In all honesty, for awhile there was nothing to blog about in our little world except maybe some heartache. But that heartache flew right out the window and lately, I’ve had better things to do than blog. Like take care of our precious addition to the Mayfield family.
By now most of you know that we adopted our daughter, Selah Faith, in May! My mom brought it to my attention that what most of you do not know is the story leading up to Selah’s birth. Well consider yourselves up to date after reading this post:) Hang in there...it’s gonna be a long one.
It’s so funny to me thinking back now about how all this happened. We were beaten down, weary and discouraged in the whole adoption world. But God is faithful. And He certainly showed us what favor looks like.
My grandmother passed away in January here in NC with her family after a very long battle with pancreatic cancer. We decided, as a family, that we would wait to have a celebration of her life until we could all be together at her home church in Florida where she and my grandfather lived.
The service was to be held February 7th, 2015. My sister, her husband, and their 2.5 girls (Harper wasn’t going to make an appearance until April) were going to be traveling down the same day as Robert and I so we decided to all ride down together. At this point we had made a trip to Florida in December to go get my grandma and bring her to NC, a trip in January for a planned family Disney vacation and now were headed back down in February. Little did I know I was going to spend part of 2 more months of the year in Florida also.
We left Thursday morning after poor Robert had worked all night. We swung by his work and picked him up and we were on our way. Around 9 am or so, my friend Leigh texted me and said that she saw one of her friends, who had adopted last summer, post on FB that adoption was a beautiful thing and that if anyone was home study ready and waiting, he knew of a situation in which a sweet baby needed to find their forever home. Multiple people responded to this post, Leigh being one of those posters on our behalf. She texted me the attorney’s phone number and said “Jen, you have to call her. My friend called the attorney on your behalf and told her to be expecting your phone call!”. As I shared this information with everyone in the car, the excitement grew. Of course along with the excitement came the doubt. But we pushed that to the side and called the number and left a voicemail.
The next couple hours were spent talking and laughing with everyone and not even really thinking about what had just taken place in the previous hours.
Around 11:30 am my phone rang from a strange number and to my surprise it was the attorney. She quickly rattled off the few details she had about the situation and asked if we may be interested. She knew nothing about the baby as far as due date, sex, or even if the baby was healthy. Robert and I agreed that it sounded like something we would like to pursue and with that the attorney asked if we could send our profile to her because she was meeting with the birth mom at 12:00 pm that day to present 2 other families profiles, plus ours. Panic set in as we tried to pull 6 months worth of work together to send within 15 minutes so that she could print the stuff off to take with her. Keep in mind we were in the car! My sister jumped into action taking screen shots of our adoption album and putting them into word documents all while Robert and I were frantically typing up an email on an iPad describing ourselves, what we do for a living, and why we wanted to adopt. Talk about stress. My hands were shaking so bad and I couldn’t think! We sent it around 11:45 am and I immediately called the attorney to let her know it was coming in 2 emails. I got her voicemail. And instantly I was flooded with worry that it wouldn’t get there in time. We all prayed together that if this was God’s will that the birth mom’s heart would be open to us and she would choose us.
The rest of the day was no more than driving, talking and laughing and for Robert, sleeping. At 4:45 pm my phone rang again and this time I recognized the attorney’s number. I answered the phone unsure of what this conversation would hold. This is what I heard. “Jen, I was given strict instructions to give you a message. Congratulations! It’s a girl!” I couldn’t speak. All I could do was reach over and
nudge smack Robert to wake him up. He sat up startled and all I could manage to utter was “we got the baby...and it’s a girl!”. We were overwhelmed. I still couldn’t speak a complete sentence at this point so the attorney said let me give you a second to digest everything while I tell you what I learned today. Oddly enough, an ultrasound had been done prior to the attorney meeting with the birth mom that day so she learned the sex of the baby and that she appeared to be healthy on the ultrasound. I had the phone on speaker and good thing I did because we certainly needed more than just Robert and I listening to the details. When we hung up the phone I asked "when is the due date again?”. Ha. Pure shock. We prayed again and thanked God for His faithfulness, His sovereignty, His goodness, and His favor and mercy. Then the phone calls started. We called my dad and mom, Robert’s dad and of course Leigh who started all of this! The crazy part? The baby was going to be born in Florida. We were in Florida! Driving right past our baby. And had driven right past our baby in December and January too!
