I remember that day so clearly. The emergency room was short-staffed, and there were more urgent cases than mine. The ER doctor stopped in briefly to tell me that I was most likely going to miscarry, and there was nothing to do but wait. I asked if my husband could come and wait with me. No, he said, he had to stay in the waiting room. Then they left, leaving me on a gurney in a big, cold room all alone.
I remember the intense loneliness – how badly I needed my husband. As much as I hated being alone, it was worse for him. I had talked with the doctor and knew what was happening; he was just as alone as I was but knew nothing.
Out of frustration, fear, and loneliness – not knowing where else to turn – I began to pray, repeating the Our Father over and over again. I remember the clarity, understanding, and even peace that came every time I whispered, ‘thy will be done’.
When the doctor returned, he told me it was over and I could go home. I walked out to the waiting room, and after we held each other, my husband and I silently walked to the car. On the way home, my husband quietly whispered, “It was probably a boy.” That moment, I realized that our boy, our first son, died without either of us ever seeing him, knowing him, or holding him. I named him Joshua.
That was July 1984 and I was 25 years old.
My miscarriage may have been long ago, but throughout the years, I have continued to picture our sweet baby in the arms of Jesus. That day 29 years ago, I wasn’t sure my grief would ever fade. Today I can say that I do not grieve; instead, and only through God’s total grace, I have a complete sense of peace whenever I remember Joshua.
We have four other beautiful and healthy children – all grown now, and with children of their own. On the wall that displays the portraits of our children, I have a beautiful sketch of Jesus holding an infant. It is a physical reminder for me and my husband, of Joshua, the son we never got to meet. The sketch is also a reminder to our other children that they have a brother, an intercessor, who is now precious saint in heaven.
The time that has passed since Joshua’s death hasn’t brought him back, and two sons I had after him didn’t replace him. However, each time I hear one the laughter or my children or the cry of one of my grandbabies, I am reminded of the son I didn’t meet. Instead of bringing me sorrow, that reminder is accompanied by comfort and peace. See, I believe that Joshua is in heaven in the full glory of our Lord. I believe that he is praying for me, praying for my husband, praying for my children, their spouses, and their children. And I pray that someday I will finally get to meet him and join in that glory.
Maureen is the mother of 4 and 1 in heaven and the grandmother of 8 and 1 in heaven.