I’m trying something new! Join me for time spent in scripture discussing the remarkable ways God works in our lives.
I am a mother today, finally, because Josh and I were given an amazing opportunity to adopt a beautiful girl from a beautiful young woman.
So many of us are going through so much – putting our bodies through so much – stretching the limits of our sanity.
My message to you today is don’t stop. Don’t give up.
But more importantly – don’t close your mind to opportunity. Listen to your heart. Listen to the world around you.
If you think Yoga will help – do Yoga.
If you think acupuncture might be a solution – do acupuncture.
If you have an opportunity and the means – do it.
Just never close your mind. Never close your heart.
Nothing is worth shutting the door on your dream of loving a child.
Read it again – Nothing.
Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance. Perseverance must finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything. ~ James 1:2-4
The following story describes the moment of my deliverance from infertility to motherhood.
On Saturday April 30, 2011, I had a phone conversation that would forever change my life. I wrote this blog post shortly after that day.
Josh and I had been trying to get pregnant for quite some time. So when we were approached with the opportunity to adopt, especially considering the amazing family we were approached by, there was no question that God had beautifully orchestrated our circumstances and so purposefully intertwined our lives with the family that was destined to become an extension of our own.
To try and fit our entire experience over the past 6 months into one post would be impossible – and wouldn’t do justice to the lives involved. It was just too precious a journey with such incredible emotional ranges to try and summarize. I hardly know where to begin.
So for now, I think I’ll begin at the exact moment our old lives ended, and our new lives began – Phoebe’s birthday.
Brandy, Kim (Brandy’s mom), Josh and I had been to almost every one of Brandy’s appointments together. We heard Phoebe’s heartbeat together, we witnessed her sonograms together, saw Phoebe’s toes on the screen, watched her beating heart and saw her tiny hands together, hugging and holding hands and loving on Brandy together. We began to think of ourselves as the four musketeers – Phoebe’s original crew. From the very beginning, Brandy was so gracious to include Josh and I in every part of her pregnancy. Josh and I were thrilled that Brandy wanted us in the delivery room with her.
Brandy went into labor just a few days shy of being full term. She and Phoebe both had been strong and healthy the entire pregnancy. Brandy’s strength always impressed me – and continues to do so.
On Thursday night (Sept 8th) Josh and I got “the call” and we met at the hospital at around 11pm. It was excruciating watching Brandy, this brave young girl, go through so much pain. She had an epidural in the early hours of the morning (which we were all very glad for her to get), and at about 6:45am the nurses began setting up the room and her bed for the delivery.
It all got really real, really quick.
There were two delivery nurses who were in the room with us to get Brandy started until the doctor was called. The head nurse was a very impressive and take charge woman who said she’d been delivering babies for 40 years and in whom we all had every confidence could deliver a baby without the doctor if it came to it. I think we were all just glad there was an adult in the room because we felt like a bunch of kids who didn’t know what we were doing. Thank God she was there to give us all an activity.
Once the delivery began, Josh and Kim stayed at the top of the bed to hold Brandy’s hands and help her push. Myself and the other nurse (who herself was very new) each held a leg in a stirrup – the most important job of my entire life. The nurse had Brandy push until she saw Phoebe crown, then the doctor came in. We had become acquainted with this doctor over the past months of appointments, so she knew Josh and I too. We really liked her. And I think there was a big collective sigh of relief when we saw her familiar smiling face walk in the door.
I really can’t describe watching the delivery. I had no idea what all goes on “down there” in order for a child to be born. It was incredible. I saw Phoebe’s head. I looked at Brandy and she was looking right at me and I said, “Brandy, she’s coming. She’s almost here. Push sweetie!”
And Brandy pushed.
And suddenly, the world slowed down.
I watched as Phoebe was born into this world. She was here. She was born facing up, and her eyes were wide open. The umbilical cord was wrapped around her neck twice, but the doctor freed her immediately. The nurses cleaned around her mouth and she cried out – and so did we.
Brandy had arranged beforehand what she wanted to happen once Phoebe was born. Josh cut the umbilical cord, then one of the nurses laid Phoebe on a small blanket –
and she placed my daughter in my arms.
I began crying like a baby. We all did – the doctor and nurses included, I was later told. Well, everyone except Phoebe. She was just wide eyed and looking around – taking in her new world.
As I held Phoebe, suddenly it seemed the doctor and nurses disappeared, it seemed there was no one else in the room – in the whole world – except for the four of us and Phoebe. God stopped the world – He stopped time – for just a moment, and gave us the most precious moment I have ever experienced in my life. Josh and I held each other, and together we held Phoebe, I kissed Brandy on her forehead and I thanked her and I held onto Kim as she had her arms wrapped around her own precious daughter. And God’s arms were wrapped so tightly around all of us it was as though He physically enveloped us and allowed us to leave the earth behind for a moment.
And in that precious moment that Phoebe was delivered – I was delivered too.
I was delivered from all of my fears, all of my frustrations, all of my doubts. I was delivered from bitterness and anger and countless days spent agonizing over my infertility.
I was delivered from the fear of childlessness – and born into motherhood.
It was so important to me to write about this moment. It is so important to me that you know what an incredible experience this has been. I know there are many couples who have considered adoption but have held back due to fear of the unknown. I want to thank those of you who have been through the adoption process and who offered nonstop encouragement and prayers when my frustrations started getting the better of me. I want to thank the adoption agency for their tireless efforts to keep us on the fast track during the very unbelievably tedious adoption process. I want to thank Kim for her courage and her friendship and her unconditional love for her daughter. I want to thank Josh for being strong for me every single time I was weak. I want to thank Brandy for her bravery and selflessness – and for giving Josh and I the incredible gift of parenthood.
Dear God, Thank you for blessing us with a child.
Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you.~ Matthew 7:7
I believe this.
Four years later, at the age of 40, I became pregnant by surprise and gave birth to a beautiful baby boy named Stephen.
Dear God, Thank you for blessing us with our children.
I love feeling the weight of my family. The weight of my daughter snuggled up tight to me on the couch while she plays on her phone. The weight of my son sitting on my lap while he drinks from his sippy cup and gets sleepy and heavy. The weight of my husband blanketing me, holding me.
The weight of my world.
I always thank God for you because of his grace given you in Christ Jesus. – 1 Corinthians 1:4
There was a time when I lived a flighty, selfish life and let my closest loved ones down on many occasions.
Then I met my husband who rooted and grounded me in love.
There was a time in my life when I didn’t think I would be a mother, and my baby-less, infertility obsessed thoughts had me headed for a self-destructive breakdown.
Then I allowed Christ to fill and heal the broken emptiness in my heart. And through faith I was blessed with my children – who have rooted and grounded me with an unfathomable comprehension and understanding of unconditional love.
17 that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith; that you, being rooted and grounded in love, 18 may be able to comprehend with all the saints what is the width and length and depth and height— 19 to know the love of Christ which passes knowledge; that you may be filled with all the fullness of God. – Ephesians 3:17-19
Rooted and grounded in love.
Now, when insecurities make me want to give up, when anxieties make me want to hide, when the weight of the world feels like it’s pushing me off the edge, I blanket myself with the weight of MY world.
The weight that loves me and holds me and strengthens me and covers me and forgives me.
Above all, keep fervent in your love for one another, because love covers a multitude of sins. – 1 Peter 4:8
Rooted and grounded and heavy and solid and intentional and weighted in love.
~Be Intentional. Be Strong. Be Faithful. Be Delivered. ~