Sunday, September 30, 2007

What We Did This Weekend

I have written about my adoption process up until this point, and will continue to do so, although I doubt it will be as extensive. I have done that because my family is very large, they live across the country, and it is very hard to keep in contact with all of them.

However, I do have other passions, such as college football, particularly SEC football!

Yesterday it was Georgia vs. Old Miss @ home. And yes, we won. Yea!

I don't usually go to the games because we work all day long beforehand.

These are my employees getting ready for the rush. It can get pretty crazy.

And these are our customers...well, not all of them at the same time. Not everyone drinks Coca Cola before the game!

The other thing that happened was on Friday night, when Lucas decided to go to the movies with his friends and came back with different colored hair! I hope they did not do this while in the theater!

Saturday, September 29, 2007

The End And The Beginning

For a rare moment in this journey, I was finally being presented with a logical choice. And it felt strange!
To choose these girls, to adopt these girls, was the logical choice. They were a good age, they were healthy, they needed a home, they were beautiful, and they were even well behaved! They were obviously intelligent. My goodness, what else could one ask for?

I had to ask my heart. Can I love these girls? Do I already love these girls?

The answer was yes, but wisdom has taught me not to make a lifetime decision on impulse. And I was not used to logic all of a sudden being introduced into what had so far been mostly an emotional and spiritual experience.

So we just enjoyed our day together, and yes, we really did enjoy it! We swam and ate and played and swam some more and slept. When we woke up, it was dark and raining hard. We slept so hard we missed dinner. We went out to the courtyard and found Jen and Wil. Jen and I decided to brave the storm and take the kids back to Marie’s. When we got to the street, a torrential stream was shooting down hill. With no drainage, we were looking at a true flash flood. Living in the South, I have seen them before (and we do have drainage in Georgia, TYVM!) but not one like this. Jen and I decided to brave it.

OK, in retrospect, this was probably dumb, and I won’t do it again. Not only were we bombarded with Haitian road debris (eeewwwwww!) the force was so fierce it took all that I had to hold onto Widmina, and that was scary. It lifted her right off of her feet and I felt it when her shoes were whisked away. She was also very unhappy about losing her shoes, and informed Marie immediately when we finally arrived at the back door looking like sopping rats. Marie had a real good laugh at our expense, and we did look pretty pitiful. We sat around for awhile and Jen said her goodbyes, since she was leaving in the morning. I asked Marie if I could see the girls again the next day and also if I could have moment with her the next morning, which she agreed to. By the time we walked back to Walls, the flood had ceased and the street looked like a street, not a rushing river, as it had an hour earlier! When I got back to my room, I took a cold shower (only kind available, but it’s OK because it is so hot all the time!) and slathered myself with a bottle of antibacterial that Jen had given me, hoping it would deter any germs I might have picked up in the Haitian Road Flood of July 2007! And I decided to sleep on my decision. I knew I would know when I awoke in the morning if my decision was correct.
I woke up feeling correct, logical, and heart bound, all at the same time. I almost felt like I was making the (correct) decision to get married. This was certainly as monumental, if not more so! I expected, and maybe even wanted to feel swept away at this point, but that is not how it was for me. I just knew that these were my girls.

When I got to Marie's, I sat on the porch and waited. Pretty soon Marie came out and sat down with me. She is a very gracious person, BTW. I told her I wished to adopt Widmina and Lovely. I know she was happy, and I think she was relieved. Marie cares so much for all of these children!!! We briefly discussed financial matters, and she said she would take my dossier to 1st Legal the next morning. By the time my girls came out to the porch to meet me, I think the word had already traveled that I was to be their Mama. I say this because we had a huge language barrier, but I knew in short time that they knew. They acted more confidently and they became much more relaxed. They started acting like real kids!

