Cynthia is a mom of two grown boys, and I have known her and her boys for a long time now. We would usually just gist about our children, when we meet. I had never met her husband until recently, but I knew he worked outside the country and that his wife was not happy that he wasn’t coming home as often as she and the children would like.
Neither did she like the fact that she had to raise the boys by herself. She gets so frustrated at times and I understand how that can get. Unfortunately, the boys bear the brunt and I can see the questions in their eyes, at their mom’s reaction to something she wouldn’t have even raised an eyebrow to in another circumstance.
Anyways, her husband came home for her 40th birthday last month, and it was such a fun time. He went the extra mile, just to make sure she had a good time on that day and the week leading up to it. With the help of her sisters and mother, they pulled a modest surprise birthday party for her. While Cynthia had planned a thanksgiving service and lunch with her family, later in the day she got more. While they were at the church, her home was transformed into a party zone with a huge banner bearing her pictures over the years put up, food caterers and drinks set up, friends, colleagues, neighbours and family were all invited. Let’s just say, Cynthia was pleasantly surprised.
I had often heard TTC buzz around her, but that birthday, I pieced it all together. Apparently, Cynthia had gotten pregnant for her secondary school sweetheart and since her parents would not hear of abortion, she had had the baby, even though the shame had nearly killed her.
Life went back to normal, she went back to school, he went back to school, no pressures of marriage on them, but they were both still very much in each other’s lives. Cynthia’s parents watched over their kid.
However, one year after the birth of that son, Cynthia found out she was pregnant again. It was absolute horror! Her father hit the roof in his anger, her mother was too furious to talk to her. Her boyfriend dared not come near their house, even to see his son.
The blame game started between the parents. One set blamed the boy, another blamed Cynthia for getting pregnant again. In the end, both agreed that this time, they were going to get married. So, by age 21, Cynthia walked down the aisle with her boyfriend and father of her children.
It wasn’t an easy time for them, as she and her husband squatted with his parents, who took every opportunity to remind her she got herself into this mess. It grew worse when their son dropped out of school to get a job to provide for his young family.
This young man worked hard and somehow got an opportunity to travel outside the country. He grabbed it with both hands and left, leaving her and his boys in the custody of his parents. Truth be told, they did not do a very good job of that. They literally frustrated her life. It took years for Cynthia’s husband to find his footing and send anything home but when he did, the first thing she did was move out and rent an apartment for herself and the boys.
Life got easier after that, as he settled in and he was even able to come home. That was close to six years later. While he was home, they tried for a baby; they wanted a girl but it didn’t happen, they were disappointed but glad that they still had the boys.
Just for formality sake, Cynthia went to the hospital to run some tests and the results were shocking. She had no egg reserve! There was no way she could get pregnant with her own eggs. She might just be 27 years old, but she might as well be menopausal for all her results showed.
That was when Cynthia realised there were so many things that were off about her menstrual cycle, which she had not paid attention to. For one, her period was not regular and she had put that down to her high stress level, running around with two boys and all. When the period came, it was mostly spotting and clots, nothing like a normal flow.
When she told the doctor about all of these other symptoms, the doctor asked if she had had any children and if she wanted to have any. When she replied in the affirmative to the first question, the doctor literally heaved a sigh of relief when she mentioned she had two babies.
Slammed right her face was the door to that sunshine princess dream. A baby girl wasn’t happening. You know there are some things you would never know you want, until you are told you can’t ever have them. That was how Cynthia felt.
Later that day, she told her husband about the doctor’s verdict and the first thing he said was, “Let’s get a second opinion and we will get it over here, when you guys come over.” It was six months later that she got their second opinion, and it was the same.
There was no way she would be able to have a baby with her own eggs. She had suffered premature ovarian failure, and from all indications, it had happened years ago and was just being diagnosed.
When the doctor asked if they would consider donor eggs, both Cynthia and her husband said no at the same time.
In that moment, Cynthia was filled with so much gratitude to God, who had engineered her life’s path so. Getting pregnant twice out of wedlock wasn’t a walk in the park. It was a shameful thing for her. Even though it happened several years ago, she still had a chip on her shoulder regarding it. She was filled with wonder, at how that very object of her shame was indeed meant for her beautification.
Just thinking about it, I wonder if she had aborted those pregnancies out of shame, she might have found herself going through the TTC journey, with a heavy burden in her heart, about the babies she had had but had aborted.
This life is filled with many turns and twists, that it takes grace to keep moving and not beat oneself up over every misstep.
Day dreams of baby girls have been banished with constant reminders of what God has done for her.
And ladies, that is the right step forward.
Let’s keeping moving.
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