I am horrible at blogging, especially of late and the last few posts I have done have been very personal to me and my little family but I want to be able to remember these details and also have something to pass onto the girls. I also have felt strongly of my need to share this miracle and my testimony to all who would like to read it. I have been meaning to post this post for some time now but I am just now getting around to it. I received an email from Mary after I posted my thoughts on the miracles of the girls. She was sweet enough to share to us her side of the miracles and story. It was so neat for Jay and I to be able to hear the story before we were even in the picture. Mary lives in the same town as Raquel...the twins' grandma. She has been such an example to us and such a blessing to be able to get to know her. Below is Mary's testimony:
"The moment I met Raquel, my heart did a little leap and I knew that I needed to invite her over for dinner. Weeks passed and that yearning to have her come to my home continued. I was so busy with my little ones and the demands of going to school that I didn’t know when I would be able to do it. I didn’t know anything about her, I just knew that my heart felt love toward this woman who probably had many burdens and I wanted to help in some way. Around Thanksgiving my husband, whom I wouldn’t call the overly charity kind, told me that he wanted to do something special for a family for Christmas that year. He was so adamant about it that I agreed to do it. When we tried to think of who should be the beneficiary of our meager offering, Raquel’s name immediately came to my mind. I couldn’t replace her name with anyone else that seemed in need. Not having much money to give, I decided to make quilts from the left over fabric I had in my fabric bins; besides it gave my children an opportunity to participate in the process. By this time, I understood that Raquel’s daughter had given birth to twins and that they were being cared for, but I didn’t realize that Raquel was doing it on her own. I also didn’t know that she was trying to do that while caring for her two teenage sons, and two toddler-aged grand daughters. Trying to get the quilts done and all of my other Christmas priorities was pretty daunting, but my heart was full of peace and I knew it needed to be done. We dropped the quilts off the Wednesday prior to Christmas. We visited with her for a little while and held the new babies. Raquel began to express her own burdensome feelings of trying to care for illness with her sons and all of the many demands of trying run the household with very little income and now twin newborn girls. She explained why she hadn’t been able to get to church for the past several weeks: There weren’t enough seats in her car now that the twins had been born, and she didn’t know how she was able to manage the toddler girls and the twins when she got there. We offered to take her to church that following Sunday – which was Christmas. Deep down I knew that if Raquel got to church that everyone would witness the needs she had and would be willing to help. Walking into church carrying the twins with the toddler girls trailing behind turned quite a few heads. My heart took a leap because I knew this day needed to happen. From that moment on, I started getting inquiries about Raquel, the babies, and the many burdens she was dealing with. It also formed a trust between Raquel and I – that she knew she could rely on me for help. Driving home after church that day, I said, “So when can I take the babies so you can have a break?” I was surprised when she said, “Can you take them Tuesday?” That Tuesday was one of the most beautiful days of my life. All day my daughter Lydia and I just sat and held those little angel-girls. The sweet Motherly feelings that come from holding a newborn swept over me again and I suddenly had the strongest urge that these babies needed to be in the arms of a Father and Mother who wanted them. That Saturday I began a fast that was more earnest than I had fasted in a very long time. I pleaded with Heavenly Father to place these little girls in arms of those who were best for them. I did not know his will, but I knew my desires for those babies were real and strong. After that day, I began to have long talks with Raquel about her feelings for the babies. There were many questions about what her rights were as far as caring for the twins. I began making inquiries, but wasn’t getting very far. It wasn’t until Maria Draper called telling me that she was having concerns regarding Raquel and wanted to know how she could help (no doubt the spirit was working here). I told her about the legal dilemma and she offered to call a family relative who was a lawyer in Vale. It didn’t take her long to set an appointment. Come to find out, the lawyer she contacted had already been handling Raquel’s legal cases regarding the older girls. Maria said, “Normally I’m not the kind of person to get involved with people’s personal decisions, but I have this feeling that this needs to be taken care of now!” (I hope this line sounds familiar). The following week Raquel and I drove out to the lawyer. He told us of our options and seemed to know exactly what to recommend. He highly stressed the importance of getting an immediate-temporary guardianship on the twins so that the mother wouldn’t take the babies away once she realized that Raquel was filing for permanent guardianship. We got all of the paper work accomplished and felt relief that the babies were safe, and that Raquel then had legal right to allow someone to properly care for the babies while she tried to get herself back together again. It was right at this time that Rachelle Phillips called asking if she would be granted the