because you can give life without giving birth

Hey, love.

Come on over. I’m curled up in a king-sized bed, with a tiny puppy who loves to snuggle, and there’s plenty of space for you. I have coffee. Granted, I’ve never actually MADE a cup of coffee in my life, so it’s from the coffee shop and I only have one cup, but I’m great at sharing.

Today is hard. It really is. I skipped church because, honestly, it’s easier to spend my morning grocery shopping and cooking and snuggling with my little furball than it is to go today. Because in a church full of families, my love and I are literally the only ones in the married-no-kids stage of life. And it’s not for lack of desire, or lack of trying. Three solid years of desire and trying, and nothing. We’ve been in the infertility category for two years now, and it weighs heavy on Mother’s Day. And I just can’t do it today. I can’t make myself go.

Is this an okay place for complete honesty? I started my period yesterday, and it sucks. It doesn’t always suck. Some months, it comes and goes without much fanfare or feeling, but this is not that month. This is the other kind of month, the one that finds me sitting in the floor of my shower on a Saturday night, sobbing and swearing and hurt and angry. And I’m a lucky lady, with a gentle and kind husband who meets me there, on the floor of the shower, and holds me while I cry. I don’t take for granted the abundance of my blessings.

But I can’t go to church today.

And I guess what I want to say is that it’s okay if you can’t either. You can come here, and curl up with me in my cozy bed, and I will hold your hand and we will have church over coffee and conversation.

And I will tell you something important. And it won’t fix anything. It won’t make the grief process easy. It won’t always make you feel better when you’re in a crowded room of mothers being asked to stand and be celebrated. But it’s true, and it’s a healing thread in a heart that feels like it’s breaking month after month after month.

You may never give birth. But giving birth isn’t a prerequisite to giving life. Your body might never stitch together a human being inside its dark corners, but you were BORN to create. To stitch together. To mend. To nurture. To raise up. To restore. To give life to people and things and places.

I’m learning, and the learning is oh-so-slow and oh-so-painful, but I’m learning that I am here to stitch together, into being, things that are not yet. Sometimes those broken things are fragmented thoughts that I stitch together into words, into music. Sometimes those broken things are people’s hearts, that I’m here to stitch together with love and compassion and grace.

And maybe some day, I’ll stitch together a person.

And maybe you will too.

But even if we don’t, we’re here for a reason, and we should do something about it. It’s easier together, so I want to hold your hand and cheer you on while you’re doing your thing. And I want you to hold my hand and cheer me on while I’m doing mine. Sometimes I might need you to push me, and remind me that my thing is beautiful and necessary and life-giving. And I’ll try to do the same for you.

Your thing is beautiful and necessary and life-giving. Even if it’s not motherhood, it’s beautiful and necessary and life-giving and you’ve just got to keep doing it.

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