Dear Little One,
If you are anything like your big sister and brother, when you get older you are going to LOVE hearing stories about yourself. You will ask us to repeat the same stories you've heard over and over and you will beg to finish your schoolwork early so you can read my blog and look at pictures and read stories from when you were young.
So, here is the first story in your journey to life, but it starts long before you began to grow in my tummy. Your presence, sweet little one, is nothing short of a blessed miracle.
Our journey to parenthood began with your sister. We had known her and loved her from the day she was born, but she didn't become our daughter until she was 16 months old. I first became a mommy in 2004 through the blessing of adoption! Your daddy and I had decided that we wanted to start a family. Because of how my body works, I always suspected that I might have a hard time getting pregnant, but I didn't know that for sure. Regardless, we were ready and wanting to become parents when an opportunity came about to bring Leeann into our family. We jumped at the chance to become parents. And parents we became--literally over night. One night it was the two of us and the next day we had a toddler!
Your brother came around in 2005, about a year and a half after we had decided to start a family, and a year after Leeann had made us parents for the first time. My pregnancy with him was a doozy, but I loved him from the moment I found out that life was growing in my womb!
When your siblings were 2 and 4 your daddy came home one day and said, "I think it's time to have a third kid." This news was much to my surprise and delight because daddy had previously said he was pretty sure that two was the perfect number of children. I not-so-secretly wanted more kids.
To make a long story short, we decided to pursue the adoption of a teenage girl, who ended up being placed with another family. Shortly thereafter though, we ended up becoming foster parents. Over the next 6 years we would foster 19 children. I thought that maybe child #3 would come from one of our fostering situations. But alas, it never did.
Somewhere during that time we decided to try for another biological child. We spent years learning about infertility. Our dreams of another child were being crushed month after month after month.
Finally, in September of 2011, I learned I was pregnant! I sent my baby off to kindergarten knowing that there was finally a new baby growing in my tummy! Our joy grew into heartache over the next two months, however, as we learned that the baby in my tummy wasn't growing. Eventually, we came to accept the fact that this little one was not meant to join our family here on Earth.
On that baby's due date, I found out I was expecting again! But my joy once again turned to grief when we had to let go of those dreams just 5 days later--on Mother's Day no less.
After losing these two little ones, mommy's heart couldn't take it anymore. We decided to put aside our dream of having child #3. The grief and sorrow was simply too much to bear. I knew I needed to be healthy and present for your big sister and big brother, and I was having a hard time doing that while hanging onto the dream that I was powerless to fulfill.
So I let go of my dream, though the desire never disappeared. I always felt in my heart like God had more in store for our family, but clearly, he was not opening any doors by which to make that happen. In 2014 we let our foster care certification lapse, since we didn't know what the future would hold for our family. Another potential avenue closed.
Now, here we are today. It's 2016. Your sister is 12 and your brother is 10. I had long given up on having a third child, until early April when much to my surprise I learned that were growing in my tummy. Miracle of all miracles, I marvel that God is growing life within my womb after so many years of wishing and wanting and waiting!
I don't know if God will allow you to join our family here on Earth, or if you are meant to join your siblings in Heaven until we get to meet you face to face one day. But, what I do know, is that our whole family is choosing to celebrate every day of your life. We are grateful for the joy that you have already brought to our hearts and we anxiously await seeing what God has in store for you and for the future of our family!
Dear little one, I love you more than you could ever imagine. I look forward to writing more stories about how you are growing and changing in the weeks and months to come. I'm so excited to meet you one day!