Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Elijah's Story

It took us a while to heal from our failed adoption heartbreak this past summer. Even weeks after the tears were dry, we didn't talk about babies in our house.  Adoption was a huge goal we'd been working toward for years  and we were too worn down with disappointments to dream any more. It felt like we'd never get there, and in our discouragement we settled into an unspoken agreement: let's move on.  We still hoped for a little one, but we needed to focus on the here and now.  

When we recieved a call in the middle of September letting us know we'd been selected by another birth mom, we didn't get our hopes up.  

We'd been here before. 

Several times (most often with foster children).  

We met the birthmom and instantly connected with her. We sat in a restaurant for two hours at that first meeting and talked and laughed until we started getting dirty looks from the staff.  Then we moved out to the parking lot and talked and laughed some more.  It still didn't seem possible that this could actually happen.

We kept in touch through our adoption agency for months.  We met in person several times and connected more deeply each time.  Before long Jason and I found ourselves saying things like, "I just LOVE her!".  
And it wasn't a superficial 'I love her because she tells funny stories and packs in more food than you could imagine possible from such a tiny person' love; it was deeper.

But it still didn't seem real.

We faced drama with the adoption agency, background checks (due to the governement shutdown), financial strain, and fear that this would all fall apart again. Unless it was necessary (because of paperwork that was due, etc) we rarely spoke about our pending adoption.  But we prayed about it daily.   Ethan made a point to pray for the birthmom and baby in every prayer he uttered. I began to wonder if we'd made a mistake in telling the kids about it.  After all, more than likely, it wouldn't work out.

We shared our news with a very limited number of people.  We just didn't want to have to talk about it if the adoption didn't go through.

But as time passed and we continued praying I began to have an inkling, a small glimmer of reassurance, that grew with every prayer.  

After a little bit more drama, including a c-section and time in the NICU, it actually happened.  
This giant goal we've been reaching toward for years is now a reality!

Elijah Thomas Hillman
December 2, 2013
7lbs 0oz
19.5 inches

We met our little boy minutes after he was delivered via c-section.
I still had lingering doubts at this point.  So much could still change. 
But we were undoubtedly in love.

{feeding Elijah for the first time}

Ellie and Ethan got to meet their little brother the next day.  We feel like this moment was a tender mercy from the Lord for our family. Elijah was placed in the NICU later that day and the kids would not have been allowed to see him there.  They have been with us every moment of this journey and have experienced the heartbreak along with us.  The day before Elijah was born, Ellie broke down.  Her heart was heavy with worry (as was mine) about the possibility of having our hearts broken again.
 Heavenly Father knew they needed this moment as much as Jason and I did.

We visited the birthmom and baby Elijah several times a day last week. With every visit our love grew, for both birthmom and baby. 

After just 4 days in the NICU, we brought our sweet boy home.

{my awesome sister surprised us with this sign}

We've jumped back into newborn mode around here.  Slower days that somehow seem more busy. 
Lots of snuggles, feedings, diapers. And every prayer includes a declaration of gratitude for this tiny miraculous boy and his strong, selfless birth mother.

We've received an outpouring of love from family, friends, and neighbors.  So many people anticipated the arrival of this tiny person!  We thank you for your prayers and encouragement throughout this process, even when we didn't believe you :)

How grateful I am for this time to slow down and appreciate each moment.  I find myself longing to be in the moment more than ever before.  So, if you try to reach me and I don't answer it's probably because I'm snuggling one of my little people.

Either that or taking a nap...


  1. Oh thanks tons for posting this, Heidi!! Awesome story and so happy for you all! A few tears were shed while reading this amazing story of God's leading and perfect plan for you all! Gretchen Varghese

    1. Thank you Gretchen! It's amazing to see God's plan, isn't it? I just wish I was better at being faithful when I can't see how things are falling into place. I'm working on it!

  2. I love him!!! Now I just have to meet him! All of the mushy gushy things I feel about your entire journey can't even begin to fit in a comment box. Love. Just pure love for your entire family!

    1. My friend! I can't wait for you to meet him. Thank you for your love and support! Hugs!

  3. I love adoption and little miracles! I cried reading your story as it hit close to home. So grateful for blessings from a loving heavenly father.

    1. Thank you, Katie! I am overwhelmed with gratitude right now. This little boy was meant to be ours!

  4. I love adoption and little miracles! I cried reading your story as it hit close to home. So grateful for blessings from a loving heavenly father.

  5. I'm so happy for you guys. Congratulations. I'm glad you didn't have to go through another heart break.

    1. So are we! It was definitely time for something to work out for us :)

  6. Congratulations you guys! The Matz

  7. We are so excited for you! Congratulations. Jeff and Janell