Sunday, September 27, 2009

Thoughts in the waiting....

So I wonder sometimes if anyone really reads these "no-news" posts. And there is a part of me that struggles with whether or not I should even write some of these, however, today, it occurred to me (I am REALLY slow sometimes) that I will print these off and keep them for posterity sake not only for me to look back on, but especially for Mia. So today, it's confessions of the heart (this is your opportunity to navigate to a different page if you are looking for exciting news :-) I am starting to mentally prepare myself for the realities of bringing Mia home and all that that entails---trip there, stay there, return home, assimilation into life. I have been dealing with my own emotions and now trying as best I can to try and figure out how to help shoulder some of hers as well. As silly as this sounds, I often ask myself, "Will anyone be at the airport to greet us when we get home?" I was doing some adoptive parent online courses and it was asking pointed questions about what we will feel right when we bring the baby home. I am glad they asked very specific questions and was honestly surprised at what I learned about myself. They were talking about the difference in the way people celebrate birth and the to-do made over new babies vs. often the absence of this extended celebratory atmosphere when you bring home your adopted child. Huh. I never thought of that...,but as I started to, I realized that I have longed for and waited for this baby longer than all three of my pregnancies combined starting from when I filled out the first paper. Wow. That is a long time to wait and a long time to anticipate something! I don't want the return celebration to end as quickly as I am afraid it will :-) It's hard to imagine just putting my life on pause and then trying to resume it, plus one foreign baby as soon as we get off the airplane. I guess that is because that isn't at all what is happening emotionally or socially even though the boys will continue to go to school, I will need to jump back into grocery shopping, paying bills, routine. This is definitely uncharted territory. I have had three babies and am accustomed to what life looks life after that, but this time it is going to be a little more challenging. My foundation is knowing that God has prepared in advance what we need to accomplish the things He calls us to. Whew. Glad I thought of that :-) Lord, please prepare little Mia to be a part of our family. Everything in her world is about to be turned upside down--from the sounds she hears, sensations she feels, foods she tastes, things she sees. Every sense is going to be different. Help prepare her in ways that only you can. Help prepare us to be sensitive to her needs, easily adaptable and flexible in order to make her feel more at home and more comfortable. Lord, give me wisdom to know how to celebrate and bring people along side us to celebrate with us, for this is worth celebrating! Be with us in India as we meet for the first time, figure out how to spend our time together, adjust to learning one another, and trying to figure out how to balance getting done what we need to legally, what we want to emotionally, with being in another culture and trying to be gracious and wise. Thank you for the people you have already brought to us in so many ways to join us in this journey. Use our story to tell of your love and greatness toward men. Our story is your song. Our praise to you. Shine through in every way. Envelop our desires and plans and overwhelm them with your heart and plans. Go before us, with us, and be our rear guard. And please, Lord, expedite that passport!!! Well, I guess that is all I have for today. India is in the middle of a national holiday until sometime this coming week. The passport office is closed during this time. I am also trying to get over a cold which we be good to do before we leave. Thanks for your prayers! Look forward to sharing more news to come soon!

Friday, September 18, 2009

Sometime between now and November...

we will be traveling to India! The exact date will come soon. We are preparing to apply for her passport which they are saying to wait six weeks for. Again, God is not bound to time restraints, and we are not the only family (there are 6 others in the same stage as us) pray for a "quicker than usual" passport turnaround for all of us. We are spending time this Saturday tying up lose ends in regards to paperwork so that when her appointment time is given, we can focus on packing and travel arrangements. We will keep the updates coming :-)

Also, THANK you for all of your prayers and support for my brother and his family and thanks be to God, the author and perfecter of our faith; the One who works all things together for good to those who love Him and are called according to purpose..He alone sustains us and brings us victory because of his great love and goodness,all for his namesake and for his glory. The dawn always comes after the night, and we are just beginning to see all the miraculous and beautiful things God has in store for them. Please continue to pray for perseverance, wisdom and courage. They have a long ride ahead of them, and from experience, I know that many can show support in crises moments, but there tends to be fewer companions for long journeys. It is hard to remain steadfast in prayer, but they will continue to need it. :-) Thanks so much!!!


Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Life is full of the unexpected....

