When I was 11 or so, I listened to the song by Michael McClean " From God's Arms, to My Arms, To Yours". I had no idea that Adoption would be such a huge part of my life at all. I just loved the song and loved the idea of adopting a child one day.
Fast forward to me at 15- being told by a Dr. that I have endometriosis and having children will be hard for me if not impossible. I prayed and prayed and pleaded with God to let me know that I'd be a mother some day- then finally after about 1.5 years later, one night after prayer and scripture study- I got a Heavenly Answer! The heavens had parted and I saw what seemed to be a small crowd of
young adults or teens looking down on me and a few calling to me- not to give up on them.
"We are your children and we are coming!" As I sobbed tears of joy- I KNEW! One day and some how- I would become a mother and that was enough for me to know.
Fast forward to the day I took the man I was hoping to marry to meet my mom... Brandon and I sat in the car conversing about details of our lives we hadn't shared yet. Then the moment came for me to tell him about my infertility issues. It went something like this " Well, I'm not sure if this is a deal breaker for you but, I may not ever be able to bear children so, I plan on adopting and I am excited about this but, I understand if this isn't what you are hoping for! ( 2 seconds of silence tick by) Then Brandon says " Well, that's cool, Because I'm adopted!" What a RELIEF it was to hear that and we joked about having 12 kids or 6 or whatever God would favor us with!
4.5 years after we had wed- We got the feeling to START doing something to get our family started and foster and adoption were both in our hearts! We went to a conference and met with our church counselors at the agency and both felt prompted to dive straight into traditional adoption- even though we thought Fostering would be our first step- the feeling was not there for it at that time.
We started our paperwork and within a week our new case manager called us and told us to speed up our profile b/c there is an expectant parent who needs to see it on that Tuesday! It was a Friday and right around Christmas time and we eeked a bit more info out of Him and went out to eat and a movie but, somehow our prepaid tickets slipped out of the car and landed in the parking lot where we ate dinner. When we went to go back- the movie was sold out and 30 minutes into it. So, I decided to go to a Christmas party and my hubby and my stepdad went to shoot pool. As I arrived at the party, I noticed a pretty blonde lady I had never met. She and her boyfriend were charming and I saw pics of her kids on her phone and she asked if we had any kids yet. I explained about the possibilities of adoption and our case manager calling us that day and she told me she had a niece who as looking to place and hadn't found a family yet. I asked her some ?'s and she answered with the same info our case manager had given us earlier that day. Everything matched. We both started sobbing and Felt the Spirit and she vowed not to push us onto her niece.
I shared the info with Brandon and my step dad and they ran over for a quick hello! We finished our paperwork ( which normally takes like 2-3 months) and prints and such in 2 days! Turned in our profile and fees and the expectant mom saw it on Tuesday as planned! Well, the office closed on Friday for Christmas so we heard nothing until Dec. 30th- it was agonizing but, amazing to think we might become parents. We got a call from Kara's case worker and we all met on Jan. 2nd and it was INTENSE to say the least. We met Kyle and Kara and their parents and it was so emotional but full of love. We hung out again on the 9th to lunch and shop and I miscarried a baby on the 10th ( at 14 weeks) that I had no idea I was pregnant with. I got a call on the 11th and Kara told me she was going in. On the 12th Brielle was born with no complications and a huge family surrounding Kara and this new tiny baby.
We walked into this room with 5 generations of love and all of us bawled and sobbed. I felt joy and sorrow all in one foul swoop. I hated that we were causing so much grief and pain to these kind and loving people. Brielle was placed with us 5 days later ( due to a gov't holiday) and We just stared at her trying to figure out her name. Placement went amazing with a father's blessing from Kara's dad & they dressed her in a white blessing dress and many, many tears were shed. Brandon broke down during the blessing and couldn't hold it in. He told me later that He felt an immense love and gratitude for what His own Birth mother must have went thru when She placed him into the arms of His parents. It was overwhelming to see this come full circle for him.
Brielle was named after about 4 more day and was a great baby! She smiled and cooed and developed so rapidly- it was the neatest time as we watched her grow. She was our miracle girl who made us parents! She lit up every room and we explored this new open adoption relationship and were learning as we grew in love for each other and our little girl!
