Heart ba­bies: A story of love

The Haus­ners have rock-solid faith. They also in­cu­bate hope and leak love. Theirs is truly a story of faith, hope and love, writes Karen Read

Your Baby & Toddler - - Contents -

CAPETO­NI­ANS MIKE AND ANGIE

Haus­ner al­ways knew they wanted chil­dren and when they dis­cov­ered they were in­fer­tile, dev­as­ta­tion cut them deeply. “We had to face that raw ques­tion: ‘Would we be able to make peace with the fact that we might never be par­ents?’ Our pur­pose and iden­tity in this world had to be an­chored in the right place for that ques­tion to not wash us out to sea,” writes Angie in a post on her blog, Ev­ery­day is writ­ten.

The cou­ple went on to spend six years work­ing their way through pain. “I think we drove those close to us a lit­tle dilly with our lack of ‘out­ward ac­tion’. But in­side our hearts, in our home and some­times even through­out the night, we trusted and prayed to­gether.”

The room that they had hoped would be a nurs­ery be­came a prayer room and over time “God ten­derly led us through the val­ley to an open space where adop­tion be­came our con­vic­tion and not our es­cape,” writes Angie.

The Haus­ners used a pri­vate so­cial worker, whose name had come up in con­ver­sa­tions with friends re­peat­edly over the years. She was a great help, but they alone had to grap­ple with “which boxes to tick”, says Angie, re­fer­ring to the choices that prospec­tive adop­tive par­ents are asked to make con­cern­ing the race, sex and health – among other things – of the child they want to adopt.

“Hav­ing felt to put our­selves for­ward for a white baby, we knew we needed to be pre­pared for a wait that could po­ten­tially take years, but we stuck with what felt like a ‘deep know­ing’, even when at times fear said ‘untick that box’.”

A mere seven months later, in their sev­enth year of mar­riage, the Haus­ners got “the call” – and seven hours’ no­tice – that their new­born baby girl was ready to be united with her for­ever par­ents. There were shrieks of joy and floods of tears – or “laugh­blub­bing” as Angie puts it.

Five months later and over­whelmed by love for Zoe, the Haus­ners called their so­cial worker with baby num­ber two in mind. In Jan­uary 2014, when Zoe was 15 months old, Angie heard a pod­cast by psy­chol­o­gist and founder of Fo­cus on the Fam­ily Dr James Dob­son on “The Mir­a­cle of Snowflake Adop­tion” – ba­bies born as a re­sult of em­bryo adop­tion. “Snowflake” refers to frozen em­bryos. Night­light Adop­tions in the USA, a non-profit or­gan­i­sa­tion that has pi­o­neered this form of adop­tion in the States, de­fines em­bryo adop­tion as a means of al­low­ing a cou­ple with ex­cess em­bryos (formed through IVF) the op­por­tu­nity to se­lect a fam­ily for their em­bryo, and the adopt­ing fam­ily the op­por­tu­nity to give birth to their adopted child.

“It’s not part of the adop­tion frame­work here, but, if ap­proached, a so­cial worker could in the­ory screen adop­tive par­ents in the same way they would with a tra­di­tional adop­tion and fa­cil­i­tate the adop­tion of the em­bryo,” says Angie.

For a sense of what it might in­volve, the Haus­ners sought the coun­sel of a fer­til­ity spe­cial­ist. They walked away from the sec­ond con­sul­ta­tion as the ben­e­fi­cia­ries of three per­fectly cre­ated lit­tle em­bryos! “We had no doubt of God’s lead­ing in this,” Angie says.

The beauty of em­bryo adop­tion is that the fi­nan­cially and emo­tion­ally drain­ing first half of IVF has al­ready taken place. What it does in­volve is prep­ping the uterus for the “trans­fer” of the thawed em­bryo, at the ex­act right time for im­plan­ta­tion to oc­cur. This prep­ping can in­volve ei­ther a med­i­cated process or what’s known as a “nat­u­ral cy­cle”.

Jake Haus­ner was the very last em­bryo – the only one that took to set­tling into Angie’s womb. He made his grand en­trance into the world in July 2015.

While Jake and Zoe’s adop­tion sto­ries may be very dif­fer­ent, Mike and Angie be­lieve that they are es­sen­tially the same: the same pas­sion­ate love that gave their chil­dren life, placed them with their par­ents. It just so hap­pens that adop­tion was used in the craft­ing and graft­ing of this fam­ily. YB

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