When I was just about to deliver my youngest son, Brandon, August 7, 1991, I became extremely ill. Through a series of tests and visits to the hospital it was determined that I was dealing with a serious blood disease called HELLP syndrome. My doctor quickly informed me that I would most likely not live to birth other children and it was in my best interest to make certain I never became pregnant again. Consequently, we made sure this could not happen. After a few days of extreme pain(worse than any labor I ever experienced), and no relief, I was quickly rushed into the ER to have an emergency C-section. My blood was not clotting and the doctors did not know whether I would live through the night. Praise God I did and I delivered a beautiful baby boy. After heavy sedation, I finally got to see him a few days later. At this time, we realized that his being delivered early had not given his lungs an adequate time to develop and he was dealing with sleep apnea. He stayed in the hospital for 2 weeks and on a breathing monitor for 8 months before we were comfortable with taking him off.
In the eight years that followed, we were in love with our three boys and they kept us very busy! That's a whole other story! However, God left a hole in our hearts for a little girl. Due to the fact that we could not have more children, I prayed that God would take this longing away or else He would somehow give us our little girl. We had discussed adoption, but always said it was too expensive so we didn't pursue it. Finally, in 1998 we went to an informational meeting for foster/adoptive parents. We had planned to go to the second meeting in early 1999 when David fell and broke his back(also another story). Consequently, we did not go and did not think anymore about it for awhile. That is until the summer, when he was still off of work and we had a little extra time. We decided we might want to adopt, but we really weren't sure, so we would get licensed to foster/adopt and let God decide.
Then in September of 1999 we became licensed as foster parents in our area. We requested a little girl ages 0-5. I remember the phone call like yesterday, when the worker called to ask if we would take our little girl to foster. I quickly called David and he said to bring her on. Now we had no idea what we were getting into due to issues she experienced prior to birth, but we would love her for a little while until she could go back to her birth mom or whatever the workers decided.
After a year of the entire family and many friends caring for and loving "our" daughter, it was determined that we could finally adopt her. This only happened after a long year and much prayer! Praise God, because I think they would have had to admit me for psychological help if not! Now, ten years later we are still loving her every minute as she has brought abundant joy into our lives. We joyfully adopted her on National Adoption Day, November 18, 2000 during a wonderful celebration at the courthouse with all of our family. (Someday, when I get a scanner, I will share those precious pictures, but that was prior to my digital camera.)
During our wait God gave me this promise and He has been so faithful in keeping His promises since that time:
"Listen to me.....
you whom I have upheld since you were conceived,
and have carried since your birth.
Even to your old age and gray hairs
I am he, I am he who will sustain you.
I have made you and I will carry you;
I will sustain you and I will rescue you.