Sunday, April 29, 2012

Baptisms, deaths and celebrations

I meant to blog yesterday  about St. Gianna, the Consecration of Mary and what both meant to my marriage and vocation on the exact feast day. Also about the start of the Catholic Spanish If support group and my 5th wedding anniversary.   It was not to be.

This weekend has been one of contrasts:   2 baptisms, 2 deaths   and  one anniversary celebration.  All in 2 days.  

Yesterday we went to the baptism of a little baby boy adopted by some friends early in the morning.     We had met them in a personal finance course and over the weeks she opened up to me that she was preparing herself for IVF.  

 She had a very,  very bad case of endo and the doctors here had taken out one of her very damaged fallopian tubes (without  her permission). .  Pain continued as expected when you do not have the intention to cure , but only to put a band aid on a major health issue,.  She even fainted from time to time during her period due to the pain,    She then was put on on medications which stopped her cycles for months putting her in early menopause during that time.     A classic case of the management of stage 4 endo here.

She told me she wanted to become pregnant any way she could.   Over the months we spoke on FB and in person.  Once we invited her DH and her to our house  to speak about Napro where they asked me point blank about using Cre.igthon for IVF.  She wanted me to teach her to increase her success rates.

We had a long night in which told them openly about the reality of IVF, what CrMs could offer them and we also told them we had opened our hearts towards adoption.  Nobody had ever told them it was an option.    

During  the next months we  spoke frequently and I loaned her all my books on adoption.  I also offered to help her chart and even gave them both an intro session.  Despite the fact she never was my client (they always canceled at the last minute)  I consider her one of the succes cases of my FertilityCare center.

They stopped doing IVF and now are the proud parents of a baby boy.  Being invited to the baptism was such a joy and reminded me to always speak about the realities of IVF when people asked and also to speak joyfully and openly  about adoption. You never know which hearts you will touch

Later that day we decided to have lunch at a very nice yet simple restaurant just the 3 of us  to celebrate our 5th anniversary and then began to head home.

I had expected to spend the afternoon at home celebrating as a family, in prayer with my DH doing the consecration in depth, but God had other plans.

We went to visit my father in law for a few minutes on they way home  and while there we received the call that they would hold an intimate funeral  ceremony for the father of one of DH sister in laws and that they hoped we could join in the next hour.  You should have seen my face.

  He had died the day before of a very long illness, she was estranged from him, yet as to be expected was very sad. They had no plans for a funeral, nor for anything else.   Yet at the  very last minute they decided to do something and  she wanted us to be there with her and how could we say no?.

So there we were, dressed for a baptism  (me in  a pink dress!)  heading for the placement of the ashes in a church in an hour.  It was surreal.

The ceremony was very simple, sad in the fact that it looked as if he was not to me missed.  People seemed so distant, as getting over the ceremony as fast as they could.  I cannot explain it,  but its not the way I would I would like to be remembered.    

Later we stayed for Mass and came home exhausted, with a very cranky baby.   DH and I prayed the last day of the Novena to st. Gianna, when I logged to my email to set up the IF Spanish group only to find out about a death of a member of my class at my university.    A completely unexpected death at 40.

 Its always shocking to read about a young persons death, but it was incredibly moving to read all the comments and emails about him.  I was not close  to him, but many of my friends were in deep mourning and it was  such a contrast to the other persons death.

  Hundreds, yes hundreds of people spoke about the joy that he brought to all of them, about a life well lived, a life of service.   It was beautiful to read and made me realize this is exactly how I would like to live my life.    

Today we woke up again very very early  for another baptism. Now for the little daughter of one of our adoption class members.  

This family had been through so much.  The mother had  kidney disease years ago and had to have a transplant.  She had been given only 10% chance to survive the transplant.  yet she did not want to continue to live her life as she was and decided to do it.    Her DH had married knowing full well she might become ill again and that they might never had children.  Well. now they are parents of an amazing little girl.  Knowing the path they had taken to become parents made this baptism so very special.  

We came home completely exhausted, but deeply reflective  to have seen so much in the last days.

Births and deaths all in one,  just like life.


  1. A full weekend! Such a celebration of life!
    Praise to God for the adoption of the baby ... when the parents were thinking of pursuing IVF! Praying for the repose of the soul of your classmate. 40 is so young!

  2. I feel like we've had similar experiences with life and death -- we've attended so many different sacraments in the past few weeks and I definitely prefer the baptisms and First Communions!