Adoption Awareness Month: Nichols Family

Hi and namaste! We are the Nichols family - Brent and Allison. We have 3 children. Susan (8) and Bennett (5) are our biological children and Henry (3) is our newly adopted son from all the way in Hyderabad, India.

Shortly after Susan was born our church held an Orphan Sunday program and on the ride home we felt a tug on our heart for the orphans around the world. As we looked at our daughter in the back seat, Allison made a statement that would drive our desire to adopt throughout our journey:

“It’s heartbreaking that there are children who won’t get to experience the kind of love we have for Susan. What if we could provide that for someone?”

And so our journey began. We connected with Lifeline Children’s Services and got approved for the domestic adoption program. You may notice that we entered the domestic adoption program which does not include India! Bonus points if you noticed we still haven’t mentioned our 2nd biological child, Bennett yet. That’s because God had other plans for us. His answer to our adoption was a resounding “not yet.” Brent received a scary medical diagnosis of Multiple Sclerosis, which is commonly shortened to MS. As we worked through understanding what this diagnosis and treatment would mean for our lives, we put our adoption on hold and eventually welcomed Bennett into the world. Every day since, it has been clear that God’s plan for our family included a Bennett. We now know that He also had another child in mind that would require a passport!

When we reengaged with Lifeline, our priorities had changed and we were more open to exploring options for international adoption. We weren’t one of those families who had a burden for a specific country - at least not yet. The day we decided to pursue adoption in India, we celebrated with a meal at a local Indian restaurant that was so delicious!

Fast forward through the Covid pandemic and mountains of paperwork and we were waiting to be matched with our future child. As we reviewed childrens’ profiles we came across a little boy who was so precious and just felt right. It’s hard to describe in words, but we had always methodically reviewed the profiles of the children until we got to Henry. We barely read through the first few lines of his profile before it was clear that he is our son. Within a few months we would be traveling across the globe to meet him and bring him home.

Experiencing India was amazing! From flying over lush forests to the expansiveness of Delhi, the country is so beautiful and diverse. The people we met there are some of the kindest and most hospitable we’ve met anywhere in the world. There was so much we want to go back and see with our family when the kids are older, but our gotcha trip to India was mostly about bonding with Henry and completing all the necessary processes to bring him home. In fact, we spent the last 48 or so hours in India chasing all the final approvals in what would kick off the

most stressful several days of our entire adoption journey and would end with a beautiful blessing.

Two days before we were scheduled and booked to fly home from India, we still had not received one of our final approvals. Our support team did a great job getting us to the right offices and talking to the right people to resolve the issue. As you can imagine it was quite stressful not knowing if we would be able to leave on time especially when our hearts were longing for our kids back home in the States. Luckily, the approval arrived about 15 minutes before we had to reschedule everything. So we rushed to the airport and boarded the long flights back home. It was a literal miracle we made it! When we got home we were greeted at the airport with the sweetest friends and family all eager to welcome Henry to his new home.

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