It all began early one September day as school was starting and the school district I was working in was dealing with staffing cuts, budget cuts, and poor morale. I had only been the Business Manager not quite a year at the time. Sometime in the late morning, the Public Relations Officer came into my office and closed the door. It seemed I was not going to like the information she had to share…this is how she started.
“I need to talk to you…my Aunt who works for this Foster Family agency came to my husband and me about possibly taking the unborn babies of a young woman she worked with …” I was ready to hear she needed time off for this event and just kept listening. As she continued, I became more and more confused about what she actually needed to tell me, until the final statement. “I’m just finishing my Masters, and my husband & I aren’t ready for kids, so I gave my Aunt your name.” I could only reply, “What did you say, start over…” And so the story goes.
A young woman, Hannah, became pregnant with twins (originally thought to be triplets). Hannah had been on the streets, in and out of jail, and addicted to a multitude of narcotics and alcohol for the better part of 10 years. She had a previous son born severely addicted about 2 years before, hence the relationship with the Foster Family case worker. This very special case worker, we’ll call her Monica, took Hannah in, nurtured her, and counseled her into placing her son for adoption. So, when she became pregnant some two years later, Hannah contacted Monica about the unborn babies and asked that she find a home for them. Hannah only trusted Monica. Monica contacted her niece, her niece came to me and the longest 3 months of our lives began.
Sight unseen, after talking to Monica on the phone, Casey and I were designated to take these babies at birth. Just like that.
Their anticipated due date was mid January. In mid December, when all our communication til now had been through Monica exclusively, we felt it was time to meet Hannah and finally made the date to do so. The meeting was emotional for all of us. We felt immediately close to this young woman who had been cast out to the world and forgotten, neglected and unloved, but had a tremendous capacity for love, especially to these unborn boys. She will always be their angel. From that moment we were connected in a way that seemed natural and we knew these were our boys. Over the next two weeks we attended doctor visits, ultrasounds, and even the amniocentesis. A C-Section was scheduled for Christmas Eve; Hannah insisted these boys be born as a Christmas present to Casey and me.
Colin Patrick and Liam Gregor Fitzgerald were born at 8:09 and 8:10 am on December 24, 2003. My Christmas angels; born healthy, strong, and full of the strong will of their birth mother. Although by Christmas day Colin only weighed in at 4lbs (Liam was a hefty 6lbs) he was eating and thriving. We loaded them into our car and headed home. Christmas 2003 will always be the most special day for us, the boys, and all the lives they have touched since then. When they are old enough to understand, they will be told Hannah was truly their Angel, caring for them until they came to us and that they were meant to be our family from the beginning. After 20 years of marriage we finally have our special boys….