The Way to Love Anything is to Realize It May Be Lost

“The way to love anything is to realize it may be lost.”
-G.K. Chesterton as quoted in Small Steps for Catholic Moms

So I had a completely different post planned for today. I was going to share songs that moved me like Puff the Magic Dragon moves my 6-year-old (funny but true), but something else is moving me more than any song, and I can’t hold it in any longer.

I’m in one of those “how can I keep from singing?” moods. It feels good (so does the spring-like weather around here; sunshine is good for the soul). My life is charmed, and I’m going to notice it and write about it at the height of my moonstruck glory.

I was recently chatting with one of my nearest and dearest friends about how I’ve never been one to hold feelings back. Even when I try to internalize or censor my emotions, they somehow seep out through uncontrollable giggles, sometimes through tears, sometimes in a rush of joy, or a twinge of sadness. Or they end up spilling out in my journals (and sometimes on this blog, too).

Sometimes I find myself being envious of someone like my husband whose always even mood doesn’t have highs and lows. He’s never met depression or anxiety (I once asked him just to be sure he wasn’t uber talented at masking his emotions, but nope, he’s just really that centered). But (and there’s almost always a but when we start wishing we were something we’re not created to be) I’m not sure he knows joy as intimately as I do either. I can still be the kid who runs around with excitement and when I do that he watches me from the sidelines with a bemused expression. Of course, this also means on a bad day, I can morph into the kid who pouts and throws a big tantrum. Joy bubbles up, and I laugh and laugh and can’t wipe the smile off my face. When I’m sad, I’m tragically, melodramatically sad and once again my husband is bemused, although from living with four girls (five if you include our needy, girl dog) he’s starting to get used to the emotional ups and downs. That’s just me. All or nothing.

As I’ve grown older, I’ve had to learn that my goal doesn’t have to be controlling or suppressing my emotions; it has to be staying rooted in Christ and His love no matter how I’m feeling. It has to be holding onto the shreds of joy that are left in me even through the tears, the joy that difficulties in life have picked apart, or the joy I’ve just too easily given away, the joy that is Him.

Lately there have still been some ups and downs – many of which fluctuations in hormones have likely caused. I tried to temper these feelings, especially the “ups.” Don’t get too excited. Not yet. Loss could be right around the corner. But it was no use. I had to whisper my secret to my close friends. I smiled when I shared the news. I couldn’t help it. Even when, physically, there were signs that I might be practicing the art of losing again, I couldn’t let go of the joy. Because the joy, this time, really is something more than warm and fuzzy feelings. It just might be my recognition of Him, and I find myself grateful for the tough but very valuable lessons about trust and bending to God’s will five months ago.

It’s still early, but God has planted a glorious hope within me. To make a short story terribly long as is too often my custom, I’m 12 weeks pregnant!

Because of a placental tear, I’ve had early ultrasounds – something new to me – and have had a chance to catch a glimpse of our baby, not once but twice.

At about seven weeks, I had the first ultrasound. I waited, reclining on the examination table, staring at the chalkboard screen, not sure what I was supposed to see or what I would see (or if I wouldn’t see anything at all; this was my unspoken fear). But then there it was. No one had to say anything. I knew. There was that white flash of a heartbeat – quick, beautiful, strong, alive.

There was my baby. There was my love, my joy, personified.

I’ve never questioned the tenuous nature of new life or the miracle of a new baby, but I have taken it for granted. Not now. I am in awe of the human body and the life-giving power of God and that He would use the water in my womb and transform it into the fine wine of a human being with a soul that has been created for eternity.

I’d been wondering if it was safe to make the big announcement. I even asked a few friends who had suffered miscarriages when they felt safe to share the news of subsequent pregnancies. Everyone is different, but I realized we’re never completely safe – not from losing. It happens all the time. We lose plenty in life, but we gain a lot, too. It’s been in my life’s darkest moments when I’ve felt empty or like there was nothing left that I realized I had all I ever needed: God’s love. God’s protection. He’s what keeps me safe.

