Monday, October 01, 2007

Perspective

You may remember that I posted a while back about Eliot - a little boy that was born with Trisomy 18 (99 Balloons). This weekend, I learned of another family whose daughter was born earlier this month also with Trisomy 18. God took Copeland home last week. Please pray for this family. You can read their blog and see the wonderful video tribute to this beautiful little girl.

And I read this post (in response to a question about adopting with biological children) on one of the yahoo! groups I'm a member of and was so blessed! The wonderful expression of love pouring out of this mom's heart brought tears to my eyes. I wrote to her and asked her if I could share her words and she agreed.

She said in a portion of her e-mail reply, "But something special is really happening within our family as we go on this journey together. As we've worked together to finish paperwork and prepare for our new children, our love for each other has multiplied greatly. We will not only have a larger family . . . we will have a better family."

So I'm posting here and hope that you will also be challenged and blessed by this family.

"We have three bio. kids (daughters ages 10 and 7, and a 2 year old son) and we are in the process of adopting a 6 year old boy from Guatemala (hope to get him home by the New Year) and we are hoping to start the whole process over to adopt a 14 year old girl from Kaz next year. I have many friends who have bio. children and have adopted--things have gone so wonderfully for them it has given us the courage to do the same.

Often the motivation is to complete a family--to adopt a sibling for an only child or finally add a daughter to a family with boys or vice versa. Often the motivation is compassion--to know that all children are precious and deserve a home . . . to want to make a difference in the life of that child. Often the motivation is faith--many who adopt are Christians and take God's calling to care for orphans and widows seriously. And often the motivation is a healthy mix of selflessness and selfishness (I'll explain that one).

I've know since I was a child that I not only wanted to be a parent, I wanted to be an adoptive parent. I told my husband this when we were dating and he expressed that he had a heart for adoption, too. We first tried for a bio. child (primarily because we couldn't afford to adopt at the time). And although we have 4 children waiting for us in heaven (3 miscarriages and a stillborn son due to an umbilical cord knot), we've been blessed with three wonderful children by birth. But even with these three precious children, my desire to adopt has increased . . . not diminished.

I started looking at children from Russia and Kaz last Jan. I fell in love with the description of a 14 year old girl in Kaz (her photo wasn't posted) but we closed that door when we heard of the 3 to 4 weeks of travel. In the meantime, we were approached with an emergency situation for a boy in Guatemala (long story). We've proceeded with him, but we can't get the other girl out of our minds, so we're going to try to find a way to adopt her, too.

I wish I could tell you how my children will do once they get here, but I can tell you that this experience has already been so rewarding. I love my children even more for their willingness to share their home, their parents, their holidays, their friends . . . with not an infant, but an older child. I've been amazed at how excited they are and I'm grateful that they are embracing this leap of faith with their mom and dad.

But I feel quite selfish because I know the rewards of adding these children will far outweigh any sacrifices. Our boy in Guatemala was found at 5 years old abandoned on the street eating out of a garbage can. I can't wait to tell him he is loved and special, throw him a birthday party, celebrate Christmas, take him to the beach, or sing him a lullaby. And if we can get that 14 year old girl home, I can't wait to show her that you're never to old to be chosen, to give her a childhood that she almost missed, to tell her she's beautiful and a gift, to give her the chance at an education and a future, to give her a daddy that will some day walk her down the aisle, and a mom who is by her side when she has a baby.

Our motivation has been completion, compassion, faith, selflessness and selfishness . . . but the result will be two children with a second chance and one family who is truly blessed."

2 comments:

maryanne helms said...

Alaina-

I just read about Copeland and her family yesterday. I was just devastated by their loss...wondering how people move into another day after such tragedy. It is such a privilege to pray for our "family" in Christ, but such a burden to hear about losses other people suffer....I love that you have been writing. I have also, and I think regular correspondence could be SUCH a means of showing love. Loving for the long-term...for the days when seeing another baby reminds you of your loss, or when you are asked: "how many kids do you have?" Thanks for sharing these words....

Jen said...

Wow. I am so humbled and awed by those stories. Thanks for sharing.