Friday Feature: Tiffany Ngaya
Who Am I When Everything Is Loss?
Loss…something I know so well. The very first time I experienced loss I was five years old; and my maternal uncle passed away. I remember crying my eyes out wondering why he had to go, and why God had taken away someone I loved. Ever since then I have felt my faith and spirit get crushed under the weight of loss. I lost the only great grandmother I ever knew when I was seven, and my dog when I was nine. I didn’t have another physical family death for years, but instead I lost my sanity, and depression set in when I was thirteen, and well part of me feels as though I lost a little of my childhood. Going forward I lost my paternal grandfather in 2006, my maternal grandfather (who I lived with while attending Morgan State) in 2010, followed by the hardest loss of all, my best friend, my mother in 2011. Finally the only great grandfather I knew in 2015 and now my great aunt in 2016.
Life is too short, that is definitely one thing I learned going through all of this loss. However God also taught me that He truly is a comforter, and I am truly stronger than I tend to think I am. Yes I may become down, melancholy and go a little m.i.a; but honestly who wouldn’t? God taught me that I don’t have to stay down. That I can get up out of the moment and live! That is what I am trying to do now as I go through the second biggest loss in my life since my mother; the loss of a child.
In December 2015 I found out I was a month pregnant. I was ecstatic and overjoyed and I ran to the basement to tell my husband. From there we only told a few family and close friends. During my first appointment in January (when I should have been 7 weeks) I was told the unsettling news that this looks like it may be an unviable/unsuccessful pregnancy. The next few weeks were torture as I had blood drawn and went to various appointments. It felt like Hell, and so I did what Churchill said, “When you’re walking through Hell, just keep going.” Better yet I tried to keep in mind Isaiah 43:2 “When thou passest through the waters, I [will be] with thee; and through the rivers, they shall not overflow thee: when thou walkest through the fire, thou shalt not be burned; neither shall the flame kindle upon thee.” Over time I came to accept that the news wasn’t going to change and no miracle would happen. I began to lean on my faith, and that this just wasn’t meant to be at this time. I am still doing what I can to hold onto the fact that God makes no mistakes; and that He created this amazing human body, that can detect issues in something that has barely developed and stop moving forward. Stop moving forward and spare me from the pain I could have felt if I was further along.
As God had me go through all the past losses and currently this one I am slowly beginning to see the strength He put in me that others already see. I don’t hurt any less, but I am slowly starting to let my “suffering stretch me, not stress me” (Shirley K. Russell, Visionary Founder of Alpha Nu Omega, Inc.). God has truly been doing for me what He says He will do in Isaiah 41:10 “so do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you; I will uphold you with my righteous hand”. Therefore now I continue to rely on God as my comforter and strength as I [prayerfully] get closer to the end of this process. Then I can truly mourn our loss and begin to heal. Then I will keep faith that in time God will give us our rainbow baby.