The Journey Series: Shanicka House
Journey to Motherhood
Describe yourself in 3-5 words.
Loving. Faith-filled. Helpful. Encouraging. Creative.
If your journey were a song, what song would it be?
“I Believe I’ll see It” by Kendall McDowell
How would you describe your journey to someone who has never met you?
The timeline of my journey of motherhood has been me either expecting to expect, or actually expecting. *insert laugh*
I’ve wanted nothing more than to be a mother for basically my entire life. So from about the age of 8 I began expecting to be married and begin having children in my mid-twenties (more specifically 25). However, when 30 approached and neither of those things had taken place I had to trust that it would still happen for me. At age 31 I found out that I had a goiter on my thyroid, and was unsure of what that meant concerning my fertility due to hormonal concerns. I wasn’t married or actively attempting to become pregnant, but I still lived in a place of expectancy where I fought to believe that I would still birth children of my own. Three months after getting married, and one month shy of my 32nd birthday, my husband and I found out we were expecting our first child. Eighteen months after giving birth to our first child we found out we were expecting our second child.
When did you know you were ready to start the motherhood journey?
Does 8 years old count?! I have always wanted to be a mother. I saw myself with children before I ever even knew how children really came to be. The only thing that changed, over time, was how many children I wanted.
What part of this motherhood journey are you in currently? Would you mind sharing a bit about it?
Almost five months ago, March 14th, my husband and I lost our baby at 11 weeks. I have been grieving my baby’s loss, doing my best to heal, and was honestly not sure when I would be ready to even entertain the discussion of trying again. I took up gardening because having something else to care for (physically and emotionally) really aided my grieving process. Seeing fruit come from seeds that I planted helped keep my hope alive. Being an angel mom has truly made me see a part of motherhood that I was aware existed, but had no clue of what it was really like. Becoming a mother of three, when only two of them are visible, has changed me. However, I’m now learning how to be the mother of all three, and also feel like it’s okay to try again.
What is your current state of mind?
My state of mind is currently transitioning from feeing overwhelmed to being at peace. Deciding to try and conceive again, in the middle of a pandemic is probably the next scariest thing to losing my baby at the beginning of the pandemic. Because I know overwhelm is basically self-inflicted, and can take a toll on one’s mental, emotional, and even physical health, I am doing my best to transition from feeling overwhelmed about the process to simply trusting God’s timing and the process He has in place for me.
What would you say to others who find themselves in a journey similar to yours?
“Don’t just go through motherhood, grow through motherhood. It might not get easier, but you can get stronger.”
What moment sticks in your mind most from this journey?
It is incredibly hard to pick just one. So many moments from this journey stick out in my mind; however, if I had to pick one… The day I miscarried my oldest daughter, Raegan, asked if the baby was still in my tummy (she’d ask that almost every day because she couldn’t see it). That was the first time I had to tell her no, and I wasn’t sure what her response would be. When I said that there was no longer a baby in Mommy’s tummy she took that to mean it was now “with us”, so she excitedly looked around the room asking, “It's here!? Where!?” I then told her that the baby went to be with Jesus, and her immediate response was, “Oh, He’ll give him back. That’s how Jesus works.” Her childlike faith in God is what I hold on to when mine doesn’t seem to be strong enough.
What has the journey taught you, and what keeps you going?
This journey of motherhood has taught me that God loves me far more than I can even imagine. I literally can’t imagine someone loving me more than I love my children, so to know He loves me in that manner compels me to not only be the best mother to my children, but to also be the best version of myself, period. Believing that God doesn’t just love me, but also works all things (good, bad, and ugly) together for the good of the whole me, is what keeps me going.
Our journeys may be difficult, but we don't have to go at it alone. Having an additional outlet to communicate with others who can relate, share stories and wellness tips can make all the difference on this adventure. Read more stories from the Journey Series below.
If you are looking for support or have questions about your own journey, please join Premama's Journey to Motherhood community, a place where women can talk, lift each other up and learn useful wellness, health, nutrition and self-care tips.