A Letter to My Cysters: Anesha Stanley
A Story of Pregnancy Loss & Infertility
My husband Ronald and I are high school sweethearts. When we got married June 14, 2008 we took time to enjoy our marriage and finally have some time together after a 7 year long distance relationship.
We settled back home in Saginaw to began our careers. We waited 5 years before trying to conceive and thought the process would be easy. We wanted our first child to be a girl! However that desire was quickly shattered when our first pregnancy ended with a traumatic and painful miscarriage in 2014.
Months later while still mourning the loss of our first baby, I would always ask God to reveal to me the gender of the baby we lost. One night I had a dream, there was a baby girl dressed in a pink snowsuit lying on my bed. I asked my family whose baby it was and they looked at me as if I should know whose child she was! They never spoke a word. The baby girl began to quickly outgrow her clothing so my nephews and I were constantly changing her clothes.
Weeks later, my then two year old nephew hinted to me that I may be pregnant by talking to my stomach, laughing and listening as if he was having a conversation with someone. Sure enough, weeks later we learned that I was 8 weeks pregnant with our Rainbow Baby! Sinai Olivia (baby girl) was born December 23, 2014. (pink snowsuit)
You see, God didn't reveal the gender of the first baby we lost, rather He led me to anticipate the miracle (Hallelujah) that was growing inside me, the sunshine after the storm! God is Faithful!
We waited two years before trying to conceive again and we found ourselves on a journey that would forever change our lives and test our faith. Since 2017, my husband and I have experienced 1 miscarriage, 1 birth by cesarean section, 1 chemical pregnancy loss and 2 life threatening ectopic pregnancy losses. With the exception of the birth of our daughter, all were traumatic, including the cesarean recovery. These experiences lead us to IVF consultations, individual and couples counseling, Hopelessness and Fear.
On August 22, 2018, I was summoned to the doctors because my HCG levels increased. Two weeks before that I thought I miscarried because my body went through the process of such. An ultrasound revealed that our baby was “Still Alive”, I heard the sweetest music to a mothers ears, a strong and courageous heartbeat. Unfortunately, it was another ectopic pregnancy, at that moment I had less than an hour to get to the hospital to have emergency surgery to save my life, remove my fallopian tube which was in danger of rupturing and to say good-bye to our warrior baby who was still alive.
In that moment the sweetest peace came over me. Just three days prior, God had given me a new song in my heart, Reckless Love, which I sang as they pushed me down to the operating room...There's no shadow you won’t light up, mountain you won’t climb up, coming after me. There's no wall you won’t kick down, lie you won’t tear down, coming after me. Although the circumstance ended the way it did, God acted out the lyrics to save my life...I truly raised a hallelujah in the presence of my enemy!
I made the decision to totally surrender to God. To wave my flag and position myself at God’s feet to hear what He had to say. I was beyond confused and just needed to know what He needed me to do with my pain rather than question why, like I did in the past. Despite our journey looking like the valley of the shadow of death, we knew that God still loved us and there would be glory after this.
During my long and painful recovery, seeking God was priority! I was led to be empowered by Sarah Jakes Roberts and her movement of Woman Evolve. I listened to her message from the Woman Evolve 2018 conference….did God speak to me! A prophetic word came forth:
He said “You're pregnant with purpose. Although you figured the pregnancy would result in a man child. You’re a curse breaker. You’re carrying another woman’s curse and another woman’s breakthrough. Your mother couldn’t do it, you don’t want your daughter to fight it, but because your grandmother struggled with it and now it ran into YOU! Not another person will silently endure a broken heart (miscarriage, pregnancy loss, infant loss and Infertility). You're gonna break it so the people coming behind you don’t have to go through it alone. Birth it off her, you and your daughters for generations to come. You’ve never seen another woman do what God has called you to do but you have the power to break it for yourself and everyone after you. Get in birthing position. What you release will push back darkness. If you push, I will pull. As you give birth it will become alive.”
WOW...WOW...WOW! I began to weep and weep because I now know the reason why I've experienced recurrent pregnancy loss. Only God knew that my mother has never experienced pregnancy loss or infertility, I don't want Sinai to EVER fight it, yet my grandmother experienced pregnancy and infant loss. I'm breaking one woman’s curse and carrying another woman’s breakthrough!
My calling is to break it for the generations coming after me, my community and every soul connected to my purpose. In March of 2019 God downloaded a mission, vision and strategy for a nonprofit and peer support group. Also during this time my doctor diagnosed me with secondary infertility, the inability to become pregnant or to carry a baby to term after previously giving birth to a baby, and salpingitis, inflammation of the fallopian tubes. This diagnosis stirred me up even more to be obedient to God!
On April 24, 2019 we launched the Keys of Hope Foundation and Peer Support group. This date is also significant because it would've been the due of our baby who we lost August 2018, Hope. I may not have given birth to my baby that date but I did give birth to purpose.