We went back to the guesthouse, and for the most part repeated our routine. It is so hot in Haiti. Even hotter than Georgia! Swimming is what you want to do all day long! But that makes you tired, so then you have to rest. When we went back to the room later, I asked them in my deformed Kreyol if they knew I was their Mama and they of course, said “wi”, so I wasn’t sure if it was because they did know or if it was because they just say yes to everything. But Lovely called me Mama later in conversation so I was pretty sure they got it.

They got into everything in my suitcase and tried it out. Then politely put it back. These kids are so curious. I had crayons and drawing pads, and I was happy to see they knew how to hold a crayon and scribble. But when I wrote their names for them, there was no recognition, and that made me sad. I had brought some toys to give, in tote bags. They had fun with that. I was laying on the bed heat exhausted with one eye open as I watched Widmina try out every lipstick in my makeup bag (I did not care) then put it all back very carefully. I watched her play with her toys. Then I watched Wid put everything I had given her back in her tote bag, take it over to my suitcase and put it inside, and zip it up with the all the finality of only having moments to catch our cab on the way to the airport. Little sister watched carefully and then unzipped my suitcase, added her tote bag, and did her best to rezip.


I realized Widmina thought they were going home with me now. And she was more than ready. And I did not have the means to tell her differently. I was so sad that she was going to have to suffer this disappointment.

I left it up to Marie; I had no choice, since I could not communicate. I told Marie later what happened, and she knew she had to tell them it was not to be so, at least not now. Marie thought about it for about 30 seconds and called them over to her. I have no idea what she said, although I know she said it gently. Widmina broke away and started walking away from us. Marie called her sternly “Widmina!” and said something else in kreyol. Wid came back, listened some more, and then Marie sent them off with their friends, and they showed off their new toys. Lovely, being 4 years old, just went with the flow. She seemed absolutely unphased. But I was worried about the next day, and particularly Widmina, since I was leaving. I was not sure how they were going to take it after this episode.

It turned out fine. I went over to Marie’s for about an hour before I was leave for the airport. Violette (head nanny) acknowledged me when I walked thru the kitchen, and I indicated I would be on the porch, waiting. Pretty soon the girls came out. The nannies had made a point of putting the elastics I had given them in their hair. Widmina seemed over her upset, she was very calm and back to herself. They sat on my lap for awhile, and was talking to them in English, so they did not understand much of what I was saying. They did know I was leaving though, I could tell, so somebody must have told them. Other kids started trickling out onto the porch, first a few little ones, then several of the older ones. Pretty soon they all started to play. They started a game I took to be a version of hide and seek and tag. They were running from one end of the porch to the other. Soon Widmina and Lovely jumped off my lap and joined in. Then the kids switched to another game that looked like a combo of London Bridge and Ring around the Rosie, singing the whole time. I found out later it is a French game called “The Medallion of the Rose”. They ended by sitting on the floor in front of me singing some more songs, and clapping, they knew them all by heart. It was really an amazing and spontaneous performance. After that the girls came and sat on my lap again, and all the kids started to teach me how to count in Kreyol. Then one of the older girls, Loveline, started counting in English, so she and I switched to teaching them to count in English. We would say a number and the kids would shout it out. I started telling Widmina and Lovely that it was time for me to go, but that I would be back to see them when I could and I would miss them. I pulled out my cell phone and indicated I would call them soon. Loveline started translating to them in Kreyol. It was great! She was the only child I met there that could speak any English. Her mom thinks she picked it up from hanging around adoptive parents when they come to visit. As difficult as it was, I knew it was getting to be time for me to go. I was starting to feel very emotional and I did not want to lose it in front of these kids. With a very heavy heart I finished my goodbyes and walked back to the guesthouse. It was the very best and worst part of my day.

