Friday, August 18, 2017

repost: what I wish I knew while we were waiting

There's no doubt that the wait in adoption is one of the hardest parts of the adoption journey. Your home study is done, profile is created, and now you sit, waiting to be matched. I thought today I would repost some practical encouragement from adoptive families who have been in the wait and what they wished they had known during that time...

In the midst of the wait of adoption, it can be easy for discouragement and hopelessness to creep in. Doubting what God has called you to and feeling overwhelmed with the unknown, it's easy to forget that God is working even when we can't see it. It's hard to cling to the truth in the wait.

Recently, I asked some of my families who are on the other side of their adoptions what they wished they knew while they were waiting. Each of them who are done with the wait of their journey and have little ones in their arms. Here's what they said...

God writes the best stories. Better than we could ever imagine. Once you see it all unfolded you realize all the frustration and waiting and delays were not in vain and served the perfect purpose of guiding you to the expectant mom and baby that you were meant to be with.  - Leigh

I read or heard somewhere that we shouldn't put our hope in something that we can lose. I could lose my marriage, I could lose my job, I could lose my child. I had thought, "If only I had ____, THEN I would be okay." Usually the answer was a baby. I thought that when we finally "got" a baby, I would be okay. But then I wasn't. Becoming a mom didn't solve all my problems, in fact, it created some new ones. It's so hard, but that's why we repent and ask God to help our idolatrous heart. Ask him to give you joy and peace…That’s near impossible without God's help. Ask him!  - Stacey

I wish I had realized that God didn't expect all the disappointments, the frustrations and even the no's we experienced to make sense to me at the time but that in the end He would make it all plain and his plan would make SO MUCH sense!  - Gayla

I wish I had known that God hadn't forgotten about us. That His hand was in every detour navigating us to our daughters in His perfect timing.  - Shelley

I wish we had realized just how God loves us...I think about the love my earthly father has for me and I know he would do all in his ability to give me my hearts desires and keep me from tears BUT he can't do God loves me even more than that and He CAN do all of that and more! AND He is faithful...He restored everything the moment we held our son. (And as hard as it was, I had to come to truly realize that God was sufficient even if a baby never came. It was a correcting of my perspective that led to peace throughout the process.)  - Katie

God has a plan and it's better then yours! And once the wait is over, the sadness, longing , and pain seems so short and insignificant!  - Becca

That God would be enough to see us through. That there are GOOD and BAD people in the adoption world and you have to forgive the bad and keep going and trust somehow that it was for a purpose... That God would provide financially when the debt seemed insurmountable. (God knew, I suppose, that I need a lesson in trusting when it came to money!) And in the end, although it was very hard the wait would be worth our little man.  - Rosie

That it's out of our hands, God is in control. Just breathe!  - Michelle

I wish I had realized how very precious every day of the wait is - God needs every second of that time to orchestrate the massive butterfly effect of adoption. To wish it differently is to idolize my own situation and wants. It's not just my family, but the timing of the birth family, the timing of the extended family's experiences (on both sides), the timing of the people you will spontaneously meet along the way who needed to hear your story or whose story YOU needed to hear or who needed to even just see your family from afar and have that work in their hearts, who needed to have an adoptive family's presence in the community or church, the timing of where God needs our adopted children to be as they grow up in order to accomplish his work...I could go on and on. The effects of adoption are far reaching and profound. The timing is NOT just about the right child for our family. Actually, I know for sure I don't deserve such a precious gift at all. The fact God has answered that prayer for us means that we have received INFINITELY more than we deserve.  
- Meagan

It was so good to remember that we weren't waiting on an agency, a situation, a "yes", or even a baby. We were waiting on God alone. And to continually remind ourselves of God's mercy especially in the moments we felt He was an unkind Father. Just as He had compassion on those grumbling Israelites in the desert, He continually had compassion on our faint hearts. Lean into the family of God, and hold tight to the promises of Jesus.  - Danielle

For more in the series, "In Their Own Words," visit here.

