Just like Hannah

“I want to have grand kids, so double time!” that was part of the speech of my father-in-law during our wedding years ago. It was everyone’s well wish and expectation for us to conceive and have “mini-me’s” running around. But it was not an easy journey for us.

After a year of marriage and not conceiving, I visited the OB-GYNE to find out what can be done for me to get pregnant. My ultrasound would show I have polycystic ovaries. The doctor said that the cyst was small and it should not bother us. The only solution also to this syndrome is to just get pregnant. It seemed like an easy solution, but it was far from easy for us.

I remained very hopeful. My husband and I prayed, fasted, believed that we would get pregnant. Different options were given to us, pills, exercise, following a menstrual cycle for days of contact… however the months became years and I began losing faith.

I admit that I was getting disappointed with God. I would cry every time my period would come. It pierced my heart when people would ask why we were not getting pregnant and received their suggestions on what we should do. There was a year that everyone around me was getting pregnant (even my own dog!)… but I remained barren. It came to a point that I needed to blame someone why I was not conceiving… I started to blame my husband because at that time he was not open to get himself checked. I wondered why God was not granting our request… I was getting bitter towards God that I’d say “I don’t care if I don’t get pregnant”. Truthfully that was the total opposite. I did care.

God never gave up on me though. God was working on me, stretching my faith muscles. Through His Word He reminded me of Hannah. For years she was barren and mocked for being childless. She too cried to God. Her account is found in the book of 1 Samuel 1.
v 10 “Hannah was in deep anguish, crying bitterly as she prayed to the Lord.”

But after Hannah cried to the Lord, she left this concern in faith, not in doubt or bitterness. After Eli (the priest) saw her in the temple crying he pronounced a blessing to her and she left no longer depressed.
v 18 “Then she went back and began to eat again, and she was no longer sad”
The bible accounts that “the Lord remembered her plea”; v 20 “and in due time she gave birth to a son. She named him Samuel, for she said, “I asked the Lord for him.”

I had to learn to trust God’s plan and timing for everything and for everyone. I was becoming impatient and seeding doubt. Thank God for friends who never stopped praying for us, and that encouraged me to believe.

In 2010, my twin sister gave birth to her 3rd child, Jonathan David (JD). I was with her at the labor room, and I had the privilege to see her baby right after delivery. I held her little one in my arms, and began feeling hopeful again of God’s promise to me and my husband. The week after, I took a step of faith of seeing a specialist that would assess our situation. I was diagnosed with Endometriosis. The week after, I was wheeled in the operating room for a laparoscopic procedure to remove the adhesions and polyps in my uterus and the cysts on my ovaries.

I was a Stage IV Endometriosis patient. In short, infertile. But that did not stop me to believe that God can open my womb. My husband began to follow the footsteps of Isaac who prayed for his wife. Genesis 25:21 “Isaac pleaded with the Lord on behalf of his wife, because she was unable to have children. The Lord answered Isaac’s prayer, and Rebekah became pregnant with twins.”

Okay, we did not have twins. But three months after the procedure we were pregnant! I cried for joy for the Lord remembered me. However, on our 5th week check up, the doctor could not find the sac. My blood (hcg) test says I am definitely pregnant, the pregnancy test shows 2 lines. But there was no sac.

We started to pray, and I believed God will show us a miracle that the next test we will see the baby in the uterus. We flew to Manila to have myself checked there… The findings — possible ectopic pregnancy.

The doctor explained to me that I had to undergo another operation again. She also told me straight that I can lose one of my fallopian tubes if the baby implanted in it. I was crushed and my husband was too. Both of us were crying the night before getting confined in the hospital. I was grieving to lose this child. That night I could not sleep, I kept talking to God. “Lord, please tell my child how much I want to be his/her mom.” I was talking to my baby and telling my baby “I love you, you made me excited to be a mom. I already miss you even if we have never met. You must know I want to have you so much.”

Joy Mendoza, my close friend and discipler called and cried with me… She said, “I am so sorry Mit. How are you feeling?” In my heart, I was not angry at God. I told her, “I know this is God’s will. The mere fact he made me pregnant is already a miracle. I am not disappointed with Him.” I worried about losing my fallopian tube, but the doctor assured me that I can still get pregnant with just one tube.

That day in June 2011, I had another operation to remove the fetus before it raptures my fallopian tube.