8 months later, a week after she became ours forever, found out I was pregnant! I was so shocked and in disbelief. I was nervous but, excited and as the baby grew inside me, I felt even more for Brielle's birth mom. We found out at 20 weeks we were having a GIRL and that Brielle would have a SISTER! And on a Hot July evening, after floating around in our pool and picking up the house- Aria was born at home. She let out a big scream and was a feisty little thing! Our second miracle was here!
The Girls grew up loving on each other and playing together and getting into everything, of course!
Our house was filled with dresses and bare feet with painted toe nails, potty training, dance & swim and girly delight and a few high pitched squeals every half second! It was bliss!
3 Years later after 3 miscarriages, 2 almost adoptions and a move to a new state- we had put our papers in again and were getting no where for 6 1/2 months . It seemed like time was dragging on but, In the meantime- I felt strongly prompted to PRAY for our expectant parent. Pray for everything that she needed, support, love, courage etc. I felt this constant stream of awareness for her for 3 months prior. Then, we decided that we should look into Foster care again. So, we took all the classes and on our last CPR class, we called our case manager and said we would be switching to FC very shortly.
That same night- WE GOT AN EMAIL! It was a gal in UT who was interested in considering our family! The next week another one came from a different gal. Then our case manager called us up and asked us to foster a baby girl which we did! We had baby H for 8 days!!! We loved on that little girl and told the gal in UT what was going on. The day we took H back to the agency to return to her mom was a heart breaking day but, I knew all would be well. The following day we hopped in the car and went to meet that gal in UT- Jessica! It was like we had already known each other for years ( except for some natural awkwardness) we laughed and joked and thought of all the ways to avoid the ? of if she was considering us. But, the next day on our way to Ikea- she casually said " oh yeah, You guys are It!" we laughed and cried and went shopping!
4 weeks later, Gavin was born. It was a harder birth for Jess but, she was so strong and a tiny little
Red Head was the coolest mini man we had ever laid eyes on! We met His giant family in that room overflowing with love and we have been family ever since! I tried to remain strong as placement day came and thought I was doing a great job until I began to load him into the Infant car seat. I LOST IT and broke down in tears and sobbing! Again, it was this bittersweet feeling of loss on one end and joy on the other. I hated that this was what it was going to take for our Family to get here but, I knew it was all in God's Hands. We all cried many tears again for days! Miracle #3!!!
Kara, made a trip up and met Jessica and we all visited for a whole day- just our family! It was incredible How things lined up by the Lord, played out! Intense but, astonishing to say the least!
Gavin was a sweet but fussy baby! We found out he had some allergies and switched things up and He became our little sweet go getter- which He still is today! And our open relationships with both sides of his birth family- shows us where his personality comes from.
On my 30th bday, I sang the National Anthem at the Denver Nuggets Game and NAILED it ( though it was frightening at first). That next morning, I did not feel well and proceeded to miscarry my 5th time a baby at 6 weeks. After three days of feeling pretty lousy - and Gavin going on 7 months- we determined to get back into the swing of Foster care so, when Gavin was 1 we could be ready to care and love on more children, even if it was temporary.
Well, God has a funny way of keeping you on your toes, As He does often... We ended up moving to a 7 bedroom home, getting ready for FC kiddos and I ended up being a perfect match to donate my KIDNEY to my great friend Samm! It was a whirlwind. We had just settled into our new place, set up the FC room and I announced the match to my sweet friend over Sushi. She was shocked and so was I. 6 weeks later, after feeling off for a couple weeks- I found out I was pregnant again. But, I had no reason to expect it would stay so, I didn't get excited or anything. Until 15 weeks. Then I told Samm, who eventually found another match, I told our FC case worker and I put my trust in God to help me with this one. I was 30 and not a spring chick anymore.
The pregnancy went steady along and at a few hours shy of a full 42 weeks and days after I turned 31 & We had a BOY! Our 4th Miracle! We waited to find out the gender and were very surprised!!! ( I took back that 500. worth of girls clothes I just bought b/c I was so sure, just days before). We got his name about 3 days later and SLADE entered the world with only about 14 minutes of pushing! He was fast and furious and is Everyone's baby! He has been pretty easy and has a loving, softer disposition than Gavin. They are very different but are the BEST of Buddies and love to wrestle and play and chase each other! They squeal louder than my girls did, it seems!
