Before we were married, my husband Brandon and I talked about how many kids we wanted. I thought 3-5 kids sounded perfect and he said 4 was a good number. It was actually during this conversation, that we first talked about adoption. I had always wanted to adopt, it was something I had dreamed about since I was young. Brandon felt the same way as he had some extended family members who had come to his family through adoption.
Our story goes like this.
Brandon and I welcomed a beautiful girl into our family just 15 months after we were married. We were so happy and nervous but felt so blessed. A few years later we felt like it was time to have another child. This time around, it was not as easy to get pregnant. After what felt like a long time, we decided to schedule an appointment for an infertility workup. As the appointment got closer, we had a great surprise and found out that we were expecting baby #2. We canceled the infertility appointment and soon after welcomed another beautiful girl to our family. Our two girls were 4 ½ years apart. Not exactly what we had planned but life was good.
We knew our family was not yet complete. Since it took us longer than we had planned to get pregnant with baby #2, we decided to start trying for baby #3 sooner than later. We tried, and tried, and nothing happened. Enough time had passed that our doctor wanted to do an infertility workup. I hoped for the same thing that happened last time. I hoped we would show up to our appointment and that the doctor would have great news and tell us that we were pregnant. This was not the case. The doctor told us that my husband’s work up turned out pretty good but mine showed some concerns. I needed medication and a change of diet to control an auto-immune disease. I was told to focus on taking care of myself. With time, and medication we could possibly get pregnant in the future. A total of 4 years had gone by with high hopes that one of these tests would show a diagnosis or explain why we couldn’t get pregnant. We tried fertility drugs, but still no pregnancy. We were told we were dealing with secondary infertility and there was not an explanation as to why. We had not answers and because of that we didn’t really know what to do next. We felt as if we were in the middle of a storm. Since nothing was broken, there was nothing to fix. Every direction we tried to go in seemed to be a dead end. We didn’t know when this storm would end or if it would ever pass.
We turned to God. Since our family was not complete, we wondered, “Do we continue trying to get pregnant or move forward with a new plan?” Brandon and I talked again about that conversation we had so long ago before we were married. God knew we wanted adoption to be a part of our family and he had lead us down a road to help us get there. We decided it was time to look into adoption and we were excited about it. We talked to LDS family services and took attended a class about adoption but the timing just seemed off. It was so frustrating. We prayed that God would guide us because we literally did not know what to do next. I know people that have dealt with infertility a lot longer than four years and would tell myself to be strong. But my heart hurt. I felt like I was grieving the loss of children I had never had. That they wouldn’t be coming. I was losing hope and could not see pass this storm.
Time went on and we moved our family across the country to Michigan. Soon after we got there, we decided to look into adoption again. This time, the timing felt right. We talked with LDS family services and decided to move forward. The approval process took a while. On a random day in February 2014, four months after we had started the paper work we had a strong feeling that we better get all the paperwork, home study, and everything done right away. So we did. We ended up being approved for adoption in March and our profile was put online. Our social worker told us that it was possible we would wait for 2 years or more before being chosen. We were prepared and felt like we had done all that we could do.
Just a few quick weeks later, April 5, 2014, our social worker gave us a call that we will never forget. He said, “There is a birth mom who has chosen you guys as the family she would like to have adopt her little girl. “ We were in shock. He continues saying, “The baby is currently 2 months old and was born premature. She has been at the hospital since birth. Because she was born at 29 weeks gestation she has some health concerns.” All we could say was, “Okay,” and continued to listen. We were a little scared about what he was telling us. I started to get nervous and have doubts, and then, he said the most amazing words that spoke right to our hearts. He said, “The baby’s name is Isabella Marie.” Everything changed in that very moment. My husband and I looked at each other and our eyes got wide. This was not a coincidence and we knew that. We have loved the name Isabella and have thought about naming our future baby girl this very name. Marie is my little sister’s middle name. This was a sign from God to help calm our fears and move forward in faith. We knew this was our little girl. Our doubts disappeared and anticipation and excitement took its place. We asked if we could see her tomorrow. We wanted to meet her.
Our storm was passing. How did we not know that after a storm there would be a rainbow?
We spent a couple of hours with Isabella the next day. Her eyes were big brown and beautiful and stared right at us. As soon as the nurses placed her in my arms, there was no turning back. This was our baby girl and we would do anything for her. I will never forget our first moments with her. Every moment was precious and sweet and perfect. We felt at peace and our love for her was immediate. I wish I could describe how we felt like she was our baby all along. There was a lot we had to learn about her and how to care for her. She was so itty bitty. We signed the adoption papers and two days later, she ended up needing a surgery. I remember touching her tiny hand as she was in her isolette recovering from her surgery. I was in awe at how perfect she was despite all of the cords and medical equipment around her. We are so grateful Isabella’s birth Mom gave her the name she did and that she chose us to get to be Isabella’s family. Our lives have been so blessed by adoption. Isabella is our rainbow after the storm.
Soon after we adopted Isabella we found out we were expecting baby #4. When we adopted with LDS services you could only adopt if you had two or less children. Isabella came to us when she was supposed to, at the perfect time. Having to have gone through secondary infertility lead us to Isabella and I thank God for that wonderfully blessed yet hard trial. She was meant to be a part of our family. I guess in a way, we had a double rainbow at the end of our storm. Isabella and Seth are the best of friends.
Looking for more you can read my foster to adopt story HERE .
To read a remarkable journey of an amazing Birth Mom who so courageously placed her child up for adoption read HERE.
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