Thursday, August 26, 2010

Our unbelievable journey

Hi everyone. We are Jeff and Kim. We've been married for 16 years, are in ministry and have been trying to conceive a baby for 14 years. I have suffered two miscarriages and been told that it may be impossible for me to not only conceive again, but to carry to term. We have ALWAYS desired a child and adore all children. We have prayed, along with family and friends ALL these years that somehow, God would provide a way for us to either have a child or adopt. To be quite honest, because we knew we didn't have the finances to go through the adoption process, I've prayed that someone would just "drop a baby in our laps." :) Well, that never happened, although we KNOW God can do anything He desires. We have also prayed for years that if we were not going to have a little one, that God would remove the STRONG desire for us to be parents. Again, that didn't happened. In fact, quite the opposite. Our desires grew stronger and stronger! I have a dear friend at church who is always the one who consoles me during baby dedications because as happy as I always am for the families, it would break my heart that it wasn't happening for us. She would ALWAYS say to me that she believed we were going to adopt. I always told her there was no way financially but she would hug me, smile and pray!! :) I always see her at church and her daughter went through our youth group, but I had never called her. ONE day, when I heard that there may be a couple of pregnant teens, since we'd talked about adoption, the thought crossed my mind that maybe she might know someone who could help these girls decide not to have abortions. I was so desperate and willing to say "I'll take the babies" but KNEW how crazy that was. I didn't even know the girls. Now I know WHY I felt compelled to call her! You're going to love this.....the same day I called and again, the ONLY time I'd called her, she'd run into a high school friend who recently adopted and shared with me that I should talk with his wife about the process even for us. I said "Okay" but still felt it wouldn't happen for us so just kept it in the back of my mind.

SO, here's the rest of our amazing story SO FAR. :)  I am 37 and Jeff is 39. We have always been told how long the adoption process takes and again, we knew we didn't have the money but on June 10, 2010 (only a couple of months ago) we decided to PRAY specifically for God to provide for us to adopt because it became clear in our hearts that this was what we were supposed to do. The very same night we made this decision, the night before our 16th wedding anniversary, we received a call from my mom, who had been praying and knew for a few months that she miraculously had the money for us to start this process if we were still considering it. She hadn't said anything because she knew it was a sensitive subject for me and thought we were still trying to have a biological child. When she asked me if we were considering adoption and told me..MY MOUTH FELL OPEN and tears started steaming after we hung up the phone. As always, we were in awe of how amazing God is! I called my friend from church that night and asked for her friends number again to meet with her. I met with her and got to meet her 9 month old adopted little boy as well. She told me the lawyer she had used (the one we went with) and her amazing story. We immediately began the process, hearing great things about this particular lawyer about 2 hrs away and he happened to have an opening to meet with us on Tuesday, June 15th. We decided on a domestic adoption mainly because we know there is a need here as well as internationally and knew the process may not take quite as long in the US. After meeting the lawyer, we KNEW he was the one we were supposed to have help us make this happen. Afterward, we found out we had many friends and others who also used his firm and we felt even more peace. We were told even then that this could take up to a year and according to everyone we spoke with, maybe even longer. However, we went ahead and progressed as if it was going to be soon and hired the BEST home study agency in the Southeast. Our home study was scheduled for July 14th. Everything went GREAT and again we were told, "expect at least 9 months before you are matched with a birth mom." WELL, on August 5th, I received a phone call from the lawyers office letting us know that there was a birth mom who wanted to meet us. ALREADY?? Again. my mouth fell open and heart was beating like crazy!!! Then of course the fears of "will she like us?" "is this REALLY going to come to fruition? etc but.....

We spoke with her on the phone that Saturday night. She felt so comfortable with us and we KNEW this was THE ONE!!! She is incredible and has a beautiful 20 month old. She asked to meet us the next day, so we met her in person, Sunday, August 8th and took them out to eat, then to a play place where I jumped in the inflatables with her little one. From there, WE WERE officially matched!!!!! (Of course we'd had all of the interviews already with the adoption agency we used as well, paperwork was done, physicals and everything was READY..unbelievably!!) She moved from another state to start over for her and her sweet one so we moved her into an apartment on Saturday, August 14th. MIRACULOUSLY, we had asked for everything to furnish the apartment and things for her little girl since she was only able to bring 3 suitcases and a couple of carry on bags. People were and still are amazing. She has been given everything she needs and her place is beautiful. We were and still are so amazed at how EVERYTHING came together so smoothly, easily and the details were incredible!! People were giving toys without knowing her favorite ones that suited her PERFECTLY and gave above and beyond!!!!!! We are blessed to have amazing people in our lives who will and have sacrificed SO much to make this a reality!! Even two of our boys in our youth group and my sister and brother in law helped move her in. We got a call on the August 16th that she may be in labor even though she isn't due until the last week of September. So we rushed out of town to the hospital but Sara Beth wasn't quite ready. We are praying she will come when the time is perfect and she and our beautiful birth mom will be healthy. ALL IN HIS TIMING!! I just got home today after spending two nights with her and her precious little girl bonding even more. This experience for us has been unique but ALL God!!! She has said "I am so blessed by you two and am thankful I can give you this beautiful gift." She compared this to buying someone the perfect present in July and having to wait until Christmas to see their face when they open it! However, WE are the blessed ones!!! She is giving us a gift we NEVER thought we'd have and we will be eternally thankful and grateful!!! Praying constantly that God will richly bless her!! She is at peace and we are as well!!! AND BEYOND BLESSED!

We are still in need of a few thousand dollars because the adoption costs are more than expected considering the circumstances and us being matched so quickly and moving her. So, we are praying and believing that the same loving,TRUE, ONE and ONLY God Who has had this in HIS plans ALL these years and made this process possible, will continue to be faithful!! We appreciate ALL of the prayers, support, love and happiness for us. We are overjoyed to see and hold our baby!!!

My mom and sister had my first baby shower this past Saturday and it was one of the greatest days of my life because I NEVER thought it would happen for us. Some dear friends are having another shower this Saturday and we have 3 planned for after she is born!!!! :)))

We decided to name her Sara (for my mom's mother who passed away with cancer a few years ago), Elizabeth (for Jeff's mom's mother who is almost 90) and after speaking with our birth mom and finding out she has a very dear grandmother named Clara and wanted but not asked for a form of her name to be in there somewhere..her third name is Claire. So, she is Sara Elizabeth Claire and will be called Sara Beth!!! We pray for her by name always!!! We will keep you posted as we go along. From what the doctors say as of yesterday, we're looking at maybe two weeks. Our birth mom is hoping for sooner because SHE IS READY!! haha...we love and appreciate you all!!

We are about to be a mommy and daddy!!!! :)))) We have extremely excited grandparents (our moms and dads) and aunts, uncles, nieces, nephews, cousins, friends, etc.....this child will have SO much love!! She already does! God has known about her since the beginning! How amazing is that??

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