MOBILE, Ala. (WKRG) — After hitting many roadblocks while trying to adopt their first child, Tiffany and Bobby Smith, of Mobile, Alabama, received the blessing of a lifetime, nearly one year later.
Eight weeks ago, they brought home a beautiful baby boy. Their story is one of faith, strength and providing innocent lives a second shot at life.
Bobby and Tiffany have been married for nine years.
“We knew that adoption was something we were called to do,” Tiffany said.
Serving as house parents for Alabama Baptist Children’s Home for many years, they always knew that one day they would find a child and bring them home to a forever family.
So at the end of last year, they set out to make their family complete by seeking adoption.
“In January, we begin to announce on social media with our friends and family. ‘Hey, we’re going to actively start seeking adoption. Find an agency and start fundraising.’ We had come up with all of these ideas. So as we begin that process we had a huge line of success,” Tiffany said.
With a strong support system rallying behind them, Tiffany and Bobby had no idea what was to come.
“So as we begin fundraising, we get to May and I felt like God was telling us to seek out other agencies,” Tiffany said.
Because of their job as house parents, the reality of adopting a child of their own became difficult.
“We can have up to nine children in our home. Some agencies say that as a negative. When the birth mom would choose, they wouldn’t want their child to go to a home with a rotating door of children,” Tiffany said.
And more agencies turned them down.
“Those words, ‘you will not receive a child’ just really sunk into my heart. And I couldn’t get it out of my brain. It really hurt,” Tiffany said.
As time went on, Tiffany said they got a little discouraged and stopped the process.
“I felt like for the summer, the kids were out of school. I just needed to put the adoption down,” Tiffany said.
But the desire of wanting a child of their own was one worth fighting for, so they decided to start the adoption process again — in July.
Now — back to applying and waiting … Only to learn weeks later that application had been erased.
“I still have the email that states, you can resume your application here. So, I know that I saved it. For it to be erased, I really felt like Satan was really attacking,” Tiffany said.
On Oct. 6, they received a call that changed their lives forever.
“There’s a baby at a hospital that needs a mom and she had heard through our adoption attorney that the baby was available and she said, ‘Would you want this child? I really feel like God is saying this is your child,” Tiffany said.
She was able to immediately get in touch with Donna Ames with Adoption Rocks, a non-profit organization that provides adoption help, information and adoption resources in Mobile.
Seven hours later, they were on their way to meet their son, Cullen Oden Smith.
“Beautiful baby boy in our arms and we were able to bond with him and do skin to skin within the first 7 to 8 hours of his birth and through that, it’s just history,” Tiffany said.
“He’s a happy baby most of the time. He’s a cuddler,” Bobby said.
They chose a semi-open adoption, meaning they have an open line of communication with Cullen’s birth mom.
“Our desire for you was so strong, and we said yes. And birth mom loves you just as much and to never have resentment towards her or to ever feel like you’re unwanted because you are so strongly desired,” Tiffany said.
Now, eight weeks old and Cullen is growing by the day and has made the Smith family whole just in time for the holidays.