Heavy Burden

With all of the talk about Contraception going on in the news, I have felt such a heavy burden on my heart. Now, this could also be due to the fact that it is CD3 and I'm not loving this 1st post-surgery AF at all, but I think it's more than that, especially since there was no chance of anything but AF this month. But it's all about full-disclosure, here, right? ;)

Anyway, this burden is twofold. One piece is that I know so so well how those who think we are just "crazy Catholics" are thinking. Just a few short years ago, I was one of them. I know how much prayer and research and opening of my heart and mind that it took me to understand. And as I sit here watching CNN, I can feel my chest tightening from the fear of what might be coming. I want to have the perfect words and the perfect answer and the perfect examples and just make everyone see and understand. And I feel the weight of this cross of standing up for what I believe and speaking it with love and living it well.

And then there is this fear and guilt. This fear and guilt that has been underlying every day since I tossed the birth control pills in the trash. Did I do this to myself? Did I bring this IF into our lives? I know that God doesn't sit in heaven handing out punishments, and I'm truly grateful. I also know that there are consequences for our actions. The state of our marriage pre and post NFP are proof of that. Inherent evil = bad things, even if you don't know it's evil. Are the scars on my abdomen and the tears on my cheeks the consequences of 12 years of birth control? I'm so angry at all I didn't know. And more, I'm so angry that I didn't look for answers myself. That I believed what I was hearing and what I wanted to believe. And I'm so ashamed of all the times I defended it all.

And when I combine these two, this burden of the Truth and the fear and guilt, I get anger and the desire to run away. Ireland is a nice Catholic country, right? And someone mentioned Malta on FB the other day. But I know this is not the solution. And as I'm so close to the edge on any given day that to step into the fight openly and face those I know IRL who feel differently brings that flight instinct to a whole new level.

I am struggling to sort through this all. On a bigger-than-me level, I'm scared of what is to come and trying to have hope and confidence that Truth will win out. Personally, it's much the same. I'm scared of what is to come and I'm trying to have hope and confidence in God's will.


  1. "I'm so angry I didn't look for answers for myself." Please, please don't think that. We trust our doctors to do what is the best for us. Unfortuneately, when they are handing out ABC left and right because it is the norm and because it is convenient, well, that's not what is best for us. We know that now in retrospect. Even growing up Catholic I didn't know what the big deal was with ABC. Infact, I didn't know the Church was against it, I thought they just slightly advised against it, like smoking cigarettes. I was so ignorant but I didn't have a solid Catholic background and I was just going along with what everyone else was doing. That's no excuse for my birth control use, but I don't think we should beat ourselves up over it. There's no way you'll ever know the initial cause of your IF until the glorious days of heaven. Please don't fret too much about that. (Coming from the girl who worries all the freakin' time.) Praying for you, and praying for this country... we're in scary times indeed.

  2. Hug and prayers! Remember the grace of God's love, he has long since forgiven you, follow that example and forgive yourself. As for the other I'm right there with you; hoping and praying that when the moment comes so will the words.

  3. Oh REbecca, praying for you, dear! I'm in the same boat. I was thinking recently that I used ABC for 10 years off and on and I keep waiting for the day I find a lump in my breast. (Don't worry...I don't obsess about it...it's more like, I won't be surprised should I ever find one, you know?)

    This is a very sad and a very scary time for us in this country. I know it feels that way for us because we're Catholic, but just think about all the people who are and aren't Catholic who think this isn't "a big deal" and then some other freedom is stripped from them that actually IS a "big deal" to them....and they'll feel so betrayed. Just like we Catholics do.

    We need prayer, fasting and penance. And I really liked Pat Archibold's article the other day reminding us that we probably ought to pray for good aim, too. :)

  4. A big hug for you Rebecca! What a beautiful post. I know exactly what you mean about the guilt and fear. I too used birth control pills for 4+ years and find it very difficult to forgive myself. I have thought about my situation many, many times and wonder if things would be different if I hadn't made those mistakes early on in my life. God's grace is so powerful and He is so forgiving....we must remember that!

  5. I hear you! Sometimes I want to run away too, and buy and island and have just Catholics live there. :) But, we have to FIGHT these issues!

    And DON'T blame yourself...at the time, you didn't know! Society is to blame--our culture of death tries to cover up the truth and tell you that it's okay, it'll have no consequences. This is precisely why we DO need to fight! So that the culture of death stops victimizing innocent people by feeding them lies.

    And, for what it's worth, I found the first post-surgery AF to be still pretty painful, but my periods diminished in pain a few months after surgery, to the point where I could take two advil (if I even needed any at all) and could go about my day. So it'll get better!

  6. Don't beat yourself up. We were indoctrinated from childhood in the women's lib pro-choice culture. Our doctors were also indoctrinated, and we trust our doctors. What is important is the good choices you are making now. And, I know it seems scary because it just seems like society is out of control, but we know that God wins in the end. Just today, I heard that the Susan Komen society is stopping their donations to planned parenthood. That just shows me that our prayers and sacrifices do work and that hope is out there.

  7. I think what's important is that you NOW know what is right and what to do about it...so don't beat yourself up!!

    All this going on scares the heck out of me and it has me wondering what the heck is going to happen. I have even seen more and more of my liberal FB friends' happily and even louder, speaking up on FB about how happy they are...scares me to my core.

    But we will fight and we will cling to that hope! Not giving up!

  8. "Be who you are and be that well" -St. Fancis DeSales (my college patron saint) I've always loved that quote. Who you are today is more your true self than you were years ago. Like FmtP said, you know now what is right and you're not ignoring it. God smiles for that, He smiles for you!

    Your story is such a wonderful one to share. Prayers for the Spirit to be with you, guide you and give you courage.

    P.S. My first real CD 1 post-op sucked. I bled through my sweatpants :/ If it's any consolation, each progressive cycle is looking better and better. I hear it's the same for most.

  9. As the other ladies more eloquently said, you are standing for the truth now, when you took ABC before, you did not know. God does forgive. I wonder if my past sins brought on my IF, too ... you're not alone in that ... but I hope and pray and try to remember that God is merciful. He wouldn't do that.
    It scares me too to watch our country "go to hell in a handbasket." I wonder if this is a sign of the end times. I am praying that rational Christian / Catholic people can change Obama's prerogative. I cannot wait to vote Mr. O out of office!!!

  10. None of this is a surprise for God. I know that you *know* this, it can just be hard to remember at times like this.

    Also, I'm sorry that your first post-surgery AF isn't so great. I don't know how much is emotional and how much physical, but just the physical stunk for me. My surgeon told me that for her patients it seems to be fine half the time, and the other half call her asking her to put back in whatever she removed!

    Anyway, one way or another it will get better. And either way, God will still be God.

  11. You captured so well how I feel too. Fear that what I've done in the past has "caused" my IF, but also anxiety about standing up and speaking out. I too feel like running away. But we can't. I read elsewhere today, can't remember where... "God does not call the equipped, he equippes those he calls". (or something like that.)

    Folks like us who used to use artificial birth control may be good people to have in the fight because we understand the other mindset. We're just blessed that grace showed us the Truth. Maybe because of our experience we can help show other's the Truth too.

    But I also know God is merciful and forgiving.

    As for the first cycle post surgery--mine was horrendous-very heavy bleeding and very painful! But they got much better after that!!

  12. Chiming in very late here, but I want to say that mercy and forgiveness, God's lack of punishment are all important points, but remember also that plenty of us have had infertility having never used b.c. It's hard to convince yourself that suffering is not connected with our own sin, or at least, that we couldn't have prevented it. But it's true nonetheless.