PREGNANT,” it read…again.

This was me recently for what feels like the millionth time. The struggle of remaining hopeful, but not too hopeful. Be prepared to be excited, but also for the sting of recurring disappointment. Month after month has turned into year after year. How on Earth we’ve made it this far? Jesus. Just like that morning and every other time we’ve felt disappointment, He’s met us there with comfort + peace. When I have to read those words and get that sinking feeling month after month, God meets me there so I don’t actually sink. When I feel like a giant is standing on my chest, God is there to carry the weight. When I can’t find the words to pray, God assures me He understands.

Our infertility journey has turned into ‘long-suffering.’ Long-suffering is having or showing patience in spite of troubles. Isn’t patience just tough, right? I mean, we’re all waiting on something in our lives. Waiting to see if we made a good grade on the exam, waiting on the guy you see everyday between classes to ask you out, waiting on the right guy at the right time to call husband, waiting on all the pieces of your wedding to fall into place beautifully, waiting on the closing of the house you’re ready to call home, waiting on the promotion at the job you’ve worked far too long with no recognition, waiting on your doctor to call with test results, waiting on a miracle baby. Sometimes this waiting turns into long-suffering. Long-suffering is not being able to see the light at the end of the tunnel for a very, very long period of time. You’re having to put one foot in front of the other each day out of faith for you’re not sure where you’re headed, but you’re trusting Jesus will lead you in the right direction.

Along with mine and Erik’s wait, my family has been long-suffering with the downhill slope of my grandparents aging. It’s almost unbearable watching someone who took care of you for so long needing you to return the favor. If we’ll be honest with ourselves and others, every one of us are carrying burdens as we walk through some sort of trial. Unfortunately, sin entered this world long ago and wrecked God’s perfect plan for us. Now while here on Earth, we’re in a steady tug-of-war between Satan and God. We all know God wins, but while we’re here Satan will use every opportunity to derail you, corrupt you, and distance you from God. This world is no longer perfect so there will be heartache, disease, sickness, evil, and long-suffering. You see, we are going to endure more than we can handle in this life. This causes us to look for help. This is the place where it’s so easy for the devil to slither in and tempt us with all kinds of enticing “help.” This is where we need to seek Jesus as much and as quickly as possible.

I’ve loved reading, It’s Not Supposed To Be This Way, by Lysa Terkeurst where she explains how to handle this well: “God is in overlooked places. We don’t have to find Him. God is not far from us. We just have to make the choice to see Him…I truly believe what keeps us on the path of long-suffering instead of veering off in the dangerous direction of wallowing is to wake up with great expectation of these little reminders of God’s goodness.” It would have been so easy to have a complete meltdown, like a total kicking + sobbing, “I’m done with this, going to go crawl in a hole” meltdown at 4:30am in defeat and let this ruin mine + my husband’s day, week, month {been there, done that}. Long-suffering takes SO much effort mentally to keep going. It’s a daily choice to keep putting one foot in front of the other. Finding the good in each day. Believing there is purpose in your pain.

“If God thought we could handle the promise today, He’d lift us up today. But if we aren’t standing on that firm rock, singing a glorious song, it’s because He loves us too much to lift us up there right now. This process isn’t a cruel way to keep you from the promise; it’s the exact preparation you’ll need to handle the promise” – Lysa Terkeurst. I believe God wants what’s best for us, even if our wants don’t add up to His. You can believe He is a good, good Father and wants the absolute best for His children. You may feel like your long-suffering is a punishment, but it’s far from it. By stepping out in good faith, your long-suffering is growing you tremendously, helping others, and displaying the works of God! How amazing, the God of the universe, would use little ol’ us to display His good works?! After all, that’s why we’re on this Earth…for His goodness and to share His love for us, friends. Don’t get caught up in the selfish realm of making yourself happy no matter the stakes. Stay on the right track.

“And the God of all grace, who called you to His eternal glory in Christ, after you have suffered a little while, will himself restore you and make you strong, firm and steadfast.” (1 Peter 5:10). We can rest in the assurance that suffering will end. There will be light at the end of the tunnel. You will have victory over this trial. It may not look exactly like the victory you imagined, but you will make it and it will be good. In the process of long-suffering, God is refining us to be able to handle the rest of our story.

