"Once our eyes are opened, we can't pretend we don't know what to do. God weighs our hearts and keeps our souls, knows that we know and holds us responsible to act." Proverbs 24:12

Sunday, February 28, 2010

"What to do?"

This would be so much easier if we both were 100% certain on our desires for our family. I think we are both still "sitting on the fence." My heart longs for a little girl with beautiful black curls. It really, honestly does. The children are so beautiful and in a short amount of time I've fallen in love with the country of Africa. But I'm also content with my perfect little family of four. And the money, goodness.. the money.. it costs so much to adopt! We have money, but we would have to take out a loan for a while. We can just dish over $17,000 to $20,000+ in such a short period of time. (We could potentially have everything legal & completed by the end of the year if we started today.)

I wish there was more of a 'waiting children' program for Ethiopia. I feel like it would be easier to see their sweat little faces, to pray about a specific child, and to make the next step if we knew who we were doing it for.

So if this doesn't happen, what's next? What is God asking of us? It seems very unclear right now.

Saturday, February 27, 2010

Things to prayerfully consider

1.) "Fake it till you make it" aka The transition (sometimes can be very hard.)

Read the raw emotions of this mom who just came home with her little guy. It's painful & real. These children have been taken from everything they know, their country, language, food, surroundings, friends, foster family or nannies at the orphanage. They are in pain, often sick, and they are acting out. Combine caring for this little person, who wants nothing to do with you and cannot be comforted, with shear exhaustion. (And I thought the infant stage was hard with my biological kids!)
** Should we continue our adoption journey, I will be asking, or maybe begging, our family for lots of help those first weeks.
Here's another story of the beginning: here
And one more here.

2.) RAD (Reactive attachment disorder)
The agency did say that children under 5 do not typically have long term attachment problems and can be helped greatly with therapy if they do have problems. However it is still something to be aware of, to learn, and to prepare for.

3.) The Child's Age
Our children are 11 & 6. They will be 12 & 7 a year from now. If we took in an infant there will be a huge age gap. Do we want to "start over?" Emotionally I think that an infant would be easier. (Bonding.. etc.) But we are talking more like a preschool aged child (age 3?)

4.) Traveling to another country
This was a concern in the beginning. I now think that travelling to Ethiopia would be an wonderful experience!

5.) Daycare:
Would my family be willing to help us out with daycare for longer than what they expected. My youngest will be in school full time in September.

Still waiting for a "sign." An open door that begs for us to walk through. A nudge (or a push) in the right direction.

For now, we wait. We talk. We think. We pray. And we feel closer to our friends who have adopted. We feel like we understand the process in greater depth than ever before.

Monday, February 22, 2010

Our initial agency meeting

First, I want to thank my sister for watching Hunter today while I (we) attended this meeting. Hunter was sick over the weekend and we had the meeting scheduled during the time he would have been in school. How sweet she is in allowing my little man to come stay with her during my non-exsistant dental appointment! Love ya Robyn! :) (I haven't shared any of this with my family yet.)

The meeting with Sally went well. Talked a lot & I learned a little. I felt fairly well educated going in, but we needed to know that we, in fact, had a good understanding of the process.

We have more talking, thinking, and praying to do on the subject before we continue. If we decide to start the process today, we could be a family of 5 within a year or so.

Friday, February 19, 2010

Agency Meeting

Our first consult is scheduled for this coming Monday, Feb 22nd.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Happy Birthday Hunter

Happy (belated) birthday to my little Valentine! Hunter turned 6 on Feb 14th! We held a "pirate" themed party on the 15th with a few of his Kindergarten friends. Where has time gone?!

Friday, February 12, 2010


"Not all of us are called to bring another child into our family ... but we are all called to help care for orphans. These children are not merely statistics. They are real, uniquely designed precious human beings. Our family understands that sometimes the stakes are high. Sometimes those mountains just seem too tall. Sometimes friends and family don't understand. But these children understand. They are filled with hope that someone out there will hear their cry."

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Adoption Associates

We have not officially picked an agency, but we faxed our preliminary application to Adoption Associates in Jenison, MI this past Friday, February 5th.

Three year old girl from Ethiopia

Link to a family's journey to adopt thier 3 year old daughter from Ethiopia.

(click heading for link)

Here is another story about a 3 year old girl from Ethiopia.

(I hope it's ok that I linked blogs here!)


I've hinted & prodded Dan about adoption for years, but our conversation turned more serious after the Haiti earthquake on January 13th, 2010. Our hearts were heavy knowing hundreds of thousand people had died and the orphan crisis was only going to grow. People were starving and we only wished we could take a child into our home & give him or her a good long life.

After digging into the International Adoption world we learned that we were too young, by Haitian standards, to adopt their children. The requirements were 10 years of marriage (check!), and a minimum age of 35 (un-check.) This, although discouraging, did not make us give up this journey entirely. We learned of many other children in 3rd world countries that needed a home. 143 Million children (in the world) to be precise.

143 Million orphans?!!
Michigan has a population of 10 million.
The U.S. has a population of 300 Million. That's half our countries population!

I dove into the international adoption world online. I have learned a lot about Ethiopia, the children, the adoption process, and we have made this country a possible journey to adopting a child.

This is our adoption blog. I hope to fill it with our journey. We ask God to throw the door wide open when we are on the right path, and to shut it tight when we should not walk through.

- Julie