Part one of a two part series
Two months before Heidi and Eric were supposed to get married, Heidi ended up in the hospital. They quickly found out that she had blood clots from her pelvis to her knees in both legs. The doctors believed the blood clots were caused by the birth control pills she had just started. Heidi was informed that she would have to be on a medication long term and she most likely couldn’t get pregnant because of all the potential risks.
“I told Eric, not to marry me that this isn’t what he signed up for. I knew he wanted his own family. He said God will provide our family with different way,” Heidi said. “After my blood clots and I saw a high risk pregnancy doctor and blood specialists that confirmed the birth control pills were what caused the blood clots and that I had a protein S deficiency. I was informed that my life and any baby’s life would be at risk if I were to get pregnant. When I heard it, I was okay with it. I don’t know how to explain it other than the grace of the Lord.”
Eric served as child and student pastor for three years at a church in northeast Atlanta. A church in Bryan, Living Hope Bryan (LHB), contacted him to see if he would be interested in becoming their pastor. Who they wanted to be and their passions lined up with what LHB wanted in the community. God used the desires of the people at LHB and brought everyone together. Something only God could orchestrate, much like their adoption story.
They knew that they wanted to pursue adoption and were drawn to an agency in Virginia. Family Life Services, which is unique because they have a maternity home for the women that are thinking about placing their child for adoption. Eric and Heidi pursued this agency, but it was difficult season of waiting for almost two years without a word.
“This was just a reminder that Gods’ time is not our time and He has different plan. We were made aware of a situation outside of our agency. It was between us and another couple, but then the call that the other couple had been chosen came. We were heartbroken,” Eric said. “The next day we got a phone call from the agency telling us there was a situation with a birth mom. She had to make a decision quick, but she wanted to meet us face to face. We were excited, but still not wanting to put our hope in the situation. We knew God was building a story in our lives of where our hope should stand.”
A couple weeks before Christmas, Eric and Heidi headed up to Virginia to meet a birth mother. They sat in a three hour interview with the birth mother, her case worker, and their case worker. The birth mother drilled Eric with well thought out detailed questions, but she wasn’t asking Heidi any questions.
“The mother had come to know the lord through the agency during her time there. She mentioned how Hannah had prayed for a child and she liked the name Hannah. She asked me what names I liked. I told her we hadn’t really chosen a name, but the Lord just keeps bringing Grace to mind,” Heidi said. “She just starts bawling… she tells us that she had named her unborn daughter Hannah Grace. The mother asked if we would be willing to name her Hannah Grace. Without any hesitation I exclaimed, absolutely!”
Grace was due early January and as they left the agency case worker told them that they probably wouldn’t hear anything until after Christmas. The agency wanted to give the birth mother time to make her decision. On Christmas Eve, they received a call that the mother wanted them to know before Christmas that she had chosen them.
”We found out Christmas Eve that we were going to be parents. Grace was due Jan. 6th, but she came early. Only four days after we found out we were going to be parents she was born. However, there were some legality issues so we couldn’t get Grace until April,” Eric said. “We get the news that we’d been waiting since Heidi had the blood clots, yet we have to wait four more months. Again, God was teaching us what it means to wait and be patient.”
They waited and were sent a few pictures of a bright eyed, curly dark haired girl with blue eyes. This was going to be their baby girl, what they had been waiting on and praying about for years. They finally received their little girl.
“She is just an amazing child that we know with the Lord’s hands on are going to do amazing things in her life,” Heidi said.
To see more from Peace Magazine read our Easter 2016 digital issue