Friday, January 10, 2014

Adoption Update

Well, here we wait.

As you know by now we did not travel to Africa mid December to get Easton. The current status is that we have EVERYTHING we need for him, including his visa, to come home except ONE paper. The exit letter that says he can walk through the airport with us to head home. Currently the country is not issuing those letters. I won't go into how we and many other families feel about that. Possibly insert some curse words here, followed by crying, some numbness, and pleading with God and that might give you a tiny idea. Right now I just can't even express to you how horrible it is to finally be "at the end" after three years and now to just have our kids wait more.

I know in my brain that God knows what He is doing and that it is good. My heart is lagging behind at a snail pace and I'm certain that the only time it will catch up is when we are on a plane headed home with our kids. I am determined though, to still seek and find what God would want for us to continue to learn as we continue to wait. Not to waste these days in sorrow and worry but to thrive because we see a bit more of God and His abilities to carry our hearts which lag behind our brains.

There are rumors about when these forsaken letters may be issued but no one really knows for sure and we've all learned not to believe a single rumor until we see it with our own glazed over eyeballs.

From my small view the only good thing about this wait is that as our son waits, our daughter's court documents are almost done. Possibly, IF her paperwork catches up and IF her investigation goes quickly MAYBE she would be able to come home when he does. The idea of separating them even for a short while makes me pretty sick to my stomach now that I see them looking more and more like brother and sister in pictures. Those are some huge IFs and MAYBEs, but you just never know what could happen. 

In the meantime our kids wait and we wait and every month of waiting cost over a thousand dollars in foster care cost. To say I'm frustrated is the biggest understatement of the year. Though in my frustration there is peace. Somehow. Well, it's either peace or numbness or I'm just flat out delusional. We have had some wonderful people give money to keep things going. We've been greatly humbled by some recent gifts. But yeah, in all honesty, I'm so frustrated that that money is going towards foster care payments instead of plane tickets. I need to remember that the money is God's. We decided a long time ago that if there was money in the adoption fund that we would obediently pay the next thing needed to keep it going and that's what we continue to do whether it's another month of foster care or a plane ticket.

Please keep praying.

Thursday, November 14, 2013


So most of you who are FB friends probably already know the good news we received Tuesday. Our son's investigation is complete!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! This is the step that we were told should take 3-6 months.

It took eight.

Yes, I can hear you cheering! I have been cheering and praising God even though now I'm kinda freaking out and there are knots in my stomach. I went to donate, I mean sell, my plasma yesterday and my pulse was too high so I had to just sit for a little bit to see if it would slow down to normal. Thank you God! I just sat there with my eyes closed, took deep breaths, and prayed for God to calm me not only so I could donate, I mean sell, my plasma, but because I knew I needed to again surrender to God and rest in the peace He gives.  It's all fear of the unknown and the what ifs. I'm constantly asking God to calm my fears, to help me see the bigger picture, and give us strength to keep striving to obey. After all, our prayer has always been that no matter how hopeless the wait may feel that we would continue walking (or baby stepping) toward the goal until He shut the door completely. Yesterday the door cracked open a little more! We have a foot in the door instead of just a few of our long skinny white toes.

So what does investigation complete mean? This means that the Embassy has found that our son is in fact a true orphan and is able to be adopted. There is obviously more to our son's story but that will be protected out of respect to him and the hardships he has had to endure. That topic is another whole blog post though.

Investigation complete also means that he can now have his visa interview appointment which is scheduled for November 27th. Once his visa is issued we COULD be traveling to Africa soon after. As of right now we are GUESSING that we would travel mid December.

The fear about the trip that creeps in is that we really don't know what will happen once we get there and how long we will be there. I think in my last post I told you about how the country has stopping issuing exit letters with the exception that if you have certain document before a certain date. We have that document but that doesn't mean it will be smooth sailing. We are hearing of some families that have only had to be there a few weeks but others up to 6+ weeks and some having to return home without their children. There seems to be no rhyme or reason to it, so traveling will be yet another giant step in faith! Either way, we will get to meet our children and that is exciting stuff!

Our daughter's paperwork is still not done but we are assuming that we will get to meet her, maybe even have her with us, while we are in country! We will know more about that later. I feel so sick thinking about leaving her behind.

