Hey y’all! First and foremost, we are so very grateful for your support, love, partnership and interest in our adoption journey thus far! We have a new update, and we are so appreciative for your involvement in our story.
As most of you know by now, we have had three matches since September, and each time the birth mother decided to parent the baby. While we are still coping with some of the loss and devastation from those decisions, we know, without a shadow of a doubt, that somehow we were used in those stories and in those families as an instrument of God’s grace and love. We interceded for those babies and mamas something fierce, and how can we not trust that those prayers did not go unanswered? We feel confident that those mothers will never forget how much they were prayed for during those last few weeks of pregnancy and childbirth.
As we neared the summer, our home study was coming due for it’s annual update. Lots of little tiny hints and encouragements started showing up that maybe we should consider doing something different. We started praying for clarity and direction, to see if this was the time to change directions or stay the course. We spoke with friends who had adopted, friends who were also trying to adopt, our small group, our caseworker, and each other ad nausea about whether all the doors being shut on domestic adoption was a sign or not. I fasted during lent and prayed on a schedule, trying to discern God’s will. Honestly, we didn’t get a clear answer. But we did feel like all of our reasons to not adopt internationally didn’t matter any more, and that was answer enough.
When we first started this journey, we chose domestic adoption really because it felt like international was going to be too hard with our work schedules and a toddler. There may have been other reasons, but we don’t remember them now. The more we started exploring the option, the more we realized that it was not only doable, but had a lot of the things we prayed for our son or daughter. For starters, if we adopted a child from another country, that child would be already waiting to be adopted, whether he or she was abandoned, orphaned, or any other possible scenario. These children are in desperate need of a loving family, and are waiting to find that- we want so badly to answer the call to care for the orphans and the widows, and felt especially drawn to situations where the child was waiting. Eureka. Additionally, most of these children are older, so we could adopt a toddler 1-2 years younger than Punkadoodle, and hopefully create a close bond between the siblings and not have a large age gap- something else we always prayed about. Less importantly but still notable, we will not start this process and not end up with a failed match- we will bring our son or daughter home at the end of this journey. We started looking at our agency’s international programs, especially the time in country, visits required, length of process, cost of process, and age of children available. There were 3 that appealed to us. After talking with several people and praying without ceasing, we made a decision.
We are so excited to share that we are going to adopt a toddler from China! Most likely this will take place summer of 2018, which gives us time to prepare, save up more money for the increased budget and moneys lost during our last failed match, and get Punkadoodle a passport. There are still challenges to this new direction, for sure, but we feel a lot of peace about this decision, and that the past 18 months have not been in vain. We know that there will be lots of questions, and hopefully those will be answered in future blog posts or in person, but for now, we ask two things. First, will you continue to pray for us on this journey? Pray for our son or daughter, who is likely in an orphanage or care facility right now, hopefully receiving love and attention and care from the people working with him or her. Pray for his or her caretakers, doctors, and agency representatives, that he or she would be advocated for and find his or her way to our heart soon and without any more trauma. And pray for us as we prepare to travel to China with Punkadoodle and integrate this unique and special person into our family and culture, all while retaining his or her roots. Second, will you pray for the financial aspect? We lost almost all of our personal savings on the last match failure, and are trying to recoup those losses and come up with an additional amount. God has been so faithful thus far, mostly through your oh-so-generous donations, but we will be applying for even more grants and creating even more pallet wood signs, and we covet your prayers for success in those two endeavors, and any more that come our way!
We so appreciate your prayers and support, and ask that you keep up with the journey here on the blog! We look forward to introducing each of you to our son or daughter!!!
Can’t wait to add another sweet little smile to the fam!
I’ve got my ticket for the long way ‘round/ The one with the prettiest of views/ It’s got mountains, it’s got rivers, it’s got sights to give you shivers/ But it sure would be prettier with you – Anna Kendrick
Grace and Peace,
Matt, Stevie, and Punkadoodle