First comes love, then comes marriage, then comes... a baby?
Most people's journey is like this... however, ours, was not.
Four years ago we were so excited to start our journey to parenthood. Little did we know it would end up a lot different than what we had planned! However, after each storm along the way, we have seen the most beautiful rainbows from God. Through each and every struggle God was there, no matter what I was feeling. God's grace never left me. I wasn't always strong, and I let the devil get in my head and tell me that I was never good enough to be a parent, but thankfully God always pulled me back.
After just nine months of trying, we got pregnant in April 2012 and we were happier than ever. Just a few weeks later, we lost our angel to a ruptured ectopic pregnancy. We also lost my left tube, which meant getting pregnant again might be tough. We tried and tried, but nothing happened.
In February 2013 our pain and loss set us on the path of foster care / adoption. Shockingly, God had a sightly different plan for us than becoming "legal" foster parents. He ever so gently stopped that journey and placed Ryder right into our laps through a friend at church. At the time Ryder was being raised by his amazing, God fearing, loving, supportive grandma. She loved him with all her heart, but was really wanting to be "grandma" who could see him often and spoil him with grandma love. She didn't know it at the time, but God placed Stephen and I right before her, just as he placed Ryder before us! After only nine months of getting to know Ryder and his family, he moved in with us and we became his mommy and daddy! He quickly became our everything! What we could have looked at as a complete devastation, ended up bringing us our miracle "baby" boy, and the first best gift we've ever received.
In August 2013, our journey continued with IVF when we tried again to grow our family. However, it felt like doors just kept getting slammed in our faces. IVF did not work, and the doctor was not hopeful that we'd ever have children. IVF is not any easy process, and I swore I'd never do it again. I knew that God had a plan in mind, but just didn't know what it was.
In November 2013 we found out about two children who attended the school I worked at who were in need of a family. At the time, Ryder was three, the sweet boy was four and his sister was five. Without praying about it, I said, no. I just closed the door. Months and months went by and I couldn't get these two off my mind.
In August 2014, almost a whole year later God reopened that door -- wide open! By September they had moved in with us! We were still not legal foster parents but fostering with hopes of adopting three children at this point. They were the sweetest foster daughter and son, and amazing siblings to Ryder. Our lives felt complete. We felt like this was the place God wanted us. I no longer had a yearning in my heart to have a baby, and Stephen was such an amazing daddy to the three kids.
Just six months later it felt like another tragedy hit when the two children were moved. It felt like we were living our first pregnancy over again. I felt physical pain, all three of us cried and didn't understand. Nothing could ever replace the two we lost.
After things calmed down we decided to go in search of the missing piece to our family, to try to adopt... We were finally going to become legal foster parents! But to our surprise, because of where we were in our adoption process with Ryder, the doors were slammed, over and over. We felt rejection, pain, and confusion. Didn't God want this for us? Didn't He want us to be parents?
In June 2015 we found Dr. Brian Acacio, with Acacio Fertility Clinic. I will admit I did NOT want to go meet him. IVF was so hard and there was no way I could see myself going through it all and the disappointment again. I told my husband and mom, who were my biggest supporters, that if I went through it and it didn't work, I'd probably suffer a mental breakdown.
I met him any way, and left crying tears of joy. He was so advanced, and so knowledgeable. You know what felt best? He looked at me and seemed to know the pain I had walked and acknowledged it.... It was real! It wasn't in my head. By the end of the meeting he assured us that we would have our baby. Lots and lots of medicine and pain, and appointments graced us, only to find out on August 23 that we were indeed pregnant.
It's funny how things happen. Sometimes we feel like God is closing doors and keeping us away from what we want, when really He just has a much better plan for us on the way. Each time a door was closed God brought something amazing into our lives that we never knew we always wanted. Now God is ending our four year infertility season with the next greatest blessing in our lives ... We are now expecting one boy and one girl in May 2016!