Wednesday, May 3, 2017

18 Month Check-In....

18 Month Check-In....

Since we have had a number of people lately ask us the status of our adoption, I figured it was time for an 18 month check-in.  It has officially been 18 months as of April since we started waiting on the call for baby #2!  Let's just say that God has taught me a lot in these past 18 months.  In particular from a very sweet and special conversation with Caleb a week ago.

As Caleb was getting out of the bathtub last Monday night, April 24th, he looked at me with a question that turned into a moment of just sitting and crying and saying "I hear you God!"

Caleb: Mommy, when is God going to give us a baby!
Me: (with a lump in my throat because this is a common question he asks)....God will give us a baby when He feels the timing is perfect!  We just have to be patient!  I promise that you will be a big brother one day!
Caleb: I'm already a big brother....God just hasn't brought the baby yet!
Me: What do you mean?
Caleb: God already has the baby.  It's just not here yet!

As Caleb walked away, I just sat on the bathroom floor and sobbed.  God used the most innocent of moments and conversations to remind me that He already has a baby picked out for us but it's just not here yet.  Now, since that moment, yes Caleb keeps asking and praying every night for God to bring us a baby and we keep repeating the same answer over and over again.  But, I know that in that moment God was whispering to my heart "I already have the baby picked out for you!  Just wait!"

Now, have the past 18 months been easy! HECK NO!  I can't tell you how many times I have cried and prayed and hoping for answers.  We have now waited almost 9 months longer than we waited for Caleb!  We have actually waited the length of 2 normal pregnancies for most people!  It would be like being pregnant for twice the length of a normal pregnancy and not knowing when the baby would arrive.  Haha!  That is pretty much our world.  April was a hard month for me personally as we had to go through the process of renewing our paperwork with our adoption agency, paying a renewal fee, and scheduling a check-in home study for next Monday to update our records as they do this when families have been waiting for 18 months.  I've had my moments of being frustrated and anxious and questioning when will it be our turn.  It's funny because in those moments and on those bad days is when Caleb tends to ask "when will God bring us a baby" and I find myself having to listen to my own words that God will bring us a baby but we just have to be patient and keep waiting for His perfect timing!

Like I said before, this wait has not been easy at all!  I truly feel that in some ways it has been harder than the wait for Caleb.  BUT, I know my God is good and His plan is perfect.  While I very much have my human moments with longings to be a mom for the 2nd time and waiting to see how God reveals His plan, I do know that God is weaving together a beautiful tapestry like none other to tell the story of this next angel!  I don't know how this story will unfold with the next baby!  I pray with everything in me that the next little one will arrive SOON but even if we never get that phone call I know God has a perfect plan for our family of 3 and we will love and cherish these moments we have together!  So in case you were wondering.....we are still waiting! :)


Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Moments We Will Never Forget As We Wait

I know sometimes people don't know what to say or ask about our adoption, so I figured I would give a quick update.  We are still waiting and waiting and waiting.  We have been waiting technically since October 2015, so we are almost at a year of waiting!  I figured it would go by quicker and easier having Caleb this time around to help keep us distracted, but I think Caleb is just as excited about a new baby, and tired of the waiting, as we are.  Who knew a 3 year old could literally ask the same question EVERYDAY for almost a year!  Who knew it would be so hard to explain to a 3 year old the concept of waiting!  Between going back to Disney and when will we get a new baby, I'm not sure which gets asked more by him.  Oh well...we will keep waiting patiently!

Today as I was walking upstairs to my office I just felt the need to document some thoughts going through my mind as we wait.  I do write periodically, in part to update family and friends all over the country on where we are, but mainly it is for Kelly and I to never forget the emotions we felt during these waiting seasons. We don't want to forget how GOOD our God is, and how in those moments when we felt like nothing was happening, that it truly was God who was working behind the scenes in ways we didn't know.

So, in our house we do have a room set up for what will be the nursery.  It's hard to walk by this room everyday and sometimes I just want to shut the door, because looking into the room makes my heart hurt and makes me ask questions of God and become impatient.  However, I don't want to shut the door because leaving the door open reminds me to pray for our future baby and the birthparents.  Leaving the door open helps us teach Caleb the value in patience, waiting on the Lord, and trusting in Him and His plans, which brings me to my 1st picture.  

