On Learning How To Suffer Well – Arianne Segerman {infant loss/miscarriage}

I met Arianne at Blissdom.

Little did I know that inside that pretty face lay the most beautiful writer and storyteller.

And I went home and started reading Arianne’s blog.  And learned the story of her Mabel.

And knew instantly that her poetic voice and humble heart was needed for this series.

{If you are new here, this post is part of a series on infant loss/miscarriage.  Please stay and read or direct a friend who could use encouragment.}

* * * *

For Mabel

I lay and feel this baby, 16 weeks along now, move and wiggle inside me. I cannot get enough of each and every womb-touch.  I take it all in. I gulp and gulp and swallow this experience whole. I cannot. Get. Enough.

But also.

I remember.

Laying in a dark room in my bed with a completely silent womb.  The older sister to this now growing baby having just died. At only 18 weeks along, almost where we are now in this pregnancy, my fourth baby, my first girl, was gone. But still inside me.  Then she was born asleep and I got to see her face and be with her in the only way I’d ever get to.

I remember asking God why.

I remember not liking His answer.

So you can reach people with your pain.”

Like an impish child I ignored God’s gentle answer and kept hold of anger.

And wanted to reverse time.

But of course, the anger eventually lifted.

Like a fog, up and off my stomped on heart.  And I saw a glimmer.

My star hung on my soul sky.

And that was when I began to learn how to suffer well.

I took life slowly, isolated on purpose.

I healed the way my heart was telling me,

and often not the way people wanted me to.

I would regularly find myself at a precipice, preparing to either fall into God’s arms or fall down into the river to be swept away.

That river was so seductive. It promised such relief. Such comfort.  It lied about everything, but at least it was easier than the other choice.

But with Jesus-infused eyes somewhere inside my soul I was able to see through the facade

and identify the lies

and see I really had only one option.

Because the choices really were life or death.

Life, or soul-death.

This kind of loss can most certainly soul-kill a woman. It tried to take me, many times.

And so I had only one option.

To not be swept away by that river.

But to survive, that meant to suffer well.

I had no interests but a tunnel vision of Jesus and taking care of my family. I cared about nothing else. I lost opportunities. I lost friendships because they couldn’t understand my grief process.  Again my one and only choice was to continue to suffer well.

It wasn’t about being strong or moving on. It wasn’t about being brave.

It was simply, and most difficultly, about surrendering everything to Him.

Surrendering and letting Him take it all was the only way to live each day without that horrible, wounding, hurt. But oh, the hurt was still there. It’s just that the hurt became a healing pain instead of a despair pain.

And now.

Laying here and feeling baby #5 wiggling, I don’t know what my future holds. I have no idea what will happen this time. And I won’t even tell you I’ve been the most trusting person on the planet lately.  But I go back to the truths God already taught me.

The fact is, I don’t have to know.

I simply have to surrender.

And let faith take us the rest of the way.

* * * *

I love the raw perspective Arianne brings to this series.

I love how she weaves the pain into something filled with beauty.

In conjunction with the series on infant loss/miscarriage, we are also hosting a fundraiser benefitting the Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep Foundation.

NILMDTS offers free professional photography to families grieving the loss of a babe.

Help support a Foundation that will provide irreplacable images that will become family heirlooms.

Please help us reach our goal…just $1 at a time.

Don’t assume everyone else reading will give.

Join in.  It’s a great way to start your week.

Yow know, by helping others.  :)


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I'm a mom to four. A wife to one. I believe in story. I love telling you about mine and would love to hear yours. There's really no sense in wasting our suffering and not sharing in each other's joy. We're all in this together...even if it doesn't always feel like it.

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  1. 1

    Wow. I am absolutely amazed by Arianne’s strength and faith. I will certainly be following her blog from here on out!
    Sarah´s last blog post ..Big Girl Pants

  2. 2

    beauty in brokenness. beauty from ashes. beauty soul deep in you, ariane. love your heart and your words of surrender.
    Frelle´s last blog post ..If You Really Knew Me- You Would Know That

  3. 3

    Holy cow I needed to read this today. We’ve been trying to conceive for 2 years now and lost our first baby to miscarriage last September after having done infertility treatments. Last month we did the treatment again and it didn’t work, and this month we did it again and we have one more week till we find out if it worked. But for the past 2 days I’ve been having weird pains that may be cramping which would most likely mean I’m not pregnant. Persevering through the disappointment every month is an uphill battle- and since our baby died it makes it even more awful. But….BUT- in the last 2 months Jesus has brought life and hope back to my heart. There is now light in the darkness. I didn’t think I could really live again after losing our baby- but Jesus has shown me hope for our future. Thank you for your words- God has used them in this mama’s heart today.
    carrie´s last blog post ..Here goes!

  4. 4

    I can’t believe you are already here this time again with new baby. It was like yesterday, still too long since we’ve last hugged.

    Adventures In Babywearing´s last blog post ..Lasterday

  5. 5

    My neighbor is going through the something very similar right now and this sweet, incredibly strong message will encourage her I think. :) Thank you so much for sharing.
    Mari´s last blog post ..A Week in Cell-Photos

  6. 6

    This is excellent. Thank you!
    this could soul kill a woman. So true! But, it doesn’t have to. Jesus offers beauty & healing beyond what I could ever understand. He gives all we need to be able to “suffer well”. Thanks for this blessing.
    erin´s last blog post ..Rock a Bye

  7. 7

    Arianne, you have such a gift with words. My heart hears your heart’s cries today, though I don’t pretend to know this suffering. I am thinking of you and praying for your heart to continue healing.

  8. 8

    Love love love this. Thank you so much for sharing these words.
    Beth´s last blog post ..Mother’s Day


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