Because there’s more to our story. If you are walking a path of long-suffering, you’re not alone. There are many others walking their own path of suffering. Keep taking those small steps and putting your faith in Christ. In the end, we know He wins and what joy to know we’re on the winning team. Keep trying, keep going, keep sight of the good things, keep your head up, keep smiling. I know we will make it. I know I’ll get my positive sign and you’ll get your victory. We’ve got this, friend!

Love and prayers,

Fallon


Light in Dark Days

I am still overwhelmed from the outpour of love and encouragement we got after sharing our journey with infertility.  From the bottom of our hearts, thank you for taking the time to read our story and leave a note!  

A weight has truly been lifted after sharing our burden of infertility.  I felt like we were keeping this huge secret for no reason.  We are living it everyday and ’tis life.  I truly feel like God is working through Erik and I, our journey, and our trials.  I pray our vulnerability has touched you in some way or encouraged you in your own journey.  Knowing we’re helping others somehow makes all of this seem a little lighter.

When I first realized we needed fertility help, those were some of the darkest days of my life.  When you’re down Satan just loves to kick ya.  He constantly pours lies into your mind and makes you feel like you’re drowning in despair.  The only way to rise above this is to speak truth, read truth, and grow closer to Jesus.  It’s a NEW YEAR and we’re going to work at this together! I am so happy to share with you a few ways that have helped me tremendously in our journey:

First, tell yourself that your situation or trial does NOT define you.  Just because you’re going through an incredibly hard time doesn’t mean your life as a whole is ruined.  “We are troubled on every side, yet not distressed; we are perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not forsaken; cast down, but not destroyed.” (2 Corinthians 4:8-9) God knows the crushing feeling Erik and I are experiencing and He knows how you feel too. Find light in everyday.  Talk to God and let him know exactly how you’re feeling.  He understands, He cares, and He will send you comfort.  Just remember, there will be better days.  Have grace with yourself, have grace with others, and trust you’re doing the best you can.

I could easily tell myself those things everyday, but sometimes I needed the extra reminder. I found I love doing a quick devotion in the mornings. After telling my parents we were dealing with this, my mom surprised me with the sweetest book, In Due Time by Caroline Harries. It’s a 60-Day Devotional on “Hope & Encouragement in the Waiting.” My mom did the devotional also and we learned it was helpful no matter the trial you’re facing. Just spending the extra 5-10 minutes in the morning with Jesus helps me throughout the rest of my day! I have also LOVED the book, It’s Not Supposed To Be This Way by Lysa Terkuerst and the devotional, Embraced by Lysa.

Social media is such a big part of our lives now. I love keeping up with family and friends via Facebook/Instagram. I’ve always followed a few gals sharing their infertility struggles, but when we found ourselves in the same situation, their encouragement and posts meant so much more to me. I began searching for similar accounts and I didn’t feel so alone. I may not know these people personally, but I know their hurts and fears. I’ve got a little community base and I love being encouraged by ladies who have walked in my shoes. If infertility is your struggle, I highly suggest following the #infertility! It’s opened my eyes so much and revealed there are SO many couples dealing with this. You’re never alone!

Due to social media being a big part of our lives, we’re also on our phones constantly. I know this may seem small, but it’s such a little pick-me-up throughout my day! Find some encouraging/hopeful phone screens on Pinterest. Save them as your “lock screen” and each time you go to open your phone you’ll see that bit of hope. I change mine every couple weeks. Here are a few of my favorites…PrayGrace, Worth, Spirit.

Social media is great, but you also need a real life community that has your back. Opening up to my family and close friends about our struggle is one of the hardest things I’ve ever done. It’s extremely difficult telling the people who love you most this disappointment and pain you’ve been dealing with. I didn’t want anyone else to carry this burden, but I quickly learned we would not be able to carry this ourselves. I needed my mama to surprise me with that devotional, I need the random “how are you” texts from my mother-in-law, the cheer-me-up talks from my sister + sister-in-law, and the extra knowledge from my close friends who have been through this. I’m not sure I could have made it without all these little moments combined. I think I would have had a mental breakdown, pulled my hair out, or legit lost it without them! Be sure you have your “people!!” Just know if you’ve made it this far in this post, I’m always here for you!

