Saturday, September 27, 2014

Not Thwarted, But Surprised

Our plans took a drastic turn last week. While traveling to and from the information session at the agency we planned to use, we realized that neither of us want to move forward with domestic infant adoption. First, we miscommunicated. Next, I cried in Arby's. Then, we went to the session. And finally, we talked through things and found ourselves in agreement.

After four months of planning on one thing, why the change? For one thing, we couldn't get away from these questions:

Are we seeking a child to meet our needs? 
Are we seeking to meet a child's needs?

We both feel that our motives were not entirely right in focusing on infant adoption. Domestic infant adoption is less risky than other kinds of adoption, the children come with fewer problems, and so on. It would be the easiest for us. 

Over the past several months, God seems to have been changing our hearts. We recognize that our empty home gives us a unique opportunity to take in higher-risk children. Many people do not want to take in a child with baggage for fear of risking the stability of the children already in their home. While not wanting to jump into the most complicated, risky situation, we do want to make ourselves available to meet a child's needs. 

At the information session, our feelings were confirmed. With 68 families on the waiting list and only 30-40 adoptions happening each year, the need just was not there. Not to mention the $28,000 price tag. If we added ourselves to the list, it would be for us, not for the child. For us, it felt selfish. If we couldn't get a baby one way, we would get one another way doggoneit. Please hear me: I do not think domestic infant adoption is selfish for everyone. On the contrary, I believe that it is a beautiful thing. Right now, it doesn't feel right for us.

So, what are our plans? We want to be prepared to say yes to the right situation. So, our first step is to get home study approved. Since foster care is now on the table, we will likely go through the foster care approval process and then go from there. Honestly, this is a whole new direction for us, so we are still gathering information. For those of you unfamiliar with the many types of adoption, here are a few possibilities:

  • Foster-to-adopt - Foster-parenting with the hope of adopting the child(ren). These children are not yet available for adoption, but may be soon.
  • Adoption through the foster care system - Adopting a child or children whose parental rights have already been terminated.
  • Private adoption - Adopting a child through personal connections.
  • Something totally different that we haven't thought of yet.
Originally, foster care was not an option. After wanting children for so long, we thought it would be too hard for them to come and go. It will still be hard, but we do not feel called to easy. 

I am surprised about several things:

  • Peace - We are both Type-A, ducks-in-a-row people. Domestic infant adoption through an agency seems to be the most straightforward type of adoption. When we opened the door to every other type of adoption, I would have expected us to panic. Rather, we feel a strange peace about the possibilities. 
  • Agreement - In the past, we have not been on the same page with adoption. I could have been talked into nearly any kind of adoption; whatever it takes to get kids in our home PRONTO. [Not good. Don't try that.] C has been much more cautious. Right now, we are in agreement. 
  • Excitement - Peace is one thing; excitement is an pleasant surprise. We know our family will grow in the way the Lord has planned and are fastening our seat belts for the ride. 

Please join us in prayer.

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Waiting for My Plans to Be Thwarted

God is good. His plan is perfect, far better than anything I could come up with. I can trust Him.

God is good. His plan is perfect, far better than anything I could come up with. I can trust Him.

This is my mantra lately.

I have found myself holding my breath in preparation for my plans to be thwarted. Then, I find myself frustrated with God for thwarting my plans in ways that haven't even happened yet.

Ridiculous? Yes. Reality? Also yes.

You see, we are about to officially begin the adoption process. Our first agency meeting is on Thursday, and I find myself hesitant. I am so excited about adoption and want to get there already. However, other feelings have surprised me. After transitioning from TTC to adoption, I am totally on board with adoption and not at all on board with getting pregnant. After wanting something for so long, I am shocked to find myself hoping it doesn't happen. And yet, here I am.

Many months ago, I came across an infertility blogger who immediately got back on the pill after deciding to stop treatments. At the time, I thought she was crazy. Why would you want to remove the chance of getting what you want at a time you didn't plan? Now, I get it. I think it's about control for me. I want things to go my way.

We wanted to conceive, but thus far God has thwarted that plan. Nearly four years later, we have become excited to adopt, and God better not mess it up this time. Woah! My surprising feelings are revealing a lack of faith and trust in God.

God is good. His plan is perfect, far better than anything I could come up with. I can trust Him.

My husband and I worked through my feelings over dinner last night. Mostly, I threw "what ifs" at him, and he calmly responded.

Me: "What if we start the adoption process and then find ourselves pregnant?!"
Him: "Then, we would get excited about our miracle baby."

Me: "What if people had donated money to help us pay for adoption?!"
Him: "Then, we would put the money in a fund for a future adoption. Having a biological child would not remove our desire to adopt."

Me: "But, but, but..."

And so, with much trepidation on my part, we begin the process. Please pray for us. After struggling through an abundance of disappointments and delays, we would love for something to go well and fall into place. If nothing else, we would like to walk away from the meeting on Thursday confident that we do or do not want to work with that agency.

If our family grows through adoption, God is already bringing circumstances together that will lead to a child being displaced from his or her biological family. Adoption begins with this tragedy. It is messy and sad and beautiful and happy and a picture of the gospel. Our adoption will be these things. Please join us in prayer.

God is good. His plan is perfect, far better than anything we could come up with. We can trust Him.

God is good. His plan is perfect. We can trust Him.

This post is linked up with Amateur Nester's Infertility Link Up.

Monday, September 15, 2014

Introducing Our Furry Family Member

Meet our newest and furriest family member: Louie. 

His full name is Luongo, after my husband's favorite hockey player: Roberto Luongo. 

He's a schnoodle, which is a cross between a schnauzer and a poodle. 

He has a sad and thoughtful face.

He likes to have a buddy.

He sleeps a lot.

Even a hard metal table at the vet can't distract him from his nap.

He is a lot of work, but he's a keeper.

And then there's this:

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Tuesday Tidbits (or Where Have I Been?)

Blogging has been a major part of my routine for quite some time now. As you may have noticed, I haven't posted anything new for a while. Why? I have about 2,892 posts floating around in my head, but let me give you a few tidbits about life lately:
  • June
    • Bought our first house
    • Attended a conference in Florida
  • July
    • Painted every interior wall of the house
    • Painted the brown, wooden trim white throughout the house (2 coats of primer + 2 coats of paint = approximately 45,000 hours of painting)
    • Moved out of an apartment and into the house
  • August
    • Worked on house projects
    • Learned that the adoption agency we wanted to work with has stopped accepting applications for now (which is good for the families on the waiting list, but bad for us)
    • Met our puppy
  • September
    • Enjoyed having my parents visit for a week
      • Took day trips to several locations
      • Searched thrift stores and antique shops with my mom
      • Decorated many of the bare walls in our house 
    • Brought home our puppy
      • Instantly became sleep deprived
      • Found flea on puppy (EEEWWW!!)
      • Panicked!
      • Flea-bombed, laundered, and scrubbed everything in sight
      • Took puppy outside as often as possible in hopes of keeping floor clean and dry
      • Cleaned floor over and over and over again...
      • Taught now-flealess puppy to sit and to fetch
      • Snuggled with the cutest puppy known to man
    • Learned that the informational meeting at our back-up adoption agency has been postponed another week
Whew! Is that enough to justify a blogging sabbatical? 

Like I said, I have a lot of posts floating around in my head. They will be coming at you soon, but for now, just look at this adorable little life-disrupter.