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Thursday, February 3, 2011

Lydia's Story Part I: The Phone Call

In exactly TWO WEEKS from today, we will be bringing home our little girl, Lord willing! So I figured today was a good day to start sharing "Lydia's Story..." Enjoy! :)


It was Saturday, January 15th. We were in Iowa, visiting my family for a late celebration of my birthday, which was 2 days prior. We were exhausted, due to various family events, and so we had slept in a little that Saturday morning. When I finally roused at about 9am or so, I headed to the bathroom, and while I was in there, I could hear my phone ringing.

"That's odd..." I thought to myself.

I got back to our room and began listening to the voicemail that was left. It started with,

"Hi, this is Carrie, from Lutheran Social Services..."

My heart stopped.

"...I'm calling from our W______ office, and I have a situation with a birthmother here, but things are progressing rather quickly..."

At this point, Joe's eyes flew open, as he could hear what she was saying. We both stared at each other wide-eyed as we continued to listen.

"....Laura [our social worker] gave me permission to call you directly, so if you wouldn't mind calling me back so I can give you a little more information, that would be great. My number is..."

I hurriedly grabbed the notebook by my bed and began scribbling down her phone number. As I hung up the phone, I stared at Joe in disbelief, and then started squealing. And jumping up and down. Because if you know me, that's just what I do. :)

"Oh my gosh! Oh my gosh!! I have to go tell Mom -- wait! We should call her back! Ah! What should we do?!?!?" I screeched. Joe just grinned, and in that split second I decided I needed to call her back to get more information. My hands were practically shaking as I quickly dialed Carrie's number and waited for her response.

One ring....two rings....three rings....finally she answered!

I explained who I was and told her that I had gotten her message. Carrie told me she was expecting another phone call any minute, but that she would start explaining things to me while she waited.

Carrie: Well, I have a birthmother who wasn't due until February 6th, but she went into labor last night...


Carrie: ...she was going to - oh! There's my phone call! Can I call you back?

Me: Sure! Sure!!

As we hung up the phone, my eyes were even wider than before - and Joe was too. Oh my word! We sat there frozen for a second or two, and then I burst out, "I have to tell Mom! C'mon! Let's go downstairs and tell Mom!!!"

We raced downstairs and I gushed, "Mom! LSS just called! There's a birthmother in labor!!"

I think Mom's face turned one shade whiter and she started crying, "What?!!??"

I briefly explained what had transpired so far, and we decided to go into the living room to pray. We prayed for the baby that was about to enter this world, for the birthmother's comfort and strength, and for wisdom for us...and then my phone rang. (My ringtone at the time was "While I'm Waiting" by John appropriate, eh?)

I leapt to my feet and answered, and Carrie began giving us more information.

It turned out that this birthmother had been planning on adoption for several months. She hadn't wanted to choose a family for her child because it was too overwhelming, but Carrie had encouraged her to look through some portfolio's. She had narrowed it down to our portfolio and one other family's, when she met a family independently from the agency. She liked them. They had adopted recently, and were willing to adopt her baby as well. Carrie began interacting with them, explaining the details of the adoption and the birthmother's medical background, when they suddenly changed their minds. They had just finalized an adoption of their own, and they weren't sure about adopting another child so close in age to the one they had. So they backed out.

However, before Carrie had a chance to explain this to the birthmother, she was admitted to the hospital due to high blood pressure and some contracting, so Carrie hadn't had a chance to explain all this to her yet. Since they were inducing her that morning, she didn't think it was wise to break the news to her until after the labor was over.

Talk about a lot of information to swallow! Carrie asked that we think about it and talk it over and get back to her on our decision. The rest of the morning was spent talking, questioning, wondering, and calling dear friends for wisdom and advice. It was a strange mixture of emotions. My mom put it best by asking me at one point, "So....what are you feeling right now...besides sheer terror??"

Terror was right! In one moment I was petrified of what lay ahead of us, and all the emotions that I'd be facing very shortly, and in the next moment I was ecstatic that we would maybe be meeting our future son or daughter very soon! Needless to say, it was a very emotional and draining day.

But Joe was so strong through it all. From the moment we got the phone call with all the information and I looked at him with questioning eyes, he was in it for the long haul. Even when I asked, "What in the world are we doing? This is CRAZY!" he remained strong and confident, never doubting that this was the answer to our prayers.

By supper time, we had hashed out every possible scenario, and had decided to give Carrie our answer: a solid YES. AsI huddled over my phone at Pizza Hut, waiting for Carrie to answer my call, I wondered if the baby had been born yet. She had been in the hospital 2 days now, and had been induced with petocin, so I expected some news on her progress. We told Carrie we were confident about moving forward, and she seemed glad to have our names to present to the birthmother, whose name we learned was Heather. However, there was no news on the baby front. Carrie told me that the doctors planned to induce Heather for a second time the next morning (Sunday) if she hadn't had the baby overnight, and that she would call me either way on Sunday afternoon to let me know what happened.

We went to bed that night hoping and praying for a safe delivery and for a favorable outcome to this surprise situation. I prayed over and over that if it was not the Lord's will that this situation would fizzle out and we'd all move on with our lives.

The next day at church, we tried to hide our secret...but we ended up sharing our hopes with a few close friends. They were all excited for us, and praying for the best. I nervously checked my phone just before the church service call from Carrie. Then we went to lunch at Panchero's and enjoyed talking and laughing with friends. I checked my phone call from Carrie. We finally went home and packed up our stuff to get ready to call from Carrie. We departed on our trip, with me ready to jump at my phone's ring at any call from Carrie. Finally, at around 5pm I couldn't take it anymore! I finally called her from our booth at McDonalds. After I introduced myself, she exclaimed, "Oh! I completely forgot to call you!" Thanks a lot, lady. :) However, there was no more news. Heather was still in labor, and had not moved along very quickly at all. Carrie told us that the next plan was to deliver by c-section if she had not given birth by later that evening. Again, she assured us that she'd call as soon as she knew any information.

And again, we waited....

(To be continued....)


Kathy said...

I am on the edge of my chair! This is so neat . . . praying for you ALL!!!

Tony and Lisa said...

Ha! I love the quote from me, "Whaaaaat?!" - sorry I wasn't more profound, dear. :)
God is faithful. He is answering prayers! It's been two years since you lost little Hope and now He is going to fill your arms with a new bundle of life. He takes and He gives...blessed be the name of the Lord!
We are so thankful!
I love you,

J-Funk said...

gah! I'm vibrating with anticipation for the rest of your story...

Daphne Hope said...

Thank you for sharing your story with us! I was smiling and choking up throughout the whole thing! Can't wait to read the next part!

Sarah Banowetz said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Sarah Banowetz said...

You left me hanging!! I want to hear the rest of the story!!! :c)

Charity said...

Fun to read.. so excited for you! And waiting for part 2...