About Me

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Hi. Welcome to my "taboo" blog. My name is Steph, and when I first started this, I was still in my thirties. In 2017, I switch decades! I am a Christian, so underlying everything I do and say is the Word of God, and the foundational truths I have learnt over the years. This doesn't mean I'm perfect - I am human. It just means I recognise I need God's help to live this life and try to live out His way, as best I can. So that's me in a nutshell. Thanks for taking the time to read through my blog, I hope you draw strength, hope or encouragement from what you read.

Saturday, October 27, 2012

An Animal Called "Grief"

Hubby and I were sat watching one of my favourite shows... How I met your mother. I don't know if you've ever seen it, but it's an American sitcom... a hilarious story-telling series as a man tells his children about the story of his journey from College to meeting their mother. We meet his friends, and follow their stories, as far as they occur with Ted's life-story. 

The episode we were watching was one I hadn't seen before (I'm one of those people who watches the repeats of previous series ready for the new series to start!), and was duly laughing when I should be laughing, and crying when I should be crying. It was a Christmas episode, and two of Ted's friends were a couple who had been apart for a while. Ted fell out with the girlfriend of his best mate, and ended up leaving the flat he shared with them to spend Christmas Eve dinner with his cousin and there children. A lovely family Christmas round the turkey. Before Ted and Lily make friends and he is invited home again to join them for their Christmas plans (so worth watching if you have never seen it). 

And then it hit me.

It winded me with the sheer velocity with which it hit me.

The news I had received four days before suddenly whacked me full in the stomach, from nowhere. Hubby looked at me and asked if I was OK, I suddenly leapt up from the sofa and tried to get to the bathroom before the tears came, but crumpled in a heap on the fluffy rug in front of the fire.

"What's wrong???" He asked, clearly concerned.

It took a while before the sobs stopped enough for me to answer him. "What if... *sob* What if I can't... *sob* what if I won'texperiencethat*sob* our ownfamilyChristmas" (the words seemed to flow into one word rather than one sentence).

I have never heard myself cry in the way I did that night, I am blessed in that I have never lost anyone close to me. But I have heard about people who literally collapse and wail with grief. The cries of anguish that night literally came from somewhere I had no control over. And as Hubby held me, praying for me, this feeling of grief of what may not happen slowly abated itself.

Grief is a strange animal.
The way it reared up from nowhere was quite shocking.
But the peace I felt after, was incredible.

I don't know what the future holds, and yet in spite of this, I know my Lord is giving me a deep, deep peace, which is surpassing my understanding, and is strengthening me for each day. The hardest part is waiting for an appointment to come through, so I can have some of the questions I am carrying answered by the consultant. Until then, I put my trust in the Lord because I know and can really feel He is near me. Closer to me than Hubby ever could be. Uplifting me and supporting me with His love and mercy. His unfailing promise to me that the plans He has for me are to give me a hope and a future. Regardless of what that means. He knows what He has in mind for my life. And for that, I am so thankful. 

I could not envisage handling this situation alone, while waiting for results, diagnoses and treatment, cure etc... of this "sub-fertility" journey I am on. Thank You Jesus for your presence with me, with us, on this road. Hold any woman who is also walking this road close to you Lord, for it is a hard climb, and there are many moments of hurting.

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Hysterosalpingography - AKA: HSG

It has taken me a while to come to terms with this particular aspect of the journey.

The X-Ray, known as Hysterosalpingography or HSG for short!

So it all started on the first day of the "new" cycle, when I had to call a number linking me directly to the radiology department at my local hospital in order to book an appointment between days 10 and 14 of my cycle.I actually couldn't get through, as it was late afternoon by the time I tried to call them, so I called the next day - day two of my cycle... time was ticking!! The lady I spoke with said she would need to check with the nurses to find out if there were any clear spaces in the appointments diary, and would get back to me after taking my details. She also told me... sorry advised me... that intercourse from now until I'd had the HSG. I had some important meetings that day, so nervously explained to my manager the situation and asked if I could be excused when the call came through... It's funny how often I checked my phone throughout those important discussions!

