Over a month has gone by since we heard that “Joy” ( not her real name) was adopted by another family.
We’ve had disappointment, anger, grief, joy all at different times.
If you’ve been following me for long you know we’ve been working on an international special needs adoption for over a year. Our journey in the adoption process started earlier than we’d planned. Yes, we expected to adopted “in a couple years.” When we saw “Joy,” we found the purpose for our adoption plans. She was supposed to be in our family.
She needed a family and something about those eyes gave the same innocent look as my little boys . We knew when committing to her there was a possibility another family could come adopt her before we arrived in county. Her country did not allow families to “claim” a child until they actually arrived in country and met the child.
That is what happened.
Here we are now.
Still no adoption.
We’d hoped to submit our paperwork early in the month after fixing passport issues and missing agency documents. Unfortunately, things took longer then expected. More paperwork expired meaning more needed to be done.
We’ve committed to a new child and are so excited to have the chance to be her family. At the same time, it’s been much harder to allow our hearts to believe she could be ours. With so many issues in paperwork, concern has also increased. There have been several reports of fellow orphans in her country being adopted before the committed family could get there. There have been other children who’ve passed without knowing a family. I know they could easily be her; could easily be the child I’ve committed to bring home.
This makes it far more risky to trust that she will be “the one.”
In the midst of what seems to be never ending to-do’s, we began to lose vision. Like a cloud of fog settles on the vast farm fields surrounding our home, our long journey felt like fog had enveloped it’s path.
Long days ensued. Traveling to the state capitol over and over. Notaries, phone calls, spending more money than I knew was possible to rush papers in the mail.
Can I be honest?
We’ve been finished. We’ve come to the point where little is keeping us here except that so many families have given financially to help get our child home. Who knew that so much stress and time and sleepless nights could come upon a family hoping to do good.
But then we still felt called. Or did we?
Questions like, “How do we really know we’re called to do this?” came up as they had when we first committed 13 months earlier. Our agency wanted to do a complete home study update. They asked for every update possible: background checks, medicals, employment verification. There was another home check and interview.
Our new social worker was quite nervous about such a young family taking on a special needs child which meant consulting with a doctor who specialized in adoptions. We’d planned to do this while we were in country with the child’s file in front of us. Instead, we went over 30 plus conditions and how they could impact our adopted child and the rest of the family. I then filled out several pages of essay question answers for our social worker. Everyday we wondered if “we passed,” if we were “good enough” for this child who had nobody.
Many of the questions seemed the same and I could sense a theme underlying as the assumption that we weren’t cut out for this. We would surely go insane as would our children. Just as 13 months earlier, I struggled again with so many people’s concerns and they soon became my own.
We weren’t cut out for this.
Being lost in the midst of unplanned assignments, I felt like the purpose had disappeared.
When the purpose disappears, so does the passion.
I went to a Bible study last week and at the end, people were asked to share what God was teaching them in their life. A woman stood to tell her story.
She explained that at four years old she was adopted with her sibling. They were used to being left alone for weeks and had learned that food was not dependable. Even in a safe and loving place she still dealt with the fear of food being gone. Then she became a Christian and began to learn to trust God’s love for her more than her ability to care for herself.
She soon carried a burden on her heart that she was supposed to fast. This was the scariest thing for her as someone who’d dealt with such trauma related to food. She avoided it but realized she could trust God and chose to do it. As she stood, she shared about how much she’d come to love and trust this God who cared so much for her. She shared that she was on her second week of a forty day fast.
I listened to her story trying to hold back tears. This woman had grown up adopted by parents who loved her and now by a Loving father in heaven.
There is HOPE for my girl, whoever she is.
No matter the time, the energy, the emotional drain, we can trust God. He loves our girl more than we ever could and he is the God of hope.
We continue to battle the disappointments. Who knew this journey could be so tiring right? At the same time we’re trying hard to trust God, the giver of life and purpose.
Romans 5:4 “And endurance produces character, and character produces hope,”
2 Corinthians 6:18 “And, “I will be a Father to you, and you will be my sons and daughters, says the Lord Almighty.”‘