More on waiting:
What To Do In The Wait
Dear Mamas In Waiting

Thursday, August 10, 2017

adoption story: lynn and alisa

Lynn and Alisa were such a joy to work with! Their steadfast hope and faith in God were so evident throughout their entire adoption journey. They had walked a long, hard road before they called me in September. But is was just three months later they were matched and one month later when their son was born.

Adoption has brought us to a higher level of trust in God. We often have a false sense of being in control of our lives and for us, adoption emphasized our need to let go of our idea of what should be and let God work. There were many times along the way that we seriously questioned whether we had mistaken His calling to adopt: when we waited and waited and waited…and waited some more.  When we finally matched only to experience the disappointment of a failed match. When we presented time and again thinking: This is it…the timing is perfect/the situation is in our comfort zone/the location is ideal. Surely this is THE ONE God has planned for us, but finding out that is wasn’t when we experienced a second failed match. But each time, God gently admonished us to trust His heart – He had called us on this journey for a reason. When we matched again, we admit to doubting from time to time because there were many kinks in the process from our first call with the birth mother until our clearance to come home, but God worked them out in His time – often at the last minute (which was hard on our emotions, but strengthening for our faith). 

After grieving our second failed match, we decided to broaden our options and stumbled across Susan and Christian Adoption Consultants. We had fresh hope and more importantly, an experienced, compassionate, unbiased consultant to guide us. As it turns out, our successful adoption came through our original path and wasn’t a direct result of our hiring Christian Adoption Consultants. But we were extremely grateful for Susan as the situation took some unexpected turns and had some risks that made us appreciate Susan’s experience with all involved in the adoption triad.  In the end, the decisions were up to us but she did help us view the whole situation rather than just our side of it. Having her support during those stressful times of decision making was a huge blessing for us.

While we often wondered why things were going the way they were, in the end, we don’t have to know why. The joy of loving our son dims the heartache and stress of the journey. From the bottom of our joyful and thankful hearts, we can testify that God is faithful.  

Thursday, August 3, 2017

adoption story: nathan and ashley

Nathan and Ashley spent years on the road to parenthood. Nothing went as planned. Nothing seemed to be working. Until everything seemed to come together exactly the way God had planned from the very beginning...

Our journey to parenthood was nothing like we had dreamed or imagined it would be. Years of heartache, brokenness, and daily struggles filled our lives as we tried to grow our family. After several doctor visits, multiples procedures, and one failed fertility treatment after another, we knew God was telling us to close that door, and another one would open. Many days and months of prayers led us to adoption, specifically leading us to Susan with Christian Adoption Consultants. From the moment we spoke with Susan, we knew that this was the path God was leading us to grow our family. Susan answered any questions we had, and gave us a sense of security as we embarked on our adoption journey. For the first time in months we had a feeling of hope, and truly felt God’s story unfolding.  

We signed with CAC late October, were home study approved in December and began presenting our profile book in January. After two heartbreaking “no’s” we were matched with our sweet Mama B in late February, who was due in late June. Over the next few months we spent our time building our relationship with her and the birth father. We developed a love for them both that is indescribable. They are the two individuals who chose life for their sweet baby, made the most selfless decision, and made us parents. 

On June 15, ten days before Mama B’s due date, we got the phone call that would forever change our lives. Mama B was in labor, and was headed to the hospital.  After driving through the night, and 17 hours later, we arrived at the hospital where Mama B and our sweet baby boy had been born hours before. We got to spend quality time with her while she shared the story of our son’s birth with us. We then were able to go to the NICU, where the sweetest nurse met us at the door, and handed us the most precious, amazing, little boy. The moment we laid eyes on him, our lives were forever changed.  We cried, laughed, and simply couldn’t stop smiling. We knew at that moment that those months and years of heartache were all worth it. 24 hours after his birth, papers were signed, and Mama B was discharged and would go home. It was one of the most bittersweet feelings that we’d ever felt. Our greatest joy, was one of her toughest and saddest moments. We hugged her, loved her, and prayed for her as she had just made one of the toughest most selfless decisions of her life.

At that moment, Calloway John Cohee became ours, and we were finally a family of three. The tears we had cried, the days we had asked God “why”, the heartache we experienced was all worth it.  God’s timing is always perfect, not always easy, but perfect indeed.

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