No call came through.

Day three arrived and again I waited anxiously to find out when I would be expected to attend. By lunch time I wondered if they'd forgotten and what the protocol was for calling back! And then I noticed a voicemail had been left on my phone. It was the hospital. They had an opening next week and would call me again to arrange the time for me to attend.

I did think it was a bit strange they had an opening but not the time - surely the opening included the time of the proposed appointment...?? I guess that's why I don't work in healthcare!

So... more waiting... more checking of my phone, into the weekend... If I hadn't heard after the weekend, I determined I would call them to find out what time I would be required. I'm uber-organised and like to plan ahead. I like to know what I am doing and what is expected of me well in time. Finally, on day seven, a letter arrived in the post from the Radiology department. My appointment had been arranged for 10:30am on what became known as day 11.

A couple of days before the appointment I had to pick up the prescription given to me by the consultant for some antibiotics. The antibiotics are to prevent infection from the x-ray procedure and needed to be taken two hours before I arrived for my appointment! The chemist had to order them, as they didn't have any stock, and for the sake of two tablets, I was hit with a huge NHS bill! There goes the Chinese take-away I had been planning for after the x-ray!! Lol! When they arrived, it turned out that the two different types of tablets ended up being a total of nine tablets to make up the prescribed  amount of 1000g each.

Then on day nine, I received a call from one of the radiology team, asking if I would mind changing my appointment time from 10:30am to 9am. Wahhh!! My day-off lie-in... disrupted!!! "Sure," I replied, "I may as well get it over with sooner rather than later." Oh man! Because I had to take the tablets two hours before  I was due at the hospital, that actually meant a 7am start! Lovely!

I don't think I slept much the night before. I don't like the unknown and tomorrow's procedure was a total unknown. All I had been able to do is read the information pages I had been given and do a Google-search to find out more about what a HSG was for, what they do etc....

So, when the alarm went off in the morning, I yawned my way down to the kitchen to have breakfast and the antibiotics. I don't normally have breakfast as soon as I wake up, so this with the combination of all the water made me feel really uncomfortable and nauseous. According to the paperwork, they needed me to arrive with a full bladder. This was so they could test to make sure I wasn't pregnant. No chance of that if we've not been able to... you know... before the x-ray. Have you ever needed the toilet so much you might be sick??? Yeah?? That was me!

Hubby had agreed to come with em, so we arrived at the hospital at around ten to nine - and realised there were two radiology departments on the map I had been sent. Neither of which was highlighted to be the one I needed to head for. One was the "Out-Patients Radiology Department" the other was the "Main Radiology Department". As I was an outpatient, I headed for there. There was no one in the reception area, but a little dinky bell with a sign saying "Ring for attention". So I did. A girl came out and I showed her my papers and asked if I was in the right area. She said she was new, and would need to check, so she disappeared, coming back about two minutes later to tell me I was in the wrong Department. She directed me to the Main Radiology Department and hubby and I made our way. I was now two minutes late for the appointment! I hate being late! So not cool!

I arrived at the second reception, and the lady who was there was on a call. When she finished, she took my details and invited Hubby and I to sit in the waiting area opposite her. Which we did. And waited.

A nurse came out and called my name. Hubby asked if I wanted him to come in or wait where he was. I asked him to come through, but the nurse told him he couldn't as there were other patients around. It wouldn't matter though as I was just going to have my sample checked. So I gave a last look to Hubby before walking through the double doors.

The nurse asked me to give her a sample, handed me the bottle and a wider dish to pee into, then showed me to the toilets. I duly did as I was told in private, and then emerged from the toilet to hand her my sample. She tested it to makes sure I wasn't pregnant. I wasn't (what a surprise!!).

