Thursday, August 30, 2007
This is part something in a long list of parts...just tuning in? Click here.
So here's what we've done so far:
1. Freaked out about the thought of adoption.
2. Called New Life. They sent us a packet. This included some information about ourselves, why we want to adopt, how we know we're believers, etc. They gave us a list of books to read. We sent the completed forms to them with $150 (I think that's how much it was).
3. We freaked out some more.
4. We scheduled a meeting with New Life. That day, we drove to Houston and had such a great time sitting down and talking with Cindy Seay (Jenn's mom). We learned many new things. It was great!
One of the new things we learned we wanted to share.
It seems that we've encountered yet another "myth" about adoption that needs some truth slapped on it.
When I tell people we are going to adopt...almost ALWAYS...someone will say something like...
(please read this in a high pitched southern accent...because that's how I'm writing it. I don't know why I want this person to have a southern accent...but I do.)
"OH my goodness...I just don't think I could do that. I mean....really...if they came and took my baby away from me, I would just die. You hear about that all the time where a family takes the baby home...and then the birth mother decides she wants her baby back...and that poor family...they have to give the baby back. I couldn't take that!"
Then to add to that craziness...they say something that sounds nice, but I don't think it is.
"But I'm glad you can do that." Then they smile at me.
As in...good thing I don't really care about MY babies...at least not as much as southern accent lady cares about hers.
So I've heard that conversation and concern about 9 million times now...
But then to hear Cindy give some real data about this HUGE concern...we were astonished.
To be truthful...it was a big deal to me too. Someone taking my baby away was on the top of my list of things called..."Why we should birth another baby instead of adopt."
Cindy has written up the actual information she gave us at the PAC and posted it on her adoption blog.
If this has been a concern you've had...a reason why you would not consider adoption...then this will ease your mind.
If this has been a concern you've had for US...please read what Cindy says! This will ease your mind for our family.
I keep telling myself....the only baby I want is MY baby.
If the wrong baby comes home with us...then I don't want that child to stay.
We want the child that God has ordained to spend it's days running around our house, putting hot wheels in OUR potty.
Not someone else's!
The next thing we did was fill out our application packet.
It contains the fee schedule. $1500 is due at the home study. The rest can be paid in $200 increments until we have a baby in our home. The entire amount ($5000) is due by the day the baby comes home. There is also another $950 that will be needed sometime later to finalize the adoption. That money goes to an attorney.
We wrote letters to the birth mother. I'll write more about those later.
We wrote autobiographies.
Besides saying one of the cheap ones...we also had to decide if we would take a child with any known handicaps, health issues, etc. We had to decide if we would take a child whose parents have a history of drug abuse, or mental illness...all the way down to parents who are simply in poor health. Wow! Talk about hard.
We sent in scrap book pages.
We sent in proof of education.
We're supposed to get CPR certified...but we already are...because we were foster parents.
Our doctor has to say if we're physically fit enough to adopt a baby.
We have to make a video of our house.
We had to have something notarized...which by the way...is now on my list of jobs I wish I had. Being a notary is like being a super hero. If I was a notary, I would insist on putting on a cape before I stamped someone's paper.
We have to draw a diagram of our house...with dimensions and the floor plan. This was by far my favorite part of becoming a foster parents. Ours was color coded and on graph paper. BEAUTIFUL! I wanted to frame it.
I mailed in a huge packet on Monday.
We are getting very excited.
It's kind of like I'm pregnant.
It's been emotional for me already.
I know this is what God wants us to do.
No doubts about it.
But it doesn't make it easy.
It doesn't make knowing that my baby is growing inside someone else right now easy to think about.
In most ways...it's exciting.
In other ways...it's troubling and hard.
I know I will grieve that this child did not grow inside me.
I can't pretend that away.
I don't even want to try.
There are things I will grieve...that I will miss...that I will wish were different when my baby finally comes home to stay.
I sat in church a couple weeks ago....Aaron was on stage playing something lovely...everyone was getting ready to meet with the Lord...it was a sweet, quiet moment.
I began to cry...
thinking that my child may be somewhere....growing...right now...and I'm not getting to be a part of that.
I can't protect my baby. I have no control right now over this child's little life...
Those are not easy things to think.
But I was crying because I was remembering what Ross and Staci King said in their comment on the last adoption post.
"Obviously the way that God set up pro-creation was through a husband and wife birthing biological children. He did that in the Garden of Eden. But after the fall, even that natural system became broken. Adoption is the reconciliation of broken things: a husband and wife who are broken because they can't conceive, and a child born without a whole family coming together to create a new, whole family. Two broken things made whole, for the glory of God. A "perfect American family" taking in a child who doesn't look like them looks a lot like the Kingdom of God. And obviously, our ultimate example of adoption: God adopting us – children who sinned and messed up his perfect original plan – is the ultimate reconciliation of what was broken in the Garden of Eden."
This wasn't the plan.
The plan was for a woman to conceive and give birth.
The plan was not for my baby to grow inside of someone else...far away from me...far removed from me.
The plan was never to have children who need homes, because mothers must choose something different for their babies.
The plan was never for a precious woman to have to say good-bye to her child.
But something got very messed up at the fall.
Something went horribly wrong when we went our own way.
I looked around that church and thought about how messed up we all are.
How much we all fall.
How much I want things to be restored.
And this act...this act of me waiting...longing...wanting to know more...sitting in a church crying for a baby that I know is out there...that will be mine...that wasn't sitting inside me as I sat and listened to Aaron play...
It's all part of God's plan for redemption...for restoration...
For bringing the wayward home.
I won't lie.
I long to feel those little kicks...that little squirmy body moving around inside my skin...
But I long just as much to be a part of this beautiful thing God is teaching me...
About his grace...about the lengths He has gone to in order to bring us all back home again.
Here I sit...waiting..."pregnant"...wondering...praying.