It's odd to know that had the others not been lost, this one would not exist. It's a strange grief to mourn over children that couldn't be while rejoicing for the new life. There's sadness and there's hope. There are crushed dreams and unfolding, exciting reality. We were in that balance, feeling extremes of sorrow and joy and fear and anticipation.
In late August we got an unexpected email about a baby needing a home and were asked if we would consider. We had always believed we would adopt and so even though we were pregnant, we prayed about the opportunity. And as we considered, we read articles about this type of family and "artifical twinning/virtual twinning" that discouraged us. Most adoption agencies won't even allow this type of placement. We considered the logistics of 3 car seats and 3 children in one bedroom and how would Calvin respond and how do I take care of a newborn while I'm fatigued and huge and pregnant? I felt crushed with the truth that we were probably not the best fit for this precious life. We couldn't make this amazing opportunity ours. We knew that others were considering too and we were confident that God would call the right family forward.
In early September we went to see our 10.5 week old baby again. But our baby was only 8.5 weeks in size and there was no longer a heartbeat. This baby too, had died.
It's hard to write this story. It's hard to share the devastation that has wrapped around us this year. Loss after loss. But the story isn't over.
A week after we found out our child had died, we were asked to reconsider, without pressure, if we would be ready to adopt. And, at first, we were hesitant to say yes. Not because we didn't want to or because we still felt it a closed door, but because we would be opening our hearts again to a child not guaranteed. Are we willing to say yes even though we might lose again?
This baby is a glimmer of light in our darkness and we are eager to have the privilege to be it's parents.
So, here we are, walking that line again. If the others were not lost, this one wouldn't exist for us.
We are in that balance again, feeling extremes. We are terrified and we are blessed.
Our home and lives and hearts are ready for this baby. Financially, however, we were not expecting this, and certainly not less than two months from now. There is paperwork to be filed, background checks, a home investigation, financial help for the sweet birth mama, and the biggest expense of 2 attorneys to make this baby ours. We are asking that you would come alongside us. We're asking that you would pray for us. We're asking God again to let us keep this little one.
2017 has been a wild one; 3 pregnancies, 3 losses. And before this year ends, we, Lord willing, will still have a precious baby in our arms to call our own.
Baby boy Cannon due Dec. 2nd.
- Ryan & Steph Shreckengast
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