It is a strange to come home after an experience like this. First to re-enter the world as we know it, that is to say, leaving the 3rd world and coming back to the good ole USA. Then to experience falling in love with your kids and leaving them behind, knowing the journey to bring them home will be long. Leaving them there feels terrible. I felt like an emotional astronaut, reentering Earth’s atmosphere. The first few days back I was really tired but highly energized because I was just over the moon. Then, a deep depression set in, and I started to feel very withdrawn. Dealing with the reality of a long, emotionally tough road ahead, and just missing my girls. Eventually I evened out again, and now I am just dealing with it as best I can. Most days are fine, but sometimes it just gets really hard. I miss them so much, and they are on my mind all the time. Even though they are well cared for by orphanage standards, and they have friends there, and they have each other, they are still in an orphanage. Surrounded by people, but a lonely place to be. I see it sometimes on many of the kid’s faces in the pictures that get sent back by other visiting adoptive parents. Sometimes I see it on my kids.
After regaining my emotional balance, I decided to channel my energy into doing all I need to do to keep them connected to me, as well as doing the things that need to be done to get them home. For me that includes but is not limited to:

*Working on needed remodeling projects to create more and better space in my (little) house

*Sending the girls packages and photos, via other visiting PAC parents

*Learning at least a little Kreyol; ideally learning a lot! Learning about Haitian culture past and present

*Continuing to educate myself and my family about adoption, attachment, transition, transracial, and education issues

*Educating myself about hair and skin care which is 180 degrees different than mine and my bio kids

*Keeping myself mentally, physically, spiritually, emotionally, and financially fit

On September 5, the girls entered ISBER, which is essentially the government agency in Haiti that examines your dossier and approves the adoption. It is the next step after first legal and the heart of the adoption process. It is where the files become legitimized. Right now it is taking about 4-5 months to move through this all important phase. After that the files move into second legal/Parquet, which is where the adoption becomes official. Then it is the immigration and visa phase, which our own government is obviously involved in. The whole process seems to be taking approximately 11-13 months from the time the dossier is submitted, so I’m likely looking at sometime in June-September to get them home. Because of the instability of the Haitian government, any of these current timelines could change at any time, so going through this requires flexibility and faith on my part.

In the meantime, I am planning my next visit to Haiti. I can hardly wait!!!

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

The Incredible Journey of the Heart---Part II

How I put my dossier together in 30 days, including my home study is a story by itself.
Not one I am going to tell at this time although it was humorous sometimes, as well as frustrating and exhausting. Let me just say I was determined. I had been denying myself, and I could not be denied any longer! I had a lot of help and support from the PAC group online as well as my friends, some family members, and co-workers, although I’m quite sure they thought I had gone insane! My social worker was fabulous. I had no idea if I could really make my July 15 deadline, but all I can say is, I just went for it. I also knew the only way to possibly make it was to hand deliver it myself which was OK with me because I still had to decide who to adopt! And I knew that for me, this life-altering decision would be best made in person. From where I live, Haiti is not that far away. Also, again, I give all the credit to God because logically, it’s hardly possible to do a dossier with home study in 30 days or less, and I know His hand was in it the entire time.
I had two little girls (sisters) in mind. They were a good age for me, 4 and 5.

But I knew better than to get too attached to the pictures of them, because they were not yet living at the crèche and several people’s adoptions had either become precarious or fallen through about that time, for whatever reasons. And it seemed more much more prevalent with the kids that were not yet at the orphanage. However, they were so darling; it was difficult not to dream. That dream got me through my rush dossier, and I did finish it all on Friday, July 13th when my documents came back from the Haitian Consulate in Chicago. My flight to PAP via Miami was scheduled for 6am on Sunday morning, and I did have to pull an all nighter to tie up lots of loose ends in all areas of my life before I left. So I arrived Sunday in Port-au-Prince around noon, with no sleep. It took so long to find my luggage I was sure it was lost, but I finially located it, made it through customs and found the driver for Wall’s International Guesthouse.