This past Saturday we picked up a new rocker for the nursery.  We bought this rocker because the one we had with Caleb was donated to us (thank you so much to a sweet family). While we will always treasure this rocker, and the memories we have of holding Caleb and reading to him, we also learned that my lovely 6'5" giant of a husband was not as comfortable sitting in this rocker as I was.  Haha!  It was one of those scenes when he put Caleb to bed where his head was hanging over the back every night!  While I on the other hand was perfectly comfortable each time I sat in it.  So, a big TO DO for us was buying a rocker that Kelly could enjoy this time around, too!  When I look at this rocker it makes me hold on to the fact that I TRUST our God and know that in His PERFECT timing He will bring us a baby.  No, we don't have everything we need for a baby, because honestly we don't know if we will have a boy or girl. However, we do have the essential furniture.  We are preparing and planning because we know that God WILL provide us with a baby.  We may not know when or how, but we know that He WILL, and I can put my trust and faith in Him!  He brought us the perfect son in Caleb and I know He will do it again with the next baby!  

You will see in the chair a blanket that says "Dream Big Little One."  In our house we have established the mindset that we can dream BIG dreams and know that we have a BIG God that loves us and has BIG dreams for us, too.  Plus, I bought this blanket because I just had this feeling that I needed it.  There are a couple of things in the nursery that I have purchased over the past few months because my instinct tells me to buy it.  As many of you remember, my instincts were not wrong at all with the time and arrival of Caleb.  I know God is preparing my heart and moving in ways that I cannot see right now.  So in the meantime, I will follow His leading and know that He is working on something BIGGER than I can ever imagine!

Here is the other special moment in this waiting process that I absolutely NEVER want to forget.  To the average person in the picture below you will see 3 Thirty-One products.  Now I know you may be thinking, you work for Thirty-One, so what does that have to do with your waiting process and adoption.  It's because in these 3 items God reminded me that He is in control and He is working something out BIG for our next adoption.  On July 20, 2016 I had multiple packages arrive for a recent fundraiser I did for a local Children's Home.  I used the Hostess Rewards from the order to buy some more gifts for the fundraiser, but then I decided to buy for myself what we call a "Mystery Bundle" with the hostess rewards.  Anyone that orders this bundle has no way of knowing what comes in the bundle until it arrives.  Well when I started opening this box and I pulled out the bag with the bundle in it, which was tightly taped, so I couldn't see what was inside. I could, however, see through a tiny hole a get a glimpse of the pattern of one item.  In that moment, my heart dropped and I lost my breathe for a second and dropped the bag before I opened it.  In that moment I heard God lay on my heart this phrase - "Trust me.  I've got this!"  You see this pattern is the EXACT pattern that I have planned and purchased to go in the nursery from day one of us starting the adoption process.  You see out of a warehouse of tens of thousands of products that could have been in MY Mystery Bundle God made sure that these 3 items in this pattern made its way to my house!  No one else would have understood that sign, because that sign and that moment was intended just for me as a reassurance from God that He is in control and He has a plan.  God is SOOOO GOOD!

So you may wonder or ask how we can wait for so long on a baby? Honestly, somedays I don't know.  Somedays I just want to cry and ask God WHY is He making the wait so long.  But then there are these reminders that I look at daily, which give me the strength and encouragement to make it through the next day, to know that MY God is in control and His ways and His time are always perfect!  So, we will keep waiting and thanking God in advance for the plans He is working on and the baby we will one day hold in our arms!


Thursday, April 7, 2016

I Will Trust In You...

I will trust in you....

The statement "I will trust in you" are 5 simple words that I know we have all said many times in our conversations with God, especially in moments where life just doesn't make sense.  I know I have said them plenty of times.  However, I find myself saying it more often in the past few weeks as we are once again in a season of waiting on God and how He will answer prayers that we have!  Lately, God has answered 2 large prayers for our family that we have in a short period of time.  While I begin to wonder if He is preparing the way for the BIGGEST prayer we have right now I also find myself wondering what if the wait could be a lot longer than we expected.  In these moments, I will crank up the song above and belt it out with all my heart as tears stream down my face!  

