Wednesday, November 11, 2015


To start from the beginning, click here
To catch up, click here

In January, 2012 I began a tradition of setting a word for the year.  Instead of a New Year's Resolution, I decided to focus on a word that I wanted to define my year.  If 2010-2011 had been my years of refining, I wanted 2012 to be the year of "forward." 

In early January of that year, I sent our first initial email to DHS letting them know we wanted to begin the process of becoming an adopt-only family.  It was a radical shift for us because no longer did we feel compelled to "have a baby" but instead, we felt God leading us to "parent a child."  We knew that adopting through foster care meant we would most likely not be receiving an infant and that we would be entering a new, unknown world, but we were confident enough to keep marching forward until God either closed a door or led us down a different path.  

Logistically, our decision to adopt also meant another big move.  By this time, Rodney had moved to Fayetteville to pursue his Ph.D. We were making it work by seeing each other every other weekend, but clearly that wasn't the ideal situation for becoming parents.  So I made the decision to leave my business, and my comfortable hometown, and to move to Fayetteville.  God helped make it clear that we were making the right decision by almost immediately providing me with a new job with Friendship Community Care, the same company that gave me my start as a PT. 

I started my new job in May and in July we started the 30 hours of training required to become adoptive parents through the foster care system.  We did our training through an organization known as the CALL (Children of Arkansas Loved for a Lifetime).  While the training was the same training required by the state for all potential foster and adopt families, it was done from a Christian perspective.  The mission of the CALL is to "educate, encourage, and equip the Christian community to provide a future and a hope for children in foster care in Arkansas."  Out of that training came a wonderful support system for us as we journeyed (and continue to journey) through the world of foster care and adoption.

In August of that year we completed our home study and a month later our file was in the hands of a state adoption specialist. Knowing all the children in Arkansas who needed loving homes, we assumed "the call" would come quickly. Little did we know, God had other plans. And so we waited, we made phone calls inquiring about available kids, we used our contacts (remember that state senator I helped get elected?), and we prayed. Finally, in Februrary, 2013 we received a call and then an email. Containing a picture of two boys who, despite not looking much like us, we couldn't get out of our minds. 

To say it was love at first sight would be a vast oversimplification. Yes, they were cute and their stories were compelling, but to say it was an easy choice would be a lie. We had reservations about a lot of areas. Yes, race was an issue. We "thought" we were ready to become a multi-racial family, but with that decision comes a lot of social and relational ramifications that we didn't know if we were ready for. And every child in foster care comes with a past. Were we willing to accept these children along with every possible scar they would bring with them? And so, we prayed. A lot. And we listened, to each other and to God. And then we sat down one night (over chips and salsa at On the Border), and we said a tentative yes. And the story God had in store for us from that night on was greater than anything we could imagine.

To be continued...
Click here for the next chapter

Our first picture, February, 2013

No comments:

Post a Comment