The nurse then asked me to follow her to a cubicle where she explained what was to happen. I needed to take off my own clothes and dress in the attractive hospital gowns, complete with unattractive slit at the back. You get the picture! Yeuch!!! It was cold in there too!! Before I undressed, I went out to where Hubby was waiting to give him my rings and necklace. I told him I was about to go in and asked him to pray for me as I was quite anxious. He reassured me I would be OK but he would pray. Love that man!

After undressing, my clothes were placed in a plastic basket with a handle. It really resembled a supermarket shopping basket!! So the nurse made a joke with me about it when we were going into the x-ray room. I followed behind her like a lost puppy, silently praying Jesus would come now so I wouldn't have to go through with this. When we reached the x-ray room, I was introduced to the Radiologist and her female assistant. Phew! I was dreading a male being involved and relaxed a little. Not a lot though.

As the radiologist prepared the equipment, her assistant went through a checklist of stuff with me, including checking Hubby and I had refrained form intercourse, what date I'd started my last period, that I was between day 10 and 14 of this cycle. She explained the procedure, then asked me to sign the card to say I was happy to go ahead with the x-ray.

I then was invited to climb onto the bed in the middle of the room, complete with a pillow in the centre. "I need you to pop up on here, and we'll arrange you so your bottom is on the pillow." I tried to get settled into position as elegantly as I could muster. the gown was removed from under my bottom and the two ladies continued to prepare for the procedure.

Now... if you don't want to know all the graphic gory details, click away now!!

When they were ready, the gown was moved to my stomach area, and as with a smear test, ankles were brought together and knees maneuvered flat toward the bed... as far as I could - I'm not as flexible as I like to think I am!! Some large, white, disposable sheets were placed around my lower body to preserve my dignity as much as possible in that situation. The Radiologist explained she was about to insert a speculum, which will allow her to see where she is inserting the catheter. Before she did that she used an antiseptic cleaning wipe, apparently this helps to minimize the discomfort of the procedure  When she inserted the speculum, it was ice cold. Being the first patient of the day, clearly the thing had not been brought up to room temperature. This was really uncomfortable and added to the discomfort of tube being inside anyway! If you've ever had a cervical smear test, all of this so far will be akin to what you have experienced.

The catheter followed and was positioned, although the Radiologist did struggle a bit to insert this thin tube into the uterus. When she removed the speculum, the catheter popped out. I don't think it was supposed to do that! So the whole procedure was repeated. Painfully. But this time the Radiologist decided she would leave the speculum in place so as to ease the pain of removing it, and in case it caused the catheter came out again.

She then inserted the dye through the catheter into my uterus and took x-rays of the images being produced. When the dye went in, the cramps added to the pain of the speculum really wasn't pleasant. Then the speculum fell out, bringing the catheter with it. OH no!!! I hope they don't have to do it all again.

The Radiologist checked with her assistant that they had enough images, and upon checking affirmed they wouldn't need to try again. What a relief!

The white disposable sheets were removed so my legs could stretch out and the gown replaced to cover me again. Together they checked the images, while they blocked my view and encouraged me to relax.

Then the images were shown to me. The results of the HSG were given to me. Alone. While Hubby was sat in another room. I wished he'd been with me. To hold my hand. To wipe my tear at the bad news. One blocked fallopian tube and I am at high risk of ectopic pregnancy. She said she would be recommending that I be sent for an ultrasound to see in more detail the cause of the blockage.

I was helped up from the bed, offered a hot drink and led to the bathroom with a towel, a disposable sponge which became soapy when held under water and a sanitary towel to catch the dye when it fell out again.

In a daze, I went into the bathroom, cleaned myself up and changed into my own clothes. In a daze I sat down and obediently drank the hot water they had left for me. In a daze I wished Hubby was with me. In a daze I wondered what this meant. What had caused the tube to be blocked. Had it always been blocked? Had it become blocked? Can it be unblocked? In a daze I smiled back at the nurse when she smiled at me. In a daze I returned the cup to the nurse and asked if I could leave. In a daze I walked back through those double doors to where Hubby was waiting. In a daze I observed the row of men who were also waiting for their wives and girlfriends, and located Hubby. In a daze I took his hand as we left the hospital. When we sat in the car I told him what I had been told. He had questions, but we had no one to answer them. So in a daze we drove away.

