Friday, October 24, 2014

When Intentions Don't Match Up with Reality…Part 2

Okay, so I guess I learned that I am LOUSY at doing part 1 and part 2 posts!! (Forgive me.)

But people, it's now time for PART TWO.

If you don't know what I'm talking about, you would be ahead of the game to read PART ONE here.

And now…on to part two. (WAIT A SECOND...I know you skipped part 1!! GO READ IT, SILLY!!)

I concluded part 1 with a list of how we can act in the face of something that takes us by surprise…we can look at it from our limited human perspective, or take on God's perspective.

Because sometimes, life throws something at us that we NEVER saw coming.

And so it is with us. Now.

Up till now, we have dealt with a long list of medical diagnoses which include (but Lord knows are not limited to): collapsed lungs, thyroid disease, arthrogryposis, scoliosis, concussions, spina bifida, congenital hip disorders, neurogenic bladder and bowel and a multitude of broken bones.

Never did I foresee this one being added to the list.


The "C" word.

But there it is, big and ugly. Seeking to kill, steal and destroy.

But God.

Let me tell you a story.

Once upon a time, in a land far, far away,  a baby was born.

He was a boy.

Soon after as he was born, it was discovered that he had an odd shaped abdomen. He was pale, listless and clearly something very scary was wrong. 

A frightened set of parents did what was illegal, and unimaginable: they abandoned him. 

Maybe they knew that they could not possibly pay to have the proper treatments. Maybe they knew an orphanage would. Or they could HOPE.

Once found by the police and taken to a local orphanage, an exam was performed. Blood work was taken and the worst news possible was delivered: the newborn child had a massive malignancy in his liver.


Incredibly rare. Incredibly scary.

And he was alone.

Over the next months, the baby had 3 surgeries and lots of chemotherapy.

The baby was given special care in the orphanage through a program called Half the Sky. He began to gain weight, hit milestones and a very bubbly personality emerged.

And the boy's papers were prepared so that he could find a permanent home.

He waited. And waited. "Cancer" is a very scary word on a file, you see.

Far away, in another corner of the world lived a mother of seven children. She was busy each day making food, washing clothes and encouraging other people in their own adoptions. She had a VERY FULL life and was not looking for more work.

She was not. She was not.

Her social worker alerted her to the upcoming expiration of her family's home study, to which she and her husband adamantly responded that they were letting it expire as they were DONE ADOPTING CHILDREN. Their family was full.

And expire it did.

But God.

God used the adorable boy on the side bar of this blog "Jesse" to crack open that tightly shut door of their hearts. Perhaps they COULD find room in their home for one more? But after further prayer and consideration of ages and physical needs the answer was clear: he was not theirs.

Once this cracked door let in light…God showed the picture of the baby to this momma of seven children. Her youngest child happened to be sitting on her lap at the time the picture popped up on the computer screen.

"Oh Mommy!!!" he cried. "I LOVE HIM!!"

The busy mother paused as her heart began to pound and tears began to well. In the next 48 hours God did some of the most amazing and supernatural acts to show this mother and her husband that He intended for this boy with cancer to come home to them and to become their son forever.


And they still were not sure. They wanted MORE proof.

So they prayed. 

And prayed.

And asked for other people to pray that God would speak CLEARLY to their hearts.

One person in particular (oh what a blessed woman of God she is!!) responded to the request for prayer in a most unusual way.

She told this family she would personally give them $10,000 to bring him home.

And they were stunned. But still unsure. It wasn't until she gave them a detailed plan of how she would raise these funds for this boy to become theirs that they finally realized that MAYBE this was how God was answering their prayers for clarity!!

And all of a sudden, a flurry of activity began. 

Applications, fingerprints, home inspections and personal interviews were underway. A home study had to be prepared!!
(This is funny to someone, I am sure!)

And then, yesterday, after a very long wait, this family got the news that this boy's home country had approved them to adopt this boy with cancer.

They were OVERJOYED!!!!!

They would boldly welcome this dear child into their family of 9 and grow once again. 

(I want to say, "the end" but you guys know that this is NOT the end of the story!!)

And so, with great JOY JOY JOY in our hearts we announce that yes,

WE ARE ADOPTING AGAIN…even though OUR plan was to be all done.

Even though our idea was SEVEN…God's idea was eight!!!

