Sunday, April 17, 2011

The End of a Chapter

Last year I remember sitting in our adoption classes thinking that the only truly terrifying scenario to me was having a child in our home only to have he/she taken because of a birth-mother's change of heart during that 72-hour "pending period". I figured I could handle anything else thrown at us aside from that. We were told that birth-mothers having a change of heart is extremely rare, and specifically once the child is in the home of adoptive parents almost never happens.

That being said, on Saturday at around 3:00pm we found ourselves on the unfortunate end of that statistic. We received word that our birth-mother had a change of heart and had concluded that the adoption plan was simply "too stressful" to continue. She had decided to parent. It was the sad end to an unthinkably emotional past 5 days for Brittany and me. We drove the child back to his social worker and made the emotional exchange with heavy hearts and teary eyes.

As she drove away with that precious child in her car, Brittany and I felt two simultaneous emotions: loss and relief. Obviously losing him was devastating, but I believe the Lord knew that we could handle no more. We were completely spent from the past week's extreme highs and lows and to go through much more would have been unbearable. It is difficult for us to understand how God's plan is for this baby boy to live with a single mother of four who is currently homeless and jobless, but our faith requires us to trust the Lord with all our heart and to learn not on our own understanding. I have been reminded of that verse time and time again over the last week.

We have an undeniable sense of peace that God is in control, and has a perfect plan for our family; and this child was a part of that plan, but ultimately he was not our son. Amidst the pain we are feeling is an excitement brewing in anticipation for God to reveal his plan for our first child. At no point in this difficult situation have we questioned our calling to adopt and I am so thankful to have a wife who is a woman of unshakable faith.

We decided to get away from our house/nursery/baby stuff for a few days and hopped on a flight to Laguna. We enjoyed our first day at the beach and look forward to continued healing as we begin to dream a new dream and envision holding the child that God has chosen for us to love.

Thanks again to all of you who have followed this chapter of our life and we look forward to sharing many tears of joy in the future with each of you! God is good!

Friday, April 15, 2011

Emotionally Exhausted


Today was a day that Brittany and I will always remember. There are no words to adequately express the suffocating sadness that is overwhelming us right now. Many of you know the "back and forth" that went on in the final days prior to delivery, but yesterday afternoon we were notified that our birth mother had switched hospitals and had given birth to a healthy baby boy. She needed space and time and that is why she had chosen to not have us in the delivery room as the plan had been for the past two months. That night we received another call from her social worker saying that she had her time alone to grieve and has decided to continue on with the adoption plan. Brittany and I were excited and tears of joy streamed down our cheeks; we were going to hold our boy and love on him... finally!

As we drove to the hospital this morning, we received a text from our birth-mom saying that we shouldn't come to the hospital because she still wanted to talk to some people about whether this was truly what she wanted/needed. Obviously our hearts sank, and we wondered how much longer we could experience this intense unknown. A couple hours later we received a call from her social worker; what she told us was gut-wrenching and blindsiding. She explained that our birth-mother was working with another adoption agency from Utah and that there was another family who had flown into Phoenix from Canada to adopt this very same child. Our birth-mother had decided to place the child in temporary foster care while she decided whether to parent or not. Along with that, she informed both the other family and us that if she places him for adoption it will be with an entirely different family all-together.

The news was shocking! Just last night she sent us a picture of him; why would she do that if she was working with another family or did not intend to have us adopt him? Looking back nothing makes any sense to us other than the pain of the loss that we feel. We are headed out of town for a couple of days to grieve with one another. Your prayers and support have meant so much to us throughout this process.

Brittany and I know God has a great plan for our lives and for our family and this is just the beginning of a great journey...


Our agency's director told us that our birth-mother was having a bit of a change of heart and wanted to speak with us at the hospital if we were still willing to go. After a brief discussion, Brittany and I figured that we were as broken and emotionally spent as we would ever be and that we would always look back and wonder if we stopped the process now. So after only 15 minutes at home, we were headed back to the hospital. Our prayer as we went was that God would be glorified through our actions and words.

What we witnessed upon getting to the hospital will leave an impression on our hearts until the day we die. When we walked into her room, the always strong and resilient woman that we had gotten to know the last two months was at a moment where the depths of her sorrow was incomprehensible. At that moment, any feelings I had of hurt or anger towards her vanished. Even our consideration for the baby became an afterthought. No, at that moment it was all about being there for someone at a moment of grief like I had never witnessed firsthand. The three of us embraced and cried, and cried, and cried.

We spent the rest of the evening in her room and at about 7:30pm we were discharged from the hospital with a baby boy in the backseat! Official papers cannot be signed until Monday at the earliest and our birth-mother is obviously still at a very fragile place. She remains unsure of what her ultimate decision will be. Our emotional approach is that we are foster parents to this baby boy for the time being. We are not placing "our name" on him or referring to him as our son until if/when our birth-mom signs that final step. Whether we have been given this weekend, a week, or a lifetime to love on this child, we are going to make the most of this perfect 7lb blessing the Lord has placed in our home. Every ounce of desire that has been growing inside of us since we started this process almost a year ago is being showered on this stud muffin!

We appreciate you taking the time to read this, and along with wanting to keep all of you (who have been amazingly supportive along the way) informed on the process, putting my thoughts on paper has been a healthy expression of the most unexplainable day of our lives. Emotions were from top to bottom in a matter of minutes. Please continue to pray that our birth-mother would feel comfort and peace, and that her broken-heart would begin to heal as she is walking through this devastation with no support from friends and family to lean on. We will let you know if anything new happens!

J & B

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Adoption Update

First off, I want to say THANK YOU for all your faithful prayers & support. I am guessing if you're reading this you have followed the last couple months of our adoption process on facebook. It has been a truly amazing yet emotional time for us. We got matched with Shanae, our possible birthmom, went to several of her doctor appointments, helped her move apartments & tried to be her support during this time in her life. We have grown to love her & her three sons. God definitely brought her into our life & us into hers for a reason, there is no doubt about that.

Yesterday was supposed to be the BIG day. Shanae was scheduled to be induced at 10pm last night with the hope of her delivering this morning. We waited on pins & needles to hear from her all night and nothing...turns out she canceled her induction. We are experiencing a lot of emotions right now & I would be lying to say that none of those emotions are fear and frustration. We got a text from her this morning simply saying that she "is going to wait until he comes on his own & that she needs space and time." That is all we know at this point. We are becoming more aware that anything can change at any second. It seems possible that she is questioning her decision to place her child for adoption.

You all have been a wonderful source of comfort & support for us throughout this process so we felt it necessary to update you all. Please continue to pray, pray & pray. Our prayer throughout this entire process is not that we end up with this child but that God will be glorified & His plan lived out. As hard as it is not knowing what's around the corner we are finding peace in the knowledge that our God is faithful & loving. He knows what's best & we are thankful for that!

We love you guys so much & will try to do a better job at keeping you updated.

Britt & John