But I’m not pregnant


I stood in the baby aisle of Target. I realized I was crying. Quiet tears fell down my face.

I was alone and feeling reminiscent of pregnancy hormones. But I’m not pregnant.

I bought the sweetest baby shoes a few months back. I’m dreaming of nurseries. We’re texting each other baby name ideas. But I’m not pregnant.

I’m clinging tightly to my too-close-to-five year-old and thinking of what a good big brother he’ll be. He talks of a baby sister and twins and having a baby at his house. But I’m not pregnant.

As we built our home, scriptures were prayed over and carefully written on the studs in a room that was created with a baby in mind. But I’m not pregnant.

But I'm not pregnant|Ripped Jeans and Bifocals
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When I was pregnant, it was visible, something people could see. The longing, waiting, and hoping for a baby’s arrival was explained by a bump in my shirt. While we wait to adopt, only a few know about it, and even fewer really get it. There is no outward,physical explanation for my feelings. I don’t even understand it most days.

Why not just have another biological child? Why not be grateful for the child you have?

These questions and more—they are part of this journey. They sometimes sting, but they help more than they hurt. They help us lean in and understand this call on our hearts. Maybe there will be a time we’ll have another biological child, but for now, that is not how we feel led to expand our family. We are so grateful for the child we have, and it feels selfish that I am longing for another when there are families we know who have none. I have to believe, though, that part of this longing, this desire to have this child home, is part of how God is helping us be ready to welcome our child info our family. He has placed it on our hearts for a reason, and He is making the way for our family to grow.

He already has our child picked for our family; no matter how or when they get there, they were always meant to be ours. Biology doesn’t make us a family, but our hearts do.

But I'm not pregnant|Ripped Jeans and Bifocals
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This waiting game is so different even from waiting to get pregnant. When trying to get pregnant, there is a sense of pseudo-control. There is a 28-day cycle that it operates around that at least lets you know where you are in the game. Of course, it’s a completely false sense, but it’s a sense nonetheless.

So, for now, what we know is we’re here: praying, wishing, and expecting a baby. But I’m not pregnant.

But I'm not pregnant|Ripped Jeans and Bifocals

Jolie Gray is a wife and mother striving to live every day loving Jesus and sharing His grace with others. She enjoys writing, reading, and coffee–all the coffee. You can find her on Facebook, Instagram, her blog, or in the nearest Target.


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  1. I know how this feels, waiting for an adoption. My first child was adopted in 2002, and it felt like an eternity. A pregnancy gives fairly firm dates, adoption dates are so uncertain. I had a baby in 2008, and was actually more relaxed. I agree, He has a plan for you, your husband and your sweet future big brother! It will be so exciting to see what God has in store for your family.

  2. Thank you for sharing this heart-breaking post. I know families who are waiting for an adoption. I know for them the waiting game is as full of questions and doubts as when trying for a biological child. I wish you the best.

  3. I know the waiting game too…but it is oh so worth the wait. Two China adoptions…and every day…yes…every day, I was asked when were we going to China…but I (We) would do it all over again! And the wait will be a distant memory with so much joy in the moment!

  4. I am so glad someone else feels this! I’ve felt so alone! My husband and I haven’t been married a year yet and we’ve chosen to adopt BEFORE having “our own child”. We haven’t told anyone and sometimes those feelings are just too much!

  5. Thank you for this, my husband and I have been waiting 22 months on an adoption list after trying fertility treatments for three years to no avail. It feels like an ETERNITY. It’s nice to hear that somebody gets it, even my husband sometimes doesn’t get it, how it’s different for a woman. I believe it’s all in His timing, but the waiting is the hardest part. I can’t wait to see how it will all be worth it in the end though. #Hewillgiveyouthedesiresofyourheart

  6. This seems like it was selfishly written for attention. Don’t compare your “charity” adoption to a mother who can’t have her own children and adoption is her only choice.

    1. Seems to me like this comment was “selfishly written for attention.” You seem like a troll. Unfortunately, this isn’t the underside of a bridge. Perhaps you are lost.

  7. It was nice for me to get to read this so thank you. I myself have only met personally one other person with their own biological child before adopting. It’s a different kind of feeling to have, a different sadness then never being able to have your own biological. I myself can not have another biological child but I have been pregnant so we know exactly what pieces, experiments, and possibly feelings are missing where as someone who has never been able to have a biological child doesn’t know first hand those experiences. I loved hearing from u that the feeling and longing must be there for a reason to prepare our family to welcome it’s new member ???? Made this waiting game a little less drawn out and more purposeful.

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