After the procedure, when I opened my eyes in the recovery room, my husband told me this “Guess what… the baby was found in the abdomen, it implanted and found blood supply there. But the sac could not sustain so it was ready to be removed. So, they did not cut your fallopian tube. Your reproductive organs are all intact.”

When I heard that I had peace. I thanked God for being so gracious, and for giving us a child that was so considerate to give way for another baby in the future by implanting in the abdomen rather than in the tube.

Like Hannah, I cried and grieved before the Lord, but God gave me extra grace and an increased faith. I had more confidence than before that I would conceive in God’s perfect time. Then, I moved on everyday believing that I would receive. In fact, there was no pain in my heart about the loss. I felt God’s presence and firm love for me and my future.

And true to God’s promise… I conceived again in April 2012. This is now our precious baby Joshua. God is indeed faithful, His love never fails. This is why I claim these verses as my life statements: “Everything is possible to him who believes” (Mark 9:23) and “For nothing is impossible with God” (Luke 1:37)

Pregnant by faith

Pregnant by faith

God does move mountains!

Initially, I was planning to deliver the baby in manila, so I saw my sister’s OB-GYNE when I was about 5 months pregnant. She looked through my medical history and decided its appropriate for me to get a Congenital Abnormality Scan (CAS). This scan is done via 3D or 4D ultrasound to see if the baby has any problems or is in the pink of health. It will be the time also that one would know the gender of the baby and to see a bit of the baby’s features. With lots of joy on this pregnancy I was excited to see my baby.

I asked my sister-in-law, Pria to join me for this momentous occasion. We were both giddy and excited to see the baby.

The scan is about 30 minutes long. The doctor shows us via screens in the room the baby in the uterus. My baby was moving, kicking, and responding to our voices! I was smiling from ear to ear. Then the doctor asks, “do you want to guess the gender?” … I said a quick prayer “Sana Lord, boy” … But whatever is the gender, I’d be happy. My prayer was granted, when the doctor revealed we are having a baby boy. Suddenly, I can hear Pria with tears in her eyes reporting via phone what we both could see to my husband… We were so elated!

After checking, my baby has complete fingers, complete toes, no cleft lip… Then the doctor became silent. She kept going back to the heart. Then she told me, “you need to see your doctor”. I asked her what she could see, and she refused to explain to me. In minutes she called another sonologist to come in our room, and she checked my tummy again… They both concurred that their findings was the same. I did not know what they saw, but I knew it was not normal.

Having our celebratory merienda at Landmark, i opened the results and the finding was a probable DEXTROCARDIA. I was not sure what it meant but cardia is definitely heart… I researched it and it meant that the heart was not pointing to the left and the possibility of other organs to be on the opposite side as well… As I told my husband who was at the province at that time, he worried so much and asked God, “Lord, why?” He was upset and he did not want me to be disappointed with this circumstance. I laughed and told him, “I am not worried, we are on God’s special lane, I know He will do something.”
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That night, I felt God assuring me He is in control. I talked to Pria and told her not to tell anyone because I believed God will do something about this. We kept it a secret until the prescribed 2D echo doppler has been done. The only thing is that procedure can only be done a month after. So it gave us a month to pray and practice faith. We entrusted this update to only a few friends who prayed with us.

I embraced this verse and declared it over my baby “Every good and perfect gift comes from above, coming down from the Father of heavenly lights who does not change like shifting shadows” (James 1:17). I kept saying out loud, my baby is a perfect gift from God, so he will be perfect! I surrendered, trusted and believed in this promise.

Sept 7, 2012 we got a schedule with the head of pediatric cardio in St. Luke’s global for a 2D echo doppler test. Dr Jonas del Rosario was very cool and made me and hubby relaxed. He was not going to say anything until he sees the heart of the baby. Holding hands, my husband and I prayed and thank God for this baby and the test. In about 20 minutes of scanning, he shows us.. “Look, his heart is pointing left, his valves are all normal, his stomach is on the left, your baby is normal.” Looking at the screen and seeing my baby’s heart beating, I smiled! All I could say was “thank you Jesus, thank you Doc, thank you Jesus!”

We experienced a miracle that day. God is in full control. Out loud, I would declare like a little kid, “I knew it! I knew that God would do something”. Indeed He has, and with increased joy, I believe God still moves mountains in this modern-day. He moved my son’s heart… He can move anything!