On Easter Sunday of last year, God blessed Christopher and me with another pregnancy. Since my previous pregnancy was high risk, and we had not intended to have another baby due to the likelihood of a repeat of the original condition, I was shocked and honestly very afraid not only for myself but for our new child. Yet I resolved to be as healthy as possible, and took very good care of myself.
Unknowingly, due to circumstances entirely out of my control, my son's placenta developed with a rare defect that resulted in some of the blood vessels being exposed rather than protected by the umbilical cord or the placenta. Unfortunately, this type of defect is only detectable with a type of ultrasound that is not commonly used during prenatal care, so the defect went undiagnosed. Although this placental abnormality put him in constant danger, especially during birth; miraculously, he was safeguarded throughout the pregnancy and up until the very last moments. Sometime during the last few minutes before birth, his life-giving oxygen supply was cut off, and his heart stopped. After his body was born, he did not attempt to breathe. Through the rapid response of our midwives, and the grace of God, he was revived after fifteen minutes of resuscitation. He spent fifteen days recovering in the NICU. He is doing marvelously and is a happy and healthy baby boy!
But Jesus taught us that when we are unwilling to sow, to sacrifice our best, we will not harvest. In order to yield something worthy of harvesting, something has to die. To grow in love, sacrifice is required--sacrifices of my time, my schedule, my priorities, my strength, my heart, my hopes and dreams, perhaps even my very life.
For reasons only God knows, to become his mother, my son had to die. On that sunny December day, on the winter solstice, at noon, God took his spirit. And then He gave it back. My head is baffled, and my heart is grateful to the point of tears. My son's body was the seed that fell lifeless into the fertile ground. The harvest is still to come.