Thursday, July 21, 2016

Levi Edward -- His Story

Now that Levi is nearly 2 months old, I suppose it's time that I write his story. Before I begin, let me just say, that even though I haven't posted as much and taken an insane amount of pictures, I'm totally in love with his boy. I feel like I've been waiting for him for an eternity and he has filled a part of my heart in a way that was unexpected. I love him so much and feel immensely blessed every time I look at him, and that's not an exaggeration.

So...his story...

Many months ago, our adoption agency presented his situation. His birth mother, J, was looking for an adoptive family with 1 or 2 children. She grew up with siblings and wanted that for her baby. I sent a message to our caseworker and said that we would be interested in being presented if she was ok with an adoptive family who already had 3 kids...because, well, we do. I suspected that having 3 kids would take us out of the pool for her to look at becuase, after all, there has to be a cut off somewhere among all the families.

Shortly after, we received a message that J had chosen a family already. We moved on and the entire situation left my mind.

Months later, just before Sweatin' for Sammy, I received a message from our caseworker.

"Marcus and Jenny: Do you remember the situation with J? The family she has chosen has fallen through. Would you like to be reconsidered?"

Marcus and I quickly discussed it and I sent a message back. "Sure. We'd love to be considered again." At that point, I was thinking that, once again, there was a large pool of families...that is until I got a phone call from the caseworker. "The truth is, J decided between this other family and you. So if you would like to, we can call this a match right now and I can let her know." She advised us to take some time, to think about it, ask her any questions we had, and get back to her after Sweatin' for Sammy. That, we did. We called, asked questions, discussed it, prayed about it, focused on Sweatin' for Sammy. On our end, every thing seemed to be lining up perfectly in terms of what we were hoping for with this adoption.

One item did trouble me, however. Why did the adoptive family back out? Was I missing something huge here? The answer to that question gave me such peace. I asked our caseworker..."You probably can't tell us this, but why would the adoptive family change their mind?" And this was her response, "You know, for a couple months they've been matched, but the adoptive mom just called me and said she couldn't shake the feeling that this just wasn't their baby, that this baby was meant for someone else and that their baby was somewhere else." When she told me that, the peace I felt was more than some kind of relief that there wasn't anything major I was missing...a divine confirmation settled on my heart and I knew this was right. It was like the Lord softly whispered, "He's the one I have prepared for you."

We officially accepted the match.

BUT. We've been through failed placements before. We were given a ton of information about what to do, blah blah blah. BUT, we've been through failed placements before. I couldn't bring myself to buy a plane ticket, because I just wasn't sure. We were told she was being induced on June 2, but something kept me back from buying those tickets. We hadn't had any communication with J and that was unsettling to me. It all felt a little unreal.

On May 28 we were celebrating my mother-in-law's birthday. All of Marcus's siblings were there. Bryan and Gaby had just returned from their honeymoon and were spending the day with us before driving back to Utah. We were in the backyard enjoying watching the cousins all play together and enjoying the perfect California weather when I went inside to grab my phone. That feeling I had had earlier, that I should keep my phone on me....there was a reason for it. I had several text messages and voice mails waiting:

"Call me! Your birth mother is in labor!"
"I hope you get this message soon! She's in labor!"
"Call asap! J is in labor!"

I immediately called, and the status was the same...she was in labor. The truth is, she had gone into the hospital at least 2 other times before thinking she was in labor, only to be sent home. But this time was not the case.

Over the next hour, we made plans for the kids (Callie and Micah to spend the night at Grammy and Grandpa's. Sammy would sleep at home and Colin would spend the night there with her. She was still in casts after her surgery and this would be much easier keeping her home in her own bed.), we bought plane tickets (the earliest flight was the following morning), and we were given text messages play by play of the labor and delivery.

I cried as I received those messages. And thank goodness for Lindsey because she spoke peace to my emotional heart. The last time we did this, I was in the delivery room with Lindsey. She was surrounded by me, her mom, her grandma...there was support. I was so heartsick thinking of J there, alone, without family around her. But Lindsey, in her wisdom, told me that J was NOT alone and that there were angels in her room to lift her during that time. I knew that was true because truly, it's the only way any woman is able to deliver a baby...especially a mother who is about to place her baby into the arms of another woman. The beauty of that heartbreaking sacrifice is never lost on me.'

And then at 9:00pm on Saturday, May 28, we received these two pictures on my phone.

The next morning, Sunday, May 29, we flew out. With only hours of sleep, we headed right to the hospital where we met our new son. It was surreal and the day we'd waited for for quite some time.


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