I’ve cried so many tears while reading all of the amazing stories that people have shared over the course of this What It’s Like series. However, today’s post written by Alex choked me up in a different way because laced in her pain breathes so much Jesus. Her words blessed me because of how genuine and vulnerable they are. I know they will you too.
Alex, thank you so much for sharing your story and relationship with Jesus with us.
And that was it, she took her last breath. At 4:54 PM on May 11, 2013, I held her cooling body in my warm arms. Heartbreak filled the room, and the silence was deafening. It was in those moments I knew this wasn’t the end, even though it felt like it. Our story would continue; but how?
Our heart for adoption was fueled by a calling. Way before we even got married. It spans back to my childhood when I knew I wanted to adopt. A year and a half after we lost Noel, our daughter, we pursued our calling.
We excitedly went through the process with an agency in Tulsa, OK. After much prayer and reflection, we felt at peace with our decision. We were picked unexpectedly quickly and were thrown into a whirlwind of classes, books, legal papers etc.
I remember receiving the phone call that we were chosen. We were driving to Grimaldi’s to celebrate my 27th birthday. That phone call was the best birthday present.
That summer, 2015, we spent it up in Tulsa, OK with the agency and our birth-mom. She was due beginning of September. So, we only had about 3 or so months until she was born.
The day finally came and she was here. And boy was she perfect. From every single hair on her head, and let me tell you it was a lot, to her perfect little baby toes. I loved her the moment I saw her.
I loved her as my own. I was finally able to parent on this side of heaven. We changed diapers, had late night and early morning feedings and called her ours. Her healthy cry was music to my ears, and her round cheeks were the perfect size to kiss. I never knew how quickly you could fall in love with someone who has never heard your heartbeat from the inside.
6 days after we took her “home”, our birth-mom changed her mind. With tear-stained cheeks, we said our goodbyes and drove back home to Texas, empty arms again.
I vividly remember one conversation with our birth-mom. I told her that at any point in time, if she ever changed her mind, it’s okay. I know what it’s like to have to give a baby back, and to live without a piece of your heart.
We were never mad at her.
Feelings of disappointment and discouragement and doubt filled our minds.
- Did we hear wrong from God?
- Why? Why are we left with aching arms again?
- How could you let this happen God? You knew the final outcome.
I remember my heart being so severely shattered. It felt like it would never be repaired from back to back to back losses. (Our daughter dies, we find out we are infertile, then we experience a failed adoption.)
One day after sobbing on my white, not so white anymore (thank you waterproof mascara), pillow, I cried out to the Lord. I told him how disappointed I was, how he let me down, how I felt forgotten and forsaken. I cried until my head was pounding and my loud sobs turned into quiet whimpers. He very tenderly told me, that he knew all of this, he just needed me to be vulnerable with him and to come to him whole heartedly, so we can move forward, together.
It took another year and a half, 2017, until our Liv Noel was born, our rainbow baby via artificial insemination with a donor sperm. During those early months of waiting I pressed into the Lord without abandon. I saturated myself in everything that was true. I wanted a relationship so deep with the Lord that no one could touch it. I made a choice. I could either blend in the desert, or bloom in it. I wanted my valley to be green and lush, full of life, and vast with love.
Walking the road of a failed adoption was never an experience we thought we would encounter. But through it our marriage is stronger, (cliché but true), my relationship with the Lord is on a completely new level, and I am who I am today because of it, and I like the Alex I’ve fought so hard to become. (Now I would tweak a few pounds here and there, ha ha!)
Alex is a far west Texas girl who enjoys weekend getaways, quality time and a good chocolate with sprinkles donut. She’s been married to Caleb for 6 years and has 2 daughters. Noel, their angel baby, and Liv their rainbow baby. Alex thrives off of coffee, dance parties with Liv and of course Jesus.
PPS – If you’re ever looking for a devotional on living life while in a waiting season, check out the devotional I co-authored called ‘In the Wait’!
PPPS – Check out the other contributions from this series, including What It’s Like: to experience multiple IVF cycles, raise a child with special needs, use an egg donor, be a DIY-er and home style blogger , be a NICU nurse, Live fully in singleness while still hoping for marriage, suffer with endometriosis. experience depression, start a company, have a micro preemie, lose a parent, be childless not by choice, have a spouse with a chronic illness, fund raise for fertility treatments, have a traumatic birthing experience, take a natural route with infertility, be on a reality show, go through the adoption process, have male factor infertility,be a stay at home mom, be an entertainer, be given a Down syndrome diagnosis for your child , experience multiple miscarriages, have a surrogate, experience a late pregnancy stillbirth, be a police officers wife, be a working mom , be a breastfeeding mother, have weight loss surgery, donate and adopt an embryo, be on a reality show, go through the fostering process, throw a themed dinner party , have PCOS, have had a cancer diagnosis,be a high school teacher,love someone who’s experiencing infertility, be a step-parent, be the husband in a couple experiencing infertility , experience secondary infertility,experience postpartum anxiety,experience a traumatic loss,be a single mom,have a child born with cancer andbe pregnant with a rainbow baby. Stay tuned for our last contribution, written by little ol’ ME, coming your way next Tuesday!