Life with PCOS looks so different when viewed through a wellness lens rather than a fertility (or an infertility) lens. I am on the other side of infertility. My cycles have regulated. I ovulate regularly. And I am not trying to get pregnant. So viewing PCOS objectively is easy for me now. It is easy for me to sit behind a computer screen and claim that I am grateful for PCOS, that it was part of our story. I am grateful for the ways it changed me, changed my marriage, drew me closer to Jesus, gave me a testimony for Him, and played a part in our journey to parenthood.
But in 2011, when I was diagnosed with PCOS and heard the acronym for the first time, I did not feel thankful. I remember feeling relieved in a strange way. A diagnosis meant I could start searching for answers and developing some sort of plan. (We all know how our best laid plans usually go, don’t we?) But more than anything, I felt overwhelmed, worried, and downright scared.
Then my research started and rather than easing my apprehension, it only fed my fears. So much conflicting information. So many stories of infertility and loss. Heart disease, obesity, type 2 diabetes. Shall I go on?
But as time went on and I moved away from scientific research toward building relationships with other women affected by PCOS, my fear-filled heart became hopeful. And expectant. There is a song on the radio right now that says, “There’s a place where fear has to face to God you know.” PCOS became the place where my fear had to face the God I knew was bigger. And having to really lay my fears at His feet day after day, moment by moment, revolutionized my life. PCOS was part of our journey toward parenthood. But our journey toward parenthood, as huge as it was, was only a small part of our story.
As the pain of infertility fades into memory, the lessons I learned, and the grace God showed me throughout that chapter, will forever be a deeply rooted part of who I am as a follow of Christ, as a mother, and as a wife.
Today I have two beautiful daughters. (My youngest is 15 months old today!) My heart is full. And I am in a new season where, again, I am laying my fears down at the feet of the King. In expectancy, in hope, and in complete trust.
If you’re in the thick of infertility, you are likely tired of hearing well-meaning people give you crappy fertility advice. (I’d give a few examples, but I bet you already have a few that have popped into your mind and put a frown on your face!) So I shouldn’t give you any advice at all. And I won’t, EXCEPT for this one thing:
Whatever your season, whatever your circumstances, place them in the hands of the Savior. When our faith is in our Savior, rather than in our circumstances, we find joy in the midst of heartache, loss, exhaustion.
Mark chapter 5 shares the account of Jesus healing a woman who had been bleeding for twelve years. We are told that, “She had suffered a great deal under many doctors and spent all she had, yet instead of getting better, she grew worse.” (Mark 5:26.) And then, she touched the hem of His garment. In a crowd full of people, in a world full of distractions, she reached out, found Jesus, and touched Him. And her faith healed her. In the midst of a bustling, busy streets, Jesus felt her fingertips touch his garment. Her faith stopped Him in His tracks, and she was healed.
I don’t know the intricacies of your story, of your struggle. But I know that, whatever your struggle: He’s got this. In a crowded, busy, hurting, broken world, keep your eyes on Jesus. Reach out through the distractions, and touch even just the hem of His garment. And know with absolute faith that, whatever happens after that, you are loved and you are held. Because when you reach out, the Savior of the world stops. He listens. He sees. He heals.
Maybe not when or how you want to be healed. Maybe not even in this lifetime. But one day you will be healed. These struggles, even if they last your whole life, are temporary. Because we will enter heaven one day, touch the garment of Jesus, and worship at the feet of the One who conquers sickness, disease, brokenness. We will worship at the throne of the One who conquers ALL. And we will be made new.