our journey to little one {part two}

*this is the second half of this story, make sure to read the first part (click here to read it)

(This update was also added to yesterday’s post: I would hope that if you have read this blog even a week, you would know I am crazy about my four kids. I am beyond grateful for each of them. My life is full and I am consistently humbled by the incredible gift it is to be their mommy. This is the story of our adoption journey, it is not the complete story of our family. It is not the story of how crazy we are about the four kids we have. It just a very small glimpse of our adoption. You can read nearly every post from the past 4 years regarding how grateful I am to be a mom and how much I relish my days with my kids…)

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So yesterday, I ended with my daughter’ first birthday…

Summer 2010: Our daughter had just turned one and we began talking about adoption again. We were a bit lost where to pick back up. One thing about the adoption world is it is constantly changing. Rules, regulations, open countries….it is a constant stream of change and everyone has an opinion. We started doing some research into a DHS (department of human services) adoption and fostering with the intention of adoption.

Fall 2010: Still trying to figure out which path to start walking down in our own adoption, I received and email from Angie, the owner of Foster Kade Designs. She was working to raise funds for her adoption (a little girl in China). She asked if she could send me a headband or clutch and host a giveaway on my blog (back before I had blog sponsors). I checked out her store ~ gorgeous. She sent me a few headbands and clutches. I began following Angie’s blog as she shared her journey to bring her little Emery home.
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Fall 2010: We were still actively trying to figure out our next step. International adoption wasn’t looking like an option. We didn’t feel God leading us towards DHS or fostering to adopt at that time. In the midst of all that, we had close friends that we watched welcome their son into their family over the past year. They had an open domestic adoption and it was beautiful. We began leaning towards pursuing an open domestic adoption as a direct result to all that we saw in their family and the family of their son’s birth mom. Though we felt we knew what direction to head, we still sensed a big “not yet” when we prayed. So we waited. We waited AGAIN for a green light.
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April 8th, 2011: Through prayer and wise counsel believed it was time to begin, we downloaded an application to start a domestic adoption

April 9th, 2011 am: began filling out that application
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a few hours later: Chris worked on the application while FireCracker ate Oreos by the window.
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a few hours later: I sat in the waiting room at pediatric urgent care for 3 hours waiting for my daughter with a hurt leg to be seen
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the next morning: After the long wait at urgent care, then a drive to the ER, and a surgery, FireCracker would spend the next 3 weeks in traction to set a broken femur. We tried to find moments of humor in all the horrible by thinking about if we had been at the point of a homestudy…please visit us at the hospital for our home visit, our one year old is in traction. We really are great parents.
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May 2011: FireCracker came home sporting a hot pink spica cast. Our application had been sent off. We had been accepted by the agency.  We were thrilled and excited to be walking forward. We had every reason to be at peace and hopeful about the process. And yet, I wasn’t. There was just something bothering me. We were finally on a great path after waiting so long. Yet, I couldn’t shake the feeling that something just wasn’t quite right. I didn’t have a peace about it. I began thinking of China again. I looked up the requirements…we met them all now. But the websites said the wait was 4-5 years.
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Monday, May 9th, 2011 am: I thought of my friend Angie and how her adoption was going much faster than 4-5 years. I finished things up for the day.

that night at 9:51 pm: After kids were in bed, I was still thinking about Angie…about China…about our adoption. I emailed her asking why her adoption was so much faster.

ten minutes later: Exactly ten minutes later she wrote me back…gushing about her daughter. I read her words. She said they were doing a “Special Needs” adoption. With the words of a mother crazy about her daughter, she shared how her little one was healthy, and strong, and beautiful. She mentioned how her daughter’s cute little cleft lip & palate placed her on the “Special Needs” list.  (The “Non-Special Needs” list in China is the 4-5 year wait). She attached a picture of little Emery, still waiting in China. The instant I opened the photo, I knew. When I saw Emery, I saw my child. In an instant, God gave me the peace and assurance I had been waiting so long to know…
Emery

May 11th, 2011: After a couple days of talking, thinking, praying, being both nervous and excited all at once ~ Chris and I made the ‘official’ decision that we would pursue a Special Needs adoption from China.

June 2011: Our beautiful girl learned to walk again and we began walking in regards to our adoption again
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And so that is the short version of how we got to where we were when I began sharing about our adoption here. We fully believe in fostering to adopt, adopting through DHS, open adoptions, special needs adoptions, non-special needs adoptions, domestic adoptions and international adoptions. We have looked into any and every option, and we have waited. We have prayed. We have cried. We have been confused. We have been anxious. We have been sad. Now, we are no longer waiting to begin. We are walking….even in the paperwork wait, we are learning to walk.

Ultimately we chose the path that we believe God has led us to through numerous ways. The right choice is different for every family. Kids need loving homes. Most people think we have just begun the adoption process. In reality, it was started a decade ago. We have waited and waited and waited. We are now possibly a few weeks or months from reading our little one’s name and seeing our little one’s picture for the first time. I can barely even write those words, it so hard to believe. We are so, so close!

It is crazy how after waiting so long to begin, now in what is kind of our final days…I am so impatient.

Let’s get a cute little bum in that chair! NOW!!!
1.12ourstory-20You can read all the posts that came after we finally got to the point of starting with China on our adoption page (click here).

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