“It’s funny how a 2-sentence email can change your life forever. At 4:09 AM on October 31, 2017, we received an email from our attorney saying, ‘I need to speak with you about a unique situation. Please give me a call when you get this message.’ My husband and I had been married for over 10 years and due to a cancer diagnosis and treatment shortly after college, we were unable to conceive children of our own. Adam had always dreamed of a big family, 6 children to be exact, but as the years went by we had both started to wonder if the family we dreamed of would ever happen.
Adoption isn’t an easy process and we hit almost every road block possible, including moving 10 hours away in the middle of the process and having to start the home study process over from scratch. We fought hard to get numerous background checks between states (TX and AL) and worked through countless issues until we were finally home study approved. After finding the perfect attorney and waiting to be matched with an expectant mother, our dreams finally came true – we were matched! As we would learn shortly, that match and subsequent unique situation would change our lives forever.
Fortunately for us, our birth mother shared our desire for an open adoption so we were able to share in the joy of attending all of our daughters’ prenatal visits, including the day before their arrival when our doctors confirmed a 33-35-week arrival timeframe. But God, and our girls, had other plans. The next day, on February 27, 2018, Alie Ana, Alexandra, and Mila were born at 30 weeks and their extremely early arrival came as a huge surprise to everyone. Just the day before their arrival my husband and I had risen at 2:00 am to make the 6-hour trek from Dallas, TX, to Fayetteville, AR, for our birth mother’s (BM) next prenatal visit at 9:30 AM; upon being matched with our BM Halloween Day 2017 we had made it an important part of our journey to attend each of these visits, both for the knowledge and well-being of our daughters but also to get to know her and her family. Although Mila and Alexandra had jumped ahead of Alie Ana weight-wise, the doctors assured us there were no signs of distress and they were confident BM would make it to 33-35 weeks. However, about 30 minutes after arriving back home in Dallas we received ‘the call’ – BM’s water had broken and labor had commenced. After a frantic few minutes of packing up anything we could grab, as well as our dogs and their gear – after all, we had no idea when we would be back – we hit the road again for our 3rd 6-hour journey of the day. That trip was one of the longest of our lives – filled with tears, excitement, and prayer, but also with fear, trepidation, and panic; we had read so much on the topic of early deliveries but now our only children were arriving 70 days early.
When we finally arrived at the hospital at 2:25 AM we were only able to say a quick ‘hey’ to BM as they wheeled her back for an emergency c-section; at 2:36, 2:37, and 2:38 AM our daughters were born at 2 lb., 7oz; 3 lbs., and 3 lbs., 1 oz. with a team of 15 medical professionals assisting in their deliveries.
Unfortunately, our anxiety would not be alleviated any time soon. The girls were whisked out of the OR passing right by us – Alexandra was not breathing and had to be intubated – on their way to the NICU. As adoptive parents, and due to the girls’ unexpected arrival, none of the paperwork was in order so we had to wait an exhaustive and painstaking eight hours before we could meet our daughters; easily some of the longest hours in our life. But the moment we walked in to the ‘core’ area of the NICU later that morning to witness our three daughters fighting for their lives is a moment we will never forget.
The following 55 days were filled with highs and lows as we watched our baby girls fight every day. As if that wasn’t emotional enough, we also waited as court dates were delayed and the finalization of our adoption was pushed. All of this while we were 6 hours from our home in TX and more than 10 hours from friends and family in AL. Without these official parental rights we were not comfortable sharing our news publicly. Finally, after six weeks of being by their sides in the NICU, we were able to finalize their adoption on April 10, 2018 and share our wonderful news with the world; only a few weeks later the girls were released from the NICU and able to come home with us forever.
Looking back on the whirlwind of life that was, it’s very easy to see God’s hand in everything that happened. For years and years my husband and I talked about and planned for our coming growing family, yet it continued to not materialize. Finally, our faithfulness proved fruitful – by an increment of three times more than we had ever seriously imagined.”
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