Photos: Elle Danielle
The Riveras are a couple that you can truly see their heart for people and God upon immediately meeting them. They have experienced many trials that have tested their faith and have come out victorious. From not being sure they can have children, to the loss of a child, they are standing strong and absolutely living their best-blended family life. Their story will leave you inspired and reassured in the promises you are looking towards in your own life. I can’t say enough about this family and felt very honored to chat with them in their Nolensville home.
Loss, Love and Faith
As a couple, they knew once they got married having a big family was their ideal next step. This included adopting or fostering a child (big hearts, remember:). They adopted their first child, Khloe in 2017 after Franky’s Mom (a Nashville nurse) shared the story of a baby recently born to parents that were unable to take care of her. Khole would spend 12 days in the NICU due to her birth Mom doing drugs during her pregnancy. Franky shares “I remember first holding Khloe and knew this little girl would be mine”.
They would later that year have their first son, Ezio Juan, and lose him 90 days later due to a rare genetic disorder. Nicole remembers, “He fought to stay with us for 90 days. Ninety days of back and forth to the NICU, making life or death decisions in those moments, watching him tell us what he wanted and needed. It was a tough ninety days, but they were well worth it. The day he passed, God gave Franky and me complete peace”. Franky also shares, “We were blessed to have 90 days with our precious son. Losing our son was the toughest experience I’ve ever had to go through in my life. Without God’s comfort and giving us peace knowing we would see him again, I don’t think we would have coped the way we were able to”.
Delayed But Not Denied
After losing their son, Ezio, Franky had a dream and Nicole received a vision they would have twins. Talk about divine confirmation. “I was so sure that our next children would be twins that I told everyone, Franky remembers. The Riveras would find out in 2018 that they were expecting their first daughter, Natalee. “When we discovered we were pregnant, the ultrasound revealed a single baby, so I thought, okay, Irish twins then”, Nicole remembers. Both of them never wavered from what they knew God promised of having twins as they continued through the pregnancy. During this time, they received another fateful call from a friend. She wanted them to met a pregnant mother she knew who wanted The Riveras to adopt her baby. “I still remember getting back in the car with Franky, locking eyes, as we both shared that look of – This is it. This is our promised “twin”, Nicole thinks back.
This season of joy and confirmation of their “twins” would also include another loss for the couple. Franky’s father would unexpectedly pass away on his birthday. As Franky recalls, “once again my world was shattered and a week later my wife gave birth to our daughter Natalee Faith in March, then we received the call that our daughter Hailee was here, 4 weeks later. The birth of my girls really helped me through the coping process of losing my father and best friend.” Nicole continues, “Our faith truly grew the greatest during our son’s life here on earth and after his passing. Faith is also part of the reason we decided to use as the middle name for our daughter, Natalee.”
Unexpected Delivery and Blessings
The Riveras spent the next few years loving and raising their children while redefining what family looks like in such a beautiful way. As Franky shares “family means unity, diversity, commitment and just loving each other.” That is what they were doing when they decided to try to have another baby, as Nicole shared “they do say after you have three, what’s one more, right?” Nicole knew with this baby, she wanted to have a peaceful home birth. Plus, home births have had an increase due to the pandemic and comfort level of expectant Moms. They received the great news in November 2020 and Nicole became the biggest “Shero” of all time by delivering her own baby at home in four pushes! Nicole calmly reflects back, “I remember notifying my midwife that I was ready for her. What I wasn’t expecting was the feeling of needing to push with the next wave that came over me. Franky and my aunt were panicking as I calmly told them this baby was coming and would not wait for the midwife. So in four pushes, I caught my own child in my arms.”
They decided to name the adorable little guy, Solomon Franky because Solomon was the blessing promised to King David after he lost his first son in the bible. Talk about a full-circle moment of blessings, faith, and true trust in knowing things will work out for your good. “I would have random people tell me because of our faith in God during the process, it restored their faith and relationship back with God. If my son’s life was able to touch at least one person’s life then his mission was completed in God’s perfect plan, Franky shares. This is why The Riveras story was one I wanted to share as I know there are many of us out there trusting and believing in so many things for our lives and the lives of the ones we love. I knew their story would serve as motivation and confirmation to keep moving forward knowing there are amazing things ahead.
To get more guides and stories of the people behind the culture and soul of Nashville, subscribe to our weekly newsletter HERE.
Our daughter Tamara introduced my husband Jimmy and I to Franky. Through his Real estate business we where able to purchase our home. We are grateful to know him and Nicole. Nicole who is a good friend of Tamara. We are so grateful to God for being Constance in their lives. We both Love their heart for Children and Family.
We so agree and thank you for sharing such a beautiful message.