Crushed. Dejected. Isolated. These are some of the feelings I had after my hysterectomy and six failed adoptions. The problem was, I was too upset and mad at God to feel them. Why me, why us, Lord?! Haven’t we been faithful to you? We had a chaste dating life and served you in the Church! Why did you open so many doors leading us to believe you would bless us with children, only to slam them back to our faces?! Why? Why? Why?
I desperately wanted to feel “normal” again. I missed the joyful, spirit-filled person that I was before the infertility issues. Not even an eight-day Ignatian retreat (thankfully, though, I had some breakthrough in a second Ignatian retreat) could draw me out of deep this darkness and desolation.
Our Blessed Mother must have heard my plea for help. One day during Lenten Adoration, the meditation from the Fourth Station of the Cross, when Jesus met His Sorrowful Mother, spoke volumes to me:
“Jesus returns your gaze. Does he see a why in your eyes? Couldn’t he work a miracle now? He worked so many for others. He worked the Cana miracle for you. He raised the widow’s dead son for her. Couldn’t he change things now so you could go home together and live a simple, good life?
…You gaze at one another. These seconds speak more than many words. This is how it ought to be for us. Every day, there are such encounters. With your divine Son, will you, too, walk beside me, look at me deep down, return my why with your gentle presence? When we look at one another, let it be as valuable as a long conversation…” (Mary’s Way of the Cross – Walking with the Mother of Jesus by Irma Pfeifer, Translated and adapted by M. Jean Frisk, page 13).
I started sobbing after reading this reflection. It dawned on me that Jesus had to say no to Mary too. If He could deny her, His most beloved Mother, He could say no to me too. Therefore, I’m in good company because Mary completely understands me.
Our Savior knew that a greater good would come out of His passion, death, and resurrection. And in my case, there are good things coming out of my pain and suffering from infertility, if I only look with the eyes of faith, as Mary did. “Lord, I believe; help my unbelief!” (Mark 9:24)
It was so cleansing to let go of the bottled-up tears that I had held on to for about ten years. I felt so much lighter after this healing episode. For me, grief is not a one and done event. Sometimes tears come during the most unexpected moments. But I’m forever grateful for this Lenten meditation that brought me so much consolation, leaving me feeling less crushed, less dejected, and less isolated.
This post was written by Agnes, a Springs in the Desert writer.