For the rest of the day, and the following day, the pain from the procedure was quite intense. I curled up on the sofa with my hot water bottle till we had to go out. I think at one point the pain was so bad I just burst into tears and Hubby prayed for me.

It took four days before the news actually hit me.

It's taken longer for me to come to terms with it, as I wait for the consultant to send me details of my next appointment so we could have our questions answered. Until then I don't know why or what can be done.

Friday, October 19, 2012

The Hilarious Parent Test Circulating!

I love reading women's magazines or the women's section of the paper... especially those "real life" stories by women like me, who experience the same stuff that I experience. It's always a blessing to know we are not alone in our experiences. You know what I mean???

But I had to laugh the other morning at a brilliant piece in the Daily Mail's Femail section. I was at work, browsing the online paper during my morning coffee and Jaffa Cake break, looking at the range of "women-related" articles on offer. One heading really caught my attention - "Think you are ready to have children? Hilarious new parent test taking mummy blogs by storm MIGHT just put you off..."

As Hubby and I are TTC, I thought I would have a quick read. But as I read through the various tests advised for women considering motherhood, it was all I could do to keep the coffee, delectably mixed with chocolate, sponge and orange jelly, from bursting out of my mouth and onto the screen in front of me, especially with colleagues present. It is hilarious...  let me feed you some of the suggestions offered, via Bianca London, from mums on what you can expect from a child. 

There are 14 sections with a varying number of test recommended for you to try. These are: Preparation (2. Go to the supermarket. Arrange to have your salary paid directly to their head office), Knowledge, Nights (1. Walk around the living room from 5pm to 10pm carrying a wet bag weighing approximately 4 - 6kg, with a radio turned to static (or some other obnoxious sound) playing loudly. 2.  At 10pm, put the bag down, set the alarm for midnight and go to sleep. 3. Get up at 11pm and walk the bag around the living room until 1am. 4. Set the alarm for 3am.), Dressing Small Children, Cars, Going for a Walk (this was a particular hilarious "test" as I have experienced this with my nephews, numerous times, when they were small!!!), Conversations With Children (Repeat everything you say at least 5 times - my step son still does this at seven!), Grocery Shopping (the test involves the purchase of goats - if you know a farmer, you may prefer to borrow one - or a few - for a weekend!), Feeding a one year old (complete with airplane noises - why do we do that... and why does it work???), TV, Mess (eg 5. Drag randomly items from one room to another room and leave them there), Long trips with toddlers (are we nearly there yet???? My step-son has mastered this to such a fine art he can ask if we are half-way or nearly half way, and then when we are past half way, he starts asking if we are nearly there! Genius!!), Conversations and the final test, Getting Ready for Work (including the tips: 3. Take a cup of cream and put 1 cup of lemon juice in it, 4. Stir, 5. Dump half of it on your nice silk shirt).

So am I really ready for all this???

Maybe, when Bubba comes along, I can "train" him or her to behave differently from some of these other parent's children??? Ha! A child is a child - complete with his or her own thoughts, behaviours and ways of pushing the boundaries! No amount of preparation can really make you ready for the reality!!!

Anyway, if the comments accompanying the article are to be believed, it's not all this bad, and who knows - maybe one day, in the future, I can add some hilarious anecdotes of my own for other women who are considering motherhood or TTC!!

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Fertility Envy??!

The other day, I was reading the Daily Mail online, and focused on the "Femail" section. As I scrolled through the various features, I came across an article on "fertility envy" (click on link to read article). This is basically a "condition" where women like me who are TTC, but are not YET successful, become an evil, obsessed, angry, green-eyed monster around others who have successfully conceived - particularly their friends or family. This made me think about my reactions to other people's news around getting pregnant. Do I suffer from this fertility envy??? Do I become some evil green-eyed monster around others who are a step ahead of me????

