Saturday, March 04, 2006

Linking - Noah is turning TWO in Haiti!

Today's post is all about "linking." Stick with it, it will come together in the end.

Tomorrow, March 5th is Noah's 2nd birthday.

For the first few years of our marriage we were unsure that there would ever be biological children in our future.

Troy and I were married in Nov. 1998. He courageously took on an instant family, a wife and two young daughters. He was only 23.

We did not wait very long to try and add children to our household. We found out we were expecting in July of 1999. Later in '99 when we were 16 weeks pregnant our ultrasound showed our son had died. We were devastated. I still remember calling my dad at his work and sobbing so hard that he did not even know who was on the other end of the phone.

The grief was real and it was consuming. I took my anger and turned it on God.

I stayed angry but we moved on and continued to desire a child. I found out I was pregnant in April of 2001. Right when there were signs of losing the pregnancy we called everyone we could think of who would pray. We lost that baby seven days after we learned we were pregnant. We had pleaded with God to save this baby. It was beyond confusing.

I cannot speak for Troy. But I felt like God did not love me or care about me very much. I really started to close myself off from Him. Anger towards God became my way of coping.

Fast-forward seven months to November of 2001. We had tried a little fertility stuff and had been researching adoption. The adoption route appealed more to us after the losses. We had been told that we could not adopt from Colombia, after putting our hearts and efforts into a Colombian adoption. We agreed that maybe God had no plan for us to have kids; adopted or biological. We were discouraged. I was angry.

We agreed to take a few months off and not focus on babies at all. It gave me time to heal and deal with my anger.We really did end all discussion of kids for three months.

In February of 2002 we were just sitting together near the computer and I asked Troy if he thought we should start looking at adoption again. He thought we should. We got on the internet and started researching our options. We came across Haitian children and I felt a real connection to them, more so than any other country we had looked at. We had to go to a map to confirm the geographical location of the country.

We began to pray and planned a trip to Haiti in April. We planned to adopt one boy. The trip was its own crazy experience that we will never forget.

After our trip we were committed to adopting both Hope and Isaac. The entire experience was life-changing. They came home seven months after the first time we met them.

Where is the linking? I am taking the long way around, here it comes.

Had we never lost those babies, chances are we never would have found Haiti.

We never would have found Isaac.

We never would have found Hope.

If the adoptions had not happened, we would be missing out on the lessons we learned through adoption. We would have missed the gifts of Hope and Isaac and the opportunity it provided to grow our faith. We also would have missed out on making some really good and lasting friendships. Bigger than that, we would have missed out on being here in Haiti now.

Our loss led to gain. Our loss led to growth. Our loss led to God.

A few weeks back, I talked about the big puzzle. I reflected on the fact that God has all the pieces, but I only have a few.

In my pain and loss over our two babies I forgot that God specializes in making good come of bad situations.

Have you ever heard someone say they were thankful for a miscarriage? Well, I am. I am thankful that God knows what He is doing. His intention is never to hurt us, but to draw us closer to Him - and sometimes the only way to do that is through trials and tribulation.

More Linking ---
Hope and Isaac had been home from Haiti about 9 months. We were growing in our faith and trust in the Lord, we were happy and completely content. Our minds were focused on good things and the anger had long since lifted.

The God of the Universe blessed us with a total surprise. I was to have one of my ovaries removed a few weeks later, when I found out we were expecting. I went to the Doctor to find out why I felt so sick all the time. I was paranoid I had something bad going on. I laughed out loud at the nurse who told me I was pregnant. I did, I laughed in her face. I didn't even really believe her. We were thrilled and shocked and more than amazed, at the creativity & timing of the blessing of a pregnancy.

God showed up again on Noah's delivery day. Due to a very frightening placenta abruption, he was born emergency c-section (with a cut in the back of his head from getting him out of me so quickly) and needed resuscitation - and then to the PICU for a week --- Thanks be to God for His answers in all of it. God had control when we lost our babies, when we found Haiti, and when Noah was saved.

We are happy to be celebrating Noah's 2nd Birthday here, in Haiti. We will share pictures after our family day and the party with our visiting team on Sunday night.
Happy Birthday Noah Matthew, our HUGE surprise from God.

Sometimes God says "Not now" Sometimes He says "Yes" Other times He says "No." But, He always loves us and comforts and guides if we ask Him.