• Adoption Updates, Explanations, and Observations

    Date: 2013.04.03 | Category: Adoption, Elijah, Photos, Thoughts to ponder | Tags:

    babies x 4

    Look at those sweet, sweet faces.   (Top left) Evie (then clockwise) Lainey, Min and Eli.  I can’t wait to hold them and take them home.  We are all just so excited.  Gracie sits and tells stories about what she is going to do with everyone all day long.  She debates who she is going to hug first and who will sit beside her in the car.  Who will like to swim and who will like to read.  Ben lies in bed at night and talks about how much fun this is going to be.  He tells me who will lie where and how he will hold their hands.  I have a special song that I make up for each of my children when they are born.  It is only their song and I sing it every night before they go to bed.  It made perfect sense when there was a couple – now it goes on and on forever.  Ben has been making me practice songs for each new child, so far he has not approved of any of my song choices.  I’m running out of time.  I’d better get working on it.   I love that they are excited about adding to our family.  It’s a wonderful thing for this mama’s heart.


    We are getting so close to the time to travel.  The closer it gets the harder it is to wait.  Yesterday we received Eli’s LOA (Letter of Acceptance) that we need to sign saying we officially want to adopt him.  The next step is our immigration letter and then we will get our travel approval.  We are one step closer in this adoption journey.  We have been informed that we should travel the last week of April or the first week of May – if all goes as planned.  Yay!


    It’s crazy all the steps and acronyms involved with adopting.  You have your LID (Log in date for your dossier, all the paperwork saying you are fit to adopt.  Financial statements, police records, doctors letters about your health, etc.).  Then you send in a LOI (Letter of Intent) stating who the child is, why you want to adopt them and how you can provide for them.  Then you get your PA (Preapproval letter), which just means that they approve of you adopting this child and the child’s file is locked in for you.  Then you get your LOA (Letter of Acceptance) which states that you agree to accept this child.  Then you get your I-800 which allows you to bring them into the country.  And finally…you get your TA (Travel Approval).   There’s more paperwork in the middle of all of this and afterward when you get to China, but you get the picture.  Paperwork, waiting, fees paid, paperwork, waiting, a few more fees, more paperwork, more waiting but then that day gets here and you can barely stand it.  Which is why the day you receive them at the Registration Office (or other meeting place) is such a highly emotional time.  All that waiting is finally over.


    Everyone pretty much thinks we are crazy.  Not that people don’t celebrate what we are doing or think it’s a good thing…..for us, but it’s not for them.  I hear that over and over again.  “Congratulations!  I’m glad it’s you and not me, but congratulations!”

    You only have to look closely at Ben and listen to his out of breath little body after he runs for only a moment, to understand that life is not guaranteed.  Hope, who is almost 14, looked all grown up in her pretty yellow Easter dress, but the truth is evident in that long jagged scar that runs down her chest that she’s been through a lot.  When you look at them it’s easy to just see the special needs – Maisey’s difficulty with hearing, Codey’s limitations both physical and mental, Ben’s blueness is hard to miss, Hope’s scar lies there for all to see and Gracie’s illness has left it’s mark.  But maybe that isn’t what we should be looking at.  Instead when you look at them, maybe the first thing you should see is the miracle of their lives.  The miracle of love.  The miracle of God’s hands working in all their lives.  The beauty of all that they are, not what they aren’t.

    I was born into a country that believes we should strive for the nice car, the perfect body, the nice house, the great job, the vacations, the pension, the retirement.  Well, I can tell you I have most of those material things.  I’ve spent a lot of my life thinking that after all the struggles, the not having money, the doing without, that someday Dan would have a well-paying job, and then that is when life would really begin.  It wasn’t that I wasn’t happy along the way.  I have always been grateful and felt blessed, but when there was more money, well, then the really good times would begin.  I’d have a nice house.  I’d drive a nice car.  I’d be able to buy clothes that I wanted.  I’d be able to do what I wanted.   Well, guess what?  I have those things and so what?  Who cares?  I wish I’d never bought the big house.  I wish I’d never wasted money on stupid gadgets.  I wish I could have a do over.  I wonder why did it take so long for my eyes to open?  Why? Why? Why?  I’m like a  two year old throwing a tantrum now but it’s at myself.  I could have funded a surgery.  I could have funded adoptions.  I could have helped a child find a family.  I could have fed more people.  I could have dug more wells.  I could have…. I could have… I could have!

    So why you spend time thinking I’ve lost my mind.  Admit it! You’ve thought it.  You think four at once?  What are they thinking?  Well, here is what I am thinking. My time for adopting is running out.  God has brought me to these four children and even though I am afraid, I will do what He asks of me.  I know that these are my children.  I may not be a lot of things, but I am really good at loving children.  I can bring these children here and they will know love.  I know that without a doubt.  They may never go to college.  They may die well before it should be anyone’s time but they will know love.  They will know laughter and love and happiness.  They will understand God’s love for them because they will have a father who shows them unconditional love.  They will know that they were not a mistake.  They will know love in abundance.  They will have their hand held.   They will have a lap to sit on.  They will have a daddy to read them bed time stories and a mommy that sings them their special songs when she tucks them in.  They will know if they wake up afraid that we will be there to comfort them.  These are the things that we take for granted.  These are the things that millions of children will never, ever know.  Simple, simple things that every child should know.  How dare we as Christ’s hands and feet deny that to anyone?

    I talk about these things over and over again because I want you to wake up to the need.  I want you to get it way before I finally did.  Don’t let time pass you by.  Don’t wait for later to help.  Do something today.  Spread the wealth.  Become God’s hands and feet.  Do something that really, truly matters.  Feed a child, help a family out, open your mind to the possibility of adopting.  Who knows where God will lead you.

    Do you know how Dan and I know that this is right?  We know it to our very core because we have such peace about it.  We aren’t freaking out wondering how it will work.  We know, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that God brought us to these children and He will provide for all of our needs.  God has this covered.  What a wonderful thing to get to be a part of.  It doesn’t mean that we don’t sometimes feel overwhelmed by all that lies ahead or that we’re not afraid, but I’m telling you that there is peace about this whole adoption that is truly amazing.  Even though we know that we have every right to be stressed, we have watched God provide over and over again this past year so it is easy to trust in His plan.  I’ve gotten to be part of some amazing, miraculous things this year. What  a beautiful gift that I am so undeserving of.  Blessed, simply blessed is the way that I feel.