Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Back from Britain

Generally, I like to keep my blog focused on life in Afghanistan.  The whole point of "Kicking it in Kabul" is to share little snippets of what it is like to live in a conflict area/the developing world and share some of the things I have learned about Afghanistan.  I want people to understand a different part of the world, a place that has forced me to do a lot of reorienting and readjusting in almost every aspect of my life.  For these reasons I try to stick to experiences and information, and not share much about my personal life. . . only on special days or when it's necessary.  We've been going through a difficult and sad time and after a lot of consideration, I think it's time to get some of it out.

I had a miscarriage while I was in London.

I'm hesitant to write about this for a couple of reasons:

-Pregnancy, fertility, infertility, etc. are things that I think are very personal and should be kept relatively private.  I know that it is a sensitive subject for many people, myself included.

-I know that by writing about this I'm opening the door to the questions that will inevitably follow (Was there anything you could have done differently?  Did the doctor give you a reason?  Are you going to try again?  When are you going to try again?).

I decided to write about it for a couple of reasons:

- We live very far away from family and friends.  Although we have a good support network here in country, there is something special and necessary about sharing with longtime friends.  I also recognize that it is healthy and healing to let people share in our grief.  It seems that we are all quick to rejoice and celebrate with each other, but when it's time to grieve we retreat back and mourn alone.

- I process things relationally.  I need coffee dates and phone calls to help me get through the tough times in life.  Living so far away has caused me to rework some of my coping mechanisms.  Writing about this situation is helping me work through some of the thoughts and feelings and difficult moments that I'm coming up against.

Some information and thoughts:

-I was 12 weeks and some days a long, the baby had stopped growing at 8.5 weeks.  We were able to see a heartbeat at a scan in Dubai at 7 weeks, it was amazing and gave us lots of hope and excitement. This was my second miscarriage.  My first was a little over  year ago at 11 weeks.  I wasn't given a reason for either of our losses.

- No, there wasn't anything I could have or would have done differently, including living in Kabul while expecting.  The only difference living in a more developed country would have given me was an earlier knowledge that we had lost the baby.  I did get to see the Afghan medical system up close and will describe it later.

- This is a really tough thing to go through, especially being so far away from home.  We're doing as well as can be expected; sad, disappointed, frustrated, sometimes a little angry, and sad some more.  But overall, we're okay.  I know that this is one of those hurts that will never fully go away.  I also know that each day I feel a little bit better, more positive and more hopeful.

- I am the type of person that really wants to understand things.  Although I can look at things I have learned through both of our losses, I know that I won't ever fully understand why these things happen.  I'm learning that not understanding is frustrating but I'm also learning that it's alright to not understand.

-In my last post, I discussed that the word I would be embracing this year is faith.  I feel like I'm holding onto that word more than ever: faith that God is sovereign; faith that He has our very best interest in mind; faith that although I don't understand, He does; faith that He has great plans for us, even when those plans aren't what we expected.

And as for trying again, that goes back to the whole pregnancy, fertility, infertility, etc. being a private and sensitive thing.  Our stock answer when people ask us when and if we're having kids will continue to be, "Maybe someday."

Saturday, January 3, 2009

Is it really 2009?

Just like that 2009 is here.  As usual, it's been a full year for us; lots of adventures and travels, lots of memories with family and friends, some ups and downs, and one gigantic move.

We're excited to see what the next year brings.

I've been thinking some about resolutions.  I've never really been the resolution type.  I guess one easy one would be to make a more conscience and consistent commitment to staying in contact with family and friends back home.  But really, that is a resolution that is always on my plate and has little to do with the new year.

A friend from college blogged about the idea of embracing a word for the year.  I really like that idea, I think it was called the One Word Challenge.  When I was reading about this idea the word "faith" immediately came to mind.

According to my Apple Dictionary, faith is a noun meaning "complete trust of confidence in someone or something, OR strong belief in God or in the doctrines of a religion based on spiritual apprehension rather than proof."

Living in a place with a lot of uncertainty, times of insecurity, and loads of instability (quite literally instability, we've been woken up by earthquakes two nights in a row, 5.8 and 5.9); I have found it absolutely necessary to have something firm to rely on and put my trust in.

I chose faith as my word because I feel like I am in a point of my life where everything is dependent on that complete trust of confidence in God, His word, His promises, His love, His ability and desire to do amazing and miraculous things, His power, and the notion that He is the same yesterday, today and forever.

When I look at the challenges everyone faces living here and some more specific and personal challenges I am facing right now, it is comforting and reassuring to have Someone solid and certain to put my faith in.  

In other news, I'll be taking a two week break from blogging.  This weekend I'll head to London to meet with my younger sister and have some good quality family time.  I'm looking forward to spending 6 days in the western world!