Joy and pain are the two emotions I feel today. Some of you have been following my brother and sister in law and their journey to bring home my precious, precious niece Josie Love from Uganda ( We have been flying high since they arrived there just a few days ago, and were scheduled to have their court date today. Unexpectedly, and all the details of how and what are not known to me, they found out that Josie is very sick. We don't know how sick she is or what this all means, but regardless, my heart is broken. God knew all of this would happen, and He will provide all that is needed to walk through this fire, but just as Jesus found it in his sweet compassionate heart to mourn with Mary and Martha just prior to raising Lazarus from the dead, my heart mourns for what my precious brother and his sweet wife are having to walk through today. On the heels of this, (literally less than 12 hours later) we found out our court case has been approved. While I know we have again miraculously quick timing for this unfolding in front of us, my heart is so torn. The facts are that we have a great deal of preparation to get done in a relatively short amount of time. We do not have a date yet, we must wait on her passport to be issued, followed by our letting the embassy in New Dehli know we are ready with all the appropriate paperwork and they will give us an appointment time to come there and finalize the papers and bring her home. The agency says it could take another week for the paperwork to be sent off for the passport and 4 to 6 weeks for it to be completed. I know it could happen a lot sooner, as what typically takes 2 to 3 months or longer to be granted was just granted to us in a week. Please keep praying for the timing. All along, I knew a September gotcha day would be an act of God, He has so far made it abundantly clear that everything is possible with him. So I will continue to believe for this and would love for you to join us in praying that everything gets signed and sent off for the passport asap, it gets issued asap, and that we get our appointment time asap. I look forward to writing these exciting updates. In the meantime, please, please, please pray for my family and our sweet Josie Love who has been planted in all of our hearts and is a part of our family. Pray for quick turn around times for her medical tests. Pray for access to treatment and that she starts to heal. And pray for wisdom for Mike and Suzanne to determine God's heart and plan in this situation (you can read more details on thier blog see address above). Thank you Jesus for your compassion, your provision, your love, your grace. Where would we be with out you? I thank you Father that Josie is like the one lost coin that you would tear apart your house to look for and pursue because she is worth pursuing. She is a treasure. Thank you for making us all your treasures.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Waiting on the court date!!!

Well, we got news this morning that the first part of our guardianship hearing has been completed and the court appointed lawyer has approved the paperwork and recommended that the judge approve the case! This took less than two weeks (ave. wait time for this is 6 weeks!) So we were very pleased with the timing on this. I was told that this last part is the worst emotionally. It can be the least predictable wait time, waiting for the actual court date (i.e. this is the part where they tell us to come and get my baby girl!!) I would liken it to the pushing part of having a baby where every moment feels like an eternity and you think surely after all I have been through this should be happening now! I am praying and would ask you to join us in first thanking God things have happened "sooner than expected" so far and that pattern would continue! As a side note, my brother and sister in law are heading to Uganda this Friday to go and get my sweet 3 yr old niece and bring her home. Go to to see her sweet face and follow another miracle of God bringing another one of His little ones home to her forever family! Love and thanks!! Mandy

Monday, September 7, 2009

So full, so empty....

I laid down in bed with my precious two year old daughter and was filled so full of love, tears were rolling down my cheeks. With each child my heart gets fuller and fuller until I think it could burst. And yet, once everyone was down asleep, the feeling of emptiness began to creep in as it does in the silence. When the world stops, the requests have silenced, the demands put on hold until morning, I long. Tears were now rolling again, yet this time, tears of longing to hold my other daughter... to tuck her in, stroke her hair, and kiss her sweet face as I was so blessed to do with Ella-Kate. I received a precious gift tonight, a Willow figurine. I have several but this one was special in that it was a tiny child with it's hand stretched high into the air, and out of it's outstretched hand, was a banner lifted high above its head with the word "hope" in humble letters. I know our time, our homecoming is getting closer, but the waiting, the wanting, is draining. And herein lies the bigger redemption story weaved in our story. As Jesus walked this earth, He experienced all of the emotions I feel right now. There is a child out there who doesn't know me, yet I know she is mine and I would move heaven and earth just to be with her so that I can love her. In this small incomparable way, I see a purpose for having to bear this deep, unmet longing. To share some of what He feels for us. We share in the life of Christ, the difficulty and the victory; how miraculous to be able to weep one moment, tears of joy and fulfillment and in the next moment ones of deep longing. Jesus is our banner of hope, stretched high above us in our no longer orphaned hands. God didn't leave us in our desperation, but gave us his Banner of Hope that one day, we would all be together. He lives in this tension of joy and longing constantly. His capacity to experience this in it's fullest, non-stop, all day, everyday is nothing less than a glimpse into his holiness.