When Slade finished nursing, I had the largest impression upon my heart and overwhelming Spirit, much like I had when I was teen. I bawled and bawled and cried some more as I recognized what that Spirit was confirming... My body had done it's work and this was my LAST child I would bear! When that feeling came, it was bittersweet again. I could not believe that THIS was ALL God wanted form my Physical body. Only 2 children out of 7 pregnancies! But, as the Spirit does- the sweetness came over me that I was not done being a mother to more children. Both my husband and I felt it and Knew that one day- again, God will line things up after all we can do, and another child if not more, will come into our lives again.
Well, Our family felt led to adoption again and at first we thought we would Head overseas!!! Why not? we could afford it, we liked having 18-24 months to prepare and the idea of a big trip and rescuing an orphan child seemed so wonderful. This had to be the PATH for us. We have already adopted two babies and had 2 as well- It would be awesome to not HAVE to do the newborn thing again, right? I could totally love on and squeeze toddlers. No doubt! Well, As God does- He had other ideas. What i knew and could not deny was that we were missing a child with brown hair and brown eyes. so , i thought for sure this child will come from a foreign country or a different ethnicity.
Over the course of 4 months, while doing some soul searching and pondering- I kept feeling like we needed to go the domestic adoption route. Friends and workers in adoption arenas kept calling me and asking if We could adopt baby X or would be interested in adopting multiples etc. this happened like 7 times in 4 months and i kept responding that We were going overseas. And then something happened. My son's birth mom Jessica messaged me about possibly wanting to adopt a baby again and i said that we were going overseas and immediately after sending her that text- i started feeling sick and it just felt wrong. I was thinking about what if I'm just doing what I want and not what GOD wants? I'm so selfish and during my ballet class that night i held back tears. I cried the rest of the night and texted Jessica back that we were absolutely open if it's Meant to Be. After that day- i pondered and prayed even more. I wanted to know if this is the way we were supposed to go again. The impressions on my heart came over time- bit by bit, in a pool during a back float, with more people unrelated to adoption reaching out to me and telling me about a situation etc. It just wouldn't stop. The biggest impression hit my heart like an Anvil. I felt the peaceful whispering in my heart that i needed to hurry, a girl was trying to get to our family. She has tried before but, i miscarried her 11 years ago and now she is ready, do not wait.
IT WAS CLEAR AS DAY! i could not deny the impression and inspiration any longer. I called LFS and told them to send me papers and called 3 other agencies too. I got the LFS papers and we filled them out and turned them in in 4 weeks! on JULY 18th we submitted them and on JULY 28th in UT Celise was conceived!!!!!!
|black sand beach in Kona|
Anyways, we were approved in December and went on a vacation to Hawaii in FEB 2016 and less than 15 hours into our trip, the agency sends me an email about a mom wanting to SKYPE with us. She sent over her file and at 4 in the morning I'm reading this file in bed and BAWLING- all the things about
Dausi and her situation rung true to what my heart was leading us to and also about circumstances surrounding D's situation in life. Brandon rolled over and asked why i was crying and i shared all this with him and i thought for sure HE would not be cool with some of the rough details. but, Alas, He said- Email them back and tell them we are IN!
We didn't get to chat with Dausi until an hour after we landed back at home 7 days later but, our whole trip had this underlying HOPE and sense of magic at what could be happening. We had a great phone call with Dausi and she said at the end " This is them, i don't want ot talk to anyone else!" we connected on so many levels- the ones that were important and 3 weeks later we went down for EASTER to celebrate and meet up with her. We invited LOTS of our family through adoption too- Kara's parents, Tammy, Michelle and Q's family ( his mom is also adopted), and Brandon's side of the Family in LV. St. George seemed magical and it was a great weekend.
A bit less than 4 weeks later, Dausi called me and told me she woke up and thought she peed the bed. Her water had broken!!! She wanted us there at the birth and although we were 9 hours away we
hustled and made it with 6 hours or so to spare. Little Celise was born on April 28th and Dausi did beautifully and pushed her out quicker than we were expecting. Brandon walked out of the room to go get the pro photographer and missed it ( I sent him out so he blames me!) YEP, that quick! After a few hours Brandon picked up Dausi's favorite dinner- RIBS and Fixin's for doing such a great job:)
It's been a roller coaster since placement but, it doesn't mean we love Dausi any less. She is so near and dear to us and we hope and pray for her recovery to go as it should. We look forward to many fun adventures and Rib dinners ahead!
OUR NEXT and FINAL chapter AWAITS- Let's see WHERE GOD and the UNIVERSE LEAD our hearts, our family and our lives!