Saturday, November 17, 2012

Our Adoption Story

Update: Thoughts after Year ONE & Year TWO 

In 2005, right before our one year anniversary, we were super excited when we found out that we were expecting our first child. However, a few months later, very unexpectedly, I miscarried our baby. That was one of the hardest things that we have ever gone through (talk about getting thrown off course!)

Over the course of the next two years, I miscarried two other babies. After the third miscarriage if I was honest, I would say that I was pretty internally angry at God for all of the pain. However, the pain became unbearable and was too great to carry on my own. As I began to seek out the character of God and his love for us, I came to one conclusion...Satan is real. My anger lifted and I started to feel hopeful again. During that time Sam and I both felt moved to adopt.

At first it seemed like a way to expand our family but it didn't take long for our hearts to be dramatically changed and our eyes opened that it is so much more than that.

Did that mean that we wouldn’t have any biological children? No, we felt that our family was going to be a wonderful mix of both. Where there had only been pain there was now healing and hope!

On May 2nd, 2008, a dear family friend asked if he could pray over us since he knew our situation. We were open to all of the prayer we good get! However, we were surprised when he prayed, asking God that I would give birth to a baby in 9 months. (Talk about being too crushed from the past to get your hopes up and still trying to have faith to believe that it could (with a would take a miracle kind of slim) chance happen!)

Exactly one month later we found out that we were expecting. 

EXACTLY nine months and one day from when that prayer was prayed, our daughter was born! 

Her middle name just happens to be "Hope"!

Next, along came our youngest son a few years later with no complications. We are SO thankful for these precious lives!

Before our youngest son was born we had moved to Minneapolis and were extremely excited to be surrounded by so many people that had a heart for adoption. In 2010 our friends, along with their four children, were in the midst of making a decision to open up their home to a sibling group of three children. These children had just entered the foster care system. 

I remember sitting with our friends in their kitchen as they asked for prayer in the direction that they felt God leading them, to open, not only their house but also their hearts, to these precious little ones. During the almost two years that the kids lived with them, we felt that we were suppose to be a part of our friend’s lives and the lives of these kids. To help in any way that we could since having seven kids seemed like no easy task even though our friends made it look so easy!

We got to know three of the most adorable kids and our hearts grew. 

A set of circumstances happened and Sam and I both knew that God was leading us to help out in their situation in a long term way. We wanted to be available to adopt them if that was the way things ended up going, but either way we knew that we wanted to be a blessing for the time that they were in our lives.

We became licensed for foster care so that we could help out even more. Then it happened: the need arose for these precious kids to have a Forever Family. 

It was an emotional process of praying through things with our friends as we were all extremely connected to the kids and wanted the best for them. It wasn’t a matter of “if” the kids would be adopted but “who” would adopt them. We knew that no matter what, these kids would be loved because they would forever have both families in their lives. Both families (our friends who were the foster parents and us) felt that Sam and I would move forward with adopting the kids.

This was our FIRST family picture, thus beginning our treasured family shots (unedited and unscripted!) Our youngest daughter is just four months younger than our middle son (I like to refer to them as the twins that don't look anything alike.)

The kids joined our family and we celebrated our “Gotcha Day” on January 21st, 2012 (one of those days that we will never forget!)

The number five means a lot to me. Through the process of having our two biological children I struggled with how to express that even though you could only see two children we really had five.

Five…three children that would have been older than our first born daughter.

We look forward to the day when we get to meet our three other children up in eternity. For now we have three children being raised by their perfect heavenly Father up in heaven and five get to experience life with their not so perfect parents.

I have been completely…COMPLETELY overwhelmed by the goodness of God!

Since our adoption, we have been asked by many, “How did you go from 2 kids to FIVE!?!” Stick around, because this blog is all about living out that reality and finding joy in the midst of the craziness!

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