Tuesday, April 25, 2017

National Infertility Awareness Week

While I like that special week designations shine a spotlight on specific causes, I find myself disliking "special" weeks too. The attention, awareness, and education that these weeks offer is encouraging; unfortunately, the spotlight shining and "acceptance" sometimes seems to last only seven days.

At the Christian college I attended, we had a Spiritual Emphasis Week every year. The idea behind it was to take a week and bring in special speakers to engage our campus in further dialogue about our faiths. In theory, that doesn't sound bad. But really, Spiritual Emphasis Week? Do we only want to emphasize spiritual things for a week? For seven days? What about the other 51 weeks of the year?

Remember Red Ribbon Week at school? Say that fives times fast. I'm certain it's still around. The week where we talked about not doing drugs every single day. We wore red and had crazy door decorating contests. You remember that?

These themed, titled weeks are not bad. Really, they aren't. They do have value. I'm not a total pessimist this morning! But I think my main beef, the thing that leaves me with a sour taste in my mouth for these "special" weeks is the idea that usually, after the week is over, the topic or cause goes back in the closet or is seen as taboo again.

I understand that certain topics make us feel uncomfortable. We feel challenged by our naivety, or our lack of knowledge on the topic.

This is okay.

This week is National Infertility Awareness Week, the one week where it's more permissible to dive into that uncomfortable conversation. The week were couples can open up about the deep valleys they've traveled with the hope of coming out on the other side, baby in hand.

Still, I am not so naive to think that once this week is over, society will embrace infertility as a topic that is fine to bring up at the family dinner table, or in the faculty lounge, or in the cubicles at work. I doubt that insurance companies will see this medical condition as one that warrants funding for treatment. Unfortunately, the need for awareness about infertility will still exist.

You know what though? One thing this week has brought to my attention is the fact that I am okay talking about the valleys and the hard stuff, beyond this "special" week. Chris and I have walked through some dark places on our path to parenthood. And God has and will use them. All of them. None of our pain or discomfort or embarrassment is a waste. God will use it.

When life doesn't go the way we want it to, or the path in front of us does not align with our dreams, we doubt God. We doubt His goodness. Even in those bleak, empty places, He is with us, working out a plan for us. He is FOR us.

You may be in a dark place where you can't see Him. He's there.

And if you want to talk to someone who gets the pain of the void of a failed pregnancy, a failed plan, I'm here. And not just this week. The other 51 too.

Simply complete the Contact Form below. Let me know how I can pray for you.


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