As I write this post, 17-month-old M is napping in my arms. I'm having one of those moments where I just gaze at his innocent little face and tear up because he's my dream come true. A dream I almost stopped hoping for month after infertile month when the pain of not conceiving felt like too much. It hurt to hope only to be crushed by the weight of monthly disappointment.
But I'm glad I held onto hope because he's here. He's right here in my arms and he couldn't have been more worth the wait.
If there's anyone reading this who is struggling to conceive and struggling even harder to hold onto hope, I want to share with you the hope onesie.
The hope onesie started on a day when my heart broke over two pregnancy announcements. I was jealous. Angry. Sad that it wasn't me. I sat down and wrote a letter to my future baby, and then I went shopping. Here's an excerpt from the letter:
I'm going to go out and buy a few baby clothes because I hope for you with such a fire! I haven't allowed myself to do it yet, but I need this today when my dream of you seems so far away. You're going to be here one day, and you'll need some clothes.
This is the hope onesie I bought that day.
The purpose of a hope onesie is to prepare for the baby you're hoping for. In the words of Pastor Joseph Prince, "'Hope' in the Bible is a confident and positive expectation of good." So if you're hoping for a baby, back up that hope with preparation for your baby! This is a show of faith. A way to prove to yourself that you believe.
I took this hope onesie out of its box month after month to hold it, pray, and imagine my baby wearing the onesie. This was the big hope onesie, but there were others too. Every month I wasn't pregnant, I had a good cry, I got angry, I laid it all out in front of God, and then...I went to the store for another onesie for my baby. I bought some gender neutral, some boy, some girl. It didn't matter. What mattered was that through the jealously, anger, and sadness, I chose hope. I turned my hope into something tangible I could touch when my waiting felt hopeless.
Here's a picture of my M wearing the hope onesie almost two years after I bought it.
This was a huge, surreal moment for me, the day he finally fit it, and I saw a complete living picture of what I had only dreamt of and prayed for all that time.
For those of you in the wait, I know how hard it is to hope. But don't give up! Go out and buy a hope onesie for your baby to show yourself that you believe, that you have an unquenchable hope. Your baby is going to wear that onesie one beautiful day.
"Hope deferred makes the heart sick, but a longing fulfilled is a tree of life." Proverbs 13:12
"We boast in the hope of the glory of God. Not only so, but we also glory in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. And hope does not put us to shame, because God's love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us." Romans 5:2-7
When Back-to-School is Hard: a Letter to those Experiencing Infertility or Pregnancy Loss
Prayer of Comfort for the Infertile and Mother of Angels
How my Past Infertility Affects My Motherhood for Better and for Worse
To the Infertile From Someone on the Other Side