Monday, May 27, 2013

Stepping out.

It's been a week since Matt said he felt led to pray over the possibility of adopting a specific sibling group of three. He said he just knew when he saw her with the two boys, but then he said to wait. Being the patient person I am, this didn't bother me at all. <sarcasm>  This morning it took everything in me to not ask Matt for an answer the minute we woke up. Titus joined us very shortly after our eyes opened. He began attacking us with a mix of love and boy aggression. After one of the many times that wild boy came in and left, Matt said something along the lines of 'he needs his brothers'... his brothers. That was my answer and I was overjoyed!!

Our daughter and two sons are now waiting for us in Uganda!

While typing up this post just an hour after emailing that we had decided, I got an email from the agency that works directly with the orphanage stating, "The children are already reserved for you." Reserved. For us. I keep reading it again and again... reserved for you.

Now begins the stepping out of our comfort zone. Loving our children, the bios and the ones waiting to come home, is not uncomfortable. The paperwork (I am not typically an organized person), the fundraising (I don't like to ask for help), the check writing (will the money be there?), the language barrier (Lugandan??), the emotional issues (They are orphans. PTSD, RAD, etc.) ... those kind of things are my stormy waters, but I believe He is out there watching me nervously step overboard. I have faith in Him. Stepping out is all I can do now.

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Decisions. Decisions.

Thank you to those who checked in with us to see how it all went! We have been a little busy with baby goats.
My husband is so handsome!

The kids are just darling and Ashley has been a great momma goat. We've had friends, their kids, and family come to see the kids and been outside with the kids while they hold the kids. How many times can I say kids in one paragraph??? Kids... speaking of kids. ;)

I think Matt and I were hoping to show up to this agency on Thursday and just get that gut feeling to know what to do... and it didn't happen. Don't get me wrong, it was well worth our time.We got a lot of great information. The lady was super nice. But. You fast. You pray. You hope God is going to put a big neon flashing arrow above the door you are supposed to go through. You go home and look at the thousands of photographs of waiting children on all sorts of websites. You read a bunch of blogs. You watch a ton of youtube gotcha stories. You listen to and read Kisses from Katie. You email more agencies. You wait.

And then a few days later you get an email with program details ... and inside are pictures, birthdates, a story... and wonder... Are these our children? You do the math to see how much it will cost... then you remember how much it cost Him to adopt you into His family. You add up the number of days you'll be gone... then you stop and remember how long He spent walking the earth to sacrifice it all for us. You pray more. First for wisdom for us, but then just for them.

I wish I could show you their picture and how you don't notice the dirty clothes and broken shoes first. It's their not smiling faces and eyes you see that let you know they have felt more pain then any child should. If I could only hold Miss M, Mr. J, and Mr. K for a little while and let them know they are loved. God has not abandoned them. He places the orphans in families and maybe, just maybe, it will be ours  (Psalms 68:5-6.)

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

One Small Step (and our backstory)

The blue construction paper on the jar reads "$ :) 125.61  May 9 2013"
     Starting just 3 months after marrying Matt when we were just teens, I stayed in a continual loop of being pregnant, nursing a baby, or trying to talk Matt into another little blessing. I had a pretty good run going with births in 2001, 2004, 2007, and 2009, but then God put a stop to my pattern. To be honest, I didn't want to believe it. Not that I wasn't content with all He had given me. This just wasn't my plan to not be able to have more. I was a great pregnant lady. Just ask Matt! He always said how much nicer I was while carrying a baby... not sure how to take that?? Me either ;)

     The homeschool community, our friends, and our church family in general are what some would call prolific. So pretty much since Titus turned two years old all of two years ago, the question of when were having another one has kept coming up. I'm sure the twelve passenger van for our family of six hasn't helped. You try to take it as a compliment that all these people believe you can handle more. You try to answer each time with a smile and a practiced statement of how it's never going to happen again. You add the comment at the end "but we are hoping to one day adopt" so the person doesn't feel like they have to say they are "sorry" and hoping it avoids the gut punch of "at least you already have four."  Not that I believe anyone is ever trying to cause any harm with asking questions or stating the obvious that we previously did not have fertility issues, but, honestly, I still completely hate the conversation. It's not easy to admit the anger, sadness, and other "woe is me" emotions that I have wrestled in with God. It has been hard since I didn't understand why God allowed this to happen, but have always known deep down that He is good and He loves me.

     We look like we already have a complete family. Looks can be deceiving. The talks about adoption have been frequent in our house. It's always been Titus saying he wants older brothers and the girls hoping for a sibling group that might possibly include another sister. I wish I knew what has been holding us back for so long, but I know we are all excited about taking the first small step by interviewing an adoption agency this week! When we told the kids the excitement level was through the roof! We started by asking them questions to see how ready they really were.

Do you want more siblings? Resounding yes!
How many? This answer ranged from 2 to 99 with the more serious answers coming in around 4 to 6 (so we still fit in the van.)
Do you care if they look like you? They all said no with Azriel adding in that, "Titus doesn't look like us!!!" I love kids :)
Do you understand we will have to change how many activities we do, start saving, and that this won't be easy? All still agreed we wanted to move forward.

    The proof in my mind that they were ready was that jar in the picture. That was the work of ALL them. Their money plus any change they could scrounge up around the house. It was a team effort that continued until they absolutely could not find a penny more. $125.61 Though it may not seem like much to some, to our kids it was everything they had and they wanted to give it all for a group of kids from the U.S. or half way around the world that they have never met or seen, but they count as family already! Praise God for the hearts of my children that are broken for the fatherless!!

Please pray as we begin this long process that will include many hard decisions. Pray we follow His will and His heart each small step we take.

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Mom's Day

I'll be celebrating my 12th Mother's Day today. Yes, Trinity is only eleven... I count the prego one too :)  I have never been much for celebrating, well, any day that a greeting card company pushes, but this year is going to be different.
This year I have listened to moms speak of children no longer here. I have heard to often the struggle of ladies who are already moms in their hearts without a child to hold.  I've watched daughters watch moms not regain health and others hit the milestone of mom being gone a year. I can't imagine.
This year I have also seen moms celebrate the pregnancy and birth of children that surpass the normal two kids we are supposed to want.  I've watched as moms welcome with open arms children into their lives that come with physical and emotional struggles. I've been privileged enough to sit back and see the love moms show even in times of discipline or when they feel absolutely terrible. Moms are amazing.
I'm so blessed to be the momma to Trinity, Emma, Azriel, and Titus! Beyond measure I tell you!! After four kids, I still don't need a day to celebrate motherhood, but I'll take it and use it as a launching point to be a better mom.
I'm going to...
1) Spend more time with the Lord and pray He helps me become a little quieter and a lot kinder. 
2) Hold onto my husband and each one of my children a little longer.
3) Hug my Mom and Dad each time I see them.
4) Let God guide each step as our family grows through adoption ... starting with interviewing an agency on Thursday.
Yep! You read right. I'm not very nice and I don't slow down and hug enough ;)