Last night my family and I met some friends, Bill and Karen, at Chick-fil-A for the Pirate & Princess night! The twins got to get tattoos, meet Pirates, get prizes and Natalie got to make a crown! They had a great time. At the end, they had a contest for the best Pirate & Princess. Natalie got an honorable mention, second place, with a trophy, but Julian did not get one at all. Natalie was thrilled to get runner up, but Julian was sad he did not get anything. It is hard to explain to a child why they did not get chosen as the best, especially when the sibling got a trophy. This may just be the beginning of such challenges. I told Julian that it may have been because the winner had a sword, but no matter what the reason, he would always be my best pirate!

There are so many different challenges in life and this is just the start of many. It can be hard as a parent to just comfort and not take the pain away, but most of the time it is just not possible to take all the hurts away. This is what I think about when I see people I love in such despair. I try to be a comfort to them, but remind them our great comforter is God. When we do not know how things are going to work out, but know that God is holding His children in His hands at all times, no matter what the outcome of the circumstances, God will still be holding you.

This is what I had to remember every time I went through an IVF cycle, fresh or frozen or adopted. When you are in the middle of your challenge it is easy to feel defeated and very difficult to find joy, but I found this is possible with Christ. I often wonder what would have happened to Brian and I if embryo adoption never worked for us. Would we been able to have a successful traditional adoption or would the traditional process have drained us emotionally as well as financially, yet not have a child to show for it. I know many people who have had successful traditional adoptions, but I also know people who have had their hopes and dreams taken away at the eleventh hour only to leave them with crushed dreams and empty wallets. Even though we went through infertility for eight years, I still consider us quite blessed not only because we were doubly blessed, but because we are able to share what God has done and where He has taken us. I would like to think that no matter what our outcome I would be singing God’s praises. I am very thankful no matter what my life circumstances are I am never runner up with God.

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