Sunday, September 23, 2012

A year in passing....

    A year ago, on the 20th of this month we officially were accepted in to AWAA Ethiopia Program. We had planned to have infant home by the Summer of 2013 and I am ashamed to admit we just thought the idea of adopting an orphan was kind of a good deed mixed with wanting to add to our family. We felt God calling us and so if we are " christian enough" we could do it and if God adopted us, it's what we are supose to do, right?
      I mean, I'v birthed two babies and raised a son, this would just make us "the modern family"  and why not just try adoption for a spin....[rolling eyes at myeslf now ]...little did I know how much God was going to work in both of our hearts thru this journey. 

   First, those were all naive but decent reasons to start our process but once we started preparing we realized adoption is so much more than that for us. Adoption is about giving a child a forever family that loves them unconditionally expecting nothing in return. It is the way God loves us. International adoption is about an immediate band- aid fix to bleeding orphan epidemic that is a result of poverty and desperation. Ethiopain adoption is about honoring a birth country and a culture that is thousands of years older than mine. It's about learning and sharing and showing respect to a country that is kind and proud but has suffered pain and hunger for much too long.  
   I have poured over my bible this year and found verse after verse of following God's will and trusting in him. Prov. 3:5 Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding. Romans 8:25 But if we hope for what we do not yet have, we wait for it patiently. Hebrews 4:16 Let us then approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of neec.

 So we started opening our eyes and listening to our hearts seeing Adoption as what it truly is. We began to research ways of making a difference in the lives of these children and their families. We began sharing what we were learning with our friends (thank you for still being my friends!) and with our family. We dug deeper into why God called us to adopt and our pre-concieved ideas and how they lined up with reality. All this time we still thought an infant, and then....

two boys and a choir that forever changed our family. God used these children to open a part of us that was so afraid and scared. We read and prayed and researched and prayed some more. We saw the need for older children and sibling adoption and changed our request to reflect that.

Our friends and family joined us in our fundraiser and orphan awareness event, showering us with so much love and support.

So now we continue to learn and grown and prepare. Knowing an idea of what lies ahead and where our child comes from. Remembering that we have been called by God to Look after the Orphans and the Widows in their distress (James 1:27) and for us that mean to adopt. Focusing not on ourselves and fufilling our own desires but reminded that this journey is about our child and what they need.


Sunday, September 16, 2012

Coffee with Karyn and other memories from Empowered to Connect

My adoption buddy Erin and I packed up and traveled to Nashville, TN for a two day conference on connecting to children from hard places. My brain has completely turned to mush as I try to process all the great things that I learned at Empowered to Connect. I'll spare a few of you and make a separate blog post about what all was covered.  

Dr. Karyn Purvis (my new bestie- but more about that in a minute) is the author of The Connected Child and has done years of brain research to aide families and therapists to have a deeper connection and create attachment in children coming from traumatic backgrounds. If you have an adopted child or are a foster care parent, this is a MUST read! 

Now, if I haven't lost you yet in this entry, let me tell you this was also an amazing weekend to connect with other adoptive families.


Here are all the AWAA girls that attended the conference. We all ate together for a yummy dinner and shared our stories then met for lunch to process all that we had learned. So nice to have that community of believers and fellow adoptive mom's to share with.

Now.....I do have to say, Dr. Purvis and I are like best buds since we had coffee together. Some Debby Downers nay sayers people may comment and call our "breakfast date" with Dr. Purvis aka my buddy Karyn a simple hello, but I am here to say it was so much more :) Erin and I were having coffee and Dr. Purvis walks by in our hotel lobby, stops and says hi to us (I happened to be wearing a Show Hope Shirt!) and asks us about our adoption. I somehow blurted out that I loved her and told my husband I wanted to marry her  .  We were able to have a few minutes to talk with her and ask her some questions. She is an awesome woman and recovering from breast cancer. She is such a great impact in vunerable children and thier lives- will you please pray for her recovery?

We headed back home late Saturday night and had a great time....until my darn throat problem surfaced and poor Erin spent the next 7 hours driving thur the dark in the rain listening to me throw-up and spit while I tried to breath through my choking, stopping every hour to get me a new barf bag. Two more hours later, a change of clothes and an ER trip with my husband, I got a soft muscles relaxer and barium x-ray made me a better Amanda. Now I just sounds like Kermit the Frog and our car will never be the same! Ahhhh, the memories, Erin Jay- you are heaven sent !  

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

I have died every day, Waiting for you...

Darlin' don't be afraid
I have loved you for a thousand years....I'll love you for a thousand more.

Today was hard.

A compelation of a lot of things and events but I was breaking today. I miss our child(ren) and this song wrapped up exactly what I feel.