We [the Payton’s] always knew that we wanted to adopt. In our minds, we thought that adoption would come later in life (we were 24 and 26 at the beginning of the process) and thought that you had to be more “mature” and “stable” to start the process. Really, there is no right time, just GOD’s time. After struggling with infertility and miscarriages in 2019-2020, God really pressed on our hearts to begin the adoption process. Though we were so scared of what that meant and so many unknowns, we took the leap of faith. We truly felt God speaking to us that adoption is solely how we will grow our family, and He gave us such an overwhelming peace about that.
God was so faithful though the journey. It was tough, a beautifully hard process, but God continued to make is so clear that this was the path we were to be on for our family. From officially starting the process in February 2020 we continued to trust that God was in control of the future of our family. Covid hit right as we began our process, and that delayed some of our steps in that next year as well as causing struggles financially with being out of work. We continued to pray and trust that God knew what He was doing.
We were matched with two beautiful twin girls in December 2021 and we were overjoyed! Surprising our family with the best Christmas blessings and in the coming months we prayed and prepared for our girls. The girls were very malnourished when they were brought to the orphanage but we could never prepare for the heartache to come when we lost one of them in February 2022, just a few short months before we got our court date to travel. The loss shook us greatly, after enduring so much in the previous years of trying to start a family. So many questions of why, but God continued to give us the strength to push through and we were even more ready to bring our daughter home to be with her forever family. Our hearts were aching, and still the heartache is there, but God makes beauty from ashes, and has redeemed our family and Eila’s life. Our journey didn’t just stop there, we struggled in Liberia with delays and financial struggles with how long we were out of the country, but God provided in huge ways and we were able to stay in Liberia as a family for the entire completion of the process. And there is no other explanation for that other than GOD.
In getting home to the US, Eila has adjusted amazingly. She is the happiest little girl and our greatest blessing. Her name means “a bright light from a strong place” and that couldn’t ring more true. We have seen such hard years in our journey to family, so much loss and heartache, but through and through, God has been there and provided and it is so evident in our journey.