July 17, 2013

An Outpouring of Love

Our journey to parenthood has been just that—a journey. There have been some highlights and some trenches that needed to have bridges to cross, but the one steady aspect is that we have always felt an outpouring of love.

There are so many other people, like us, who wonder why they never marry or are never able to have children. Our hearts go out to them and we hope they too feel the love and support of those around them.

As we continue to wait for Tau’aho’s arrival and we pray for Aleki every night, we know there are people all over the world doing the exact same thing.

Let us share some of the many ways that we have been reminded people love us:

There is an endless amount of support that comes via email, letters and Facebook messages. I would dare say Aleki caused quite a blog sensation there for a few weeks!

Through an “online baby shower” that Madre put together we received gifts from family and friends from all corners of the earth. Each new box brought so many thoughts of love. One of Lady Hiva’s friends sent her one of her custom leather bags from her own designer line—Lady was so happy that she displayed it on the counter for a few days and every time she saw it she complimented the bag and how beautiful it was!

People have reached out to us each day and there are not many days since Aleki left that we have not had dinner with someone at our house or over at theirs.

We had one friend write on her blog about her feelings of Aleki being taken, I didn’t find it until earlier this week. They are an amazing support to us, they even paid our bills in Manila when we had to leave for Moana’s funeral last year. http://ponkin.blogspot.com/2013/06/no-words.html

On Sunday we received an email from one of the women who was a few years younger than me in school sent us an email. It was similar to the messages that we have received from all of you. I want to copy over a piece of it (I left out any identifying information so she is not embarrassed):

Dear Dustin and Hiva,
I just want to say thank you for your incredible testimonies and for the strength and courage you have shown through all of your trials. While I can't even imagine all that you have been through, your testimonies have truly been an answer to prayers to me. Your book was an inspiration, and something that I felt was sent to me at a specific time, when Heavenly Father knew I needed it the most. After reading your book, I began following your blog, which again seemed to be an answer to my prayers. On days when I was having problems or facing challenges of my own, I would get onto the computer to read a post that would bring me back in to the light, and back where I needed to be. When I would complain about some small, pathetic trial I may have been facing, I would read about trials that you had been facing that were a thousand times harder, yet I have never heard or seen you complain a single time. Your faith is incredible.

With this note was a message that she had found a photographer here in our area  and paid for a photo session for Tau’aho when he arrives. How cool is that? I tell you all of this to let you know there are some AMAZING people out there. It makes me want to be a better person—to reach out to others has so many have reached out us over the last several years and especially the past few weeks.

The last story I want share is Lady Hiva’s baby shower. Some great people in our congregation decided when Aleki was coming they wanted to have a baby shower for Lady. With everything that transpired with him, they waited for a few weeks and had one for Tau’aho.
I was able to go because they decided that husbands should be invited. I was glad that several of the women decided to coerce their husbands into coming too! (It was awkward there for a few minutes being the only man there, even if I was the dad)

We laughed, ate and played some games.

One of the games they had me wear a poster board that looked like a baby and Lady Hiva had to feed me some yogurt blindfolded. Now, let me tell you that I don’t eat yogurt. I have a SERIOUS gag reflex problem and yogurt does NOT agree with it. I can do a frozen go-gurt, but the key there is that it is frozen. Not some gooey slimy nastiness…it is making me sick just thinking about it (yes, that is how serious it is).

But, I decided to be a good sport and try. Lady said, “Can you handle this?” I thought I could so we stood there, in front of all the people as I watched Lady scoop up a big goopy spoonful of peach yogurt. I was just about to open my mouth when, Ben, my uncle who KNOWS that I have a gag reflex said, “Watch him throw up!” That did it, I had to back away…they all started laughing as I told them, then Lady verified that I have a hard time doing it.

I ducked and she got my head...

This is as close as it got...

That is an ugly face...I admit it, but you can't really control your reflexes...

But I wasn’t going to be a quitter. I took several large breaths and we tried again. As the spoon got closer the bile filled my throat and my lymph system flared and my eyes started watering---seriously, I’m not making it up. (Even talking about it makes it happen again and there is no yogurt in sight)

Finally, after five failed attempts, I quit. I couldn’t do it. I really tried, but it wasn’t happening. So they switched us and Lady Hiva let me feed her. I tried to be nice and not get it on her face but when I tried to use my other hand to find her mouth she freaked out (she hates when people touch her face) Yes, we have plenty of issues at our house! HAHA. Sadly, even after one spoonful she ended up with yogurt all over her mouth and a bit up her nose…she is a good sport. 

It was very interesting to go to a baby shower for the first time...

We left, once again, amazed at the giving and kind people that surround us. Hopefully we too can give back and return the favor. Most of all, I am inspired by the care and love we have felt. We truly are blessed, by all of you. So thank you. Thank you for all of your support.


  1. Hiva, you are so, so gorgeous. Love you guys! SO so excited for Tau'aho to come!

  2. Chad&KristenJuly 18, 2013 at 7:59 AM

    I too feel very much the same way as the woman above. Your book has helped me in a time of need, and I think of the two of you often when I struggle with my trials. Dustin and Hiva, you inspire me greatly! I feel very privileged to know you! Thank you so very much for your amazing example! We love and miss you guys! Kloden is still praying for you guys and your baby in all of his prayers.