Fast forward to May 13th. The expected arrival date of our girl. After several grueling weeks of waiting and anxiety and all the unknowns, May 13th came and went. As a labor and delivery nurse, this part killed me! I wanted to be there. I wanted to see for myself that they were both okay. I loved both our birth mom and our baby already and I wanted to know they were both safe. It was torture. But then May 20th came. I was just getting ready to get out of bed. It was a few minutes to 9 am. My phone rang. It was odd for the attorney to be calling in the morning and I knew this was it! “They are taking her to the hospital right now to do a C-section.” I jumped out of bed. “Okay. We will be on the road within the hour.” I called Robert who was in a training class after working all night. No answer. He texted me. “I can’t talk. Is this about the baby?” YES!!!! SHE’S COMING! I’m pretty sure when he got home, the scene he saw probably looked like pure chaos. I was throwing clothes in suitcases as fast as I could. No folding involved. We were on the road by 11 am.
I won’t bore you with the traveling details. But I will say this...I may or may not have gotten pulled over in SC for speeding. And I may or may not have played the “we are on the way to FL to meet our daughter for the first time. She is about to come into this world and we need to be there” card. The state patrolman was the nicest guy EVER and said okay just be careful! It’s about to be memorial day weekend and there will be a lot of us clocking speeders. Congratulations! Now go get your daughter! Whew...If by some slim chance that state patrolman reads this and recognizes this story, THANK YOU!
The attorney called me a little later and said she was scheduled to be sectioned at 2 pm and everything was okay.
I had my phone music playing on shuffle and was singing along to keep myself occupied while Robert slept. I kid you not, at 2 pm, the song “On Loan From Heaven” came on randomly and I instantly burst into tears. I took a picture because I knew no one would believe me!
We swapped drivers around 5 pm or so and boy am I glad we did. Soon after I got the best text ever. 6 lbs 12 oz 19.5 inches long and healthy. And then a picture. Selah and her sweet first mama. We cried. We thanked God for this precious gift. We cried some more. We shared pictures with our family. And we basked in the glow of new proud parents.
We arrived at the hospital about 7:30 pm. The attorney met us there. I remember trying to sort through what I was feeling at that very moment but I just couldn’t. I wasn’t even sure what I felt. It was nerves or excitement or thankfulness or maybe all of those together. I don’t know. I just remember thinking that I had never felt like that before and it almost wasn’t a good feeling because it was so overwhelming! The ride up the elevator seemed like we hit every floor about 10 times before we made it to our floor. My face felt flush and hot and I could feel hot tears welling up in my eyes as I looked up at Robert and we read each other’s thoughts. We were about to meet our daughter. And all the months of hurt and disappointment and clinging to our faith and anticipation had led up to this exact moment. I knew I wouldn’t be able to utter a word past the huge lump in my throat. We walked in the nursery and had to show our ID’s and sign some papers before we could see her but little did the nurse and social worker know, we had already spotted her. She was all the way across the nursery under the baby warmer in nothing but a diaper after having had her bath. She was amongst a LOT of other babies and how we knew it was her I’ll never know. But we did. The nurse said she needed to check her temp and dress her and then we could take her to the little private area and hold her. The nurse in me couldn’t help but speak up and ask if I could dress her myself. The nurse half rolling her eyes said “I guess. Oh, you’re the labor and delivery nurse aren’t you?”. I proudly said yes, I was, but that had nothing to do with it. I had just been made a mom. HER mom. And as minute an event as dressing your baby for the first time seemed to that nurse, I had waited a long time to do it and I wanted to. We spent some time with Selah that night snuggling and snapping tons of pictures of course. We finally pried ourselves away around 10 pm. That walk to the car was terrible. We both cried. Leaving her was not a good feeling.
We spent the next couple of days visiting her in the hospital. And then Saturday we got to take her to our temporary home in Jacksonville, FL to meet up with my parents. We all spent the weekend taking in this sweet precious little baby. It was the sweetest time. Due to some paperwork issues I got stuck in Florida for 23 days while Robert had to go back to NC to work. I stayed with a friends aunt and uncle (Ken and Judy) in Jacksonville who took me and Selah in as their own. They were wonderful! They will now be a forever part of our little family!
So there you have it! Hopefully you’re still with me and you enjoyed our story. God continues to amaze me everyday when I look at this sweet gift He’s entrusted us with.
Thank you, thank you, thank you to all of those who prayed for us and waited anxiously with us for Selah’s arrival. Robert and I could have never gotten through all of this without all of your support and prayers. Keep watching for more blogs. There is so much more in my head but for a later time:)
“Who is the King of glory?
The Lord of host,
He is the King of Glory.
Selah” Psalms 24:10
|Just after we found out that we were going to be parents in May!|
|Mama and Selah’s first picture!|
|Daddy and Selah’s first picture!|
|Time to go “home”!|
|Mayfield...party of 3:)|
|First night in the extended stay!|
|Family beach trip to Jacksonville beach.|
|Judy, Jen, Ken and Selah|
|Yes you were precious girl.|