When I read the story of Gideon in the Bible, I am always reminded of how Ellie came into our family.
The Lord appears to a man named Gideon and tells him to rescue Israel from the Midianites. Gideon, unsure that God will really be with him in this endeavor, asks for a sign.
“Then Gideon said to God, ‘If you are truly going to use me to rescue Israel as you promised, prove it to me in this way. I will put a wool fleece on the threshing floor tonight. If the fleece is wet with dew in the morning but the ground is dry, then I will know that you are going to help me rescue Israel as you promised.” Judges 6:36-37 (NLT). When God delivers on this request he asks for another sign; he lays out the fleece once again and asks for the ground to be wet while the fleece stays dry.
In early 2016, after several months of trying to get pregnant, I was diagnosed with “chronic anovulation” and told we would need fertility treatments in order to conceive. A few weeks after the diagnosis, I found out that come the end of the year the dream job I was working would be ending as well.
After a period of prayer David and I were still completely unsure what to do. Should we put fertility treatments on hold to allow me to find and grow into a new job? Should we throw caution to the wind and start treatments knowing that getting pregnant would make it difficult to find a new job and pretty much guarantee I would transition into being a stay-at-home-mom? This was something we both wanted, but weren’t sure if we could financially handle.
We asked and asked, but still God seemed silent.
Finally, we made a plan of action and hoped for a sign. I put my job hunt on hold for a few months while we pursued treatments. If the treatments didn’t work after a set period of time, we planned to put those on hold while I focused on finding a new job. The Lord’s answer became crystal clear when we surprised all of our doctors by getting pregnant right away after just one round of Clomid.
Not exactly laying down a fleece, but the sentiment feels very similar.
Fast forward to early 2019 when we have a spunky almost two year-old and I finally feel like I have my stay-at-home-mom feet underneath me. David and I had long said we would start thinking about a second child once Ellie turned two but I brought up the topic a little early, reasoning it would surely take several months at a minimum and possibly even a second round of fertility treatments to get pregnant again. He agreed, so I deleted the “take birth control” reminder that popped up on my phone every night and didn’t think too much about it. I was more curious to see if my body would work properly than anything else.
Imagine our surprise when mere weeks later my morning cup of coffee tasted like soap (one of the first signs of my pregnancy with Ellie) and I once again found myself standing in our bathroom holding a test with two pink lines on it. I walked out to the kitchen where David was getting Ellie’s breakfast ready and held it out to him, unable to really do anything but laugh with nervous excitement. He looked at the test, and then looked at me with a smile. Ellie asked to be picked up, and he continued cooking her scrambled eggs. You know, just an ordinary morning.
It was as simple as that.
There were no exams and no medication. We didn’t have any awkward conversations with doctors about our relationship we simply enjoyed being married. Nothing was planned and nothing was timed. We weren’t even trying really; we had just stopped preventing.
I know that’s how most people make a baby, but for me it seems like such a strange concept. You mean, I just get to love my husband and we create a miracle? Without involving anyone else? What a beautifully redemptive experience.
I am now 21 weeks along with Baby #2, who we just found out is another sweet little girl! Most days it still doesn’t feel real to me, even now as she is kicking around in my belly.
When we found out that we were pregnant with Ellie, I had this sense that she was meant to come into the world at that exact moment for a great purpose. I know our second daughter is exactly who is meant to join our family right now for that same reason. The stories of how they came to be are incredibly different, but the outcome remarkably similar.
So for now, I pray the same prayer over her that I did her sister. Lord, please help her to grow healthy and strong, and let us keep her for a long, long time.