I know I shouldn't be surprised by the emotions I feel or by the wait because we have been through this before but once again I find myself just wondering when God is going to answer our prayer and how He will work it all out.  There are so many questions in my mind about the timeline, the specifics, the finances, the emotions, etc that I just wish I had answers to.  I thought it would be easier with the wait for the 2nd child.  I figured "Caleb will keep us busy enough that we won't notice the wait."  However, now that we are sitting 6 months into the wait and almost a year since we started the paperwork, I am beginning to get a little antsy.  Caleb is longing to be a BIG Brother and asks us everyday when will we get a baby, which breaks my heart as we try to explain what our "normal" is and why we can't have a baby as quickly as others can.  Maybe it's the fact that I have had to begin to explain to him why other mommies can carry babies in their tummy but I can't, which is why we have to wait on God to bring us the most perfect baby for our family.  Maybe it's the dream of having a large family seems harder to foresee happening due to the cost and process of adoption.  However, if you ask Caleb, he will tell you that we are getting some where between 2 to 5 babies!  Yes, you read that right!  Oh the funny things kids say! Maybe it's that we haven't had a designated room for the next child so it has helped the wait go by without noticing it much.  But now that we are moving into a different house (not moving cities but just down the street in case you were wondering), there will be a designated nursery for the next little one and the thought of having to pass by that room everyday without knowing when there will be a baby in it has made me a little anxious too.  I don't know what it is but I think the waiting is beginning to hit.  I feel like a piece of our family is missing and there is no definite timeline on when that piece will be found.  In the words of every adoption family, we are "paper pregnant" with no definite due date.  


Here is what I do know...

1) God gave Kelly and I the most perfect, amazing, sweet, hilarious, caring, loving, smart little boy when He brought Caleb into our lives.  His timing was absolutely perfect and Caleb's story is one that I can look back on and see how God knit everything together, even down to what will forever be called my "mother's intuition" on the day he was born and the day we got the call for him.

2) My God is a faithful, loving, and GOOD Father and I know that He has our best interest in mind.  As I have said before, as we waited on Caleb, EVEN IF God never answers our prayer for a 2nd child, I will still love Him, praise Him, and thank Him for all the other blessings in my life and most importantly for my salvation.  

3) God has given us a platform through our struggle, pain, tears, ups and down in infertility and adoption to make His name great and share how our God is faithful.  We consider it our honor and blessing to be able to help comfort, cry with, talk to, and share our story with others to help them through their own struggles. But most importantly we love to share through our story how we have been forever adopted as His children into the Kingdom of God when we come to Him and commit our life to Him.  If God allowed us to walk this journey to help others and point them towards Christ, then it's all worth it. 

So you may be asking why am I writing all of this?!?  Well honestly, when we went through our adoption journey with Caleb, writing some how seemed to help me release emotions and express what I was thinking.  Today, for some reason, everything has hit me with regards to the wait and how God will complete this next chapter in our journey for a 2nd child.  However, I also wanted to write this because I know there are women out there struggling and still waiting on that 1st child.  Some of you I know by name, some I don't.  I honestly feel bad for having these emotions since we already have adopted one child and some are still waiting on how God will make them parents for the 1st time.  I just want you to know that God loves you and has an AMAZING plan for you!  The most perfect child is out there and in God's sovereignty He already knows how all the details of His plan will work out to making you parents for the 1st time.  But trust me when I say this, while a child is the greatest blessing I could ever imagine and has brought Kelly and I so much joy in our lives, we must always remind ourselves that our joy needs to come from God first and foremost.  We need to find peace and rest in Him and Him alone.  Everything else is a blessing from God but He alone needs to be our firm foundation on which we stand!  

No matter what you are going through, know that you can trust in God!  He may not answer your prayers how you want or when you want but He will answer them in the most perfect way that is RIGHT for YOU!  So for now.....I continue to wait AND trust in God!


Saturday, November 2, 2013

The difference a year makes!

I can't believe that today is finally here!  Today is a day that we have dreamed about and prayed for over the past 3 1/2 years.  Today is a day that I have been planning for over the past 9 months (I know…don't laugh!) Today is not just any old day in our household.  Today is a day that we will cherish every moment, every laugh, every tear, every detail!!!  Emotions will be high today with celebration, reflection, excitement, and complete awe of the faithfulness of God!  

TODAY we celebrate Caleb's 1st birthday!

