She woke up after an emergency surgery to the sound of her family crying.
To add insult to injury, her room was on the maternity floor, and part of her post-surgery care was to walk the halls.
“I remember walking and bawling because it wasn’t my room that had the big wreath on the door. It wasn’t me who had the baby in the room. Everybody else did, but not me,” Smith said.
Smith and her husband, Nick, experienced seven ectopic pregnancies within one year and a half. Doctors eventually diagnosed Smith with a tubal disease.
She felt broken and began to question God about what she had done wrong to deserve not being able to carry a child.
“After about the third loss, I finally started praying for His will to be done over our life. Whatever He wanted us to do, we would do it, and I started praying that I wanted to be a blessing to somebody,” Smith said.
The Smiths decided to become foster parents with the intent to adopt.
Their first child, Dylan, came into their care in 2009. A daughter, Anna Marie, joined their family in 2010.
In 2011, the couple received a call about a baby boy who had been born at UAB. They brought Noah home from the hospital and adopted him in 2012.
Earlier this year, finances fell into place for the Smiths to try in vitro fertilization.
“My children are my world. I believe God placed them with us for a reason, but I always wanted to carry a child. Not to replace them, but just to have the experience. I wanted the big belly, the waddle, to feel the baby inside,” Smith said.
The first two treatments were not successful.
However, Smith clung to two prophecies that came to her through the same preacher.
One was that God would give her the desires of her heart. The other was specifically for a little girl named Hope, who is due on Feb. 1, 2014.
When Smith first became pregnant in 2007, she purchased several gender neutral outfits.
She held onto them over the years, although she considered giving them away several times.
Smith pulled them out of storage while she and her husband were in prayer about whether to try in vitro fertilization.
“I hung them out on our door, and I claimed my blessing. I said, ‘We will have a baby that will wear these clothes one day.’ I think my faith has grown through all of this. I believe He can do anything,” Smith said.
Smith said she has learned that she was never alone in her struggle.
Because of her faith, she can trust that she was meant to carry Dylan, now 6, Anna Marie, 4, and Noah, 2, in her heart before she could be blessed with Hope in her womb.
“We all have to realize that we have to wait on the Lord and it’s not in our time. If it had been in our time, where would my three children be today?” Smith said.
In October 1988, President Ronald Reagan proclaimed October as National Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Month.
Approximately 15 percent of all pregnancies end in miscarriage or stillbirth, according to statistics provided by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.