Recently, it seems as though everyone around me - well every random stranger - has just become, or is about to become a Grandma, or an aunty. Apart from all the celebrities who are tweeting about their pregnancies, and daily updates on what they are wearing to cover Bump, or to highlight Bump - ie the sudden urge to strip off and wear a bikini - I don't actually have any friends around me who are pregnant. Most of my close friends are single or already well-established mothers. So I don't have to "handle" (for want of a better word) being reminded of my failings as a woman at the moment.

The other day, I was at a conference and a woman who I don't really know came up to me and started to talk to me about how she wouldn't be able to attend a Women's Conference I was organising, because her daughter was coming to see her with the new baby. The next day another lady, who I had never spoken to, also came up to me and apologetically explained she couldn't make the Women's Conference because her sister had just had a baby and was coming to the UK to introduce the baby to the family.

I smiled, genuinely, at both these ladies. I didn't know them. I certainly didn't know the new mothers in their lives, so in that respect it was very easy to feel genuine excitement and joy at their news - I think I even clapped!! Lol!And I went so far as to hug the new Grandmother my congratulations! I didn't feel sad or disheartened at my own situation. In fact - it broadened my horizon as I thought of my own parents sharing the exciting news of their Grandchild through me. And I would love for my own Grandmother to be around long enough to meet Bubba - when he or she is released to me. The joy of a new life extends beyond Hubby and I.

And in the same way, the difficulties we face also extends beyond Hubby and I. A few years ago I found a random teddy bear hidden away in my mothers "grotto" (she loves Christmas so starts buying presents from Boxing Day!!!). When I asked her about it, she said she had bought it for my first child (I have three brothers - two of whom have children already and as far as I know, neither of them received this bear). That was a step of faith on her part, and I know that when Bubba arrives, she will derive as much pleasure in her new Grandchild (even though she has other gorgeous Grandchildren - I'm her only daughter); but at the moment, as we wait each month's cycle  she feels my pain as it reminds her of her own struggle to conceive (I took three years to come along - even though she was in her early twenties).

I love spending time with friends who have little ones, and love hearing some of their stories... I say some because when they start talking about the trials of labour, I know I definitely DO NOT suffer fertility envy!! I think it's good to hear what they say, and learn lessons from their experiences. Especially for those who were in the same situation as Hubby and I... as not everyone conceives straight away, and I am not the only woman who has to be investigated for conception problems.

I can't say I feel envious at others' joy. Sometimes I get annoyed with some of these celebrity pregnancies which are shoved in my face. It seems that when I want to read "News" I am offered "Gossip" instead. Do I really need to be told if someone is daring to wear a bikini to show off her Bubba Bump??? Do I need to observe whether the new mum-to-be is hiding her bump in a baggy jumper??? Do we really need the speculation of whether this Royal is carrying an heir because she holds her stomach, or that popstar is throwing up and putting on weight???

I wouldn't say this is fertility envy. I would say this is irritation at being smacked in the face every time I want to read the paper!!! I can't say this has ever made me consider or get upset about my own situation, though. These celebrities aren't personal to me - and are not in my life.

I wonder if it would be different if it was someone closer to me though. I think there has only been one time I have "struggled" with a friend's pregnancy news. When speaking to a friend who conceived with her Hubby with 1 month of deciding to try for a Baby, my heart dropped a beat, and my mind raced with thoughts of how unfair it all was, when I thought of how long it was taking me.

I hope I will always have enough of God's love and grace within me, that I can rejoice with any friend who is rejoicing. I would definitely NEVER want her to feel awkward around me just because of the journey I am on compared to hers - that's not what being friends is about. Even though there are times when it is hard to be on this journey - I still want to hear, and learn from, others who are ahead of me. When friends have become pregnant in the past, I've had the honour of walking through it with them. Hearing about their odd cravings, laughing at their "baby-brain" moments. The creation of a new life is such a beautiful thing to behold.