As we prepare for his birthday celebration, I reflect on that special day when I got to hold my little man for the 1st time!  When the day finally arrived to go get our son, I felt like the hours and minutes passed by so slowly.  We spent all day making sure we had everything ready in the house.  After a whirlwind of a weekend, with only 3 days notice to meet Caleb, I knew that God knew what He was doing with only giving us 3 days notice.  I know I couldn't wait another minute until I met him!  Finally, the time arrived where we started our drive to go pick up Caleb.  I felt butterflies in my stomach the entire way there.  When we finally arrived at the agency, we got there before Caleb did with his foster parents.  We had to take care of all of the paperwork first, but obviously my mind was not focused on paperwork when all I wanted to do was hold my son.  Once all the paper work was complete, we still had no idea that he was there.  So we came out of the room where we met with the representative of the agency, walked down the hall way, and then as we turned into a room we then realized that THERE HE WAS! 

This one moment will forever be frozen in time in our minds and our hearts.  As they walked towards us and placed him in our arms, emotions that had been bottled up inside of us for the past 3 1/2 years, as we prayed and waited for the day to be parents came pouring out.  (Side note…I knew I wanted every moment of this to be captured in pictures so I had a sweet friend, Jennifer Hambrick, come and take pictures for us.)  

Here is the 1st picture ever taken of Caleb placed in my arms.  If you know me well, you know that I hate having bad pictures taken of me.  BUT, when I look at this picture I think it is the most perfect picture in the entire world because all I see is the absolute pure, raw emotions of this moment.  This moment is a moment I will never forget!!!

Here is our 1st family picture.

Now it's time to head home and start our new life with our new addition! YAY!

Even though he may not have grown in my stomach and we may not have been there the day he was born, he grew in our hearts long before we ever knew about him.  Today as we celebrate his birthday, we reflect on this special day when we became a family.  One of the reasons I loved the name Caleb is because it means "faithful".  Kelly and I have always called this our journey of faith, so the name Caleb is perfectly fitting for our answered prayer and God's faithfulness to us.  Caleb's middle name is Mark, which is Kelly's middle name.  We love our little man more than life itself and thank God everyday for him!  November is National Adoption Month and I couldn't imagine any better way to celebrate than to celebrate the birth of our son this month as well!  

Now, even though this is such a special day for us and for Caleb, my heart still thinks about and prays for his birthparents.  Questions go through my mind about if they remember that today is his birthday and are they thinking of him.  You see, I can never be angry or bitter or resentful to his birthparents because they have us the gift that we couldn't give ourself.  I will be forever grateful to them and this precious blessing that they gave us.  In our family, Caleb's adoption will always be an open and very common conversation.  His birthparents will always hold a special place in my heart.  Even though we have never met them, I will always think about them.  Just like Caleb has been adopted by us, we have been adopted by Christ and both stories are ones that we should never try to hide or be embarrassed about.  The perfect example of adoption is when Christ adopted us so I know as long as I follow His example then we can never go wrong in raising Caleb.

Happy 1st Birthday to our little man!  Mommy and Daddy love you so very much!  You will never know how much joy, love, laughter, and excitement you bring to our lives!

Monday, October 21, 2013

Reflecting on a year ago...

So, I know it has been a long time since I wrote my last post and I basically took a year off, but as many of you know about 2 weeks after I wrote my last post we finally received THE CALL about our little boy!  Can I just say how amazing it is to see how God works and not knowing that as I wrote it, our little boy had already been born and was waiting for us!!!  Feel free to go back and read what I wrote about, how as I was letting go and giving it to God, that He was already 2 steps ahead of us and had our blessing prepared for us and waiting.  I don't think the timing of how everything unfolded was by coincidence, but instead by God's divine plan!  God works in miraculous and wonderful ways!  I can't even begin to express how in awe I am at how He guided and allowed our story to unfold.  So, now fast forward one year and we are about to celebrate the 1 year birthday of our little man, Caleb.  WOW!  How fast this past year has gone by, but I know we get to experience all the years to come and make many more memories.

Now, I know I am not the best writer and I can't promise how often I will write any posts as I am obviously very busy between 2 jobs, my family, and my church. However, I thought I would try to write every once in awhile, since we have so many family and friends all over, not only North Carolina, but also over the country, and wow, even around the world.  As we are coming up to Caleb's 1 year birthday and celebrating National Orphan Sunday in 2 weeks, I have really been reflecting on how I felt and what I was doing this time last year, when I didn't even know about Caleb, but I did know that God was stirring something in my heart for his arrival.  So most of you know the story of how everything unfolded the weeks and months leading up to us getting Caleb, but if you don't know I thought I would take a moment and catch everyone up...

