I'm a married mother of "3 1/2" ;) and the loves of my life are my faith and my family. I've grown in my faith over the last two years since my daughter's adoption, she is the reason why I started this blog in the first place, and I'm so looking forward to watching God move in my heart, and the hearts of others who follow along on our journey towards bringing home one of "the least of these". Special needs adoption is my mission field, whether I'm adopting a child myself, or helping other families get funded, or shouting for waiting children who need families to find them, and I hope you'll come along for the ride and watch what God can accomplish when we say yes to His command to care for the orphan, and go out into the world to be His hands and feet.

Apparent Project Fundraiser

Apparent Project Fundraiser

Hello :)

Hello :)

My Better Half

My Better Half

The Crew

The Crew

The New Guy

The New Guy

Before Adoption

Before Adoption

Two Years After Adoption

Two Years After Adoption

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Blog Therapy

I hate when I feel forced into choosing sides, or forced into choosing between two people. In the past it has always been my policy to choose the person who didn’t ask me to choose them over someone else! You deal with a lot of this as a kid, particularly in high school, a friend gets jealous when their “bestie” makes a new friend, and ends up giving the “it’s me or them” ultimatum. Or, a friend gets jealous when you have a new boyfriend who is taking up all your time that used to be reserved for your friends…so they want you to make a choice.

I hate making choices…

I always second guess myself, I always wonder “what if”, I am very rarely 100% confident that I’ve made the right decision.

Recently I was forced to make a choice by someone I love, and I was also forced to make an internal choice….neither one was easy, but it had to be done.

Ok so I’m talking in circles so let me get back to the point of this mess of a blog….

Someone wanted me to choose between them and Natasha, the little girl we are adopting. Someone very close to me, in most ways. I had a lot to consider, and believe me I looked at it from all angles. What if the adoption fell through? That isn’t unheard of, especially when dealing with international adoption…if I chose this little girl over a close family member, then I never got to bring her home, well I would really be in a tough spot! I would have lost at both ends! Then I considered which relationship could potentially be more meaningful? The one I’ve had life long, or the one that is just beginning, but that will more than likely last the rest of my life?

Then…I asked myself…who do I *need* more? Who needs *me* more?

When you’re asked to make a choice like that, these questions aren’t easy to answer.

Do you give up everything you’ve had in the past on a shot at saving a life and giving a little girl a future, or do you stick to the status quo and try to put this child out of your head?

Anyone who knows me at all probably already knows the answer to that last question, but I feel the need to explain myself, and my reasoning. Maybe it’s because I want to have a clear conscience, maybe it’s because I think putting it into written word will make it easier for people to understand, myself included…maybe I just need to LET. IT. OUT.

So here goes.

Natasha is my daughter like Dylan and Jack are my sons. I would never choose another human being over my boys, not even their father. Some might disagree with me on that but it is what it is, they are my blood and they are my number one priorities in this world. Natasha is no different. Is she with me? No. Is there that chance that she may never be with me? Yes. Is she legally my child? Not yet.

So you might be asking yourself, how in the world do you pick this “soon-to-be daughter” over a flesh and blood family member?

Well the short answer is: if I didn’t feel in my heart that I was Natasha’s mommy and that she was MY little girl, I would have no business adopting her. I guess it’s comparable to being pregnant. Can you hold your baby, touch their skin, rock them, etc? No…but they’re with you, right there under your heart…well Natasha is with me, right there IN my heart…and the even shorter answer is this: I love her. I love her with the heart of a mother and NOTHING and NO ONE should ever come between the bond of a mom and her child, or the love of a mother for her child.

None of this means that it’s easy being cut off from a family member, it’s really tough, and it’s sad, and it hurts, a lot…but it isn’t one of those situations where you can suck it up, apologize even though you did nothing wrong, just to keep the peace. There is an innocent child caught in the middle and honestly, I can’t have a relationship with someone, family or not, if they can’t ACCEPT this little girl into our family. No one says they have to like it, or support it, but they have to ACCEPT it. When this was brought up in a conversation, it was flat out rejected. Accepting this little girl was not even a possibility, so, I did what any mother would do, I put my child first.

I’ve had a week to reflect on the conversations that were had concerning this adoption, and the reasoning behind WHY this person refused to accept the fact that it was happening.

