I inherited the herb garden when we bought our townhouse and quickly learned that it's virtually impossible to kill rosemary. I'll prune or trim once a year—maybe—but the truth is it grows on its own—except for one patch of earth between the jasmine and the indestructible citrus tree. The patch gets plenty of sun, and the same amount of attention (or lack thereof) as the rest of the garden, and yet it yields nothing.

Our wedding anniversary is November 2. I love cut flowers, and by mid-October I'm dropping hints. My husband almost always comes through, so each year after the store-bought flowers have wilted, I lay them in the garden over that barren patch of ground, and hope something will grow.

This November, the week before our ninth wedding anniversary, I had a miscarriage. For weeks my body held onto the life we had created, refusing to believe, as did my mind, that it wasn't a life. So on the advice of my doctor I made an appointment for a "D&C," as it appeared I wasn't going to "pass" the baby on my own, or what a nurse casually referred to as the "evidence of conception."

I was at a writer's retreat in the Texas Hill Country in September when I realized I was late. For two years the months had come and gone and we wondered if we'd ever get pregnant again (our daughter was born in 2006). I didn't believe it. I checked and rechecked the dates, then waited another week before casually adding a pregnancy test to my grocery list. When I finally took the test, three actually, each one revealed the same pink plus sign, shadowy like an impressionist watercolor.

I made an appointment for an ultrasound; it was early, 5 weeks 6 days. The bubbly ultrasound technician printed a little snapshot with the word "baby!" typed beside what looked like a white pea cozied up to the wall of my uterus. For a second I'd seen the flicker of a heartbeat, the technician had seen it too, but a moment later it was gone. "Nothing to worry about," she assured me, "it's so tiny! Come back in two weeks just to be sure." "June 12," my doctor announced later in her office, less enthusiastically, "—if everything goes well." I left the office that day in tears of joy, clutching the little photo. Later, as I handed it to my husband he swelled with pride, gazing out the window at the garden he exclaimed, "We made a person!"

When you miscarry, people around you may gently insist that it wasn't a person at all. Maybe it'll hurt less if we don't characterize this loss as a death. After all it was only just forming, just beginning. We have no memories together, no favorite restaurants or movies, no school art projects to weep over. Perhaps it's easier if we just shake it off and keep trying. "Don't worry," people say, "You'll get pregnant again. You'll see."

It's like telling a widow she'll re-marry; it may be true, we hope it's true, but right now all she can think about is the love she lost. Right now, I'm thinking about my child. The one whose DNA, even at 6 weeks, already determined the color of her eyes or the way he would hold a baseball bat. It connected us a thousand years into our past and a thousand years into our future, like a blueprint for a person—one who will never be repeated, never recreated. I'm thinking about my son, or daughter, the precious one whose brief life was ordained before the earth's framework was laid, who passed so quickly and quietly from hope to eternity, but never made the pit stop here, with us, in this rocky and dry world.

I had the D&C in the same hospital, across the hallway, from where I delivered my daughter. In the recovery room I told this to the nurse hovering over me. "Was it a boy?" she asked. Shocked by her question and still drugged, I failed to answer. "It was probably too early to tell," she mumbled while adjusting my pillow, as if comforting herself.

I told a friend about my miscarriage, and that night a bouquet of wildflowers arrived on my doorstep. I set them next to the roses my husband gave me for our anniversary. For days I watched them bloom and open together, the berries mingling with the daisies, wrapped around the red and pink roses. I watched them brown and wilt in equal measure, scattering petals and pollen on the glass table until it was time to lay the flowers in the garden.

As the first jasmine of the season stretches open, and the rosemary releases its antiseptic balm, I scatter my flowers and pray: I pray that these flowers, evidence of our joy and pain, will draw life out of this earth. I squeeze my eyes shut and picture the miracle; life wriggling, writhing, and bursting forth. I believe that out of this loss and grief, new life is being formed. Life that will one day rise again.

For you created my inmost being;
you knit me together in my mother's womb.
I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
your works are wonderful,
I know that full well.
My frame was not hidden from you
when I was made in the secret place,
when I was woven together in the depths of the earth.
Your eyes saw my unformed body;
all the days ordained for me were written in your book
before one of them came to be.

Cameron Dezen Hammon is a worship pastor and songwriter and lives in Houston, Texas with her husband, daughter and cat named Steve. She blogs at HipsterChristianHousewife.blogspot.com.