No matter how long the trip, I kinda feel like puking when I think about leaving our bio kids for that long. I think the longest I've ever been away from our kids was like four nights...maybe. Jason is the pro at being away from home so I'm so thankful we will be together! It won't be an easy trip and missing the kids will make it even harder, not to mention that when we return our family will be totally different. I keep asking God to give me peace and help we see it all in the big picture. The amount of time away is a very small time when compared to our family's life span. It also helps knowing that our bio kids will be in VERY good hands with Jason's parents and I'm so grateful for facetime and skype!

Soooooo.... what now? Well now I guess we start gathering together things we will need for our trip. The more prepared we can get now the less stressed we will feel right before leaving.... I hope. We will know more details after we have a phone conference with our agency on December 3. What we take will also depend on where we stay. Where we stay will depend on how much money we have and what is available at the time of travel. Some of you have asked how you can help with practical needs. I will try to post a list soon for those that want to help in that way.

We are also still in need of funds for the cost of the trip. Being in the country is expensive with the flights and high cost of hotel/apartment and food. If you are interested in helping in the area of giving funds, here is a great place to do it tax deducible!

Thank you everyone for the continued support through prayers, gifts, and your encouragement! Please keep praying!

Monday, November 4, 2013

Adoption Update

Adoption Update...What does that even mean anymore? I wish I had an awesome update for you but here we sit still waiting.
In my last post a month and a half ago you learned that there had been a big misunderstanding and that Mr Easton was actually NOT through the investigation process. I still can not publicly go into details here. Many of you who know us well, know the whole story of the mistake and how much of a roller coaster ride that was. Now we try to continue to move forward.
I can tell you that the embassy of Easton's birth country is still trying to unfold his past and discover his orphan status. After him being matched with us and waiting in foster care for a YEAR AND THREE MONTHS, in our minds he IS adoptable and is already our son in our hearts but the embassy wants more solid evidence of his orphan status. So we wait while they investigate. Insert gritting teeth and maybe a few curse words here . . . and then confession and learning even more surrender to God.

SURRENDER has become a big word in my head. Surrender, peace, trust, rest, and OBEDIENCE. I saw a saying on Facebook somewhere, I don't even remember where, but it's on the fridge now. "The victims of injustice don't need our spasms of passion, but our long obedience in one direction." That is exactly what this feels like. Long obedience. The Bible talks a lot about how if we love God then we will obey Him. We've decided that until God closes the door completely, then we continue to step forward in obedience. Sometimes that looks a lot like standing still. Sometimes that looks like insanity, but even in these uncertain times we are still actually moving forward. That moving forward may not be a trip to Africa just yet. Each day of waiting is another opportunity to surrender these adoptions to God. Another chance to move forward in our knowledge of who God is.  It's another day to be reminded that mountains are moved at the time He tells them to move. They are not moved by our worry. There is much to be learned in waiting. Many times it may feel like a waste but I know it is not. I don't think we are not allowed to be frustrated in the wait. If it was easy then how would we ever learn to surrender? It's up to us to choose to not allow the frustrations form bitterness in our hearts.

As of right now we are hopeful. Many of you know that recently the country decided not to issue exit letters in order for kids to leave the country with their adopting parents. They have also released that IF you had a certain letter (we'll call it the B letter) before a certain date, that you would be eventually approved to exit the country with your adopted child. We have that letter!!! So we feel hopeful that once Easton's investigation is passed and he receives his visa then whenever we do travel that he will be able to come home with us... eventually. I will not stand solidly on that but it gives us hope! SO, if his investigation is finished soon then we COULD be leaving in the next few months.

We are still waiting on Miss Josephine's court documents. The last I heard they were only waiting for one piece of paper work. Then we wait for translations of those documents, then apply for her I600, then her investigation starts. And at this point we don't know how the country will deal with exit letters when she is passed through everything else and just waiting to come home.

Please pray we hear good news soon about Easton's investigation! Please pray that the country begins issuing more exit letters. There are lots of families there waiting to bring their kids home. Some who even had to return home without their children. Pray for Josephine's court documents to be finished up soon. Pray for the safety of our kids and that they stay healthy as they wait. Also please pray that God continues to provide the funds to keep this going. He's brought us so far! We just recently paid our last payment to our agency, however, there is still foster care cost for each month that our kids wait and we are running lower and lower every month. There will still be all the travel cost in the future as well. I am not worried because God has already showed us His provision and if He wants this to come to completion that He will continue on. We did recently send in an application for the Show Hope grant! Wowser that was a lot of work! It will be some time before we hear anything on that.

Thank you everyone for continuing to pray and support us. I'm sure it's difficult to continue to believe that anything will ever happen as you watch us wait and wait and wait. So those of you who continue to encourage us along the way, you are greatly appreciated and loved!

