Our crew

Our crew

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Looking back

It's fun to look back at the family Christmas photos from the last 9 years of our marriage.  With our 10th anniversary in January, we are hopeful that once again this year's family photo will look a little different.  Here's a look back at the last 9 years.

2004, the Christmas before we got married

2005, Christmas as first time parents with a 2 week old

2006, expecting #2

2007, Family of Four

2008, expecting #3

2009, family of five AND expecting #4

2010, family of six

2011, expecting #5!

2012, family of seven

2013, still a family of seven!

Monday, October 20, 2014

7 months later

It's been a year since we started our adoption journey.

It's been 7 months since we've been licensed.

I really thought we would have a placement by now.

I remember last year before Christmas being a little sad that all of our kids weren't going to be "home for the holidays."  I knew even then that our missing kids were out there somewhere.  I wanted to be careful all summer with planning trips and activities.  I was constantly wondering what we would do or how plans would change if we got more kids.  We were licensed March 8th and I had hopeful expectations of having a placement by summer.

Now summer has come and gone.  And what a wonderful summer it was!   I knew in the back of my head though that as much fun as we were having and as enjoyable as it was with our kids at the ages and stages they were at that our family just wasn't complete.  Now, I admit that it would probably have been a little easier without a toddler, but most things are.

Each time our caseworker has a potential match for us we are shown a picture of a sibling group and told minimal details about them such as age, gender, basic reason for removal from their birth parents, and a few personal details.  The first few times this happened we would plan it all out in our heads.  Well, maybe Andrew didn't go that far, but I did.  I would imagine where they would sleep in our home, what we would need to get for a 2 and 4 year old girl or for 3 and 5 year old boys.  I would try to plan out as much as I could.  I would pray for them by name and think longingly of the day they would come home to us.  But that gets hard!  It gets very emotional to be told we weren't the right match for this sibling group or that.  It seems that just before we find out it's a "no" on one set we are shown another.  Then we find out we didn't get matched with the first set and we wait another month to hear on the second set, only to then be shown a third.

I'm not sure exactly how many kids we've been shown a photo of.  Maybe we are at 8 or 9 sets now. Now I try not to plan too much though.  I pray for them constantly.  But I can't plan.  And really I don't need to.  I know that we will have more warning still.  Even if we are told that we were selected in the top three we would still have time to read through the kids' case file and decide if we are personally ready for that particular commitment.  Then we would have more time as we wait to see if we are the #1 family.  That's plenty of time for planning and making the proper arrangements.  Plenty of time for more prayer!

We've recently been blessed to be part of the Foster Family Association for our county.  We enjoyed getting to meet some other local foster and adoptive parents and are looking forward to being involved with them.  I may have raised my hand to volunteer for something...

We continue to be blessed by this journey to adoption.  We love meeting new people that are doing the same thing or going about it a little differently.  I love learning about their experiences and their families.  I even struck up a conversation at Chick-fil-A with an adoptive mom I'd never met before.  A friend in my Bible study small group at another church is currently waiting for a match for domestic infant adoption.  Another family friend is searching for a sibling in an African country.  All of these people bless us.  And so do you.  Thanks for your continued prayers for our family.