Today the busy family of six, relies on God’s providence more clearly than ever, as four rambunctious, fun loving boys bring equal measures of fun, love and chaos into their sunny Affton home, “We encounter all the normal issues of family life, but we feel really intensely joyful that our family has grown beyond our wildest dreams,” said Beth about their active brood.
Beth and Eric began their story as high school sweethearts and lifelong St. Louisans. Blessed to have been raised in two active, Catholic, faith-filled families that have been a fixture in St. Louis parishes for more than three generations, Beth said, “Our parents and grandparents gave us amazing role models for loving marriages.” When the couple said “I do” in 2004, they were committed to living a sacramental marriage according to God’s plan, thanks to the solid foundation laid before them and their mutual commitment to their faith.
As a newly married couple, they did everything right to position themselves for a secure family life. Both got good jobs in marketing and, with two incomes, worked on building their savings for their future dream of raising kids with a parent at home full-time and while paying tuition for Catholic education.
The couple was diagnosed with fertility issues relatively early in their marriage, thanks to “a few years of charting” that Beth had begun since their engagement and early education in Natural Family Planning, which she called, “the most amazing blessing” because it allowed doctors to really “hit the ground running” in diagnosing and treating their fertility.
“Because our doctors were able to identify particular issues so quickly, we saved thousands of dollars and months - if not years - of time compared to other fertility treatments,” said Beth. “We attribute that, of course, to the grace of God, but to the work of the NFP office as well.”
While working on achieving pregnancy, Beth and Eric both continued to excel in their careers, serve the church and stash savings for the future. Beth began working for the Archdiocesan Respect Life Apostolate. Eric became the director of marketing for a fire and life safety device manufacturing company called Potter Electric Signal Co. They dug deep into life at their home parish, with Eric joining the parish council and Beth volunteering for the respect life committee and also becoming a consecrated member of the Daughters of St. Francis de Sales.
Throughout their early years of marriage, Beth said, “We had always been open to adoption, but it took a couple of years to really grieve the fertility issues and prepare for the adoption process.” When they did turn to adoption, the couple found themselves in a great position because they were still young and had built up some savings.
The couple used a private agent for their first adoption process, which brought them a son, Christopher, in January 2012. “After catching the first flight out to Southern California when we heard his birth mother was in labor, we met him in the hospital about an hour after he was born,” said Beth. Christopher was brought home 10 days later after all of the paperwork had been completed.
“The adoption process is very stressful, but Christopher’s arrival healed our every desire to parent. We felt the most amazing joy introducing him to our families and friends and really becoming a family, experiencing all the joys and struggles that come along with that,” said Beth. “We have loved watching him learn at every stage of development, seeing his eyes light up at something that interests him, and feeling his arms wrap around us for a hug or crawling into our laps at story time.”
After a couple of years, the family felt called to begin the process again, and they found Lutheran Children and Family Services to be the best fit. Sure that the whole family wanted another child, Beth relates how their then three-year-old Christopher began praying nightly for “three babies.” When the birth mother of triplet boys looked at the Lauver’s profile book on the feast of John Paul II, Beth believes it was more than a coincidence, “LCFS truly miraculously placed us with our triplet boys, who were born in December 2015.”
After 25 days in the hospital, Michael, Alexander, and Matthew came home to join big brother Christopher and Beth said they “have amazed us at every turn.” During their hospital stay, their weights ranged from just over three pounds to nearly five pounds by the time of discharge. They have hit every developmental milestone right on target despite arriving seven weeks early. Beth said all three boys have very different personalities, but complement each other so well it’s impossible to imagine one without the others.
“Michael has been intense and focused from day one, fighting through an array of newborn battles, and now is the first to walk, smiling and clapping the whole time because he’s so proud of himself!” said Beth. “Alex can be the quiet middle child of the bunch, but loves to blow kisses and has a smile that lights up the room and Matthew is the biggest and silliest of the triplets who loves to belly laugh, but he’s also the most likely to crawl into our laps to snuggle. With four boys, there are certainly times where we’re learning what it means to “fight like brothers” with each other and for our attention. However, there are just as many moments where they give each other hugs and especially make each other laugh until they fall over!”
Adoption can be extremely expensive, and adopting four babies over the course of four years necessarily compounds the financial burden. For Beth and Eric, it meant going through a significant portion of their savings. With their family size instantly doubled, they knew that finances would be an issue, but continued to believe that God would provide.
As recipients of a 2017 adoption grant from the Archbishop Robert J. Carlson adoption fund, the family has begun to rebuild their savings towards a future of raising their four amazing boys within the Catholic faith. Beth learned about the fund through her involvement in working with the Archdiocese years ago, “I worked for the Archdiocese at the time the fund was founded, and thought it was a wonderful effort, not imagining I would ever need it myself!”
With a total of six grants awarded in 2017 totaling $36,000, the adoption fund continues to aid faithful families, in living according to God’s plan. And the hand of God continues to guide Beth, Eric, and their four beautiful boys into a bright future filled with family love and endless possibility.
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St. Louis, MO 63119
20 Archbishop May Drive | St. Louis, MO 63119 | 314.792.7005