I am thrilled to share an amazing story of pain, hope and love with you! I met Amzie and Destiny when they brought their baby girl to her newborn session. They briefly shared with me their story and their hope to adopt Miss Azalea. I wasn't fully aware of the magnitude of their journey until Destiny sent me her story:
I've wanted to be a mom as long as I can remember….
My husband and I have known each other for 20 years. When we married in 2001 I knew that I wanted to be a mom to Amzie's kids. What I didn't know was that our journey to parenthood would include a lot of ups and downs, hardships and prayers.
Amzie and I went through a lot of heartache together in our first years as a couple. In a short amount of time I lost both my parents and my only sibling. Amzie and I both suffered the loss of every living grandparent that we had in our lives. In fact, we both lost a grandmother on the same day. On top of those losses, Amzie's mother was diagnosed with breast cancer. Thankfully, she survived her battle and has been in relatively good health ever since.
We first started trying to get pregnant in 2005. We were grieving the losses of our family members and we couldn't have a baby. We ran through the whole gamut of infertility treatments and we were confident in this process. We eventually got pregnant through IVF but lost the baby after 11 weeks.
I know God's timing is perfect. I believe it was during our time of waiting, God was giving Amzie and I time to grieve the losses of our family members. It was during this time we came to know Christ and were baptized together. It was in the waiting we started attending The Point Community Church and were introduced and intrigued by adoption.
We decided to change our path to adoption, not because we decided infertility treatments wouldn't work, but it was that through our waiting God began to heal our hearts and help us with our fears. My fear was that I couldn't handle the stress of the uncertainty before finalization. Amzie feared he couldn't fully love a child that wasn't his own. God so graciously started dealing with our fears of adoption. Amzie went on two mission trips to Haiti to do construction work on an orphanage our church helps support. He felt tremendous love in his heart for these children and bonded with one little boy in particular, his name was Jean Moises. Through Amzie's service, God showed him that he absolutely could love a child not born of his body. The miscarriage on top of all the other losses I had suffered was more than I could bear - and so it was through this God showed me what it means to say that Jesus is sufficient. I came to know that we really can "do all things through Christ who strengthens us" and I have nothing to fear as long as I am following Christ.
In March of 2016 we started classes with Catholic Charities of Lexington. On Wednesday, July 20, 2016 at 9:15 in the morning we submitted them our final paperwork. At around 3:00 THAT afternoon, the agency called to say we had been chosen! We were told that the expectant mother was 39 weeks pregnant and wanted to meet us the following day. We had a great meeting and everyone agreed to move forward with an open adoption arrangement. We took the next two days to make transition plans at our job, knowing the baby could arrive anytime. We had a nursery ready, but we didn't have diapers or bottles...the things you actually need!
Around 2:00 a.m. on Saturday July 23rd, we received a call that the birth mother was in active labor. We hightailed it to the hospital with a hastily packed overnight bag and diaper bag. Azalea Joy was born at 7:32 a.m. - three days after we had turned in the last of our paperwork to the agency! Azalea's birth mother spent about 30 minutes with her and then we were welcomed into the delivery room. After waiting 11 years, we would finally hold our baby in our arms. On February 20, 2017 we finalized our adoption. We enjoyed the time between birth and finalization, because it was one of those times where you are absolutely dependent on the Lord and must trust Him. That vulnerability coupled with absolute certainty of the goodness of God is nothing short of amazing. Amazing grace.
On the Monday before Azalea was born I bought myself a necklace that says "If not, He is still good." I intended to wear this throughout what I knew could be a long wait for our child to be born and placed with us. I believe this is where God wanted to get me before He made me a mother - a place of total surrender and trust in Him. I am so thankful for our wait now. It got me to that place and it led us to Azalea, our daughter. We would wait twice as long for her if we had to. Azalea was always meant to be our daughter since our desire to have her in 2005, she just wasn't born until 2016!
My prayer now is that God's glory will shine through the telling of our story. We are anxious to boast of all He has done!
I had to wait to share Miss Azalea with everyone until she was legally Amzie and Destiny's...so head on over to see images from her newborn and 6 month session!