After I got to Walls, I met up with another mom from the PAC group that was there, and she took me across the street to the orphanage to meet Marie, the director. Did I mention it was hot?!!!! Here I was, sitting inside trying to be polite, sweating buckets. It was probably only 2 o’clock in the afternoon, but with the heat and no sleep, I felt like I was melting! After she agreed to find out about the sisters for me, who were still living with their mom, she gently suggested I go get some rest and come back later, with my dossier. So I did exactly that. When I came back in the evening, she said that Caleb, her assistant had gone to look for the girls, but it turned out that they had gotten into a dangerous situation of some sort and they had moved away suddenly with their mother, and no one knew where they were or even if they were still in Port-au-Prince. So my cautious intuition had been correct, but still, it was disappointing. We talked then about the right fit for me and who was available for adoption. I knew there were two sisters living there that were in the age range I wanted and they needed a home. In fact, I had seen the older girl in the crowd of kids that was swarming around the courtyard when I had been there earlier. She was not like the majority of the other kids that run straight to you for all the attention they can get! She sort of hung out on the perimeter of the crowd, but I couldn’t miss her. The pictures I’d seen of her on the web site were attractive; however in reality she was absolutely stunning. I don’t mean that in any superficial way, it’s just a fact.

So when Marie mentioned this pair I said of course I was interested, and we sat on the porch (where it really is a bit cooler) as she looked over my dossier. Then Dada came out with Widmina and Lovely, the girls we had been discussing, and they were very shy. They probably would have hung back but Dada was crouching next to them, coaching them on what to do! She would tell Widmina to kiss me on the cheek, and tried to get them to call me “Mama”. It startled me, because she was so bold about it (laughing the whole time, she is such a gorgeous girl herself) but of course I realized that she really wanted the best for them. The girls were very polite as well as reserved; I felt that none of this was easy for them. I know they did not understand a word I said to them, but Widmina would just say “wi” in a little voice to everything I said to her in English and Lovely let her big sister do all the talking. Marie pronounced my dossier “good” which meant complete, and said she would take it to First Legal the next day. About this time, a mom showed up at the door with her 2 daughters, who were probably about 6 and 4 years of age. They were getting their picture taken and then came in to where we were all seated, where the mother, in Kreyol began extolling her daughters’ virtues to me. I could not understand a word she was saying, but it was very obvious that she was trying to get me to choose them.( I guessed that when Caleb had gone out earlier looking for the original sisters, the word had gotten out that there was a ‘blanc” woman looking to adopt 2 girls. Or maybe Marie told her somehow.) The older girl was actually flirting with me, and then her mother brought her over to the other side of my chair and opened her daughter’s mouth to show me how good her teeth were. Widmina and Lovely remained standing on the other side of my chair, pressed kind of close to me. I caught Dada’s face out of the corner of my eye, her smile was gone, and all I could see were big eyes. Marie just sat there calmly. The last thing I wanted to be was rude, but I was definitely feeling emotionally overwhelmed by this woman and her older daughter, and I’d had about all I could take. It was very sad because the situation especially for children is so terrible in Haiti and this mother wanted so desperately for her daughters to have a better life. I really wanted to spend more time with Widmina and Lovely but this woman was determined not to leave me alone, and it was after dark by this time. I asked Marie if I could come and get them the next morning and take them with me back to Walls for the day. She graciously said “Of course!” and then Dada walked me across the street and back to the guesthouse.

Luckily I am an early riser, but the rooster went off before my alarm did. Those of you that have been there know exactly what I mean. Also, you can’t hit the snooze button on the rooster; he goes on and on and on. Jen (PAC mom) and I went back over to Marie’s probably around 8:30, but the sun rises so early and it gets so hot, it felt like it was high noon. We sat in the kitchen with Marie, waiting for the girls to come down, and it turned out that a group of lab reports, including theirs, had just come back for review. Marie asked me if I wanted to look Widmina and Lovely’s lab reports while she had them there, which of course I did. Jen is a nurse, and she quickly scanned the reports proclaiming them good except for a little anemia, common in Haiti.( a bean and rice diet, mostly) The common problems you might encounter in Haiti with children’s health besides lack of nutrition are TB, hepatitis A or B, sickle cell anemia or sickle cell trait, and of course HIV. But then, consider too the alarmingly high infant/child mortality rate.
Their reports were very good news indeed.

