Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Happens Every Month

Every month there is some new story with me. I think I feel something in my body that is distinctly different than previous months. In the 2 week wait, we TTC ladies tend to get really tuned in to every nudge, twitch, ache, or cramp. We notice if our appetite or energy levels change. We notice if our emotions are running high. Last month I thought I was overly emotional and noticed I was getting winded easily. I knew my lack of pre-menstrual spotting was because I was finally supplementing with progesterone again…but I still wondered…

As the wife in the movie Facing the Giants said, "sometimes my mind plays tricks on me." I completely identified with that line in the movie. It is too bad that early pregnancy symptoms are so similar to PMS! It makes it so much easier to get up our hopes. Even though I've been pregnant a couple times and I know that implantation cramps feel different from PMS cramps, I still sometimes trick myself into thinking that maybe these are "the ones." I guess I need to admit that not every symptom I face is cycle related. Maybe I am extra exhausted one month because I'm not keeping up with my exercise, or I'm eating junk, or…I'm just not getting enough sleep!

It can be difficult to get our hopes up only to stare a negative pregnancy test in the face, or see the signs of CD1. I learned once again last month that the fastest way to start a new cycle is to take a pregnancy test. I try to avoid testing at all costs, but I was about to go on travel and needed to know what medicines and supplies to pack.

The emotions on the day you test or at the first signs of a new cycle tend to run the gamut. Disappointment, sadness, bitterness, acceptance – it is a monthly heartache – a reminder of an opportunity missed. I guess God thinks a lot of us ladies, because He sure did give us quite challenge – one that cuts right to the core. But somehow we are given the strength and grace that is needed. We learn that we can handle more than we thought, that even if we are having a bad day, things will turn around. Though no day goes by without that silent suffering, there is much to be thankful for. The Holy Spirit, who we celebrate in this week of Pentecost is our constant helper and companion. The Holy Spirit helps us to pray when we have no words, and to move forward when we feel like holding back. The fruits of the Holy Spirit are some of those gifts that we TTC ladies need most: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, generosity, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control. Perhaps it is time that I take another look at my relationship with the "hidden person of the Trinity."

"The spirit of the LORD shall rest upon him: a spirit of wisdom and of understanding, a spirit of counsel and of strength, a spirit of knowledge and of fear of the LORD" Isaiah 11:2

"In the same way, the Spirit too comes to the aid of our weakness; for we do not know how to pray as we ought, but the Spirit itself intercedes with inexpressible groanings. And the one who searches hearts knows what is the intention of the Spirit, because it intercedes for the holy ones according to God's will." Romans 8:26-27

"We have not received the spirit of the world but the Spirit that is from God, so that we may understand the things freely given us by God." 1 Corinthians 2:12

"In contrast, the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, generosity, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control." Galatians 5:22-23a

Reflection Questions

  1. Does my mind play tricks on me throughout the month?
  2. How do I deal with the disappointments of not conceiving each month?
  3. What gifts and fruits of the Holy Spirit do I need most at this point in my life?

Prayer for the Seven Gifts of the Holy Spirit

O Lord Jesus Christ Who, before ascending into heaven did promise to send the Holy Spirit to finish Your work in the souls of Your Apostles and Disciples, deign to grant the same Holy Spirit to me that He may perfect in my soul, the work of Your grace and Your love. Grant me the Spirit of Wisdom that I may despise the perishable things of this world and aspire only after the things that are eternal, the Spirit of Understanding to enlighten my mind with the light of Your divine truth, the Spirit of Counsel that I may ever choose the surest way of pleasing God and gaining heaven, the Spirit of Fortitude that I may bear my cross with You and that I may overcome with courage all the obstacles that oppose my salvation, the Spirit of Knowledge that I may know God and know myself and grow perfect in the science of the Saints, the Spirit of Piety that I may find the service of God sweet and amiable, and the Spirit of Fear that I may be filled with a loving reverence towards God and may dread in any way to displease Him. Mark me, dear Lord, with the sign of Your true disciples and animate me in all things with Your Spirit. Amen.


  1. I usually have no idea where my posts are going to go after the basic premise. I had no idea this one would turn into a reflection on Pentecost and the gifts of the Holy Spirit!