I know there are no guarantees. I know joy is sometimes followed by heartache and love by loss. As Chesterton writes, “The way to love anything is to realize that it may be lost.” I’ve had friends lose babies as far along as 38 weeks. I’ve known women to give birth to stillborn babies perfect but silently sleeping or moms who have only had a chance to breathe in the sweet scent of their babies for a few days or maybe a few months before their beloved little one left this earth. But I can’t be standoffish about my love. It’s not my nature.

And so my secret is out for the world to see: We are expecting another baby set to make his or her big debut September 1st!

We’re all very happy around here, but you might have guessed that I’m getting all theatrical about it and doing a little, happy dance (when I’m not feeling too “pukey” and exhausted). The physical exhaustion (I’ve never felt more tired than I have in recent weeks), and the nausea is weighing on me just a little but not as much as in past pregnancies. Perhaps I have a new perspective, having had a miscarriage. There aren’t too many complaints this time around. There is no maternal malaise this pregnancy, although check back in a few months when I realize that Mary Elizabeth is still nursing a dozen times a day and I’m about to add another sleep and milk-sucking creature to our nest. For now, though, there is hope and gratitude for this work in progress. And there are prayers for patience, grace, and trust as this new life continues to be knit within me.

Thank you for sharing in my ongoing journey into motherhood, and thank you for being a special witness to my sorrows and my many joys.

Grow, baby, grow!

And how wonderful it’s been to see that my little one and I are in good company with Suzanne of Blessed Among Men and Charlotte of Waltzing Matilda! All of us are are due right around each other. How fun!

Oh, and now you can see that pregnesia was in play in the case of the mistaken leg identity.

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Enter the Conversation...

33 Responses to “The Way to Love Anything is to Realize It May Be Lost”
  1. Michelle says:

    Oh, the joys of early ultrasounds! {Yes, complete sarcasm.}

    I think you're just joining the ranks of "older and wiser" when you realize that being open to life means being open to loss as much as being open to love. At 12 weeks, I'm sure you're as fine as you can be. We're not to live in fear, right?

    Congratulations on your newest adventure! May the rest of your pregnancy be uneventful and healthy.

  2. Sara says:

    Congratulations, Kate! That's wonderful news! I remember my 4th pregnancy—the exhaustion was something I had never experienced before.

  3. KZG says:

    Kate, congratulations! After losing a baby at 9 weeks last March, it is still unreal to me I am expecting a baby in just a few week short weeks..right around the anniversary of the last baby's loss. I have experienced the feelings you have….when will I feel safe to tell? to believe? to hope? The short answer, for me, is still "I don't know" b/c I am 37 weeks pregnant and still a bit terrified but I can tell you this….I have loved this baby as much as I can from that first early ultrasound at six weeks and hope she (yes, she!)will make her debut soon, as I long to see her healthy and 'safe' -as she can be–as an outside baby. This pregnancy may be quite different from your others but in a blessed way. Please know I will keep you in my thoughts and prayers and wish you a healthy (and pukey!) pregnancy.

  4. Charlotte (Waltzing Matilda) says:

    Congratulations! The compounded tragedy of miscarriage is that it robs you of that pure, early joy of subsequent pregnancies. Any and all joy is tainted by the fear that loss embeds in our heart. It tends to magnify our worries and concerns. Sometimes I haven't felt as tired or as nauseous as I think I should be and suddenly that fear creeps back up into my throat. My even tempered husband has the heavy burden of keeping me sane during those low moments. God bless wonderful husbands! Thank you for sharing your joy with us! We'll be praying for you!!!

  5. Kris says:

    Oh, Kate!! Words can't express my joy for you!! Can't wait to meet the newest Wicker miracle. Wish you were closer so I could give you a big hug.

  6. Maggie says:

    Oh, Kate- this is wonderful news! I am so happy for you and will be praying for you and your little blessing!

    I remember getting pregnant after my miscarriage. In regards to telling people, we wanted to wait awhile, like 12 weeks- that included telling our parents. But at my first appointment they did an ultrasound (they always do one at the first appointment) and they couldn't find anything in the sac. I was EXACTLY like it was with my miscarriage so I was devasted. He told me to come back in 2 days because that could make all the difference. Well it sure did because when we went back I could see a little miraculous 6 week blob with a heartbeat! I was beyond the moon elated that I let the news out! But I was so incredibly nervous until about 24 weeks. You are right- pregnancy is a huge trust in God!

