While Heather and Stephen did not experience alloimmunization or HDFN, they decided that they would not allow their challenges to determine their family size. Their story shows one of the ways you can choose to grow your family.

Stephen and I made the decision to become foster parents after reading the book, “You and Me Forever” by Francis Chan and Lisa Chan in 2015. There was a part in the beginning of the book that said something along the lines of, “Many people wait for God to say yes to something He has already told us to do in His Word. Why not default to what His Word says and listen to see if He says no instead.” Fast forward to 2018 when we were placed for the first time with a little 18-month-old boy named Jordan. His foster mother was a single mom and was given the opportunity to adopt him, but she felt he needed a father. Since we were open to adopting from foster care, he was placed with us. Two weeks later he was diagnosed with a debilitating brain disease that left doctors puzzled when he was miraculously healed. There was a lot of bonding during that time and we knew without a shadow of a doubt that Jordan was meant to be with us forever. In September 2019, we had the privilege of calling Jordan our son and gifting him our last name.

There are no words to describe the beauty of the love that is birthed through foster care, despite the brokenness that also exists. Thus far, we have welcomed a total of 14 children into our home. Our physical bodies have been stretched well beyond their limits and our emotional capacity for love has been tested time and time again. The beauty in this journey, besides helping these vulnerable children, has been in the refining process. I have learned that God does in fact stretch us beyond what we can handle, because He wants us to call on Him for assistance. In those moments when we feel the most overwhelmed, we discover the most perfect peace on the other side. Being able to see a child healed emotionally at the expense of trial and error and more trial and error on my part is the most beautiful gift I never asked for. I can’t fathom the thought of leaving this journey. The boundaries of what defines inconvenience for me continues to change and grow. What was an impossible game changing inconvenience for me five years ago is now something I thank God for daily. I have no regrets and I have no intention of going back to my boring, convenient life for anything.

If you are interested in foster care or adoption through foster care, I urge you to reach out to me. You can message me through my Instagram account, @hcannonmiller. I would love to educate you on the highs and lows of foster care and bust the preconceived myths you may have about it.

Heather Miller enjoys life with her husband, biological son, adopted son, and foster son in Northport, Alabama and has been involved in foster care and adoption advocacy for a little over a year. She currently has a nonprofit in the works to provide tangible, response-based support for local foster families in Tuscaloosa County.

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