I can understand the raw pain for women who are TTC, and for whom life seems incomplete without Bubba. To be one among many family and friends who don't seem to have a problem can be really disheartening. As I have said before - this journey is a lonely road - more-so for us as women, I think, because at the end of the day, our bodies are designed for childbirth and if we can't fulfill that basic function, then our bodies are not working properly - at least that's how I have sometimes thought about my own body! I hope and pray that I never become so engrossed in my own difficulties in TTC that I am not able to rejoice when others rejoice. And I pray that I will never ever become so depressed about the situation, that I would push pregnant friends away from me. That would make ME even more alone.

I really don't know how I can walk this journey without the Lord's help. Because it is such a difficult, painful and lonely road. Without Him - it would be so much worse. Without the Lord upholding me, I probably would struggle with "Fertility Envy" and hide away from the rest of the female world... just in case.

Saturday, October 6, 2012

Help for Christian Couples in London


I was led to reading a blog by a FB friend of mine about a course which is being created by HTB - the Church who launched fantastic courses such as "Alpha" and "The Marriage Course" now has something aimed at childless couples.

It starts on Monday 8th October, and if you live in the London area and can get to Holy Trinity Brompton, then I know that finding support from other couples will be such a huge benefit.

Course dates and topics:
8 October – Survival tips
15 October – Impact on couples
29 October – Adoption
12 November – Fertility treatment
19 November – Living fruitfully

Feeling alone in our journey of subfertility can add to the feelings we already feel though our childlessness, but knowing you are not alone as a Christian, finding some comfort in knowing other Christian women have the same questions and struggles - surely there is comfort in this. I only wish I lived in London - or that the course would travel around the Country

It is free - so I would urge you to go. Contact the organiser, check out this link: http://www.htb.org.uk/whats-on/courses/waiting-children and use this priceless opportunity to build a support network around you with like-minded believers on a similar path to yours.

Friday, October 5, 2012

Oversensitivity to Insensitivity

So I had to go for my "Day 21" blood test a couple of days ago. The nurse who was taking it was running a bit late - I hate having a needle stabbed into my arm, so the longer I have to sit there and wait, the more tense I feel and the more sweaty my palms get! 1 minute became 2... 2 minutes became 5... 5 minutes became 10, till finally my name was called. I was glad Hubby had been next to me in the waiting room, as he is a calming influence - even if he doesn't understand my fear of having a blood test!

I went in and took my place in the big black chair with the extra "comfy" rest which the patient can lay her arm on when having blood extracted from their veins!! I handed her one of the thousands of forms and "blood test bags" I had received from the consultant who had ordered all these investigative procedures. It had on it the reason for the blood test "Day 21 - subfertility" scrawled across the notes section.

"Right then, do you want to roll your sleeve up for me?" the nurse asked.

Errrr... "No not really!" I replied, with a nervous chuckle!

"Have you had a blood tests before? You don't faint or anything do you?" she quizzed.

"No - I just don't like them" I said, laughing.

"No, not many people do" she smiled. "The other day, I had a baby come in here - you know when they have to have their jabs, it's hard to inject this tiny little foot with a great big needle. I always feel bad because they cry so much."

OK wow! Thanks for that nurse. No I "don't know" about bringing in a baby for their jabs - I don't have one which is why "sub-fertility" has been scribbled on that page I just handed to you. WOW! Talk about insensitive!

I then had a check in my spirit. She wasn't being insensitive - she was being chatty and may even have had a tough time with a baby that morning. When she was typing up my notes after taking the sample, she may have felt bad about what she had talked about with me when she read and copied into the computer what the test was for.

I felt the Lord was challenging me on the frustration I had initially felt at the nurse's conversation. Was I really annoyed??? Isn't it natural for a baby to be afraid of a needle while I - a grown woman in my thirties - should be able to handle the "sharp prick" in my arm. She was putting things into perspective - not trying to belittle my subfertility.