About this time, Widmina and Lovely showed up at the kitchen door dolled up in dresses and looking cute but shy. I took their picture a few times, and we waited for them to get some breakfast, and then Jen and I took them and Wil back to Walls and went swimming!

Monday, September 24, 2007

The Incredible Journey of the Heart---Part I

I’m going to try not going to delve too heavily into racial issues here, as I could probably start a whole blog on that. However, I must talk about it a bit, because of my family history, and also because of where I live.
For better or worse, I was a Daddy’s Girl. In my early adulthood we disagreed about a lot of things, but it seemed I came around to his way of thinking as I matured, we are very much alike. One thing that we never agreed upon was racial issues. In fact, we were deeply divided. I believe my mom never agreed with him on this either, and certainly not my two sisters, but we tolerated his point of view because it was (unfortunately) never going to change. I just could never understand why he was determined that people of color were inferior, less than, undeserving, bad,….whatever…all this based on skin color! So I grew up knowing what racism is and I hated it. Then I moved from California to the Deep South, and I learned some more. Here, this seems deeply ingrained in some people’s psyche, and for them the wounds of slavery, the Civil War, Reconstruction, segregation, the Civil Rights Era and the aftermath of all of it, have not entirely healed. I wish that were not true. However, there are many people here who are not caught up in that, and in my heart, I have hope that the wounded will heal. The wounded are black as well as white, and the hurt and fear is passed down from generation to generation, and I pray for the day that it finially ends. Racism here is not always obvious either, as some people like to stereotype the American South. There are also a lot of people, nearly all of them white that say “it’s no big deal anymore.” I have never heard a single black person say this.

OK, for now enough of that. Let me just say, I had no intention of doing something so controversial. Adoption alone, combined with the single mom issue, is plenty to deal with. Throw in the extreme transracial factor, and it just adds fuel to the fire. This is why I was so angry with God. Even though my father passed away in 2005 (and I firmly believe he is in a place where there is no room for hate) I felt like He was asking just a little too much of me by pointing me firmly in the direction of Haiti. It was so “Haiti” I could not even consider Ethiopia. I slowly began to realize it was not about color, it was about this place and about these kids, and who knew, maybe even specific kids. I also realized that as tough as it might be to do, He would not leave me alone. And He has not. I have met many people now who have done this very thing, and some of them live here. (None are celebrities, BTW!) I do not have on blinders. I know it will be very difficult at times to deal with these issues in real life. However, what I have learned is that racial issues in this type of adoption are not the most important issues, regardless of what others outside of this experience may think.

I tried to abandon this whole idea a couple of times. Just "go on with my life", as it was. But,it had already been made clear to me where He wanted me to go and what He wanted me to do and there were times I tried to ignore that, but when it was all said and done; I just could not get it out of my head or my heart. Also, I kept getting tugged in the direction of a sibling group of two, instead of just one child, and I was doing my best to ignore that as well, but finally I gave into the idea, for a lot of reasons. I already knew I wanted a girl(s), my sisters and I are and were very close, and that has been such an important bond in life. I saw my own sons really rely on each other, especially after the divorce. They are almost 5 years apart and I don’t know if they would have developed that same bond otherwise. I did not want a child to feel isolated and alone in a family setting, or in our culture, where all of a sudden, EVERYTHING is so different. It all must be strange to them. Kids are resilient, but these kids in orphanages have already been thru so much, they need a break. Since I have already essentially raised 2 kids (I still have one at home, but as a teenager he is firmly sighted on the future, and I know the time is short. Already been there and done it with the eldest) I felt confident I could do it again.

All of this occurred over a time period of about 7 or 8 months.
The whole time part of me kept thinking “well, I don’t have to do anything right now. I still have time to decide how/if/when I’m going to do this, besides; I need a lot more money than I’ve got. Maybe I won’t do it at all and I will put this crazy idea away!” But I knew somewhere in my heart that none of that was true. I knew it was my heart’s desire, and that I was going to make it happen somehow. Still, I felt like I had all the time in the world to get it all resolved. Then towards the end of May, I started getting this feeling that I needed to get a move on the adoption. It came out of nowhere, and it was urgent and insistent, and it was really ticking me off. It would not go away, in fact, it became even more so. Urgh!!!! I had already studied my dossier requirements for Haiti, and I was looking at orphanages on the internet all the time. I decided to take some action, one step at a time, and see what happened next.

