Apologies for not posting since March 27th. Our house has been busy, busy, busy! For a quick recap, we decided, after much prayer, to pursue a domestic adoption while waiting for our Ethiopia adoption (you can read more about that here). In a short amount of time, we matched with a birth family, and on April 9 we got the news that we were having a girl!
It’s Another Girl!
We found out in one phone call that not only were we having a girl, but our birth mom had already begun progressing and that we were looking at her arrival before the original May 4 due date. What ensued was a massive speed-up on baby preparation for our household, knowing that the call could happen at any moment.
On Tuesday, April 22, we got that call. Well, it wasn’t actually a call. It was an email from our attorney: “WE HAVE A BABY! BORN IN ER. 5 min after arrival. Call me – am home without your file getting dressed. Yay!”
I had just left for work and glanced down at my phone before leaving the neighborhood. As tears quickly worked their way down my face, I called Drew. “She’s here! She’s here! I’m turning around the car. Be home soon!” Poor Drew – he could hardly understand me. And as I hung up the phone, a sob bubbled up deep within me as I uttered out loud, “We have a baby. A daughter.”
I cannot tell you the emotions that hit me within that one instant. As I pulled into the driveway, I raced up the garage stairs and into Drew’s arms. I yelled for our girls to come quick, and as Meredith came running into our room she said, “Why are you back Mommy? Did you get the call? Is she born?”
My oldest – precious girl. She had been on pins and needles waiting for this call, just like I had been. My favorite part of the morning was circling together as a family to pray before the mad rush to finish packing began. That pause – that brief time spent thanking God and praying for everyone involved – helped me settle my day into what was to come.
We quickly packed up the van, dropped the girls off, and started the long journey to Northwest Arkansas. What a joy it was, calling family members and emailing friends to let them know of our daughter’s birth!
Earlier that morning, our precious birth mom barely had time to arrive to the ER before delivering Murphy. She was checked by a nurse, and as the nurse ran to get a doctor, she delivered our daughter with no time for pain meds and not even medical staff to assist with the delivery. Talk about one tough woman!
As we arrived at the hospital that evening, my palms began sweating and my heart raced as we walked down the hallway towards our birth mother’s room. What would she be like? How would she feel about us?
Our birth mom had just handed Murphy to me. Speechless, precious moment.
I should have put my fears and worries to rest, because she was absolutely lovely. We spent a day and a half together in the hospital, feeding Murphy together (and changing MANY diapers), sharing meals, talking about our faith, and praying together. We were able to meet her family, talk about our family, take pictures together, laugh at Drew together (because, hey, he was the only guy in the room. We had to poke fun at someone!), and all in all, simply spend time together.
First official family shot – all we need now are our other two daughters (and son from Ethiopia – one day)
Having that time together, from one mom to another, was priceless. The day of her birth, my devotional that morning was about not compulsively planning every moment. I feel like I lived that out in the time that I spent with the birth mom.
Relying on God from one minute to the next, I chose to focus on embracing this opportunity by taking each moment as it came, and I am forever blessed by putting my compulsive planning to the side for a few days. I pray I can continue some of that ‘living in the moment’ when I come home. I think I’m a better mom and wife when I’m not worrying about planning each second of the day.
Puffy eyes, make-up cried off… yep, it was an emotional day.
As we wrap up this trip in Arkansas, awaiting our court date, God continues to give me the strength to get through each day. Life with a newborn in a hotel room isn’t ideal, away from all family and friends, but I’m so incredibly grateful for saying YES to this life-changing opportunity. We’ve gotten all sorts of questions, ranging from a flat-out, “Why?” to “Well you’re a better person than I am. I don’t think I could do that.”
It’s simple, really. When God presses something on your heart, you say yes. It’s not easy, and it doesn’t always make sense, but the blessing received from saying yes far outweighs all the other stuff. Yes, this is going to be difficult. But isn’t it awesome that God has already gone before us, and that by leaning on Him, we’ll get through it, one day at a time? Knowing that I don’t have to be self-reliant is what gives me peace.
Thank you, so much, for all the prayers. Definitely keep ‘em coming. We’re going to need it! Next up – I’m going to tackle some common questions I’ve gotten in the past couple weeks. Stay tuned!