As most of you know I am 100% a PLANNER!  I have a timeline and a schedule on how things need to be done, so obviously waiting in our adoption process was a definite test for me.  However, God knew what He was doing as the timeline would unfold for the arrival of our son.  Kelly and I agreed that we would only get the main furniture and a couple of key items, before we actually received a call about a placement.  Thanks to some amazing friends, we did, however, agree to have only 1 baby shower in advance of an actual placement call in order to get some additional necessities!

For about 3 months leading up to the arrival of Caleb, I had in me this restless feeling that something was going on, but I didn't know what it was.  I told Kelly and my mom for months that I knew we were going to have a child by Christmas, and as any good husband and mom would do, they both tried to tell me to not get my hopes up in the event that it didn't happen.  Needless to say, I ignored their advice because in my heart of hearts I knew this was happening.  I could even begin to actually picture what our living room would look like with toys everywhere and a baby crawling on the floor, which is exactly what it looks like today.  Haha!  I was so certain that God was laying it on my heart that we would have a child by Christmas that we decorated the house with Christmas decorations the beginning of November, so that I knew we were ready if we got the call.  Even a friend of ours, while going on a Pastor's Conference, the 2nd weekend in November, remembers me saying that I know we will have a baby by Christmas.  I'm not saying I can predict the future by any means, but I am saying that God placed in me such a strong desire and longing for this child, which I can only explain as his way of preparing me for motherhood.

One of the best stories during this journey to meet our son came on the actual day Caleb was born.  Remember, we didn't know of his birth until almost a month after he was born.  The day he was being born I was at a Christmas fair with my mom.  As we were shopping we came up to this booth that had bibs and burp cloths.  Well, I fell in LOVE with this one set in a green argyle pattern with dark navy blue.  I couldn't stop looking at it and wanting it.  Well, as has been our agreement from the beginning, I didn't want to go crazy and by stuff, since we didn't know if we would have a boy or girl.  My only reason for not getting it was I thought it looked very boyish and if we got a girl I didn't know if it would be good for a girl.  So I told my mom to let's walk around and look at everything else and if it is still there when we come back around then I will get it.  Well, needless to say it was in the exact place I had left it since we walked away and I couldn't get it off my mind the entire time.  Who knew that at that moment that I was looking that bib and burp cloth set that my little boy was being born.  I 100% believe that my longing for this set was God building that connection and longing with my son before I ever had met him.  They say in adoption that our children grew in our hearts instead of our tummies, and that is exactly what God was doing for me.  He was growing this love and this longing for a child that I had not even met yet.

Fast forward 3 weeks, the day before we got THE CALL I was at work and when I left work that day I was so mad because I had not gotten everything I needed to get done at work before the weekend.  I had spent every weekend for the past few weeks making sure when I left on Thursday that I was 100% ready just in case we got a call.  On the way home from work that day, I called Kelly and I remember saying to him "I'm so mad that I didn't get all my work done.  What if we get a call this weekend and I'M NOT READY?!?!".  Well guess what happened the next day, on Friday (this is when I think God has an amazing sense of humor)?!?!

Around 2 PM on Friday, I get a call from our case worker as I was driving to church.  When I saw her name calling me, it didn't even register what it would be about.  She started the call as calm as possible and just said she was checking on her families and then preceded to say "So Lindsey, knowing you, you probably already have your Christmas decorations up and presents bought and wrapped under the tree".  Well I laughed and responded with "well of course the decorations are up and presents are bought, but not wrapped yet", which she quickly responded with "well you better go ahead and do that".  Now, I will admit at this point I still had NO CLUE what this call was about and it didn't register at all with me, so I just kind of laughed off her response.  Then she said the words I have been longing to hear for 3 1/2 years as we have waited to be parents..."Well you better get ready because you will be a mother on MONDAY!" That moment will forever stand still in my mind.  I know where I was, what I was doing, and that feeling I will never forget.  So I try to continue to drive, without going too much over the speed limit, as I race to church to get to Kelly and ask her if she can hold because I don't want to hear another detail until we are together to hear it at the same time.

