Our lives were about to drastically change this time last year. I still can't believe all that transpired. We feel SO blessed. It's been an amazing year, a challenging year, and a growing year. I can't believe how quickly it has passed. It's such a privilege being the mom to these three boys. Titus has been the perfect fit for our family. (We honestly thought that maybe we would have a new baby around now and we have an almost 1 year old!)
Here is a rough timeline:
May 2008 - decide to pursue domestic adoption but kept it mostly to ourselves.
June 2008 - home study delayed for a variety of reasons.
July 9 - still were not in process and very seriously considered delaying starting another adoption - kind of decided to put it all on the back burner for awhile.
July 10 - phone message out of the blue about a potential domestic adoption from the agency we used for the boys - they did not know we were planning to adopt again. We decided to pursue the adoption. We quickly sent them a few pictures and the profile letter I had written on a whim several weeks earlier.
July 10 in the evening - C learned about us and one or two other families. C told the social worker that she wanted to meet us.
July 11-14 - we kept pinching ourselves and telling each other that it probably wouldn't work out. And we worked very hard to keep it quiet.
July 15 - learned that we would be meeting C in KY the next day.
July 16 - very nervously met and had lunch with C (whom we really liked) - she asked us to parent her baby boy during the lunch. I got very teary eyed and gave her a hug.
July 17 - August 14 - a blur :), paperwork, paperwork, paperwork, vacation, more pinching ourselves. Tried to prepare for a newborn. :)
August 15 - Titus arrived 2 weeks early. We cancelled the fantasy football draft, called in to work and headed to KY.
August 15 - 29 - on pins and needles as we waited to find out if everything would work out. Loved on our new baby, shed lots of tears, had lunch with C, and pinched ourselves some more.
August 29 - we came home with our beautiful baby boy.
November 6 - adoption finalized and we breathed a big sigh of relief.
I think so much of C. In fact, rarely does a day go by that I don't think of her. I often wish to tell her how much our lives have changed - not only through Ty joining our family but through meeting her. She made such a courageous and difficult decision. I wish for her to know how happy and healthy Titus is and what an incredibly adorable little guy he is. I look forward to telling Titus about his first mom. How thankful I am that our lives touched and that our lives will be forever linked through our beautiful son.
I am so thankful for God's work in our lives - for calling us to adoption. We have been forever impacted and changed. We will never see the world the same - we see it through the eyes of children - children with no home, no parents to call their own, children from dysfunctional families, children in foster care... God has given us three wonderful children. We often wish for others to experience the amazingness of growing their family through adoption - we just can never fully put in words how wonderful and life-changing it has been for us (for us and for our children!).
Though we knew adoption was important to us when God joined us as man and wife, we had no idea how He would use it. We have learned so much about our adoption as God's children through the earthly adoptions of our boys. They are fully our own, our real children, no question. It does not matter that our skin color and eye color and eye shape are different, it does not matter that they did not grow in my tummy. They are ours in the truest sense of the word - they grew in our hearts and changed us.
We celebrate today as the big start of our journey to #3 - unexpected, surprising, difficult, emotional, amazing, and wonderful. Yes, he turned 11 months yesterday and we are still pinching ourselves - for sure.