sunny in any light

Sunny in any light. The title of a sunflower-filled watercolor painting in my mother and father-in-law's home and the inspiration for a beautiful bouquet filled with  sunflowers and lilacs they sent to Jeremiah and me on Monday. I love the title "sunny in any light," and I love the imagery it brings to my mind. Even when difficult trials surround us, we can carry God's light within us to help us through. 

It was a difficult week for our family. Early Sunday morning--Mothers Day--I miscarried our precious 13 1/2 week baby. Up until a couple of days before, we thought all was well with the pregnancy. So learning that our baby was not doing well or may face serious struggles came as an unexpected blow. Jeremiah and I poured our hearts out to Heavenly Father, and we invited family and some friends to pray and fast with us. If God willed it, we wanted a miracle.

But sometimes miracles come in unexpected ways. I wanted our miracle to be that our baby would be healed and that the remainder of the pregnancy to go well. Certainly we would not have anticipated our miracle. 

After miscarrying our sweet baby I lost a lot of blood. So much that I had difficulty remaining conscious. My poor husband called an ambulance and I spent the following hours in the emergency room and operating room--it was honestly very scary. I was losing blood more quickly than I could receive a transfusion. I remember looking around me as I lay in the ER thinking how grateful I was for all the people working to help me, but for the first time in my life feeling my body giving out. I have always been blessed with really great health--so this was a new experience. One I do not wish to repeat. Thanks to quick-acting, well-trained doctors, my husband who is my rock and who is always there to help me in everything, and above all God, my body began to stabilize. It was a scary experience for me physically, and oh, how our hearts hurt with this loss! While I do not understand all the reasons why we've had this experience, this verse of scripture has taken on new meaning for me:

"And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus." { Philippians 4:7 } While I am filled with a tremendous amount of sadness, I am also filled with a peace that I cannot explain--a peace that only God can bestow. I know so many family and friends have been praying for us, and the power of those prayers is palpable. I can feel it. And I am so grateful. Thank you.

Later that day as I lay in the hospital bed I was surprised at how I felt. I wondered if I'd have a sick feeling about all that had happened. But somehow I felt hope in addition to the peace. A dear friend shared a quote with me that I love. 

"While weak hope leaves us at the mercy of our moods and events, “brightness of hope” produces illuminated individuals. Their luminosity is seen, and things are also seen by it! Such hope permits us to “press forward” even when dark clouds oppress (see 2 Ne. 31:16, 20; Heb. 6:19; Ether 12:4; Col. 1:23). Sometimes in the deepest darkness there is no external light—only an inner light to guide and to reassure." { Neal A. Maxwell }

Sunny in any light. To me that is one of the great blessings that Jesus Christ shares with us. No matter what circumstances we face during mortality, the peace that passes understanding, the brightness of hope that comes from Jesus Christ is what gets us through.

This week I have been pondering my blessings with a new sense of gratitude for health and strength. For life. I am in awe of my incredible husband. I love him more than words can express, and with each experience we share my gratitude for him, his loving heart, and his goodness grows even deeper. For my forever family. For my children--whose energy and light bless my life daily. For family and dear friends whose faith, prayers, and thoughtful generosity provides me so much strength. For incredible healthcare and brilliant doctors. For a loving Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ who never leave me to face anything alone. My heart is full.