There’s so many other things that have helped, but these really stood out to me. Now I want to hear what’s helped you through your trials! Please let me know below and I’ll be praying for you, friend.

Love,

Fallon

The Journey of Heartache, Faith, and Hope

  It’s been so long since I’ve written a post.  Forgive me if my writing is a little rusty.  There’s just something about spelling your feelings out on a blank page.  I’ve missed it.  Things have been a whirlwind for some time now. IMG_9921 I’ve learned life can’t always be planned, comfortable, and organized.  Life can sometimes be unfair and just plain hard.  Erik and I have been “sitting on the fence” about sharing a burden that’s tugged on our hearts for so long.  God has been chiseling away and we’re ready to open up in hopes you will pray for us.  Let this be a reminder: everyone is facing their own unique journey and battles.  There’s so much more to life than what you see on one another’s status updates and picture perfect moments.

Jesus said, “Bear one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ” Galatians 6:2

I remember when Erik and I decided we were ready for our own family.  We had enjoyed 4 years of adventures, traveling, sweet memories, and marriage.  It was such a milestone for us; feeling the eagerness to be parents together.  We prayed heavily about the decision and knew it was our time.  I was ready to be called mom and see Erik as a dad! Everything I do, I do 110%.  This would be no different.  I researched and read on average it takes 3-6 months for most couples to get a positive sign.  With my Type A personality, I began tracking everything.  3 months passed, no big deal.  6 months later, life was busy, we were traveling so often with Erik’s show schedule.  A year crept by of logging symptoms on an app, counting down the days, living “the two week wait” over and over and over again.  My heart began to get so weary and discouraged.  After wrestling with some pride and denial, we reached out to family and close friends. IMG_0039 We had several doctors appointments with no answers.  The months were passing us by and I couldn’t grasp that we were really facing this.  I never thought I would live this.  I never thought it would happen to me.  I remember always feeling so sorry for couples dealing with infertility.  I couldn’t imagine the heartache they experienced.  However; we eventually found ourselves sitting in front of a nice doctor at a fertility clinic with the same heartache. I remember the first time I saw the word ‘infertility’ on our medical documents.  It was like a dagger to my hopeful heart.  Maybe that’s dramatic, but this word brings so much hurt, damage, and loneliness.  I’ve learned it’s something you truly cannot understand unless you’ve walked in those shoes and lived it every moment of every day. IMG_0026 There’s really good, hopeful days and days I literally don’t know how I got out of bed.  There’s moments I hear the word baby and a lump swells up in my throat.  There’s times I get out the cute little onesie I bought with excitement at the start of this adventure and tears come to my eyes.  Daily, we’re having to choose joy over this battle.  Infertility is a crippling struggle. So here I am writing this post.  Pouring my heart and guts out on the stinkin’ internet.  Humbly, genuinely asking you to please think of us, friend.  We know there will be big steps and decisions to be made.  Our first desire is to stay in God’s will for our lives and secondly, to be parents to a sweet, precious, miracle baby.  Please pray for us, our doctor, nurses, and others struggling with the heartache of infertility. img_0372 I believe there are times in our lives for helping carry people’s burdens and there are times for letting people carry you through.  I’ve accepted this is our time to be carried.  I am so thankful for the strength God has given us thus far.  I’m incredibly grateful Erik is continuously speaking truth to me, encouraging me, praying for me, and leading me through this time in our lives.  We’re taking this journey step by step; navigating through all the appointments, bills, and waiting as optimistic as we can.  I am also very appreciative of our families and friends that have stood behind us and cheered us on every step.  We literally could not do this without their motivation and love.  You know who you are! IMG_0119 I believe God wants His children to be real with one another.  Facebook, Instagram…it’s all just bits and pieces.  Let us be a little more transparent.  If you’re facing this or have questions about infertility, I’m here for you!  Opening up to a friend is the best thing I ever did.  This life isn’t a race.  We’re all just walking each other “home.”  Be kind, y’all.  That’s why we’re here anyways.  To love God, love people, and share our faith; even if it’s small as a mustard seed.  Keep us in your prayers as we conquer this tough journey. Love, Fallon + Erik

“He performs wonders that cannot be fathomed, miracles that cannot be counted.” Job 5:9

 
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