by Abby Hebert
The summer before my senior year of high school, I ended an unhealthy, four-year-long relationship. At a church camp shortly after, the Lord opened my heart and I was forever changed. Two weeks after starting the school year, I found out I was two months pregnant.
During my first visit to the OB, a nurse pulled my mom and me aside and told us about a couple from her church that wanted to adopt a baby. He was a music pastor, she was a nurse, and they were a lovely couple. But I immediately rejected the idea, unable to consider the thought of giving my child away.
As the pregnancy progressed, the relationship with the baby’s father and his family became an impossible situation. My mom and I visited Catholic Charities in Baton Rouge, where I learned about the concept of an open adoption. My daughter could have two Christian parents to love and care for her, and I could still have a relationship with her. As I flipped through every book of prospective parents, no one seemed like a good fit. At the end of my review, the nurse explained that there was one more she was working to compile, an in-progress and unfinished book.
As I flipped through the book, I saw a glimpse of the lives of a music pastor and a nurse – the same couple I’d heard about months ago. In that moment, I was overwhelmed with a peace that the Lord’s plan for Kara’s parents was already complete.
Kara was born in March, and it was one of the most emotional, empowering experiences of my life. The Lord provided for every emotion and need along the way. It was so amazing to share that day with her adoptive parents, my family and my friends who were my support during my pregnancy.
But God was not quite finished yet. My sophomore year of college, two weeks after meeting my now-husband Josh and knowing he was perfect for me in every way, I told him that I had a daughter, Kara.
He simply listened, didn’t say a word and I walked away thinking I’d lost him. I had prayed specifically for the Lord to prepare a husband for me that would understand and empathize with my past as well as my continued relationship with my daughter. Two days later, he said we needed to talk. He explained that he had also had a daughter during his senior year of high school.
His daughter, Dani, and my daughter, Kara, were both five years old at the time. Once again, I knew in that moment that God had answered my prayers! The year we got engaged is also the year that Dani came to live with us.
We went on to have three boys together, raise Dani, and keep Kara and her adoptive parents in our hearts and lives. We are reminded every day that even when we fall short, God has a plan.