I’ve always struggled with feeling dumb and with forgiving myself. Both feelings collided in a life-changing way in 1999.
Shortly after we gave birth to our first child, we wanted to add more children to our family. We began trying to get pregnant almost immediately. Month after month, I was convinced I was pregnant only to be crushed with yet another negative result. These ongoing heavy emotions caused my husband to outlaw home pregnancy tests.
We began medical testing to find the problem.
After many tests, we graduated to the hysterosalpingogram (HSG) test. A dye is injected and an X-ray taken of the uterus, fallopian tubes, and the area around them. A blood pregnancy test was required the week before the HSG to make sure I wasn’t pregnant as the test could harm the baby.
Again, convinced I was pregnant, I was utterly shocked when the blood test was negative. Undeterred, I called my OB/GYN office every day trying to convince them the test was wrong. The staff was very compassionate but assured me I wasn’t pregnant.
I was so convinced I was pregnant, I called my doctor’s home at 11:30 pm the night before the HSG. I’m sure he was thrilled I kept his number from the years I worked for him. He very sweetly explained a blood pregnancy test is extremely sensitive and shows a positive result within 24 hours of conception. Therefore, I could not possibly be pregnant.
I went to bed and prayed asking God why I continued to experience such strong feelings while everyone disagreed. Only three times in my life has God spoken so clearly, it may as well have been audible. For the first of those three times He said, “I promised you a baby, cancel the test.”
I immediately began thinking of all the reasons I couldn’t possibly cancel the test. My doctor was making a special trip to my chosen hospital at 6:30 am before he planned to rush across town to another hospital for surgery. The Radiologist and nurses also made special concessions to come in early for my doctor’s sake. I would not be able to cancel in time.
My concerns also involved how dumb I was going to look if I walked in refusing to take the test saying, “Well God told me……” I felt stupid enough already!
There was no way I was cancelling the test.
The next morning when the test began, I knew I had made a big mistake. I prayed and asked forgiveness for disobeying and asked God to cover the baby with His hand if I was pregnant. After finishing the test, I felt nauseous and left.
As much as I tried to put it out of my mind over the next month, I finally couldn’t deny my symptoms any longer. I bought a pregnancy test. The result? Positive.
The doctor confirmed I was indeed 4 weeks pregnant during the HSG. He informed my husband and me the baby would not be able to handle that much radiation and fully expected us to lose the baby any time. However, if in the off-chance we carried the baby to term, he or she would have a high chance of developing childhood leukemia. He offered us an abortion. We declined and went home with instructions on what to do when I miscarried.
I climbed into bed and stayed there for a week. A deep depression set in. I hated myself. I couldn’t even look at myself in the mirror. I had killed the child I coveted because I was afraid of looking dumb.
Crying and praying, I begged God not to take my stupid mistake out on our baby. After a week, God spoke clearly for the second of three times, “I covered that baby with my hand. Now get up.” This time I believed. All my fears dissipated and I worried no more. Seven months later, we gave birth to a beautiful baby girl.
Our daughter celebrates her 13th birthday today. And other than a sensitive stomach, she is perfectly healthy.
“For You formed my inward parts;
You covered me in my mother’s womb.”
~ Psalm 139:13 NKJV
©2012 Connie Davis Johnson