Finally, as I race into the church and come into Kelly's office crying as the case worker is on mute trying to explain what is happening, we finally un-muted her and she tells us we have been selected for a beautiful little boy!  Needless to say, tears are flowing in overdrive at this moment!  The next few moments are filled with jumping up and down, crying, writing down all the facts as fast as we can, and then sitting in his office WAITING to get a picture of our little man.  As we wait, I finally get the words out with the feelings God has been re-affirming in my heart for months and I say "I TOLD YOU WE WOULD HAVE A CHILD BY CHRISTMAS" (Kelly will never question again my mother's intuition...haha).  When we finally saw his handsome face, we fell in love and God reaffirmed our love for this little one and that he was hours.  Next, in order to avoid telling ANYONE before we could get to our parents, we left the church and drove down the street and just sat in our car making calls.  The next hours we spent telling parents (who all SCREAMED and CRIED on the phone) as well as family and friends.  The following 3 days became a whirlwind as we had to buy everything we could imagine to prepare for Caleb's arrival as well as recruiting assistance from family and friends.  I didn't think Monday at 3 PM could get here soon enough.

Now I know this post is already long enough so I will wait and share more on the actual day of getting him in the next few days, so to not do information overload with you in one post.  Haha!  I hope for those of you that haven't heard all these details before, that this helps you see how God works absolutely  everything out in His PERFECT timing and His PERFECT way!  The journey was long to get to that moment, but I wouldn't trade a second of it as I know it is all a part of God's plan and design for our life and I give Him all the glory for what He has done for us!

Monday, November 19, 2012

This Thanksgiving I am thankful for the "Even If"!

Even if the healing doesn't come
And life falls apart
And dreams are still undone
You are God You are good
Forever faithful One
Even if the healing
Even if the healing doesn't come
~ Even If by Kutless

As many of you know we are still patiently or trying to patiently wait for a placement in our adoption.  However, while we have been waiting, God has been growing us as individuals and as a couple.  A month or two ago, God caused one single question to penetrate my heart and for me to really ponder my answer to the question.  The question was this "Even if I don't give you children, whether through pregnancy or adoption, will you still love me?" WOW!  What a question!  When you have been longing for something or struggling with a problem for so long, no matter what it is, it is hard to imagine and think that there is a chance that God's ultimate plan for your life is for that problem you are facing to never be removed.  I know people have the best intentions, and mean well when they say, "you will receive a placement one day," or "I know it will happen for you," and trust me, we still believe with our whole heart that God has called us to be parents, and one day that will happen.  However, God has convicted me to reexamine my focus and ask the question, "do I have my identity wrapped up in being a parent or is my desire to find my identity in Christ always".  He also has caused me to answer the question "will you love and trust me EVEN IF my plans for your life are not to be parents". Two hard questions that you always feel you know the answer to, but what if God chooses to not answer a prayer you have or fulfill a longing in your heart, because even though you feel it is the best thing for you, that it is not what He feels is best for you.

If you have ever seen the movie Facing The Giants, the main character and his wife are struggling with starting a family.  I remember watching this movie when it first came out, which was before Kelly and I ever started dating.  I had no idea that this one scene in this movie would become so real in my own life down the road.  I just saw this movie for the 1st time, since that time years ago, and this one scene has so much more of a powerful meaning now then it did back then.  This one clip started my process in examining this question of "even if" and how I would answer it.  Here is the clip to refresh your memory:

One day while I was working, I heard this amazing song, which hit this question right on the head.  It is by Kutless called "Even If".  Needless to say, I cried the 1st time I heard it.  I spent a lot of time in prayer and examing my heart to make sure my calling and focus in life is to serve God and to find my identity in Him and not in being a parent.  God has been so good to me and provided for all of my needs!  Even if He doesn't give me another blessing, I could never repay Him for all He has done for me and Kelly in our lives.  So this Thanksgiving I am thankful for the "Even If" in my life because even if we never receive a placement I will still trust, love, and follow my God because He knows what is best for me and loves me beyond anything I can ever comprehend!

So this Thanksgiving I am thankful for the "even if".  I hope in your own life if you are struggling with health issues, family issues, financial issues, whatever it might be, that you will examine the question "will you still love and trust God even if the healing never comes".  My God if faithful, all powerful, and loving and I am thankful for that.  Even if He never does another thing for me, He has already done more than I could ever comprehend by sending His son to give me eternal life. 

