Each of us has dreams and plans for the future. Every aspect of our life is planned, whether it is our outfit for tomorrow, our careers, or even our relationships.
It can be troublesome, however, if we refuse to be flexible and adjust our plans as needs arise. One Arkansas man certainly found it to be true. There would be a permanent impact on his life, and he would always regret what he had done.
The dream of his perfect future grew as he walked over the grounds of his family's property as a boy. As he strived to achieve this future, he chipped away at it with dedication and hard work.
But in doing so, he disregarded the reality of his life, which finally compelled him to make an unfavorable decision.
The young Walt Mantis was raised on a 100-acre farm in Arkansas with his parents. Rather than watching television, he enjoyed wandering the property at an early age, developing a love for the outdoors.
He had a plan for his future at the age of 12, and he was prepared to take all necessary steps to make it a reality.
“I just had a vision. God sent me a very vivid picture of a little kid,” Walt shared with his parents once. The vision showed him swinging a little girl by the arms over their land.
This girl would be named Chloe, and she would be his future daughter. She had "dark skin and dark eyes."
The First Step
Finding a suitable wife and mother for Chloe would be the first step for him.
This process wasn't that challenging; it turned out. For many years, Annie, a young child who lived across the street, had a crush on the "wonderful" Walt Manis.
Years later, when Walt was in his college years, he and Annie were conversing in a room in their respective residence halls. She confessed to him that she had always wanted to have children during that talk.
That wasn't all, though. In addition, she had already chosen a name for the girl she was certain was intended to be born.
Yes, Annie had informed him that Chloe would be the name of her child. Walt was completely shocked by this. But he realized something right away.
He devoted himself to Annie despite the fact that the girl in his vision was not Annie because she had an olive complexion and black eyes. The couple eventually got married while hoping to have Chloe as a child.
Before deciding to settle down, the couple worked as missionaries and humanitarians for several years in missions around the globe. They spent four years trying to become parents because they were determined to see their dreams realized.
They were unsuccessful, though. Walt was losing his patience. What was the matter with them? Do any of them have any biological flaws that might prevent them from conceiving a child together?
“I had always clung to this promise that God had given me about the daughter,” Walt remembered. “I didn’t know when it was going to happen, but it was starting to get hard to wait.”
He wasn't the only one in the family that was upset, though. His devoted wife, Annie, faced her own challenges. They were also not at all simple.
Trouble In Paradise
“It was really hard,” she shared. “I struggled with questioning God’s goodness at that time because I just felt like it was so mean.”
She had always wanted a daughter, but it seemed impossible. What conceivable flaws might they have? The couple began to fight all the time because of their intense desire for their ideal future.
Their lack of success sat between them like a barbed-wire fence. There was no way to deal with it without painful feelings.
Things worsened to the point where not only were their marriage and relationship suffering but so too was Walt’s faith. Had he believed in a lie all his life? Had he wasted all those years hoping for something that would never come true?
Every time any of their friends or acquaintances announced a pregnancy, the couple was happy for them but felt slighted due to their own failure. They felt humiliated. Why could everyone have kids but not them?
“We’re just fools,” Walt thought. “We’re just fools who want kids, and it’s never going to happen.” The happy couple became truly miserable and despondent.
Despite the pain, troubles, and disappointment, the couple’s desire for a family never waned. In fact, it only grew stronger. In time, Annie suggested that they could adopt a baby instead.
Walt, however, refused and adamantly insisted that they would never adopt. Ever. What about his vision? What about the dream the two of them used to share of having their own kid?
“I had this thought,” Walt explained, “I don’t want, I called it a ‘Band-Aid Baby.’ We are struggling. We are hurting. I didn’t want just a fix. I didn’t want just some kid. I wanted the kid that we were supposed to have.”
For a while, Walt didn’t want to hear anything about the topic. In time, however, Walt would change his tune.
In time, Walt came to accept the idea and decided that whether or not the child was his biologically, he would have the baby he had always dreamed of.
So the couple set to work and dealt with the mountains of paperwork and red tape. Then, it was time for them to wait, hoping to be chosen.