“You Don’t Look Like What You’ve Been Through.”

Why 2019 Wasn’t the Worst Year of My Life

An open, raw look into my life in 2019.

2019 was one of the hardest years I’ve ever through, and the absolute hardest year that we’ve been through as a couple. But God.

January 2019

In January 2019, we found out we were finally expecting after 7 months, which I later realized was not a long time at all to be trying to conceive. 

February 2019

Just a few weeks later, 1 day before Valentine’s Day, we started miscarrying. I had never experienced a loss of any kind before, so it was a very strong punch in the chest. It knocked the “wind” out of me. Wind being a reason to keep fighting, the will to continue living. I fell into a deep depression that took a lot of God-given strength to get out of.

March 2019

I found out that we were expecting again. It was not a smooth pregnancy. I had several bouts of bleeding, and struggled with crippling migraines and nausea the entire time.


May 2019

Our house was in the process of being built, and we didn’t have much longer. I was just 10 weeks pregnant with baby girl Aaliyah (my 2nd pregnancy) before we finally moved in.

Before we were able to close on the house, the enemy moved. He created weapons of mass destruction meant for our lives, but they didn’t prosper. 

We were due to be booted from our apartment on May 31st since we had given our 60 day notice. We were anticipating moving into our home, and figured everything would go smoothly.

We had owed $60,000 in taxes (yes, you read that correctly). This was no problem, we had a payment plan in place with the government and we were ready to begin our monthly payments. 

At the last minute, we were informed that our payment plan was void and that we would have to come out of pocket for the entire bill in order to close on our house. 

Within literally 24 hours, we went from nearly 6 digits in our savings account, only expecting to have to pay our down payment, to having to borrow money from family members to make sure we could pay our bills. 

We had both contemplated at one point just letting the house go because we were afraid that we would not be able to survive our monthly bills. At the same time, my business was hurting badly. I was so sick all the time and struggled to handle all of the attacks that were coming at my business. It was hard to see how we would make it if we closed on the house. 

We took a leap of faith and decided to close anyway. We believed that God would provide for us, and He did.

July 2019

The first night of Vacation Bible School, my water broke at 3 AM that night. I was only 16w5d gestation. I was immediately hospitalized and told to terminate our precious baby girl. We were told that if we didn’t terminate her, that I could develop an infection that could kill me. But what would’ve killed me was terminating our healthy daughter while her heart was still beating. We couldn’t do it. We decided to go home and try to keep her in as long as possible without amniotic fluid. 

On July 22nd at 18 weeks, her cord fell from my cervix and I had to be induced at 5 PM that day. By 9 PM, I gave birth to our perfectly healthy, sleeping little girl. She was too young to survive the traumas of my water breaking early (PPROM – research on your own time).

I felt like I had failed. I failed as a woman, I failed as a mother, I failed as a wife, I failed as a daughter. I couldn’t carry my husband’s daughter. I couldn’t carry my parent’s, or his parent’s granddaughter. I failed my daughter. 

3 months of Hell on earth (July – October 2019)

I’m not going into the full details. But just like the subtitle says, it was pure hell on earth for me during those 3 months following the loss of Aaliyah. Emotionally and physically. I will share this one thing because it was the worst thing I had to deal with after losing her. After birthing Aaliyah, I started producing milk. I was completely engorged and it was horrible. My body didn’t realize that we had lost her, so it continued producing milk for several months after. It slowed, but it was constantly producing for months even with no stimulation. It was a painful reminder that I did not have my baby to nurse. One of the things I’ve always looked forward to was nursing my baby one day. It was as if someone dumped gallons of salt in a bullet hole sized wound in my heart.

November 2019

I went through a 3rd miscarriage on November 5th that no one really knew about. 

December 2019

The enemy was on the move yet again, in a variety of different ways. He was determined to make 2019 the worst year of my life, but he failed. Miserably might I add. 

Grateful to Have Gone Through the Fire

I think from the outside looking in, it appears we have it all. I’ve often told myself that I feel like since going through our losses, we have appeared to be more “human.” The perfect life we appeared to have, the perfect image that those around us have had OF us, has been shattered. The stigma (hovering over our heads) that was associated with having money, having property, having nice cars, has been shattered. And for that, I am grateful. 

I’m sad that it happened, but grateful that we’ve gone through everything that happened in 2019.

I grew up in church, but my relationship with God was on and off, often being influenced by “friends,” school, my church “family”, and other things. In 2019, my relationship with God shifted.

I grew closer to Him than I ever thought possible. I longed to know more about Him, and why He allowed these things to happen to us. My curiosity sparked my interest in actually getting to know Him. I began reading Job and everything started falling into place. I actually discovered who I am in God. I leaned on Him and He literally carried me through that year. As I type this, I tear up thinking about how good God has been to me. How He gave me the strength to keep fighting. I literally imagine (key word: imagine) my body completely crippled, and God carrying me down this road called “life,” on a sturdy cot. 

I began to picture the side of God that people have always told me about. I’ve read that God cries with us when we grieve. I imagine God actually holding me and crying as I cry. Rocking me, like a baby. This thought has comforted me over and over during times of grief.

God also placed a song in my life that helped me get through. I found myself keeping Todd Dulaney’s “Let it Flow” on repeat. No other artist has ever blessed me as much as Todd Dulaney and his group has. “Let it Flow” truly helped to connect me to God on a deeper level. Each time I found a place of worship, whether it was in the shower, in the guest room, or in my car, this song would be on constant repeat. I’ll never be able to express in words how that song has carried me through my grief. I don’t know if I hadn’t found that song, that my relationship with God would have shifted as quickly and as much as it did. I long for the day that I can tell Todd Dulaney my testimony in person. 

Now, I just enjoy conversing with God. I tell Him how I feel, and the conversation is rarely one-sided. I’ve found that God speaks to me through His word. When I have a question that I desperately need answered, I end up finding the answer when I pick up my Bible. 

God has never felt so real to me, more than He feels real to me now. I can’t express enough how happy this makes me. I truly have found a friend in Jesus. 

Last thing: “You Don’t Look Like What You’ve Been Through”

The phrase stuck with me since the first day someone said it to me. This statement empowered me. It was at that point that I realized that there was literally nothing I could go through that destroy me to the point of no return. There is nothing the enemy can throw at me that will tear up my relationship with God. 

I refuse to allow myself to “look” how I feel. No, I’m not fake. But, I don’t let myself go. God doesn’t want to see me let myself go. He doesn’t want to see tear stains on my face, day in and day out, He doesn’t want to see me with a messy appearance. Neither does Aaliyah. I know that my loved ones in heaven, even down to those that I don’t know, are rooting for me and it pushes me to keep going. 

I never want to look like what I’ve been through. I want to look like God has been good to me, and He has. 

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