Wednesday, December 30, 2015

"Before"-- Chantzlyn Hope's Birth Story

Before we get into the day of Chantzlyn's arrival, there are a few things I'd like to document that led us to that point.

If you'd like to get caught up on our journey into adoption, our paperwork, and up to the point of waiting, then read HERE.

Read HERE to catch up on our being "matched" with our birth mother, Jess. Here is a picture of us the night after meeting Jess for the first time:

And there was a post on one week out from meeting Chantzlyn that you can read HERE.  Here is a picture of us & Jess after the appointment:

On the notes of those sweet pictures, let me just take a minute to tell you about how much we love and respect our birth mom, Jess.  She truly is a warrior and someone that has overcome so much in this world.  From hearing her story for the first time I knew in my gut that we were all meant to be intertwined together to bring love to a sweet baby.  I wish each of you could know her story to be inspired from it, but it is her story to tell.  She is so sweet, very loyal, a hard worker, and very driven. And the best part of all of this, is now being able to call her our sister in Christ.  About a month after Chantzlyn was born Jess gave her life to Christ in baptism and we couldn't be any more proud or happy for her!  This woman is so wonderful!

Now back to our sweet baby girl's pre-birth story:

Chantzlyn was to be induced on October 7th in Abilene.  We had plans of being there the day before and getting up early to be at the hospital.  I had {half} of my bags packed and ready to head to Abilene in case she decided to make a grand entrance early.  The plan was that I'd drive down by myself and that Lantz and the girls would follow if our birth mom went into labor before the 7th.

We asked Jess to keep us posted if anything happened because the last thing we wanted to do was miss the birth of our 4th daughter.

Well, on October 1st at about 1:00 I got a phone call from Jess letting me know she was headed to the hospital with contractions that were strong and frequent.  I was so excited and also {slightly} panicked!  I hung up the phone with Jess and immediately called Lantz, who had just left the house from his lunch break.  I let him know what was happening while I walked around in circles trying to finish packing my bags.  We quickly dropped plan A and decided that he would get Sawyer and Kennedie from school and meet me at the house.  I was to pack everyone's bag and we were all going to Abilene.

I don't know how we did it, but we managed to be on the road by like 1:30 headed to Abilene with our 3 girls & who knows what that was packed or not packed. The whole time on the road I had been texting Jess & her dad who were both keeping me updated.  She was continuing to have strong and consistent contractions, but it didn't seem like our sweet baby girl would be coming quit as fast as we thought originally.  This was very good news because we felt we had enough time to get to Abilene, but that we'd still be meeting our girl that night.

We rolled into Abilene about 4:45, making great time & not having to stop for the bathroom for the girls. Right as we were pulling up Jess was literally walking out of the hospital with Brenda {my mother-in-law, who quickly made the trip too} and her dad.  She said they released her to go home and walk but that they'd probably see her later that night.

We were so excited to be in Abilene because we were nice in close if anything happened.  Jess decided to go back to her parent's house to rest some.  I told her to call me if anything happened and we'd meet her at the hospital.

We went out to eat and then headed to Lantz's aunt's house to stay the night.  Brenda came with us so if we had to leave in the middle of the night she could stay with the girls since Lantz's aunt was out of town.

Well, Jess rested up that night and we surprisingly didn't hear anything from her.  We hung out with the girls at Lantz's aunts house & just had a low key day playing and cuddling with the girls.

We decided to stay in Abilene through the weekend in case she went into labor.

I got to go with Jess as she followed up with her doctor on Friday {I think} and he said he was surprised they sent her home from the hospital because he thought it sounded like she was going into labor.  He sent her next door to the hospital to get a sonogram to check in on the baby and get a better idea of what was going on. Lantz and the girls came over to the hospital with us so that we could all see baby Chantzlyn's sonogram together.

We were there for awhile.  We didn't realize that Jess would have a hospital room and put on a gown and they would hook her up and monitor her for a few hours.

While we were there, Jess had the sweetest nurse, Stephanie, who took care of her for those few hours.  It was so great to get to see Chantzlyn on the monitor first hand.  Of course, my heart was going wild with love.  I thought love would ooze out of my body I was so excited!  The girls were super excited to see their baby sister too!  They did great at the hospital considering we weren't planning on being there so long.

Eventually they sent Jess home and told her to come back if her contractions came back consistently (because at this point they were not consistent or frequent like on Thursday).

So we hung out again on Saturday for a little while and then decided  that we'd go ahead and go back home to go to church on Sunday and so Kennedie didn't miss more school Monday and Tuesday.  Plus I had a batch of pictures sitting and waiting for me to edit on the computer and my house was a wreck.  We thought we'd just come back on Tuesday night like we had originally planned. We just thought going home was the best thing.

Saturday night I actually had a sweet friend who invited a few girls over for dinner and girl time.  It was such a great time and I so desperately needed it.

From the second we got home I did not feel at peace about being back.  I just kept thinking, "What if Jess goes into labor and this time I don't make it.  If I we would have stayed then I'd be there no matter what."  Something just wouldn't settle inside.

At the girls night I explained a little of what I was feeling and why we'd come back and then I had a sweet friend who spoke out of love very blatantly.  She looked me in the eye while outside on her back porch and said, "Why are you here?  Why would you come back?  Is Kennedie missing school or whatever else you have to do here really worth missing the birth of your daughter?"

I will never forget that conversation.  It was exactly what I needed to hear.  Yes, why had we come back?!  It seemed like a good idea, but now being back it appeared to be the dumbest choice ever.

I got home and I woke Lantz up and told him everything.  We both went to sleep unsettled that night. When we woke up we decided that we'd go back to Abilene.  We decided after church we'd hit the road and that we weren't coming back until we had our baby girl.  Best. Decision. Ever.

Even though we got back to Abilene and nothing happened, I am glad we were there just in case.  I think I would have lived with regret had we stayed in McKinney and Jess had gone into labor before the 7th.

I cherish those few days of nothing to do in Abilene as we stayed outside of town at the ranch of one of our elders.  It was a time we could just be with the 3 big girls and love on them before becoming a family of 6.  It was nice to not be surrounded with a to-do list and just live in the moment there as we prepared to meet Chantzlyn. I was at peace knowing that I was close by in case something were to happen.

To say we were both nervous and excited would be understatements.....

{Up next will be Chantzlyn's birth story complete with amazing pictures by our amazing birth photographer, Micah of Double Knot Photography.}


  1. How did you come up with the name? It's funny we have the same unique name

    1. How neat! My father-in-law's name is Frantz, my husband is Lantz. If we had a boy we were going to keep the "ntz" going with "Chantz." Well, no boy, so we decided to girly up "Chantz" with "Chantzlyn." Love to hear how you got your name!