While I technically share a LOT on this blog (does everyone really need to know all the details of a road trip?), I rarely share much that is truly personal. In December I wrote this post, sharing more of myself than usual. Sharing my heartbreak and hope. This is the rest of the story:
It starts roughly 4 years ago when we were first going through fertility treatments. I remember praying (often), "God, just give me one baby. Just let me experience being pregnant once. Just let me know what that feels like. And I promise I will adopt all the orphans you want." God gave me 2 beautiful children and I thought, "That was generous. I promise to be generous in return." But we had those 3 remaining embryos, and when the time came for us to try I found myself going back on my promise. "God, I lied. Please, just give me one more. I love these 2 that you gave me so much. I loved being pregnant so much. Just let 1 of these embryos work and I promise that I will adopt all of the orphans you want." You know how that went. It just wasn't part of God's plan.
And I was sad. But I knew what I had promised, and I knew that I needed to pray more about adoption. I was very open. I would love another baby. But did I NEED another? I have 2 amazing children with whom I am very happy. The IVF was so hard. Could I really go through more emotional and financial stress? Lucas had recommended the most recent copy of Christianity Today. "It's all about adoption," he told me. And so I picked it up, and read this article. My heart broke. There are children out there who are so lacking of loving touch that they no longer cry? I am a mother who LOVES being a mother. I am a mother who knows that I had so much love to offer. I am a mother who cherishes the moments I can respond to my children's cries with love and reassurance. There are children out there who need this love, and I am a mother who loves to give it. How could I not respond? That was a life-changing moment.
Lucas and I committed to 6 months of praying...and saving (because adoption is expensive! Holy cow!)...to test, and see, and make sure before we jumped into something so huge. In this 6 months we went from $0 and no idea where any money would come from to opening a special savings account (with almost the exact amount I had in my head that would be "ideal" to have in this time); from having no idea what agency or from where to not only finding an agency we really like, but that has a program with the country that was truly on our heart - Uganda. At the beginning of 6 months, I had no clue what the end would look like, or even if we would decide to keep going. But at the end we have specific direction, a solid beginning, and confidence in our calling.
And so now we continue to pray. And wait. And SAVE. The expense of adoption is quite large, and while we have a good start, we have a long way to go (we are about 1/4 of the way to the FULL cost). One of the things we are doing to bring in a little money to put toward our adoption is a yard sale. And this is where my story becomes a bit of a plug. A dear friend recently dropped off some items her mom donated to our cause. Things she didn't want, but didn't want to go through the hassle to sell. And we thought, "Hey, maybe there are more of our family and friends who have similar items." We don't want people to go out of their way to scavenge for things, or feel obligated to part with something they actually sort of want to keep just because they feel like they should help. But if you have some items around your house that you no longer want, but haven't gotten around to throwing them out (or don't quite have enough to do a yard sale yourself), we are asking that you consider donating them to our sale. If you have ANYTHING that you would be willing to donate, please, call or e-mail, or facebook, or leave a comment and we can work out pickup, etc. There is no item too small. And. Thank you.
I was trying to create a "logo" (for lack of a better word). A visual that would sort of express our feelings and purpose and tie together the random, mundane ideas I have to glean money for the adoption (like a yard sale) and easily communicate their purpose. I came across the poem below (the inspiration for the words you see in the completed "logo" above), and it seemed to express what I've been feeling lately. This waiting is a new type of waiting. With the twins, the moment I knew about them, they were a part of me. They have always been WITH me. Now I'm very aware that somewhere out there, there might already be a baby that is mine. And I'm just here, so far away, doing whatever I can to get there and finally hold them for real.
KISSES IN THE WIND (The Waiting Child's Lullaby)
I hold you in my heart and touch you in my dreams.
You are here each day with me, at least that's how it seems.
I know you wonder where we are...what's taking us so long.
But remember child, I love you so and God will keep you strong.
Now go outside and feel the breeze and let it touch your skin...
Because tonight, just as always, I blow you kisses in the wind.
May God hold you in His hand until I can be with you.
I promise you, my darling, I'm doing all that I can do.
Very soon, you'll have a family for real, not just pretend.
But tonight, just as always, I blow you kisses in the wind.
May God wrap you in His arms and hold you very tight.
And let the angels bring the kisses that I send to you each night.
--Pamela Durkota, written for Josh