Award-winning mentor and speaker Funke Oham had her life all mapped out, until she realised conceiving wouldn’t be as easy as she thought.
I had my life figured out as a twenty-four-year-old newlywed bride.
- Step 1 – Complete my Postgraduate studies
- Step 2 – Come off the pill
- Step 3 – Conceive and become a mum
No one told me, women experience "prolonged infertility". No one told me not every pregnancy ends in celebration. No one told me I would have to go through sixteen months of trying to conceive and then lose two babies within ten months (stillbirth at 39 weeks and a premature birth at 23 weeks).
In hindsight, sixteen months wasn’t that long but it felt like a lifetime. The book of Proverbs attests to the fact that hope deferred makes the heart sick. I never imagined being in this position and God letting all of this happen to me. One thing, I decided to do after my "why me" episode was to take my pain, questions, expectations, disappointment and desires to God.
My time of reflection, fasting, prayer, reading and leaning on other women who had walked in my shoes gave me clarity, a sense of purpose and hope to step into my future. I concluded without a shadow of a doubt God loves me and he is a good God. In all of this, I resolved to let nothing separate me from God’s love – even if I never had other children. Of course, I still yearned for babies and chose to try again.
The same year, I lost my second baby, Faith. God came through and blessed us with a son on Christmas Eve and another son three years later. Although my journey to motherhood wasn’t a bed of roses, I am eternally grateful for the woman I have become due to this process. I would like to share three things I found helpful while waiting for my babies.
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Live in the wait
On your journey to having your baby(ies), don’t let life pass you by. Choose to enjoy this season as you prepare for the next. Cherish what you have right now – your spouse, friends and family. In this moment, ask yourself; what am I grateful for? Talking to other women who had waited a while as well, when we looked back, we all wished we hadn’t put our lives on hold during the waiting season and had trusted God more.
You are enough
With or without children, you are valuable. You are no less a woman. You are enough. You are accepted. You are worthy. Others may say otherwise. You may think otherwise. But God sees you as whole, complete and says: "Daughter, you are loved beyond measure." Each time you feel otherwise, go back to God’s word and your tribe and let them remind you that you belong.
Before God formed you in the womb, he had a purpose for you. He wants you to find this purpose, live it and fulfil it. Sometimes our purpose is birthed from our pain. If you are able to ‘see’ the waiting season through God’s eyes, it would be easier to wait with grace, joy and run with His purpose for your life. Don’t let the waiting season stop you from fulfilling your mission on earth.
Finally, let God decide how and when He wants to bring His promises to pass in your life. Your role is to trust God and let him write your story. Always remember His thoughts towards you are good and not evil. He plans to give you a beautiful future and bring you to an expected end.