Happy Thanksgiving!

Sunday, September 9, 2012

A Long Overdue Update...

I know it has been a few months since our last post.  We have had a busy summer and took a break from blogging for a few months.  I know many of you have been asking where we stand in the adoption process, so the answer to your question is...we are still WAITING!  Haha!  The word "waiting" has become a very common word in our vocabulary over the past few months.  Now, I know a few people have not liked how open we have been with our adoption process and our infertility struggles, so just a heads up that the next few paragraphs to follow will be a detailed update on what has been going on with us and this process.  The desire of our hearts from day one has been that if someone can learn from our adoption journey, and can find hope in it, as well as see how our amazing and wonderful God will work out all things in His timing and glory, then it is definitely worth it to share our journey.  So here we go...

Since our last post, we have been very busy closing on our new house.  We finally feel completely settled and at home.  God has blessed us in so many ways, and we can't wait for the day, that in addition to the sound of our little dog's feet running around,  we can also hear the sound of our little baby's feet.  The process of building the house helped keep us busy and not focused on the waiting process with the adoption, but now that we are settled we have definitely had those moments of anxiousness where we wonder how much longer it will take.  Due to our recent move to our new house, we had to update our home study to contain the most recent information on our new home and its location.  During this home study we did receive some discouraging news that the waiting time now with our agency is between 1 to 3 years, instead of about 1 year as we had originally been anticipating.  The extended wait is due to the slower flow of birth mothers coming to the agency in order to pursue the adoption process.  We know that in God's perfect timing that He will bring the perfect child to us.  Until the time of placement, we will keep on waiting and trusting.  Here are a few pictures of the new nursery...

We have always said that we would be completely honest with our adoption journey. So to be completely honest, I will say that the waiting has not always been easy.  I can't tell you how many times we have spent crying and praying and seeking guidance as we go through this process.  We have joked that the nursery has become an amazing prayer room during this time.  We often sit in the nursery and stare at the wall over the crib where we have the verse "For this child we prayed, the Lord gave us the desire of our hearts" 1 Samuel 1:27. We know that God's ways are higher than our ways and His thoughts are higher than our thoughts and that He sees the greater picture.  The positive thing is that we have had a couple of potential leads on placements during this waiting period, which shows that the process is working.  However, none of these leads ended up working, which just means that it was not the right time for us to have a placement.  It at least gives us hope that the process is working and some day we will receive that placement.

One piece of advice that so many couples who have adopted told us is that we need to enjoy this time together and have fun traveling and doing all the things we have always wanted to do.  Kelly and I love to travel, so this was something we definitely wanted to enjoy doing right now in order to keep our minds occupied.  God has blessed us in so many ways and one of those ways is with a company I work for, Thirty-One.  God has allowed me to earn so many trips and do things we never thought we'd be able to do. Last year, Thirty-One afforded us a few opportunities to vacation for FREE in some amazing places. Over this summer, we have taken a couple of trips with just us, with Thirty-One and with groups from our church.  We plan to take a trip with our New Beginnings group from church, as well as finally having an opportunity to take our anniversary trip for this year.  Even though we have been blessed to take some wonderful trips, we have still kept our focus on continuing to save money for our adoption fund.  We still have a ways to go to reach the necessary amount for our entire adoption cost, but we know that God will provide the money and help give us the wisdom as we save for adoption. Some people believe in putting their lives on hold during an adoption. For us, we realize that these days of waiting are some of the most precious that we will share as husband and wife. The memories we make during this time will be the foundation upon which the future years of our life are built. We can't wait to for our baby to join us, but until then, we'll keep moving forward together, and trusting in our Great God!

Ok...I think that covers everything in our update.  I know that is a lot of information, but we have always believed in being open and honest in this entire adoption process.  We hope that some how God can use the things we share about our journey to be an encouragement to someone else.  We know that God is allowing us to walk this journey to grow us closer to Him and to each other.   We also know that this entire journey is going to allow us to treasure and enjoy that moment when we are finally placed with our little one so much more.  Here is a special song that has really spoken to Kelly and I through this process. We have the lyrics to this song printed on the last page of our adoption book in hopes that they can be an encouragement to a birthmother when looking at our profile book.  I hope it can be an encouragement to you today as well.