I ordered my birth certificate from California (thinking it would take along time (it didn’t) and went to see about my passport. I joined the yahoo group for PAC (orphanage) and just hung out there for awhile, observing. I researched some local home study agencies and started some needed home improvements. I started working on replacing my kitchen floor, a DIY project that required me to completely tear the place up. After several days, I got it back together enough to put my computer back up I went online to the PAC group, and lo and behold was an announcement from the director of the orphanage (via a mouthpiece) that anyone that might be affected by the Haitian Laws of 1974* needed to submit their dossiers by July 15. This was on June 14.

*Haitian Adoptive Laws of 1974 ---summation
· Adoption is only allowed for people older than 35.
· If married, at least one parent should be 35 years old.
· If married, to qualify for adoption from Haiti, you must have been married for at least 10 years, and not have any biological children from this marriage.
· Single women are OK to adopt
For my situation, it was the biological children that I was afraid might stall the whole process.

The rules are exclusive, but were instated when the poverty in Haiti was not as bad as it is now. These are the only rules the government has ever had, and in a current effort to stem corruption, there has been much ado about reinstating at least something, because the infrastructure is so weak there is no safety net for these kids. Orphanages are run by individuals and charitable organizations. The American and Canadian Embassies do not get involved in these matters.

Sunday, September 23, 2007

How Did I Get To This Place?

I understand that I am sometimes hard to get to know.
I have probably driven my own mother half crazy all my life with my reserve. (Fortunately for me and her, she had 5 other kids she could concentrate on if she got frustrated with me) On the other hand, as many know, I do project a public persona, which many people take to be the real me. It’s only one part of me.

So, how in the world did I come to decide to adopt 2 young girls from Haiti?
It was not a fly-by decision. It may seem that way to some, but when I look back at my own life, I see clues. One way to sum it up is as my SW did in my home study: “Marta has always wanted to be a mother.”

Here are some things about me you may or may not know;
My biggest recurring daydream as a young (young!) girl was to have 6 children!!! (BTW this was long before my mother had 6 children.) In my mind they were very close together in age, and I named all of them, although the names changed sometimes with my tastes. I also studied Sears Roebuck, Montgomery Ward, Spiegel, and Fingerhut catalogs and shopped for them, as well as furnished an entire (imaginary) house, on a BUDGET! I had a perfect good looking husband who worked hard but did not make a lot of money. If I remember correctly, he was a teacher. I didn’t seem to shop for him too much. I did shop for the adult me though, and I pretty much had a fabulous wardrobe, LOL. This was all before I had any idea of where babies REALLY came from! I also loved dolls, and played house with them until my parents took them away from me. They thought it was best. They saw it as childish, and thought it was time to grow up. I still think they interpreted that incorrectly. Other than that, before the age of 12, I was a real tomboy. I also loved animals, and HATED the whole idea of euthenization. In the 5th grade, one of my major daydreams was to start an animal shelter with my friends. I didn’t know you called it an animal shelter because this would have been before those actually existed at least in public awareness.

When I was 11 my younger brothers started coming. We had 3 babies/toddlers in the house for the rest of my teenage years at home. Of course I had to grow up in ways many of my friends did not experience. I loved those babies, but I learned I did not want to start having them at a real young age. In college I was determined to finish my education and become some sort of career woman, although I was unsure of what career. I did meet my 1st future husband in college, and it was not long before I knew he was the “ONE”. He actually resembled my childish day-dream husband, except he got a better job out of
college and he did not want a lot of kids. (Those of you that know him should be laughing now!) I was 20 when I met him, but we did not marry for another 8 years. I must have been born independent, because I enjoyed those years of freedom, and they also shaped me in many ways. However, I will say that except for the really rough stuff (no details, sorry) I enjoyed being married to him. The previous years of independence have helped me since I have been divorced.

