Friday, April 15, 2011

My Birthday Gifts

I woke up with excitement for it was one special day. First reason, I’m going to visit my ob-gynecologist for an ultrasound to confirm my pregnancy. Second, we are going to give away thirty-six brown bags with sandwiches to beggars and street children. And third, it’s my 36th birthday! That explains the thirty-six brown bags.

My husband and two-year-old son, Gian Timothy, greeted me as soon as I woke up. Our little boy even sang the birthday song. I read the card my husband gave me over breakfast, glanced at the bouquet of roses displayed in our living room and smiled with tear-filled eyes.

I have decided to celebrate my birthday in a simple way this year because it fell within the observance of Lent. Instead of enjoying a cake and ice cream, I’ve chosen to share whatever little that I have to the poor. We just had pancit and barbeque delivered to our house and we had a simple family celebration. After that, we went to the hospital for my check up.

I could feel my heart beating faster as we approached the very same hospital where I gave birth to our first-born. It was quite far from where we live now but I still decided to stick to my ob-gynecologist because my experience with her and the hospital was very good.

Then came our turn for the ultrasound. I was glad my husband was allowed to go inside and see for himself the little baby growing slowly in my womb. It was one great birthday gift from the Lord, indeed! Just a month ago, my doctor said that I might need to undergo a procedure to clear my uterus and to prepare it for conception. I prayed hard that it would not be necessary and that God would grant me another miracle. What perfect time to have my ultrasound! I got confirmation of the miracle I asked for on my birthday. God is so good!

The doctor prescribed some vitamins and told us when my expected due date for delivery will be. We then proceeded to the church nearby to hear Holy Mass as a family.

I felt a sense of nostalgia while praying during the Mass. This was the same church where I used to hear Mass as a single lady waiting for my bridegroom to come. This was the same church where I cried buckets of tears to God to heal me from my condition (of having polycystic ovaries) and make it possible for me to lead a normal and healthy life.

I was back at St. Joseph Shrine.
I was very happy to be back in that church and be reminded of God’s faithfulness to me. I recalled how God answered my every prayer in His own good time. Then, I realized that the psalm for the day is the meaning of our first-born’s name – the Lord is gracious and merciful. Wow!

I remembered how costly it is to be pregnant when we paid for my ultrasound at the hospital and when my doctor listed the vitamins I need to take for my pregnancy. As with my first pregnancy, our bank account is not prepared for this kind of expense. But unlike the last time, I am no longer worried. I already learned my lesson. I only need to look back at our spiritual landmarks and I could go on with courage once more.

I remembered the string of blessings and answered prayers we got during my first pregnancy. I remembered how God took care of all my concerns up to the littlest details. I thanked God for making my faith stronger. I thanked Him for the psalm during my birthday which gave me His assurance that in the same way that He has been gracious and merciful to us during my first pregnancy, He will be gracious and merciful to us again this time. This is truly one glorious day!

It was already late in the evening when we started distributing our brown bags but we still found many poor people on the road. We were still able to distribute all thirty-six. I was very happy!

As I lie in bed that night, I breathed a prayer I’ve grown familiar with over the years. “Make miracles for us, Lord, as in the days when You led Your people out of Egypt.” I adapted this prayer from Micah 7:15. It has been my prayer every time I needed something quite big from God. It has never failed me.

I know that as we welcome another baby into our life and our family, we will be welcoming more blessings including financial blessing into our lives. So, last week, when we received financial blessings from God, I was no longer surprised.

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