Wednesday, March 24, 2004

William Nikolas

We in our little circle of friends are celebrating with tears of joy the news of a new arrival. Russ & Carleen have emailed us from Russia that the adoption of their new son was made official yesterday. They will be flying back this coming Sunday, their little family having increased by one. The "one" being bouncing blue-eyed baby Nikolas, renamed William Nikolas, who will turn one in May.

We have agonized with them as the endless trials of infertility have gone on through the years. Russ & Carleen are in their early 30s, and have remained faithful to the Church's teaching in the areas of fertility achieved through artificial insemination, etc. About 6 weeks ago, after over a year of waiting, they received word that they needed to fly to Russia to meet a possible candidate for adoption. They flew home a week later, knowing that in 2-8 weeks they could be called to return and hopefully adopt little Nikolas. That call came two weeks ago, and they have been there for the past 10 days.

It is impossible to relate the emotions we feel at home. For several years they were my wife and I's support partners as we went through our own trials with infertility. They grieved with us when we lost Nathan to miscarriage, and we felt the awkwardness of their having to be happy for us when we conceived Jonah last year, yet privately mourning and questioning their own inabilities to conceive. We know...we've been there.

But they were also the first couple to greet Jonah upon his birth, with wide open smiles of joy. They were there for us during the first two weeks of Jonah's life, as he struggled within the hospital's NICU with a mystery virus that almost claimed his life. Russ made us his famous lasagna, which I liked so much I sheepishly asked him to make another pan once Jonah was recovered and home from the NICU. Russ, in fact, is Jonah's godfather.

We understand completely Carleen's assertion that "for the first five days we are home: NO VISITORS!!!" We couldn't agree more. But we, and so many others, anxiously await the chance for hugs, handshakes, and coos from the newest member of their family....and ours.

Welcome to the family, William Nikolas! I'll be visiting your home with a lasagna on Day 6.


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