Tiffany and Cody struggled with infertility. They spent a lot of time and money on doctor visits, medications, and procedures. At one point, they knew it wasn’t going to work. “We did all of this for nothing,” Tiffany remembers thinking. But she also says that their marriage became “stronger because of what we went through.” Together they realized, “God had a different plan for us.”
Cody mentioned adoption first. Driving to work each day, he listened to a popular radio show. The show’s host spoke often of his adopted son, so Cody emailed him for advice, not knowing where else to turn. A reply came back: “Use Catholic Charities. Do whatever they tell you to do; it’ll work.”
But Tiffany wasn’t sure how she felt about adoption. “I hadn’t mourned the idea of us not having our own biological child,” she says. “I was going through the emotional side of it. I wasn’t 100% there.” Nevertheless, she agreed to attend with Cody the orientation program at Catholic Charities Community Services of Phoenix (CCCS), and that made all the difference. “Right when we walked in, it just felt comfortable,” Tiffany says. “A lot of our questions were answered, and it was really informative. It felt like we were talking with family.”
A CCCS case worker led Tiffany and Cody through the adoption process, not only with all the paper work but also with managing expectations and anticipating emotions. “Catholic Charities were completely up front about the different scenarios that might happen,” Tiffany says.
As it turned out, the process was a rollercoaster ride. Tiffany and Cody received the good news that a birthmother had chosen their profile as the kind of couple she wanted for her baby. They were overjoyed, but just a few days later the birthmother changed her mind. Now she wanted to raise the child herself. Tiffany and Cody were disappointed, but they understood this happened often in the adoption process. A few weeks had passed when the birthmother contacted CCCS again. She stated definitively this time that she wanted her child to be adopted. The case worker called Tiffany and Cody telling them to get ready to welcome their child.
It was one last ride on the rollercoaster. They had not yet prepared a room for a child, so Cody drove to the nearest baby store and told the clerk, “I need everything to keep a child alive for the next week.” Tiffany remembers the day they received the baby: “It was emotional, crazy. The good thing about Catholic Charities – something I can’t thank them enough for – is that they videotaped the whole thing, the delivery at our doorstop and our reactions to seeing [the baby] for the first time.”
That’s how Harper came to Tiffany and Cody. “I thank Harper’s mother every day,” says Tiffany. She is grateful to CCCS as well: “They were with us every step of the way – checking in on us, texting us, seeing if we were ok. They still do. We had actually given our profile to an adoption attorney, and we didn’t receive one phone call. Not one.”
Tiffany and Cody’s gratitude to CCCS prompted them to reach out to other couples: “We still talk to people from our orientation class.” They hope to organize regular get-togethers for adoptive parents to share stories and information. They are also quick to sing the praises of CCCS to couples who are considering adoption.
Tiffany remembers hearing something over and over again in her meetings with CCCS, and it’s something she tells others: “They kept saying that the right baby goes to the right family, and you just have to believe that, and that’s what happened. It can happen to you.”