I was 29 when Nicholas was born and 34 when Lucas was born. I did not get my tubes tied (as suggested by my doctor) because I really wanted at least one more child, but my husband informed in the delivery room, with Lucas about 10 minutes old, that this was the last child for him. (Those of you that know him should be laughing some more) I might have pushed the baby issue with him, but the marriage was shaky, and then we moved across the country, and then after awhile we separated, so another child between the two of us was just not a realistic possibility. In the ensuing years I was so busy trying to revive my career (a matter of survival) and feed, clothe and house us, that I repressed my desire for one more child. Sometimes it would come to surface, and I would think,’ well maybe I will remarry, and then it will be a possibility,’ but I didn’t remarry within the truly viable period of time where this could actually be a possibility. So most of the time, this desire just stayed in a highly disciplined repressed place I have within me, and I did my best to concentrate on the blessings that I had. Because my boys were and are a true joy to me, and they also kept me very busy, and as they entered their teenage years, in a lot of hair color (cover up that gray LOL) The divorce also left me with a lot of financial worries that were difficult and took many years to resolve.

I have had the opportunity to remarry; however, for various reasons, I have not. While evaluating this conscious decision in regards to my recent long term relationship, I admit I did some intensive inner work about what my hopes, dreams, desires, and goals were for the rest of my life. I surprised myself when that long repressed desire about having another child popped up front and center. This really surprised me. I had been thinking it really was just a fantasy, not a true desire. Another thing I discovered was that now that I was on more solid financial footing, I had no desire to hoard money or to spend it on a lot of “things”. (I already have a great wardrobe LOL) However, I have no desire to give birth to a child outside of marriage, not to mention that this would be inconvenient and perhaps not even possible!

I was praying and meditating about all of these things, and ‘somehow’ the idea of adoption literally popped up on my radar screen. I immediately put that idea into that highly disciplined repressed place I already told y’all about. It was annoying because right after that, celebrities were in the news, adopting kids all over the globe, and I was trying real hard to keep my idea in its place. I kept telling myself how weird it was! But the concept of adoption kept rolling around in the back of my mind. And that’s exactly where I kept it. I was conscious it was back there though. It’s funny how we tell ourselves that we are open to God’s will, and then when He reveals it to us, and it scares us, we try to find reasons why that must not really be His will for us, it must be a mistake!

One day I was in church, paying attention, and all of a sudden, the adoption idea literally exploded into my consciousness. I don’t remember it being anything the pastor was talking about; I think I was just open. It was so overwhelming to me I felt literally weak, and when I got into the car I cried and cried and told God no I could not do this. Actually, I was angry at Him for suggesting it, although I was pretty sure he was not just suggesting.

Here is what I have found out when you tell God no.
He does not get mad at you; he just shows you a different way to look at things. He is the persuader. Since He knows each of us, when he is persuading He has the advantage because He knows which buttons to push! I have learned to get into acceptance sooner now, rather than later. It took one long hard week and a lot of research, and a lot of that was done under the guise of “Let me show You why I can’t do this God” At the end of the week I was numb, tired and completely freaked out, but I was surrendered. So I walked around freaked out for awhile, then got back to my research, this time with the attitude of “Well, if I do this, how can I do this?” I researched (in this order)
Russia and other former Soviet Block countries
See a pattern there? My head wanted first an Asian baby, then a Latin baby, even a Caucasian baby, but my heart kept going back to Haiti. I was also very rebellious with my heart about this. I thought the children were beautiful and certainly in need but I did not think I was the person to deal with the problems inherent in such blatant transracial adoptions.

In retrospect though, what is most instrumental is how He helped me poke around in all my baggage, to find and gently present to me my Hearts Desire, which coincided with His Will.

daily scripture