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Adoption update

HUGE misunderstandings on the adoption front but can't go into details. Easton is actually not quite through investigation. Hopefully soon though. Keep praying. I'm kinda falling apart at the seams at the moment. Of to take a very needed nap.

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Adoption Update we go.
I'm not a fan of asking for money but like I've said before adoption is God's idea and with that in mind I have to push aside my pride. So here ya go. If you are wanting to help us bring home our babies here is one way you can give a tax deducible donation!

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Adoption update!!!

Hello everyone! I have awesome, awesome news to share!!!! Today we got news that we've been waiting for SIX months to hear! SIX MONTHS!
I called the embassy today and got word that Mr. Easton's investigation has passed!!! It looks like we may be traveling early November sometime!

It is hard to describe how this wait has impacted myself and the rest of my family. It may sound odd, but as horrible the waiting was for SOMETHING to happen, it has also been a very precious time of submission to God. There have been times when I've wanted to give up and I was sorely relying on God to comfort and inspire me into obedience.

Today I am tearful. Tears of relief for one. That we are through one of the biggest part of the waiting. Tears over a great God that knows the whole story. Tears also for what is ahead, because although we are through this one giant step, there are still steps ahead that are unknown. Once Mr. Easton's visa is issued we will travel two weeks later if all goes well. Right now, we don't have any idea how God is going to supply the money to travel there to bring him home. No idea at all! That is kinda . . . no, really scary but also pretty exciting! In the days and weeks to come I will share more specific prayer request and some practical needs as well. Keep praying!!!!

A fellow adopting momma, who is also still waiting to bring home her babies, shared this poem the other day.  It has really touched my heart and I've read is several times I find myself in tears of joy over a God that desires to paint every detail of our lives. As the artist He knows His desire for the final work of art. The same God that holds massive stars in the sky also cares that we cling to Him for all our needs not because He thinks of us as so pathetic, but because He wants to us to know Him and all His glory and in turn we get to rejoice in the wonder of His perfect ways, not ours!

by Russell Kelfer
Desperately, helplessly, longingly, I cried;
Quietly, patiently, lovingly, God replied.
I pled and I wept for a clue to my fate . . .
And the Master so gently said, “Wait.”

“Wait? you say wait?” my indignant reply.
“Lord, I need answers, I need to know why!
Is your hand shortened? Or have you not heard?
By faith I have asked, and I’m claiming your Word.

“My future and all to which I relate
Hangs in the balance, and you tell me to wait?
I’m needing a ‘yes’, a go-ahead sign,
Or even a ‘no’ to which I can resign.

“You promised, dear Lord, that if we believe,
We need but to ask, and we shall receive.
And Lord I’ve been asking, and this is my cry:
I’m weary of asking! I need a reply.”

Then quietly, softly, I learned of my fate,
As my Master replied again, “Wait.”
So I slumped in my chair, defeated and taut,
And grumbled to God, “So, I’m waiting for what?”

He seemed then to kneel, and His eyes met with mine . . .
and He tenderly said, “I could give you a sign.
I could shake the heavens and darken the sun.
I could raise the dead and cause mountains to run.

“I could give all you seek and pleased you would be.
You’d have what you want, but you wouldn’t know Me.
You’d not know the depth of my love for each saint.
You’d not know the power that I give to the faint.

“You’d not learn to see through clouds of despair;
You’d not learn to trust just by knowing I’m there.
You’d not know the joy of resting in Me

When darkness and silence are all you can see.

“You’d never experience the fullness of love
When the peace of My spirit descends like a dove.
You would know that I give, and I save, for a start,
But you’d not know the depth of the beat of My heart.

“The glow of my comfort late into the night,
The faith that I give when you walk without sight.
The depth that’s beyond getting just what you ask
From an infinite God who makes what you have last.

“You’d never know, should your pain quickly flee,
What it means that My grace is sufficient for thee.
Yes, your dearest dreams overnight would come true,
But, oh, the loss, if you missed what I’m doing in you.

“So, be silent, my child, and in time you will see
That the greatest of gifts is to truly know me.
And though oft My answers seem terribly late,
My most precious answer of all is still . . . Wait.”


Saturday, August 24, 2013

Wrestling and Surrendering

From my daily devotional reading, Streams In The Desert. I've re-read this a ton this week. It's right on. Exactly how we feel nearing the end and not knowing how and when God will provide ALL of what is needed to bring our kids home.