Ever since I let the cat out of the bag a couple weeks ago on Facebook, I’ve received lots of inquiries from friends about our decision to expand our family by adoption.
I’m going to try and chronicle our journey here, so I guess the best place to start is the beginning. Because of all my health issues, I always thought I’d adopt one day because Dr.’s told me from the time I was 18 that I’d probably never have a child of my own. Before Jon and I got married, we discussed having children and adoption, and we were both fine with whatever God brought our way. Then 2.5 years into our marriage, lo and behold, I was pregnant! We were both overjoyed and paranoid, not knowing what this pregnancy would hold for my health. Turns out I had a fairly problem-free pregnancy, with the exception of a hernia I developed because of all the surgery I’d had in the past. I delivered Jaidin via c-section only because she was breech, and it’s a good thing, too, because she weighed in at a healthy 9 lbs 11.5oz!
The problems didn’t come until AFTER delivery. I had numerous, recurrent hernias that required surgical repair, developed problems with the dormant j-pouch that was still intact in my abdomen, and eventually needed 2 major surgeries and some abdominal reconstruction to remove and repair everything.
Because of that, Jon and I pretty much resigned ourselves to the idea that we had been incredibly blessed of God to have one child of our own, and thought we’d go about life as a family of 3.
Over the years, as Jaidin’s grown, we’ve talked about how we’d like to give her a sibling, but always knew it’d have to be God-ordained. The older Jaidin gets, the more she talks about wanting a sister, and about a year ago, we began to give some thought to the idea of adopting.
The more we discussed it, the more the idea began to take root in my heart, and the more it seemed that every where I turned, there were tiny glimpses of confirmation from God that this was where He was leading. I kept “running into” articles about adoption, blogs written by adoptive moms, TV shows featuring adoption – and God kept showing me scripture about believers in Christ being “adopted”. Then in October of 2010, I experienced some changes in my life that at the time were devastating, but I now can see where they were God’s way of calling me out into a new season where I was to focus on my family and the coming changes He had for us.
I had done plenty of research on adoption, and we had pretty much decided that we did not want to adopt an infant. Because of Jaidin’s age, and where we were at as a family with commitments, it just didn’t make sense. We also knew we couldn’t afford private domestic adoption, so that left us to consider other options. We began discussing adopting through the US foster care system. Over the years, I’ve heard many “arguments” about why that wasn’t the way to go – including ” you never know what kind of child you’re going to get – what kind of physical and emotional problems they’ll have, what race they’ll be”. Well – I’ve got news for people – even when you have your own biological child, you don’t know what kind of kid you’re going to get. Silly argument , if you ask me.
I started making calls in February to friends of mine who’d adopted through foster care. I wanted the REAL story – the good AND the bad. All of them shared overwhelmingly positive thoughts with me, and I was really encouraged. At the end of February, I called the county to get information about foster care and adoption, and our journey officially started this week when I signed us up for our pre-certification classes so that we can become liscensed foster care providers. We’ll finish our 36 hours of training at the end of May, and begin the homestudy process in June.
This week, I’ve been thinking a lot about the fact that whatever child God has set apart for us to adopt is already out there in this world, and is currently, or has at some point, experienced great loss, trauma or abuse that caused them to enter the foster care system in the first place. I get a picture in my mind of a nameless, faceless girl that’s a bit younger than Jaidin, and it breaks my heart. I pray that God will reveal His love to her so that she knows that she is wanted and treasured, that no matter what has happened to her in the past, there is a God that LOVES her and wants to give her hope and future. And I stand in awe of the fact that MY family will get to be a part of the rest of her journey.
Please pray for Jon, Jaidin and I. Our lives will no doubtedly never be the same. But I’m confident they’ll be BETTER, and God is going to give us everything we need on this journey to meet the needs of His special child. Some days I feel inadequate as a mom of just one – what happens when I have 2?? But then I am reminded that God doesn’t always call the equipped – but He ALWAYS equips the called.