baby ryan

Not flesh of my flesh,
Nor bone of my bone,
But still miraculously my own.
Never forget for a single minute,
You did not grow under my heart,
But in it.

this was an extra special shoot for me. if you live in the garland county area, you are probably familiar with "miss kasey from the library". miss kasey has led countless kids through books, songs and art projects over the past several years. visiting our children's library has always been a special outing
for lucy and me, and now ruthie enjoys it too. lucy's eyes light up when she sees miss kasey, and they always exchange smiles and hugs before lucy scampers off to the doll house. a couple of years ago on one of our library visits, kasey greeted lucy with the usual, but i detected something else behind that big smile. kasey told me she had a couple of questions for me. it was then that we had our first conversation about the frightening, roller coaster, unpredictable, not-for-the-faint-of-heart but miraculous-in-the-end world of adoption. i recognized the look in her eye, as i had walked in her shoes a few years before. it's difficult, impossible really, to describe the emotions that accompany the realization that adoption is the only answer to a future with children. it's a discouraging, lonely, confusing and expensive road - and there is really no other way to explain it. but here was sweet little kasey, the hint of tears in her eyes, telling me that she and her husband had decided to pursue adoption but didn't really know where to start. i told her that the very best thing about making the decision to adopt is that in the end, you WILL have a baby in your arms. it could be tomorrow, or it could be three years from now, but it will happen. i saw a tiny bit of anxiety melt away. during the next few months we talked about the grueling task of running the adoption gauntlet. first comes the homestudy where you and your spouse undergo hours of in-depth interviews, home inspections, background checks, fbi finger printings , medical exams etc. etc. we talked about the portfolio that is basically your entire life condensed into words and pictures. the birthmom chooses the adoptive parents based on those words and pictures. imagine...your future family hinges on a few pages......
over the next year and a half, i would get updates from kasey. we would discuss the latest roadblocks & frustrations. i would always tell her that even though it feels like it's never going to happen, it will happen, and it could happen tomorrow.

i also told her when it finally happened for us, my husband and i immediately realized that God had the perfect family planned for us all along. i'm not saying that we didn't have faith during the process. it's just that looking back at five long years of trying to have a baby the old fashioned way, then a few more years overcoming the pitfalls and obstacles of adoption, it's so clear that God created Lucy & Ruthie for our family. and i would not change one second of our journey. not one. the circumstances and timing surrounding both adoptions were nothing less than miraculous. ask me about the details sometime. but bring some tissues. i've never gotten through either story without waterworks. if my husband is there, bring a whole box....
anyway, a couple months passed after our last conversation at the library. then kasey and her husband paul got a phone call. THE phone call. not only had they been chosen by a birthmother, but they were to pick up their baby boy the very next morning!!

precious baby ryan had been home a couple of weeks when i had the privilege of doing a shoot with him. kasey & paul are such adoring, adorable parents. it was simply amazing to witness their peaceful, natural bond with the baby that God created for them. and as i watched the three of them, i said a silent prayer of thanks for this blessed new family, and for ryan's birthmother, and my daughter's birthmothers, who had the wisdom and somehow found the strength to seek different futures for their babies. they are selfless. they are brave. and our families are blessed beyond our wildest dreams because of them. excuse me while i wipe tears from my eyes....and my keys....
thank you for a lovely morning, kasey, paul & baby ryan! what a precious trio!

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