Thursday, February 3, 2011

A Baby Story


A lot of people have asked about our adoption story and how it all came about so quickly. It's something I've been pretty quiet about up until now and I still don't really like to talk about because all of the anxiety I felt during the weeks surrounding Landon’s birth washes over me like a wave. But since we have so much to be thankful for, I’m going to do my best to tell our story...


When we got married, I just assumed we would get pregnant easily.  But it never happened. After a year, we decided to see a fertility specialist. I was diagnosed with PCOS and started taking Clomid and metformin. We tried this for about 6 months, along with lots of ultrasounds and IUIs. Nothing happened. So we went onto our next step - fertility injections. We did several cycles of shots, along with more ultrasounds and IUIs. Still nothing. So we took a few months off to consider our next step...IVF.  I told Mike I wasn't sure I could do this anymore. Trying to conceive had become such an emotional roller coaster. We lived our lives in 2-week cycles. Every time I got my period, I cried and questioned God, even questioned my faith. And with every new cycle we started, I bargained and pleaded with Him, telling Him how badly we wanted a baby.  I was sure He didn't even hear me anymore...


During our struggle, the hardest part for me was  the questions we were always asked by friends or distant relatives..."So when are you starting a family?"  I'm a very private person and I never wanted people to know how badly we wanted something that I could not make happen. And I hated to think about people talking about our struggles with pity or speculation.  It also seemed like all my friends and co-workers were starting or expanding their families. Nothing made me feel more like the elephant in the room than hearing someone else announce their pregnancy. I felt like everyone looked at me to gauge my reaction. It was probably all in my head, but the feelings were there {and very real to me} nonetheless. And I definitely couldn't go to baby showers...they were just painful reminders of what we still didn't have.

We ultimately decided against IVF. It was not covered by our insurance. Of course, we could take out a loan or borrow from our 401K, but I didn't feel like that was a good plan for us.  I wasn't willing to gamble $14,000+ a cycle on something that might not work.  

So we were officially "on a break". {I'm laughing now as I think of Ross and Rachel}  We had each other, a strong marriage, a great family and a wonderful niece. In spite of this one thing we didn't have, God was still amazingly good to us. We had a lot to be thankful for. And who knew that God had more in store than we could ever imagine… Of course, He knew all along.
  
After our break from trying to conceive, we decided to try adoption. We started running an ad in the paper, but not aggressively because it's so hard to find a newborn. I let the ad drop out of the paper and really wasn't thinking about it anymore. But God was still at work. It makes me think of a song someone at our church used to sing..."Stand still and let God move. When you feel you've reached the end, He'll make a way for you. Stand still and let God move."

And God was indeed moving. My grandma was in the hospital in July. My mom went to see her and also took my grandma's sister along with her.  When mom took my grandma's sister back home, she went inside to visit for a bit. My grandma's sister's daughter was there and she started talking about a young girl she knew who was asking them to adopt her baby. She said she was too old because she's almost 60 and wanted to know if mom knew of anyone who wanted to adopt. I can just hear my mom shouting, "Tonia and Mike will take him!!!”   Only God could be responsible for this falling into place...He is in the miracle-making business after all. Mom checked everything out to make sure the birth mother truly wanted to give the baby up for adoption and arranged for us to meet. We found out about the baby on a Thursday, met with the birth mother that Saturday, and exactly three weeks from that Thursday, Landon was born.

It was without a doubt the longest 3 weeks of my life. I never knew you could experience so many emotions at one time...excitement, hope, fear. We told everyone about the adoption, but at the same time, I felt a constant worry that something would go wrong. All the birth mother had to do was change her mind. She literally held my heart in her hands. Mike was even more nervous, if that could be possible. He had to worry about his own feelings if something went wrong, and also what it would do to me. When he recounted his fears to me long after everything was finalized, I realized again what a wonderful husband I have. I was also fortunate that I had my AMAZING sister to be a go-between for us & the birth mother. I could not hide my anxiety from the birth mother and she felt that. She felt more comfortable having my sister as the go-between as well.

One afternoon, we got the call. We were in labor!!! I was about to become a mother. Thank you, God. Landon was born at 5:50pm. It was an emergency cesarean, as he was in a breech hands-first position. As soon as he was born, we were able to hold him. I was breathless. It was definitely love at first sight. He was absolutely perfect. We were finally parents.

And then came the hardest part. West Virginia adoption laws state that adoption papers cannot be signed until 72 hours after a birth. This means that the birth mother had 3 full days to change her mind. I was a wreck, but once again, my sister calmed me. She had the faith that my terrified mind could not wrap itself around.  I spent a lot of time on my knees in the hospital chapel; our entire family did. God was still in control. The day the papers were to be signed, our birth mother actually called my sister to tell her she was ready to meet her for the signing. We were still in the hospital while this was happening at our law firm. I was sitting in the rocking chair, softly rocking my boy and singing the ABC song with tears running down my face. "Please God, let everything work out", I silently prayed.

He heard my prayers. A few days later we took our son home. We've been together ever since. Watching Mike be a dad is absolutely wonderful. He is so amazing with our precious boy. And being a mother has brought me a joy and peace I never knew. We are happy, content and so blessed.


God is able to do immeasurably more than all we could ask or imagine. Ephesians 3:20

 

That’s always been one of my favorite scriptures and now I feel like it’s our life story. How else can we explain this amazing and most precious gift? I tell everyone it’s like God put a shield around us from the moment we found out about our boy. We had so many prayer warriors praying for us. We have a wonderful testimony and I’m glad to be able to share our story.

I'm linking up at Kelly's Korner. 

7 comments :

Rosemary said...

What a moving story. Landon is indeed a cutey.

Tonia said...

Thanks Rosemary. He is definitely our joy!

readtomewv said...

Oh Tonia! I have cold chills! I will never ever forget the day you told me! I love you guys so much and Landon is so blessed to have you as parents! God is great all the time...All the time, God is great!

Kristie said...

Thank you for sharing this. It was just the reminder I needed today of how Great our God is!

Sarah Caron said...

That's a beautiful and moving story. Thank you so much for sharing it.

Ellie said...

That was beautiful, Tonia. I'm so glad your prayers were answered. He is an adorable little boy and is just as lucky to have you and Mike as parents as you are to have him as a son! You three make a gorgeous little family.

bevey56 said...

In God's time........and he blessed you with an amazing beautiful baby boy. This was an awesome testimony ,thank you for posting.

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