    Sorry for the rambling!

  7. Jen Ambrose says:


  8. Betty Beguiles says:

    Congratulations! I'm so happy for you! You'll be in our prayers. :)

  9. Karen says:

    What wonderful blessings – a new baby and a new knowledge of life! Thank you for sharing so we can all rejoice with you.
    God Bless

  10. Elizabeth Williams says:

    Congratulations, Kate! What a wonderful post and what wonderful news. Thank you for sharing it in your most wonderful way… such a joy! God bless–

  11. Kate Wicker @ Momopoly says:

    Thank you all for your congratulations and kind words. I'll keep everyone posted on Baby Wicker!


  12. 8littlearrows says:

    Kate, what a beautiful post! Congratulations to you! I think anyone who's been through the loss of a baby can understand the niggling of fear the next time around, but I'm like you. I can't help but celebrate anyway. I've had three miscarriages, but also have 8 living miracles — testimony that God is in control and has wonderful things in store when I trust Him and celebrate every gift. Praying for a wonderful pregnancy and healthy delivery for you!

  13. Liz says:

    Congrats Kate! I am so happy to hear your news. Wishing you a healthy and happy pregnancy!

  14. Patty says:

    Hi Kate! I'm Patty …the other pregnant mommy. This is my 7th pregnancy and I have successfully delivered 3 healthy children. Then we grew our family through the awesome gift of adoption. Praise God! Here I am again, with the usual ups and downs..but have FINALLY found peace. It is funny how and when we finally find that peace. It is definitely different for each of us. I have the same due date as Charlotte, so I'll be close by you as well, God willing. Congratulations and praise be to God!

  15. Thrifty and Chic Mom says:

    Kate I am so thrilled for you and sending all kinds of prayers your way for you and this new beautiful life in your belly! Congratulations.

  16. Jennifer G. says:

    Congratulations Kate!!!! How wonderful!! We will keep you and your baby in our prayers. Proverbs 3:5.

  17. Steven says:

    Congratulations, Kate! What a blessing. I too wear my emotions on my sleeve and can rarely keep baby news for more than a couple weeks! Prayers for a happy, healthy pregnancy…

  18. Blair says:

    Last comment from Blair :)

  19. Kelle says:

    Congratulations! I too lost a baby last summer and am now due the day after you with my fourth living child. I love that Chesterton quote and will hold it in my heart. Thank you for sharing your journey with us.

  20. Maman A Droit says:

    Congratulations! That is so exciting! I myself am a beginning of September baby-perhaps this litle one will come September 3rd and be my "birthday buddy".
    We'll keep you in our prayers that everything goes smoothly with this pregnancy and birth!

  21. Calah says:

    Congratulations, Kate! I'm so happy for you and your family! We'll be keeping y'all (and the newest baby, of course) in our prayers.

  22. Sarah Reinhard says:

    Congrats, my dear friend! Praying for you!

  23. Molly says:

    Congratulations! What happy news! I was hoping pregnancy was the reason for your less-than-normal-number of posts lately. 😀

  24. Helen says:

    Congratulations, Kate, and thank you for sharing your news!

  25. Mum2eight says:

    congratulations Kate. I will be praying for you and your little baby.

  26. Erin says:

    Congratulations, how wonderful!!! Your post speaks beautifully of trust and love – very well said. I am due myself in mid-September… just haven't had the energy to compose any kind of announcement (or anything else!) on my blog! 😉

    I'll be praying for you and all the other pregnant mommies!

  27. Darcel @The Mahogany Way says:

    Congratulations! You are the 4th person I've learned was pregnant in the past two weeks.

  28. nicole says:

    I'm not a regular reader, but I have to say congratulations! What an exciting time. I will pray for good health for everyone, and that you may be free from anxiety as much as possible.

  29. Jordana says:

    Congratulations! I'm thrilled for your happy news of a new little life.

  30. Bridget says:

    Congrats, Katie! I'm so excited for you all! And (so far) 4 is fairly easy!

  31. Mary Ellen Barrett says:

    I'm so very happy for you!

  32. the momma says:

    Congratulations!! this is such happy news :-)

  33. Kimberlee says:

    Congratulations to all of you! I am so very happy to hear your good news! Deo Gratias!

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