Alan and I met through work over 10 years ago, he says that he clearly remembers me, and I take his word for it that we met. I was living in Seattle, Washington at the time and he was living in Phoenix. Our corporate headquarters were in Washington, which is how we met. I had the opportunity for a promotion within the company that required me to move to Phoenix. So being young and single I figured I had nothing to lose and off I went. My first day on my new job Alan reintroduced himself to me, and we became fast friends. We would often go out to eat or for drinks after work with some of our other co-workers. I already knew that I liked him but I wasn’t sure how he felt. This continued on for a little over a year, when one day he finally got up the nerve to ask me out on an official date. We have been together ever since. We were married 6 years ago in Southern California where we moved shortly after we got engaged.
We knew that we always wanted to have a family, we talked about the things we would do, the places we would go. The things we wanted to share with our children. But after 4 ½ years of infertility treatments, we looked towards adoption. We moved to Tulsa a little over a year ago and that is when we decided that adoption was the choice for us to build the family we had always talked about. We completed all our certifications, all our paperwork, put together our profiles and mostly waited. feeling nervous and wondering if a child was out there for us.
The Saturday that brought Ashley, Aaron and Aidan into our lives were just like any other day. We had plans to meet friends for dinner but they were unable to get a babysitter so they cancelled, so we drove around and talked about what we were going to do with our Saturday night. We often went to the movies but there wasn’t anything good playing. We had an appointment to look at a used car that my sister was interested in buying. Just as we pulled up to our appointment the phone rang. It was the adoption agency. They explained to us that they had a young mother in IL who was interested in speaking to us about her baby, they gave us a little background information on Ashley and then after about 10 minutes, the coordinator says “Did I mention that she is in labor right now?” Uh NO!
The coordinator asked that we return home so that we could talk to Ashley and be in a place where we could write down any information that we might need. We quickly met with the person selling the car. our minds spinning, wondering if our dream was about to come true. Then we headed home as quickly as possible hoping that we would not get a speeding ticket!
When we got home we called the agency and they said that Ashley and her mother Shawn wanted to talk to us, so they gave them our number and we waited. It seemed like hours (maybe even days) but within about 10 minutes Shawn called. It was an awkward conversation at first, neither Shawn nor we knew what to say but we managed to get through it. Ashley was already having contractions and so Shawn relayed information back and forth between us. Shawn asked us how far away we were and we asked if they would like us to come there. Ashley said yes, she wanted us to come right away knowing that her labors were quick and that we had about an 8 hour drive. We said our goodbyes and as I called the agency to let them know how the conversation went, Alan went downstairs. I could hear him moving around but it wasn’t until I finished the conversation with the agency and joined him downstairs that I realized he had started packing our clothes.
We threw the things we had for the baby together, and grabbed anything and everything that we thought we might need. We made some phone calls to family members and then we got on the road. It all seemed like a dream. I barely remember the drive except that as we got closer to IL it began to snow harder and harder and it was slow driving. We wanted to make it there for the birth but we knew that time was not on our side. Shawn called and gave us updates from time to time.
When we finally arrived in Illinois, it was almost 1am. just about 12 hours since we had first spoken to Shawn and Ashley. We were sure that the baby had been born but we were excited, happy, nervous, scared just the same. We arrived at Ashley’s room to find her sitting on the bed laughing with Shawn, Aunt Penny and Ashley's friend Jennifer. She said her contractions had all but stopped and then she said “He waited for you” and I know that at that moment I felt my heart expand tenfold.
Throughout the night, we got to know a little bit more about Ashley, Aaron, Aidan's sisters Chloe, Destine & Malyah and the rest of the family. we talked about the things we all had in common, and with each thing we brought our families together. We all decided to let Ashley get a little rest and we went down the hall to the lounge to try and get some sleep ourselves. A little after 7:00 in the morning Shawn came and informed us that Ashley was about to give birth so we should come if we wanted to be there.
It was insane in that room, tons of medical personnel around, wrapping and unwrapping packages, all the instruments, getting Ashley set up. It was just the emergency room stuff they show on TV Just as Ashley started to really push, I started to feel light headed. I think from being nervous and not much sleep and nothing to eat. But I felt like I was going to faint so I quickly stepped out of the room. The nurse brought me some orange juice and I started to feel better and then I heard a baby cry. I thought that I had missed it, so I got up quickly despite the protests of the nurses and went back into the room just as Aidan was born (it turns out it was another baby crying). I held my breath and watched them clean him off and then they handed him to me and I couldn’t believe that I was this little red, mad, crying baby’s Mommy. There were just no words to describe it but as we all looked around the room, I think we all knew. We just knew. what a wonderful moment that was.
We spent the rest of the day and the next day visiting with Ashley and Aidan in the hospital. On Monday the 15th we left the hospital and brought Aidan to our hotel where we were staying. Leaving the hospital was one of the most wonderful and also the hardest things I've ever had to do. We had come to love Ashley and our heart broke along with hers. Ashley is a very strong woman and I hope that Aidan has that strength because if he does, he will be able to get through anything that life might throw in his path.
We spent the next few days basically staring at Aidan. We couldn't believe how absolutely perfect he was. We met with our attorney and handled all the legal side of things and by Friday we were cleared to head home to Tulsa.
Before we left, we had lunch with Ashley and her family (Her mom Shawn, Aunt Penny, her Brother Joel, his wife Megan and their kids Dylan and Kaitlin) it was really nice to be able to meet and spend time with everyone but at the same time it was hard because again we could feel the heartbreak in the room. Ashley fed Aidan his lunch (and we took pictures) and before long it was time to leave.
There were many tears and lots of hugs. The room filled with heartbreak was also filled with lots of love. The journey was worth it. Not only are we the very proud parents of the most precious adorable baby boy in the whole world but we also have a whole new family too. Ashley, Aaron and the rest of the family have become a part of our family. You can never have enough people to love you!