There is a baby in the crib next to me

This was written almost six months ago, but I didn’t know if I should press publish or not.. Too much of his story? Fearful it won’t be final? But then I realized this story is my testament to God’s work in my life… I’ve tried to leave out some of the details of my son’s story so he can be the one to choose to tell it when he gets older.

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No really there is…for real. I couldn’t even make up this story if I wanted to. Do you remember my last post… over four months ago, well… it’s been an amazing whirlwind few months.  We had found out our wait time for adoption and it was longer than we thought it would be when we originally started the adoption process.  I’m in an adoption group with women whose whole process took 9 months… but I also know some who’ve had to wait five years, so I shouldn’t have been surprised when our wait looks like it’ll be somewhere in the middle just closer to the longer side. But I was sad and disappointed. Lately, God had been building an ache in me for this child. I wanted to meet him, or even just know something about him. I felt like I was ready, that I was almost hurting waiting for this child and he wasn’t going to be coming… for years.  I was crying at church worship and thinking about it all the time.

But you see God is amazing that way. He prepares your heart for what is coming, and sometimes he works through tough times to get you ready for joy. So I went to my adoption group whining about the wait, complaining about feeling so sure that God had called me to this, so why would he make us wait so long…. Then one of the women talked about knowing a little boy born prematurely that needed an adoptive family. I blurted out – what like I could adopt him? And she said the word… yes. Wait what. For real. God, wait is this what you want, is this really going to happen? Is this just me wanting it so bad? A million things whirled through my mind. I cried, we all prayed. I went home and had a very serious conversation with my husband. Now imagine how it was for him, we’ve been in this adoption process for over two years and had been praying about it for two years before that. We’ve notorized and signed what seems like thousands of papers from three different states and have gone through lots of trainings, how could I then make an adoption match at a meeting?  We talked, we prayed, we waited. We knew one thing for sure that we didn’t want to do anything that would affect our adoption in progress, but because it was such a time off we seemed to be okay with that. Were we prepared to take care of a preemie and anything that might entail? Was this our son too? An infant – we were never expecting that… or prepared.

We were always talking and praying and trying to find out every piece of information we could. Oh how I grew to love this little boy even if he wasn’t going to be ours he was on my heart. We decided YES… and then so much happened, all God’s path taking us to a place where we would be comfortable fostering and now we are his foster parents. All the details had God written in them and they are all part of his story so we aren’t going to share those. We said we never wanted to foster we couldn’t handle it, our daughters couldn’t handle it… but it worked and we are handling it.
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He has been with us for almost 6 months and I visited him in the hospital about 7 times before that. I learned everything about him.  I held him, learned how to give him a bath, how to read his monitor, how to get him to take his binkie and he has learned how to win our hearts. I was wrong to think my daughters couldn’t handle it. They were like.. okay, cool. They pray for his birthmom daily. They adore him. I realized their idea of the orphan was very much the international adoption picture and they couldn’t wrap their minds around this at first. Orphans shouldn’t have moms – that doesn’t seem right to them. They couldn’t reconcile it at first and we got the book “Maybe Days” that really helped and we would just talk in general about why kids could be in foster care. It broke our hearts for the foster care system. A system we will now be involved with for the rest of our lives in someway or another as we have learned of the needs there. We are all in.

We are learning how to survive with an infant and homeschool and work and somehow make food (really we are relying on the incredible generosity of friends). I forgot how great babies smell and how fun it is to push a stroller, I could totally do without his monitor, but as I type that I know I would be a wreck putting him to bed without the confidence of knowing he’s totally okay.  My daughters have definitely had to do without extra attention, quality schooling, and outings, but they are loving every bit of this. They will sit and hold him for an hour at a time. They’ve both fed him his bottles and my youngest always picks out his clothes and puts the diapers in the diaper champ thing. They are invaluable in his care, and it’s brought us all closer even though it seems like there is less time. There is more together time just sitting and talking and cuddling, even if we all have to whisper.

The point of this post is that I think sometimes when things are feeling hard, check out your heart to see what God is doing in there… He maybe preparing you for something amazing.

 

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