“Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never fails…” 1 Corinthians 13:7

I stand in a pristine white corridor. The air is still. My chest rises and falls slowly. Before me stretches a long glass partition, as in the nurseries of the hospital maternity wards. There are dozens of clear bassinets lined against the wall. I am a statue. Entranced by the beauty each holds inside. Not a single one the same as the next but, all breathtaking. Minutes tick by. Hours fly. Days morph into months. Time marches steadily forward. One by one, the miracle making carriages are wheeled from the room. Off they go to their families. A new life. Life anew. I wait. I watch. I whisper. Finally, I see it. A last lone little light. It is glorious. My heart leaps within my chest. I lean nearer, my breath warm against the window. What wonders I witness.

A precious family. A mother and her four children all piled on the loveseat. Arms and legs crisscrossed like a giant pretzel. They are smiling, laughing, loving each other. Silly, spunky, and sweet.  And then… look, look, a man appears. A husband. A lover. A father. A friend. He grins down at the jumbled bodies, giggling together. His new family. The family God made for him. Sent to him. Entrusted unto him. The children squeal out his name, jumping up to greet him heartily, each in their own unique way. They swallow him up in love with their tiny arms and eager eyes. He beams. Next, it is her turn. His beloved. His forever. She rises to meet him, reaching up a hand to brush his cheek. He scoops her up with a smile and a kiss. “My baby. I missed you.” I startle at the tender sincerity of his words. Rivaled in richness only by the ringing lilt of the children’s spirited laughs. A miraculous, majestic moment.

Tears track down my face. As I gaze on, life unfolds. Music. Church. Family. Fun. There are songs, books, games. Faith, hope, and love. Above all, love. True love. Lasting love. And God’s love.

Suddenly, a door opens, snapping me back to reality. Someone is in the room behind the glass wall. For the first time, I see the small sign on the side of the bassinet. In big, bold letters a name is written.

“M”…  hope pumps through my veins.

“E”… longing seizes my heart.

“L”… my mind starts to race.

“O”… my legs quake.

“D”… my soul sings softly within me. A crescendo mounting.

“Y”… I can hardly believe it. After all these years. All my tears. All the sorrow. All the fear.

A smile spreads across my lips. Just as I open my mouth to let the joy escape, a hand reaches down to grasp the paper my name is etched on. Others come inside. They each have a sheet, too. Holding them close to one another, they begin to compare, to converse. Panic punches me in the chest. It’s potent power knocks me back a step. “No, no,no!” There’s no confusion. There’s no error. It was made for me. For Melody. I’m here. I’m ready. I’ve been waiting so patiently. Preparing so diligently. Rejoicing even in the midst of pain. Trusting through the trauma. Looking past the dark nights. Seeking out the light. It’s not a mistake. It’s my future!

They push closer to the door, still debating. I feel ill. Panicked and powerless. I stretch out my hand. Press my wet face onto the glass. Please. Wait. I’m here. I’m right here. Don’t leave me. I can see you. I can hear you. Just a bit closer and you’ll be in my arms. Forever. Please.

Can they hear me? Is it too late? What else can I do?

And then, I understand. I remember.

I drop to my knees on the cold, hard floor. I fold my hands and pray once more…

“God, I know I’ve made mistakes. But, Lord, I  know I have what it takes. Because you’ve grown a love inside my heart, that’s beautiful and pure, like a work of art. I believe this is your will for me. And Father, I ask that you fulfill my destiny. Yet, I don’t want to beg and plead. I simply want to be loved, just for me. But, at the end of the day, at the end of it all. I’ll lay my soul wide open and know You’ll catch me if I fall.”