I apologize in advance as this will be a lengthy blog :)!
Since submitting our application to America World on Tuesday I've spent my evenings "blog-stalking" other adopting families....I am amazed that I've already found multiple families here in Texas adopting from Rwanda! I have enjoyed reading about where they are in their journeys...some have their children home, many are still waiting, and some are just starting the process like us. I am so excited to get the ball rolling on paperwork. I know it's going to be a lot to keep up with and we aren't the most organized folks on the block but with God's help I have no doubt we'll get everything done. So I thought I'd write a bit about how our decision to adopt came to be...
When the earthquake hit Haiti Pete and I were both moved to help in some way. I actually avoided the tv around that time, though, because I was having difficulty seeing all the images. One day I just randomly texted Pete, "Let's adopt an orphan from Haiti." I don't even remember why I was moved to do it, and I think I even laughed when I pushed send b/c it was such an outrageous, random comment. But he texted back "OK we'll talk about it when I get home." Huh? Seriously? So we talked, and talked, and prayed, and prayed, and talked some more...you get the picture. Pete wanted a clear sign, a lightning bolt out of the sky that said "ADOPT!" I, on the other hand, kept feeling like I was getting "signs" yet I was fearful that my emotions were interfering with my ability to hear God's voice clearly.
I had requested an information packet from an agency, America World Adoption, after reading that a friend from college had adopted through them. I had read over things but still had no particular insight or feeling that God was saying yes or no. One night we talked and decided that perhaps we should take a step forward and attend some sort of seminar, just to see what it would lead to, what we felt, etc. We had no idea where to find one but I planned to google it the next day.
The next morning I was feeling frustrated and prayed for God to just bombard me from every direction with adoption-related things if it was something he wanted us to pursue. As soon as I finished praying I opened my email account to a new message from America World Adoption Agency, which was just a friendly followup about my info packet, to see if we had any questions or to see if we would be interested in attending an informative seminar. Seminar? Umm yeah. So I clicked on the link, thinking we would have to travel to north TX or even further. Well, of all the little towns in all the country, there was a seminar in little London, Kentucky, a 30 min drive from Pete's parents house....on the weekend we were to fly into KY for vacation!!! Really?
My heart skipped a beat...I knew instantly that it was more than a coincidence. So I ran to the next room to tell Pete about it, and he was on the phone...talking to someone about adoption. What? Yep...he had left a message at someone's office and the person who had returned his call had just completed an adoption herself and proceeded to talk his ear off about how excited she was that we were considering it, and how it's such an amazing thing, etc etc etc. Whoa.
I wish I could remember all the other little things that occurred...I know there were many nights that the devotionals in "My Utmost for His Highest" were right on what I was praying about and I kept thinking "What does all of this mean God?"
The weekend before we left for KY we were singing "Everlasting God" at church....I was on alto mic that night and I got super choked up, almost to where I had to stop singing to gain composure. I've sang it multiple times before, but on that particular night the lyrics "You're the defender of the weak. You comfort those in need" really struck me as I thought of the orphans across the world. I had never thought of orphans in relation to those lyrics until that night, and when the pastor spoke afterwards about "going" when God says to "Go" I felt strongly that God was about to do something in our life if we would listen and obey.
SO we attended the seminar in KY. All the way there we prayed and talked about what God could possibly want us there for...to lead us to adopt? to meet someone? to hear something? all of the above? We prayed for clarity and the ability to hear Him. As soon as we walked in, Pete headed for the donuts and coffee :) and we hear someone say "I know you!" Long story short, the father of the couple leading the seminar knew Pete from college, and then the girl who sat to my left went to high school with me. Small world? Perhaps. But not coincidence in my book.
We enjoyed the seminar and went out to eat with several families afterwards to ask even more questions. Pete was asking each family "How did you know for sure that adoption was the right thing for you, and that the timing was right?" No one could give a specific answer, other than it just "felt right" and that it is God's plan for us to care for His orphans. However, one man asked us a question in return. "What sign would you look for before having another biological child?" That hit home. Things clicked. As we drove away Pete shared that he no longer felt that need for the lightning bolt. Yet I felt like we had just received it. :)
I've rambled on and on but its so hard to summarize all the thoughts going through my head. I am so excited to see what God is going to do in all of this. This is the first time in a long time where I feel like we have specifically sought God for insight and have heard and heeded His call.
We are excited about Hannah becoming a big sister. She is too young to be able to understand any of it but I love the thought of her having a little sister to play with next summer!
The lyrics I will close with are ones that have randomly come into my mind this week. The movie An American Tail 1987 (with Fieval! remember?!) had a song I used to love to sing as a child. Now the words mean something so very different to me as I ponder if our second daughter is already out there somewhere...
Somewhere Out There
Linda Ronstadt and James Ingram
Somewhere out there, beneath the pale moon light
Someone's thinking of me, and loving me tonight.
Somewhere out there, someone's saying a prayer,
That we'll find one another in that big somewhere out there.
And even though I know how very far apart we are,
It helps to think we might be wishing on the same bright star.
And when the night winds start to sing their lonesome lullaby,
It helps to think we're sleeping underneath the same big sky.
Somewhere out there, if love can see us through.
Then we'll be together, somewhere out there,
Out where dreams come true...
Goodnight all. I hope to update my blog with pics, new designs, etc, soon! It's pretty blah right now....but my life is far from blah! God is good and I am so excited to see what He has in store for our ever growing family!