opportunity to watch the babies extensively until more permanent arrangements could be made for the twins. My heart had to smile with gratitude to witness the hands of charity once again. I knew that if the babies were no longer under Raquel’s care that she would be more able to make realistic decisions about them. Rachelle truly was an angel to take them full time. I knew she had many sleepless nights ahead of her, and that her whole world would be put on hold for a while – what and offering! I worried for her and wondered how long it would take before she would find relief. She had spoken of desires of adopting them if nothing else evolved and so I knew she was doing this out of her gift of love toward children; especially babies. Several days later she called me telling me that she received a call from a lady in Arizona inquiring about them. She had received more than one inquiry, but the call from Sarah was most poignant to her. She told me of her concern about all of inquiries and how it really wasn’t her place to be giving out details about the babies. Normally, I would have agreed with her and told her that she needed to discourage Sarah from further inquiry until the decision had been made to place the babies for adoption, but I found myself saying, “How do we not know that this is the hand of the Lord working here? We have no right to intervene if this is His will. If Sarah is meant to call and inquire, then who are we to stop her?” Rachelle quickly agreed. When she called me, days later, telling me that Sarah was flying up, I was surprised, but not worried. Peace seemed to settle on my heart. I drove over to Raquel’s to tell her that someone was coming to visit from Arizona. Her eyes became really wide when I told her, but then she just smiled and said, “Okay.” Meeting Sarah was like walking into a large grocery store and the overhead fans that are there to keep the cold air from coming in due to the constant opening of the doors hits you. I was enveloped with peace and love. It was such a happy day – even with the rain falling down. It was so exciting, waiting in the van, while she visited with Raquel – wondering what they were saying to each other. It was even better when Sarah was able to come to my house for dinner and that she would be able to see the babies, since I was watching them that night. My favorite memory is Jay’s response to the picture she sent him of her holding the babies. From that moment, it was like I no longer had control of the things I said. It was like someone else was thinking and speaking for me when ever I spoke with Raquel and the need that these babies needed to go with Sarah. I just knew that’s where they needed to be – it just seemed so clear. The fact that we were able to issue the notice for permanent guardianship to the Mother of the twins that Sunday and that Raquel was able to see the benefit of having the babies in a loving home was amazing. Everything seemed to just fall together. I should have been surprised when I told Sarah that Raquel wanted to meet Jay and she responded by telling me that he was already on his way, but confirmation hit me before the surprise could come. When I met Jay my heart smiled. I’m so glad I was able to go and visit with them in Rachelle’s home. I kept watching to see Raquel’s countenance, and all I saw were smiles. I’ll never forget handing a bottle to Jay and without thinking I said, “Here Daddy.” I don’t know if he heard me, and I felt a little chagrined, but there was nothing to say after that. I wasn’t there the day that Raquel brought her mother to Rachelle’s house to meet Sarah and Jay but I was touched by what Rachelle told me. I guess the greatest miracle was the reaction of the Grandmother. Rachelle and I were both hesitant that she wouldn’t be in favor of Sarah and Jay taking the twins. To our wonder, she apparently was a source of confirmation to Raquel that allowing the girls to go was the right thing to do. Listening to Rachelle describe the subtle tender mercies that unfolded that day brought tears to my eyes. How honored I felt to have been a part of all the miracles. It’s made me wonder, “Why did I get picked to be a part of something so beautiful?” I truly didn’t feel worthy, that’s for sure! The fact that Sarah, Jay, and Raquel were able to go out and meet with the lawyer on such an immediate notice was another witness of the Lord’s timing. How glad I was to know they were taking them lawfully without any room for questioning. The fact that the Judge didn’t contest the fact that babies were leaving out of the state is another miracle. I’d like to add that I had spoken with the Judge’s daughter several weeks prior to all of the “happenings”, and so he was aware of the entire situation when the papers came across his desk – I like to think it was the hand of the Lord prompting me to call his daughter so she could talk to him about it and make him aware of this special little case. I was touched by the fact that all of Jay’s family would drive out to Nyssa just to meet Raquel. This demonstrated to me the support and love Jay’s family had for each other and that love would be passed on to these little girls. I truly admired them all. It was that night that I noticed a difference with myself. I felt like my tongue was no longer loosed. I stumbled over my words. I felt a little awkward. It took me a while afterward to realize it was because my work was done. I was no longer needed and I humbly accept that glorious reality. I’m simply grateful for being able to witness this process of LOVE. I will cherish this experience for the rest of my life. I have no fear at this point, just faith in what is meant to be. Heavenly Father truly is keenly aware of each of us – even two little girls who deserved the very best.