A nurse who never thought she would have a child after multiple failed attempts with IVF found her ‘missing piece’ after adopting a baby from a mother with a heroin addiction.
Liz Smith, 45, accomplished her dream of being nurse for 22 years and currently works as the Director of Nursing at Franciscan Children’s Hospital in Boston, Massachusetts. But another dream the woman said she wanted to accomplish was having a child, which proved to be difficult for her.
‘Becoming a nurse was easy, but becoming a mom was not,’ Liz told Today.
Difficult: Liz Smith, 45, was a nurse for 22 years and had recently moved back to Boston, Massachusetts, as the Director of Nursing. But what she really wanted was a child
Love: At Franciscan Children’s Hospital, she met Gisele (pictured) who was born at 29 weeks and weighed only 2lbs
Fighter: Gisele was born premature with Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome because her birth mom used heroin and cocaine while pregnant
Adorable: Liz was allowed to take Gisele home as her foster child because of her nursing experience. Gisele had to be fed with a feeding tube because of her condition
When she was approaching her 40th birthday, Liz was newly single and was attempting to have a child using alternative methods including IVF with no luck.
Liz had recently moved back to her hometown of Boston to join Franciscan Children’s Hospital, which is when she discovered baby who needed a foster parent.
‘I came out of the medical unit one day and in the stroller was this beautiful little girl,’ Liz told the news site. ‘I said to the nurse, “Who is this beautiful little angel”” to which the nurse replied, “This is Gisele.”‘
It is unclear whether the child’s mother was being treated at the hospital.
Liz described the moment as ‘love at first sight’ as it was the first time she met who would later become her daughter.
Gisele was in the hospital for Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome after being born at just 29 weeks and weighing only 2lbs. Her early birth was due, in part, to her birth mom’s abuse with drugs while pregnant.
It was allowed for Liz to take Gisele home and be her foster parent since her nursing license would provide adequate care for the child.
The young girl had to be fed through a feeding tube for 16 hours a day in order to help with her condition.
Strong: Gisele’s parents’ rights were revoked after the child had lived with Liz for nine months, which opened the door for her to be adopted
Family time: ‘The day I got the phone call with the adoption date was the day that I was jumping and down,’ Liz said
Heartwarming: The now-two-year-old is doing better than ever with Liz as her official mom
Making progress: Although Gisele still has to eat with a feeding tube, Liz revealed her appetite has gotten better
‘She was losing weight quickly. Being born at one pound, 14 ounces, you can imagine you have to catch up,’ Liz explained.
The nurse was able to help Gisele slowly gain weight and recover from her early birth, and when the baby girl was nine months old, the state officially terminated the parental rights of Gisele’s birth parents.
Liz then realized quickly after that she had a chance to permanently adopt Gisele as the parents did not petition the termination of rights.
‘The day I got the phone call with the adoption date was the day that I was jumping and down,’ Liz told Today. ‘They said “October 18th.” And it’s my grandmother’s birthday and I just started crying.’
The now-two-year-old is doing better than ever with Liz as her official mom. Although Gisele still has to eat with a feeding tube, Liz revealed her appetite has gotten better.
‘If you told me a year ago she would be asking for pizza, I would not have believed you,’ Liz said. ‘It’s just slow progression, but in the right direction.’