For some couples, infertility is simply the product of timing. Initially, that can feel like a huge disappointment. But, it can prove to be a great blessing.
Robin and Don met in their early 40’s and married just before Robin turned 45. Statistically, they had an 87% chance of being infertile. Robin conceived naturally – twice – but both times, she miscarried soon afterwards. Said Don, “I thought, realistically, that chances of me becoming a father were slim. I remember telling some friends one time that that would be my biggest disappointment in life….”
“ It was hard to think that we had passed the point of being able to have our own genetic children,” Robin agreed. They talked to fertility specialists, but somehow weren’t at peace with IVF. So, they began to consider adoption. Here’s how Don described their decision process:
“I’m one who believes you’ve got to exert immense patience to understand – and wait for – what God’s doing in your life. If you jump to a conclusion, you may miss the message. At the time, I wondered: We haven’t been able to get pregnant — is there a message there? I was listening and thinking: Is God saying, ‘You shouldn’t be parents?’ or ‘Take another approach’? I knew God had messages for us, but we had to be listening.”
Psalm 37 teaches, “Delight in the Lord, and He will give you your heart’s desires. Commit everything you do to the Lord. Trust Him, and He will help you.” Don and Robin did that:
1) They entered the adoption process focused intently on God’s love, His purposefulness, and His deep desire to bless them, 2) They sought His guidance and trusted Him to direct their steps, and 3) They chose to believe that He had a plan worth waiting for – one that would be better than anything they could accomplish without Him.
What happened? Did God help them? “We were told to expect a 12-18 month wait,” Robin said. So, they trusted and waited. Ten days later, they got a phone call.
“Our social worker said, ‘Are you ready to be blown away? There is a mom who has 5-month-old twins. She has been wanting to make an adoption plan since she was pregnant, but she’s had a lot of false starts and nothing’s come through. She’s ready to go through with it. She chose you.’”
“I look back on it now,” said Don, “and here’s the miracle: if we’d been ready six months earlier, this mom wouldn’t have been ready. If we had been ready six months later, we might have missed adopting our boys. God has a way of moving things around so that it’s a win-win for everybody. This mom needed relief, these boys needed a home – they needed our home, Robin and I wanted children… and God worked it all out perfectly.”
Is their story an extraordinary rarity? I don’t think so. After spending five years struggling with infertility, Owen and Kelly had a similar experience. They felt led by God to move onto a path toward adoption and they, too, are now the joyful parents of twins.
Want another example? How about Bill Haslet, who emailed me about adopting his twins 30+ years ago. He wrote, “We received a call on a Friday evening and picked them up on the following Tuesday. Talk about instant family!! Today, they are 33 years old, both married, both fathers, and two of the finest young Christian men I know. Our lives don’t always turn out the way we might plan them, but God’s plan and his blessings are more than we can even comprehend!!”
Sometimes, infertility is the first step on the path designed to lead us toward adoption. Rather than a curse, it serves as the signpost that says, “Adoption’s pinwheel of blessings: this way.”
Don’t be afraid to follow the signs.
For more resources and cause for hope, visit PregnantWithHope.com