Here are some of the main points:

If you can’t afford the cost of the adoption on your own, you shouldn’t be adopting to begin with.

                I gotta say, this is a valid point, but the hoops and costs associated with adoption (especially international adoption) are way, way above what ANY average person could afford on their own! No one my age has $30,000-$40,000 sitting around, yet ONLY people my age should be adopting children with special needs. That might step on some toes a bit, and I don’t mean it disrespectfully, I just mean that from my experience working with adults with developmental disabilities, most of them were institutionalized around the age of 40 when their parents became too old to care for them, as it is, I will probably outlive Natasha (if I live my full projected life span) which means her risk of being sent away is minimal, as I’ll be able bodied enough (hopefully) to keep her home with me.  So, you’re right, I don’t have thousands and thousands of dollars to throw at an adoption….that’s what fundraising and faith in God is for. I *do* have enough money to raise her though. She will never be without food, clothes, education, medical care, toys, etc…she will be very well provided for, as are her brothers, so that isn’t an issue.

You don’t “need” a third kid.

                Well, let’s be real honest here for a second. I didn’t really “need” the first 2. Who actually NEEDS to have kids? Migrant farmers in third world countries who need the extra farmhands maybe…but I don’t fall into that category. I wanted children because they are a joy to have, it’s a contribution back to society to raise a God fearing, well rounded, human being who will grow up and try to make this world a better place, it isn’t a “need”, it’s a gift….and yes, I DO need the GIFT of a 3rd child, or as many and God sees fit for my life. Do I want to be the Duggars? No. But if that’s what GOD wanted for my life, I would go where He led me…because that’s my duty as a follower of Christ.

You can’t raise this kid without me.

                Ok, well this one is pretty narcissistic and to be truthful, it’s annoying. Accepting someone’s offer of help and being totally reliant on them are two TOTALLY different things. Yes, this person has OFFERED to pitch in and help with the boys, or VOLUNTEERED to keep them for a few days…but let’s not mistake that for my total reliance on them. I can make it just fine on my own, thank you very much!

So those were the basic reasons for why I should not adopt Natasha. Now, if those issues had been brought up, and my answers to them had not been sufficient enough to garner the support of the person in question, then that would have been fine. We could have continued on as we always had, they could have pretended the adoption wasn’t happening.

But, that wasn’t going to be the case. It couldn’t be a simple case of “I don’t agree with this” it had to be the extreme. Why do some people ALWAYS need to take things to that next level? It had to be I will NEVER love this child, I would rather NEVER see Dylan and Jack again if it meant I had to love the special needs kid too. I NEVER want to hear about/see that child, etc etc.

So that’s when momma bear mode kicked in, and I won’t lie, I got angry. I kept t my anger to myself but in my head I was thinking….how can you be this angry about someone HELPING TO SAVE A LIFE? How can you not be ok with this, HAPPY about this?  A new member of your family…someone who has NEVER had ANYONE love her…now you expect to stay in my life? You expect me to bring her 6,000 miles across the ocean to a place where MORE people choose NOT to love her?  I’m sorry but that can’t happen.

So, that’s where I’m at. Cut off from some of my closest family members, because I want to bring my daughter home, because I want to love and care for a child who has no one, who is unwanted.

 Because I am CHOOSING to be the mother of a special needs child.

But, I’m not closed off. I’m willing to reopen that door and pick up the pieces and make things work, but there has to be change, REAL CHANGE, in the hearts of the people who are against this adoption. They never have to agree with it, they never have to financially support it, but they do have to support ME, their FAMILY through this journey. If they aren’t willing to get involved in some way, even if it’s just picking up a phone and saying “how are things going with the adoption” or “that new picture of Natasha is cute”….ANYTHING that shows that they WILL be on board and they WILL love this child REGARDLESS OF HOW THEY FEEL ABOUT ME AND HOW SHE GOT HERE…then that would be enough for me. This kid didn’t do anything to them, in fact *I* didn’t do anything to them, all I did was make a decision that was not the same decision THEY would have made. They need to learn that it is OK for me to be my own person, that I am capable of making decisions in my own life, without them, and without their approval.

