Part 2: The Miraculous Message
So here's where Fatima comes into the story...
Infertility is full of ups and downs. On the more difficult days, I clung tightly to the rosary. Prayer did not come easily during that time, and the rosary was a way for me to pray without having to come up with the words. I also picked up an old book I had laying around called "Fatima for Today” by Fr. Andrew Apostoli, which sparked in me a new-found devotion to Our Lady of Fatima.
I had never heard the messages of Fatima in such clear detail and felt so convicted to start sharing them. I decided to use my small Instagram platform to do just that, in a series of giveaways I called the “First Saturday Giveaways," with the purpose of sharing the message of Fatima with anyone who might come across the posts.
I didn’t think much about this recent devotion or the giveaway series. I just felt a strong conviction that the Blessed Mother wanted me to share her message. So I did.
Fast forward a couple years, and I found out that the National Pilgrim Virgin Statue of Fatima would be stopping at our local church. (You can read more info on the Pilgrim Statue here.)
In light of this new-found devotion, I made plans to attend the mass. It was such a beautiful night of prayer! The feeling in the church that night was heavenly. I knelt before the statue, and my eyes filled with tears. The gaze painted in her eyes pierced through to my heart, and in that moment, I felt like she saw me in my pain.
The weight of the cross of infertility had worn my heart thin. After praying the same prayer over and over again without receiving an answer, it felt impossible to keep praying it. So I didn’t.
I just sat in front of Mary and let her love me, like any mother would.
I left that night with an overwhelming sense of calm, not with any particular answer, just confident that she saw my pain, and was loving me through it.
A few nights later at another church in our area, my sister-in-law had also made plans to visit the statue. She brought along her 2-year-old who, like any little girl her age, had a tough time sitting still through the mass. It was finally their turn to go up to the front of the church and pray before the statue. Almost instantly, my niece became calm.
As her head tilted up towards the statue, her face lit up. This wasn’t unusual since, from a young age she had always loved looking at the statues and stain glass windows in church, but my sister-in-law recalled how her entire demeanor changed, as if she was witnessing something that no one else was.
They finished their prayers, and left the church. It wasn’t until they got in their car that my sister-in-law started asking her daughter about the statue…
“She hug me!” my niece said confidently with a smile on her face.
“She hugged you?!” her mom questioned, more than a little shocked.
“Yea! She hug you too!” she answered even more confidently... (chills right?!)
A week or so went by, and my sister-in-law, still thinking about the strange response her 2-year-old had given in the car, questioned her again. “Do you remember, when we went and saw the statue of Mary? What happened? Did she say anything?”
She exclaimed, “Two babies!”
Little did we know, the very next month, my sister-in-law and I would both conceive a child!
Nine months later, we gave birth to two healthy baby boys just 5 days apart.
We brought our son home from the hospital a year ago today, on Our Lady of Fatima’s feast day!
The veil between heaven and earth is so very thin, and for children it’s even thinner. It was three children, after all, that Our Lady chose to appeared to at Fatima. Call it what you may, but we truly believe Our Lady of Fatima promised us that night that God would bless us with these two babies. Again and again, she reassured us that these circumstances were not merely coincidental and that her hand had been on every part of our story from the beginning. Today, I look down at my perfect, curly-haired little one-year-old and could weep with gratitude, to Our Lady and to the Lord for allowing us to experience such an extraordinary ending to our cross of infertility.
Happy birth week to our two heaven-sent babies!
Happy feast day of Our Lady of Fatima!
And happy Mother’s Day to all of the mothers reading this!
And to all of you still carrying your cross, I'll leave you with this quote from St. Ignatius of Loyola:
“If God sends you many sufferings it is a sign that He has great plans for you, and certainly wants to make you a saint.”