The Most Expensive Pregnancy Test Ever (and why I'm happy about it)
Updated: Jun 9, 2022
It had been a day.
I went into the hospital prepared for eye surgery last Wednesday.
It was going to be a simple procedure, just a little rearranging of muscles so they could work together. I’m tired of seeing double. Even with mostly unhelpful insurance, it seemed time to take the plunge. I’ve lived with this issue for years. But I wanted to see.
My husband and I arrived and navigated through the checkpoints. Temperature, mask, health check of approval. I didn't tell them my 4-year-old had coughed on me when she woke up. I wasn't going to let anything get in the way of this long-awaited moment.
I got into the unexplainably popular hospital fashion of a well-used, far-too-big gown.
A young nurse with green eyes got my IV in with no trouble. She laughed at my watch tan line. I’ve been in the garden a lot recently; it shows.
They ran a few tests. The anesthesiologist arrived and talked pleasantly about drugging me to sleep.
The nurse with the green eyes came again and sat down.
That’s never a good sign.
“So,” she began, “a test came back positive…”
“Covid?” I thought. I’d had it several months ago and was enjoying my sense of returned smell as the flowers bloomed this spring, and I felt very healthy. But you never know.
I looked at her out of the corner of one eye. They don't work together, so that's how I have to look.
“Your pregnancy test showed two faint lines,” she focused on my face to gauge my reaction.
“What?” I squeaked. The room swirled around me.
My husband laughed. It’s not the first time he’s had the news dropped on him. We do have 7 kids at home…
But I’ve never had a stranger tell me before I knew.
And certainly not in a setting like this.
I was not happy.
I’ve needed this surgery for a long time. Years. But kids, pregnancy, financial challenges...
I thought the moment had come. I was ready to face the indignity of being the vulnerable one, of red raccoon eyes while healing, of a few days full of audiobooks and someone else doing the dishes. I was ready to pay for it. I was even ready for the potential complications. There’s a slight chance of losing sight when someone comes at your face with a scalpel - or messing with it in unpleasant ways. There was a chance of reactions to the anesthesia drugs. I’ve never had them, I don’t know how I’ll respond. I’d bio-hacked my health a bit prior to the medical intervention, adding supplements, eating a clean protein and plant-heavy diet with little sugar, no dairy, and no wheat, hoping to rebound quickly and heal well. Friends had meals lined up. My husband had a week off.
I was ready.
But not for this.
I don't know why God chose that particular week to create a new person. I missed surgery and I'm still waiting for the triple-digit bill for what ended up being no more than a drug store pregnancy test - but involved OR time, a surgeon, anesthetist, and countless nurses and aides.
I still can't see straight.
God wanted me to have better sight than any doctor could offer.
What else could it be?
I am easily blinded by the desire to be "normal" and culturally relevant.
I want to think about career moves, my hobbies (actual ones - kids don't count), and focus on homemaking and homeschooling.
I want my body back.
I want to sleep through the night.
But God doesn't give us a pastime. He gives us a calling. He gives us mundane to turn into worship.
He gives life to turn it holy.
Isaiah was a prophet called by God to tell his nation they were doomed. It couldn't have been pleasant.
Or culturally relevant.
And it ended in agonizing death.
In Isaiah 8, the prophet declares boldy, "I will wait for the Lord... I will hope in Him. Behold, I and the children whom the Lord has given me are signs and portents in Israel from the Lord of Hosts."
It's not easy to stand against the tide.
But God uses families to do just that.
Centuries later, Jesus Himself began His official ministry when he sat down, opened the scroll of Isaiah and quoted the prophet's words from chapter 61.
I think God delights in using simple humans to do supernatural, timeless
work - beyond our wildest imaginations.
I truly didn’t imagine this.
So here I am - I and the children God has given me - to be a sign to our little world.
We're here to live for our good and His glory.
In the womb.
In the fishbowl that is our life.
In the perfect care of our Creator.
I wouldn't want it any other way.
Baby number 8 due early February 2023.