And then it comes. An unexpected breakthrough. My parents happen to go away on holiday to the other side of the world and come back with the name of a recommended private London clinic that can give us a second opinion. We decide to take this next step as we wait for our NHS IVF appointment to be arranged. We want to be sure that we have explored every opinion and checked every possibility.
We know God is near to us; a few days before we attend the clinic open day I have a dream that I am walking down cream-coloured hospital corridors with Bible verses materialising on the walls as I pass by. Peace descends. An exploratory internal scan is booked and the scan shows a possible abnormality. I cuddle my dove of peace closely. Words of encouragement filter through. Another scan. A polyp is confirmed; a growth in my uterus that shouldn’t be there. 10 millimetres big. Until this time we hadn’t realised it existed – unusual symptoms pinned to other causes. What an emotional rollercoaster! Faith raises her head at this new revelation. Hope pricks up her ears and runs out onto the front porch to see what’s coming. We praise Jesus for this new unfolding and trust Him in the uncertainty of what this might mean for us.
I’m ping-ponged swiftly through a flurry of appointments and internal examinations and surgery is arranged for a month later. We pray in the turnaround to our circumstances. We declare that we will receive what we have asked for in faith. More dreams about prophetic words to come fill my nights, fulfilled in the flesh only a few days later. There is no definite medical answer as to whether this growth is the only cause of our struggle but we are reminded that with God ALL things are POSSIBLE and we rest in that promise. We trust in the Word of God and not the word of man[i].
And then the growth is removed and we wait. Expectant. Hopeful. Looking to Him for the answer. Trusting that the growth is benign. Determined not to read too far into the circumstances around it. Nervous. Impatient. A little fearful. Hopeful.
The surgeon’s post-operative assessment is encouraging. The growth was definitely causing problems. This is breakthrough. An explanation. A huge relief.
And yet we are beginning to learn that every small triumph so often seems to walk hand-in-hand with an obstructive companion. New news – a proper analysis of my husband’s results and seemingly all is not actually as we had thought. His swimmers don’t swim very well and those that do are predominantly misshapen. Wow! We had not seen that one coming!
I watch my husband allow this news to really sink in over the coming days. He grows defensive and I understand so well how threatened he feels. It hurts to watch him reeling, hurting, distancing himself. We can’t comprehend this contradiction but now the numbers on the report make sense, we understand what we hadn’t seen. Medical hieroglyphics transformed into a code which deciphers reality. But is this truth? Only God chooses the labels we wear. So how is my husband going to choose to be defined as this going has grown tougher? By his Father’s choice of words for him or by a few numbers on a piece of paper? Always the knock down and always the getting back up. This is our daily walk at the moment. But so too is the continual encouragement.
My mind wanders back to the timeline of recent months: of writing on the wall, of revelation and relief, of blessed conversations and prophetic words; of hope and expectation; of little breakthroughs pointing to our miracles; of a sense of the tide turning and the answer drawing nearer; of dreams as I sleep of positive pregnancy tests and empowered prayers from those that understand and have testimonies; of declaring what will be rather than staring in the face of what is before us. The refrain returns. Hope. Believe. Hope. Believe. Hope. Believe. Don’t be afraid, only believe.
[i] Proverbs 29:25