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All of Us Working Together

Zachary and Elizabeth Nottingham and their family

When God brought twin girls, Brynn and Tess, home to Elizabeth and Zachary Nottingham, he filled their hearts with a passion for spreading the word about adoption—and particularly the message of not letting finances get in the way.

“I’ve seen so much fruit in it,” Zachary said. “As a believer, I don’t think I’ve grown as quickly and as much in such a short time in my whole life as I have through this adoption process. The way God has blessed us with the love for these girls and then for their birth family and the way that he’s allowed us an opportunity to jump into a struggle with somebody that we’ve never met before in such a deep way.”

Adoption had always been on the table for the Nottinghams, but it was during the 2020 COVID-19 lockdowns—a few years after having two biological sons—when Elizabeth and Zachary felt the Lord’s nudging. In regard to funding, the Nottinghams, like many families, couldn’t afford the costs of adoption.

“It was kind of like, God’s either going to do it, or it’s not going to happen,” Elizabeth recalled. “So we are trusting if he’s calling us to this, then he is going to have to provide because it’s the only way it’s going to happen.”

After beginning the adoption process, the Nottinghams applied for and were awarded a Show Hope Adoption Aid grant. While Elizabeth and Zachary were planning to bring home one baby, the Lord had two in mind for them—twin girls born eight weeks prematurely.

Elizabeth spent seven weeks away from the rest of her family, so she could see the girls daily in the NICU. It was in the NICU that both girls began developing multiple hemangiomas, noncancerous growths These growths can be common on premature babies, twins, girls, and low birth-rate babies and tend to go away over time. But Brynn had one growing above her eyelid threatening her vision, and Tess had some growing on her liver, which left untreated could damage liver and heart functions.

The Nottinghams saw specialist after specialist to ensure Brynn didn’t lose her eyesight, and Tess consistently underwent ultrasounds to monitor the size of the tumors on her liver. Both girls also had to take prescription drugs to help shrink the growths.

All those costs began rapidly mounting for the Nottinghams. At first, Elizabeth and Zachary didn’t think they would qualify for a Show Hope Medical Care grant but decided to apply anyway. Much to their surprise, Show Hope awarded them the grant covering medicine, ultrasounds, specialist appointments, eye-patching, and more.

“For Show Hope to step in and alleviate that financial burden for us so we don’t have to worry, How are we going to pay for all of these doctors appointments and ultrasounds?” Elizabeth said. “I know that some families may have to go, Well, should we cut out a doctor? We didn’t have to think about those kinds of decisions. We could just focus on the care they needed because the financial burden was cared for.”

Today, both girls, who are nearly 2 years old, have seen amazing progress. Brynn’s tumor above her eye is so small it’s almost unnoticeable, and no tumors have appeared on Tess’ recent ultrasounds. The twins aren’t skipping a beat in life either, jumping full force into the Nottinghams’ active lifestyle with both Elizabeth and Zachary saying they’ve never seen children smile so much.

Zachary and Elizabeth Nottingham and their children

“You wonder how much is nature versus nurture,” Zachary said. “But knowing their birth family, we know they come from such a sweet and fun family, so that’s who they are. That’s who God made them to be. And we love how they have just jumped into their place here in our family.”

The whole experience has ignited a passion in the Nottinghams—particularly Zachary—to encourage any family considering adoption to not let money hinder them.

“Here in America, the money really is out there,” Zachary said. “There really are people like Show Hope that are ready to help families who need the resources to move forward in the way that God is leading them. That’s one of the things I always tell people. There are other reasons that you should not adopt, definitely. … But just because you can’t pay for the adoption costs, that’s not a good reason, not here in America. That’s something that’s been awesome to be able to share with other people who are very concerned about that to just kind of tear down that wall. And it opens up so many doors, and it helps them to actually really process, Is this right for me?

The Nottinghams said asking for help in adoption was humbling but were so grateful for the love and support they received from so many in and outside their community.

“It’s all of us working together to care for what we get to call our girls,” Elizabeth added. “God is using so many people as a part of our story to help us care for our girls in that way. We just couldn’t have done it on our own financially. We are just so, so grateful.”

Show Hope Adoption Aid grant and Medical care grant recipient family

This story is part of our annual Summer Newsletter. To learn more about Show Hope Medical Care grants, we encourage you to visit showhope.org/medicalcare.

Stories like this are not possible without the love, support, and generosity of faithful donors. We would be honored for you to join us in this work through a financial gift. You can give today at showhope.org/give.

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