And as you may already know, GOD WINS!!!! 
post signature

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Birth Parent Loss--My Ache for Them

Sometimes it doesn't take much to light a fire in my heart to make me want to write. Sometimes writing is the only vehicle for my intense emotions.

This morning, it was this picture that undid my heart:
Used with permission from Casey Chappell

This glorious image of a boy, head thrown back in laughter, in the arms of his birth mother also in the same pose.

Don't they look so happy? So ALIKE.

Yet she is not raising him. She has spent the past 5 years getting herself together. And she bravely placed her baby into the arms of a family she only knew by letter…trusting they would raise him well.

And they have.

And as in open adoptions, they know one another.

This was a brave post by this adoptive mom…she was celebrating the amazing choice that this birth mother made to give her baby life and not take it from him because it was not convenient for her to become a parent at that time in her life. 

Let me have you read her sentiment in her own words: 
5 years ago today this brave young lady gave birth to this super smart and adventurous boy. Words can't explain how much I admire her courage to place her baby with a family she only knew through a letter. 
She's had a long 5 years and is getting ready for the rest of her life and knowing Jack is one of those precious things that both she and Dan and I value greatly. Birth moms are incredible and I'm so glad that I have the privilege to know 3 American women and wish I knew the 2 African women who have given life to the children who call me mom.          ~Casey Chappell

I love this. And it had me in a puddle of tears.

This tender young birth mother! She bravely made an adoption plan for her baby and followed through.

How difficult.

How ripping.

Do we, adoptive parents, pause long enough to fathom what these birth parents go through as they place their precious children for adoption?

Or are we all about OUR timelines, our fundraising, our dossiers, and obtaining our police clearances??

We turned to International adoption for many reasons, and one of which was that the adoption would not be open. We would NOT be faced with the unknowns of visitations from birth family. 

I must say, after seeing this post and hearing stories from my domestic adoptive mom friends…I wish we had the opportunity to know our children's birth families.

I am struck how selfish our desire for closed adoptions has been.


Yet, our 3 "grafted in" children's stories would be the same no matter who adopted them. They all have deep, dark gaping holes of their past. Abandonments. Only one with a note, and it was not personal. 

Their aches are so real. So painful.

I ache to hear our son lament that he wishes he could give food to his Africa mommy…because she might be hungry.

I cry at night when I hear him tell me how much he longs to have been born in my tummy. Really, I think he aches to know the woman who gave him life and to KNOW the answers to his past.

I think of these biological parents who gave away their children in China when they were born "different" than they expected.

And honestly, I had PLENTY of time to choose them as my children, to investigate their special needs and to evaluate if I could "handle them." They did not get this luxury.

As Toby giggles or Esty walks using canes and braces I WISH DESPERATELY I could have their birth mothers standing there with me. I'd place my arms around them and say, "LOOK! That's OUR baby!!! Doing sooooo well! Thank you for making this most difficult choice for them!"

And then I'd plant a big fat kiss on their cheeks.

Adoption is riddled with pain, ache, longing. It's impossible to be torn away from your roots and not have scars.

And it is just as impossible to scoop these treasured children into your family and not feel heavy hearted over the loss your children feel, but also the loss for these nebulous birth parents who are just "somewhere" out there. 

Oh how I wish I knew their names, knew their phone numbers. How I'd love to text the video of Esty WALKING into school on her own this morning. 

I'd love to text the funnies said by Toby. I'd love to show them how he can feed himself because of his surgery. I would love to ask them who is the eternal optimist that put such sunshine into my son's heart!

I'd love to let Zeb's mommy know that he is safe. He is well fed, he is attending school and making amazing progress. That their choices have worked out well for their precious child.

I planted rose bushes for each of these mothers. They are still blooming now, well into the fall, just as their babies are blooming here with us.

But I still cry for them. I still feel the pain of their losses. If YOU were one of my children's birth mothers then I say to you: be at peace. Your child is my treasure. Your baby is happy. Your son/daughter is valued, getting an education, knowing love. Your sweet one is being nurtured to discover their strengths and go after their future with gusto. Medical needs are being attended to. Opportunities abound. I carry your child in our family with utmost care and love. Your child will soar is soaring!!!

And then, I'd hug them...and then cry too.

post signature
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...