I can't assume people are being insensitive about the situation I am currently in. As there is no outlet to talk about it publicly most people won't have a clue what I am going through, and it is only natural for them to talk about babies and children and the like. Most of the time I am fine about it - but once a month, around the PMT time, my added fears about waiting for my monthly cycle can cause me to view things through somewhat negative glasses.

Waiting is always the hardest bit - no matter what we are waiting for, it is difficult to be patient during that waiting period. Maybe it's just me, but I find myself becoming a little more over-sensitive about my desire for a child than at any other time.  I find myself more easily upset at things people say, more likely to burst into tears, more likely to stare at pictures of babies on supermarket billboards or in magazines - wondering what my own would be like, more likely to reflect on what is missing in my life at the moment, whenever I see a baby in a TV programme / film I am watching.

Waiting for the onset (or hopefully not) of the period can be excruciating. This is one of those times when learning to "Set your mind on things above, not on the things of the earth" (Colossians 3:2) help me to focus not on what is not happening in my body, but on what I can achieve with the help of the Lord.

This may be a difficult aspect of my life, but in other areas - the Lord is blessing me mightily.

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Faith Gift

At the risk of sounding like a crazy woman (which Hubby thinks I am at the moment!!), I bought a faith gift for Bubba a few days ago.

A faith gift is basically a gift I have bought for Bubba, in the faith that one day he or she will receive it. A bit like a woman collects items in her bottom drawer before she gets married, I wanted to "collect" one item for Bubba. No woman has the guarantee she will get married, just like none of us has the guarantee we will fall pregnant and become Mumma. 

So why have I done this? The Bible tells me that faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not yet seen (Hebrews 11:1). I am hoping to become Bubba's Mumma, so by purchasing this faith gift I am providing "substance" to the thing hoped for; I am acting in faith for what is not yet seen, that we will one day see, hold and cherish the reality. 

I'm not saying this is right for everyone. So please don't think you have to rush out and do the same. It is not a "formula" to make God do what I want Him to do, It is just something I wanted to do to say to Him, I have faith that You are God, and when you see fit, You will answer my prayer for Bubba to be born to us.

It's actually something I had been wrestling with for a while. I had considered buying a faith gift at the beginning of Summer, but didn't go through with it. Even when a friend suggested to me a couple of months ago, when we went shopping one day, that I buy something "in faith". But I still couldn't go through with it.

Whenever I went into a Baby Shop, or into the Baby section of a larger store, I always felt like a fraud. Like I had no right to be there. I felt as though the mums and pregnant mums-to-be were staring at me, because I had no right to be there! Silly I know! But that's how I felt!

But recently, I have experience a couple of things, answers to prayers through words which other people have spoken to me, and I wanted to act on what I believed the Lord has been confirming to me. So I bought the faith gift.

It obviously had to be unisex. It obviously had to be something which would be practical, not something which would "go off" or go "out of date" or "out of fashion" or a certain size, for obvious reasons. It couldn't be seasonal, because I don't know how old Bubba would be at the relevant season. It had to be something with longevity. So I looked at the sleeping pods. 

I did feel like a fraud going into Mama's and Papa's, even more when I had to enquire about the price of something I considered buying. But I felt the biggest fraud when I approached the till with my purchase. I didn't want the assistant to ask me any questions, or I would have to say it was for a friend! She didn't, so it was OK. 

But after I had bought it, I felt elated. I felt at peace. I didn't for one minute think, "What have you done you stupid woman!" No. The Lord sent His peace to me. 

Regardless of when Bubba arrives, even I have to endure the rest of the tests and stuff, I am standing in faith that the Lord has heard my prayers, and will bring Bubba for me to be Mumma to.

And so Bubba's faith gift is hidden away in my "bottom drawer" ready for him or her to take naps in.