I’m almost 30 years old….I’m an adult…I can run my own life….I got this!!

Families support each other, and they love each other THROUGH things, they love each other IN SPITE of things, they are THERE FOR each other no matter what.

If you can’t see that, or be that, then there is nowhere left for us to go.

I’m praying, a lot of people are praying, that these individuals have a change of heart, that they open their eyes and hearts to what is happening in front of them, to what they stand to lose by being stubborn.

For now, I will comply with the rules that have obviously been laid out. I will keep my distance, I will keep my mouth shut, I will be the “ghost” I’m being treated as….I will do what you want with regard to bowing out of your lives gracefully like you want, but I will never give up on Natasha. I will bring her home, she will be my family, and if you want her to be your family too, the invitation is always open.

<3 Dear God, Please touch the hearts of the people who are being spoken about in this blog. Make them see what a beautiful thing they’re missing. Make them open their eyes and see YOUR hand is on this process! That YOU are in control, not me, not them, but YOU! You commanded us to take care of the orphans on this earth. Your mighty hand will guide us along the path we are meant to follow, and I feel Your presence all around this adoption. Make their hearts open up to embrace this child you’ve sent to be in this family. Make them love her. Amen <3


  1. I love the 'If you can't afford to adopt you can't have the kid' argument.
    If you can't afford that house, all at once, you can't have it.
    If you can't afford that car, all the money up front, you can't have it.
    If you can't afford to pay the full price for that holiday all in one go, you can't have it.

    Solid argument....obviously.

    You go girl, love to you, Natasha and the rest of your family.

  2. (((hugs)))) What an impossibly hard thing to ask a person... to give up their child for you. :( Narcissistic, yes, definitely. We're praying for you! I know this is hard.

  3. Frankly, I don't feel those individuals who disagree with you adopting Natasha, whether family or not, DESERVE to be a part of your lives. Not one of those so called "reasons" justify you not being allowed or worthy of being Natasha's mother. From what was said, it makes me wonder even if you had given birth to Natasha whether these individuals would love her, let alone accept her. Those who are helping you in your process to adopt Natasha, whether financially or by spreading the word or by praying are doing so because they can see that you ARE Natasha's mommy. There are plenty of people, whether blood or not, who would be honored and overjoyed to be a part of Natasha's "family". There has not been a day that has gone by that I have not thought of Natasha since learning of her and your plans to adopt her. We are not "family" and even though I have not met her, I love her and want only the best for her...something all DECENT human beings should want for her. Hugs to you all, especially to little Natasha.

  4. I think what you are doing is absolutely amazing. As a mother of a baby girl with DS, seeing what some of these kids are going through just kills me inside. Knowing there are families like yours that are willing to take the leap of faith and give up so much to give that baby girl a home, well, there just are not words to say how grateful it makes me feel.
    This may be a hard road and many people you previously counted on may desert you, but know there are people that don't even know you who are supporting you and sending you all our best wishes.
    I am rooting for you and Natasha in this adoption and pray it works out. Stay the course!

  5. My hubby and are I are 32 and 31 and make a considerably good salary just over 140k and have very little debt, basically house, cars and student loans and have adopted once and are adopting again but we had to take out a loan for our first adoption for about half the fee because we were matched a month after our home study and our son was born the next month. You're right I don't know anyone who has kids, house, cars etc etc that could just afford to pay $30 to $40 thousand at once or even in a years time! There is NOTHING wrong with fundraising, people are free to choose whether or not to give. I think adopting a special baby like you are is wonderful.

  6. Everyone else said all the things I would have said...so I'm going to say my bit to Jules' comment...
    How dare you put so much hate in your heart? Better yet, how DARE YOU question what GOD has decided for them or Natasha? It is not your place to judge!! I pray God opens your eyes and removes that hatred from your heart. This is a precious baby that deserves to be in the arms of her loving mother and SHE IS HER MOTHER EVEN IF SHE'S NOT BLOOD.
    Comparing this precious family to those that adopted and were bad parents? SHAME!! Look at the love this family spreads!! Look at the FAITH of this family!! If God wants Natasha to be with them then HE will make it that way.

    I pray for you, Natasha! I pray for you to get HOME soon and enjoy the love of your mom, dad, and two brothers!