Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Two sides

I've gotten a few questions about what happened after the sermon I posted about here. I don't really have anything new to say. We haven't talked to our pastor. Chris called the associate pastor for help and got some good advice about reconciliation. Basically, he said that sometimes reconciliation comes in two forms. If we felt we were going to hold something against our pastor by not talking to him about the sermon, then we should talk out our feelings with him. But if we could reconcile the situation without talking to him and not have a 'personal voodoo doll' for him, then we were fine in not talking to him.

I still don't know where I am. Chris, I think, is fine in not talking to him. I haven't decided if I want to approach him. It must be hard to get up in front of a church of 500+ people and preach a sermon that will reach everyone. I know he meant no harm and I know I am really super sensitive and vulnerable. So...that's where I am right now...

Maybe one day, I will talk to him about it. I don't have a 'personal voodoo doll' for him (that's my favorite way of saying that I don't hold anything against a person), but I still think I would like to talk to him about the imagery he used.

The other side to this story is that through the sermon I have made a new friend. A very unlikely friend. One that will probably make your jaws drop open. 

She came looking for me after I went running (well, fast walking) from the sanctuary with tears streaming down my face. She sat with me in the floor while I cried. Ever since that Sunday she has made a point to talk to me and call me when she can. Yesterday, she invited me over to her house. And I went. And I actually had a good time. 
Where's the part where your jaws drop open?

She has an infant son. 

He's two months old. He has black hair that sticks straight up on his head and looks a lot like I imagine Owen would have looked like at this age. 

I know. I know. I seriously can't believe it myself. I know it is the work of the Holy Spirit that is enabling our new friendship. I know it is the grace of God. 

And I'm thankful for this friendship. I'm thankful for this little boy who is helping to restore my joy around babies. She left the room yesterday to change her other child's diaper (she has twin girls too) and it was just me and this tiny baby boy. I sat down beside him and looked at his wriggling little legs. I put my thumb against his foot to measure the size of Owen's feet against his (Owen's foot was exactly the height of my thumb)...R.'s feet were not much bigger than Owen's, which again proves my theory that my child had some huge feet! 
As he grunted and cooed, my heart was sad but somehow lighter too. I know how this is going to sound, but it is such a burden to hate babies. I know you know what I mean.

We sat there together (I still can't hold babies) and I felt the reconciliation I have been longing for. Reconciliation with her living baby and my baby in Heaven. I felt reconciled with his cute button nose and chubby knees and my longing for precious Owen. 
It is okay to adore babies. While stroking his soft little feet, it is okay to have joy and sorrow; happiness and jealousy can abide side by side in my heart. I can still struggle with the jealousy, and I can smile a baby too. 

I am still 2ww-ing. Thanks again for praying.


Emily said...

Oh, I have been wondering if you had approached your pastor. I did have a conversation with ours after an awful Sunday. He did say felt terrible, and he apologized, and he said that it didn't even cross his mind how I would feel.

It was actually that last part that still stings- knowing that our loss didn't affect our pastor. But good luck in however you approach the reconciliation.

It is hard to hate babies! I like how you describe the strange feelings of lightness and joy around a baby, and pure sorrow too. I don't know how our bodies/souls/minds can hold such extreme emotions at the same time. I guess we've been torn apart, and therefore can extend all the way around both emotions.

I"m so glad someone followed you out, and that you have made a friend, and that you are able to gently enter the space near an infant.

Rebecca said...

I like your term about the 'personal voodoo doll'. Think I'll have to use that now.

Sorry about hating babies, but glad that the joy & sorrow can live side-by-side. I am crying for you right now, but I'm not really sure why. Probably because I bet Olivia would've had black spiky hair & be all cooing and snuggly right about now. I think the fact that my sister-in-law just had a baby yesterday & the fact that I *know* about the 'hating' babies thing now might have something to do with it.

Still praying for your 2ww.

Keisha Valentina said...

This is beautiful Ebe!

Traci said...

God is so cool in the way He does things sometimes! To allow you the ability to adjust to being around a little one whose mom was sent to comfort you....

Praying with you through the 2ww.
Love You.

Mrs. MK said...

Ebe, I am so glad to hear that you have made a new friend, and have found moments of joy with her little son! I know that I still recoil a bit from babies, which really stinks, becuase we have 4 new ones in our extended family and my sil is pregnant. Just hard.

Sara said...

I can so relate to the difficulty and exhaustion of not liking babies... especially when I am the type of person who previously was a baby lover to the max. Tiring. Ebe, I am so glad you were able to experience the joy and not just the sadness with that little baby boy... the jealousy with the happiness. I don't think I am quite there... but it encourages me. Still praying for you... thanks for keeping us posted:)
God's peace,

dorothe said...

This posting made my heart jump. Love you lots.

Becky said...

Girl, You are in great company!
I spoke last month at the Bereaved Parents of the USA Gathering in New York and noticed that almost wthout exception, most attendees had been emotionally wounded by leaders within the church!
I DO think the pain of our grief becomes a thick filter which distorts the things we hear, but we do the best we can.
You pastor will probably be sad that he hurt you and I am thrilled that you now have a new friend! Ohh,..God's ways!