There Was A Heartbeat
The Story Behind the Song
Stephen and I were best friends that realized that we were supposed to get married. We got married without even dating first. We had successful careers, owned a nice home, and had been married for a couple of years when we decided we were ready to start a family. I had severe endometriosis so we knew that it would probably not be easy for us. After enduring countless infertility treatments and four surgeries, we still didn’t have the one thing we longed for more than anything—a child to make our family complete.
Those four years of trying to have a baby, were emotionally and financially exhausted. We tried multiple infertility treatments. I mourned each month I didn’t conceive. The process and regimented routine was taking its toll. One afternoon, I was feeling extremely defeated and sorry for myself. My father-in-law is a minister, and he asked me if I was a believer. I replied, ‘Yes, of course!’ He told me to start acting like one, because God has a plan for this. So, I think that is when we put our heartache in God’s hands.
After my last surgery, Stephen and I had tons of honest discussions, and decided it didn’t matter how our family was formed. It was just important that we have one.
That’s when we fully opened our hearts to adoption. We stopped praying that I would become pregnant, and started praying for a child; that wherever he or she might be, God would find a way to bring us together. And, in His most wondrous way, the very month we made this decision our son was conceived! We adopted Eli through the Gladney Center for Adoption. We were matched with our birth mother when she was in her third trimester. The birth parents were very young, but they made the best decision they could make. Which was also a hard decision for them. They were very emotional, but they cared about him from conception and wanted the best for him. Stephen and I were there when Eli was born, and it was the best day of our lives! We will be eternally grateful.
One morning, Stephen called and asked if I had listened to the new Christmas song by Faith Hill called “A Baby Changes Everything.” I listened to it, and loved the song. Jesus’ birth changed everything—it is where my hope as a Christian rests. That baby was sent from Heaven, lived a perfect life, grew into a man who changed the world, and died on the cross for my sins. I get to spend eternity in Heaven because of that baby, but I also kept thinking about that title. I started thinking about Eli. He was a baby that changed everything for not only Stephen and I, but for his birthparents too.
I wrote a poem in about 5 minutes that day. The words kept coming to me. We showed it to a dear friend of ours, who said it needed to be a song and put me in touch with a lady named Cindy Hughlett. When I talked to Cindy, she said she was busy but loved the idea of making my poem into a song. She said after her album that she was working on was finished, she would try to come up with a melody. In about an hour, she called me back and said that she had it done, explaining that the melody just “came to her” much like the words had come to me. She recorded it and put it on her album. Cindy went on to win artist of the year that year, and “There Was A Heartbeat” went to #8 on the Country Christian charts.
Sometimes, people have the wrong idea and think birth moms with an unplanned pregnancy are bad people and place their baby for adoption because they don’t want or care about them. That’s not true. They are making the most unselfish, loving, and courageous decision by planning adoption for their baby.
A baby truly does change everything. When we brought Eli home from the hospital, I remember laying him down on the bed, sitting beside him and crying. I was so happy for myself and Stephen, but I was hurting for his birth parents. I can’t imagine how hard it had to be for them to have the strength to let him go. And I was amazed at God’s love, and His plan to bring this beautiful child into our lives. Eli is the greatest blessing in our lives and I am so thankful for the courage and love from his birthparents. God gave me infertility for a purpose. I think that’s because I’m supposed to be Eli’s mom. I’m supposed to help people understand. I don’t want anyone to be embarrassed about infertility, or afraid of adoption. I want to help young women struggling with an unplanned pregnancy know that there are people waiting to give their baby a loving home.
Life is a blessing, from the very first heartbeat. God will orchestrate the most beautiful moments for everyone involved if we love like He loves. Life is precious and should be valued from the first heartbeat. This is my prayer.
- Lana Newton