I've decided to write this post to those who have never met me and tell you about our journey through adoption and life. There is so much to tell so I will try to stick to the most important facts.
Adoption became a part of my life early on. One of the most special people to me in this World is my Godson Cody. When I was just 12 years old he was brought into this world addicted to drugs and crying almost constantly..... after he was just a few months old, he was removed from his parents care and placed with his grandparents (my grandparents). I spent every free moment there.... track breaks, summer break, if there was no school, I was with my grandparents 6 hours from home.
Everyone thought Cody was mine... we had the same big blue eyes... They often apologized to me, but I would just smile. I did not need to explain that he was my cousin. I loved him like my own. I remember being 12 years old and pacing for hours in my grandparents living room with him because he could not sleep unless there was constant movement and they did not have the awesome swings that we have now. I remember teaching him to sleep.... something a baby his age should do often. He was having drug withdrawls.... something no baby should ever have to do.... My AMAZING grandparents took him in and loved (and still love) him as their own!!!
It was at that moment that I knew I would one day adopt!!
Every child deserves to be loved.
It was not his fault that he cried. His parents made bad choices. Does that mean he should not be loved??
Luckily he was born in the US because had he been born in a foreign Country he would have been discarded like trash. Sent to an orphanage to be ranked among the others.... given a number.... NOT a NAME!!! At the time though, I did not even know that this was happening!!!
Let's skip ahead a few years.... I was married to my amazing hubby nearly 12 years ago and we now have 3 amazing daughters despite the fact that age 17 I was told by doctors that I would never have children due to a cancer scare.... Imagine my surprise when 8.5 years ago I discovered I was pregnant! One of the best surprises ever. This did not cure my desire to adopt though.... I have always wanted to adopt. I did not want to adopt a tiny healthy baby though.... I never did. God knew I was made to be a special needs parent and blessed me with 3 amazing girls that all have different special needs. My oldest is on the Autism spectrum. The first few years of her life were very rough as I learned how to parent, how to figure out her needs and how to coordinate what seemed like 100s of appointments with every specialist known to man!! Less than 2 years later my 2nd daughter was born... She was premature also, but did not seem to have the many health concerns as my oldest and was a much more content child UNTIL she was about 7 months old. She kept getting ear infections. No matter what medication they put her on or what they did the infection stayed. After 7 LONG months of an almost constant infection, the ENT wanted to put in tubes. Sadly her infection was too bad and tubes could not be placed until it was under control. We went in daily for weeks for shots of antibiotics until the infection was slightly under control. Her tubes were put in place and things were good for a few weeks..... even with tubes her ears would gush nasty infection almost weekly and she was miserable.... Luckily we finally got her infection free around 2 years old, but it had been too long. She had significant hearing loss. Another surgery was done with different tubes to attempt to help her hearing, but she still has issues. She has hearing aids, can read lips like a champ and can speak very clearly. God has blessed us, but hearing loss is still a challenge. Hearing aids do not work well in a noisy classroom, in public places or if you are behind the child..... We make it work and she is happy.
After a miscarriage at 13 weeks, we got pregnant again months later with our 3rd daughter. She was born at a huge 9lbs 3 oz. She was 1 week early and healthy. This was a miracle!!! When the doctors cut my stomach open for my c-section, the could see the baby even before cutting through the uterus. It had ripped into shreds... Apparently the D&C done after the c-section had left my uterus damaged. The doctors said had my water broken (like it had with my previous 2) the baby would have died and I would have also. God knew what he was doing. After yet again 7 months, my sweet girl took a turn for the worse..... She was nearly 17 pounds at 7 months old, but after a 10 day battle with multiple illnesses that just hit her hard she lost SEVERAL pounds which is awful for a sweet baby. Blood work determined that her platelets were more than 3 times what the highest point should be..... They drew blood daily, she continued to lose weight, the tested her for every condition they could think of.... these tests involved electric shock, allergy testing leaving tiny pin holes over her entire back, surgery and many more things.... All tests revealed nothing!!! Finally the dreaded word was mentioned.... CANCER! I cried for days as we wait to see the oncologist/hematologist. More tests were ran..... All the people at the lab knew us by first name. Nothing was conclusive.... She has chronic high platelets. She saw the best doctors and yet nobody knew what was happening to my sweet girl. they determined that she was a medical anomaly.. They have no clue what is wrong. She was diagnosed with medical failure to thrive and put on appetite stimulants.... she ate almost constantly, but she was not gaining weight. Gradually as time went on her levels started to get lower, but to this day 3 years later they have NEVER been in a normal range and at nearly 4 years old my sweet girl is just 23 pounds. She is tiny, but healthy.
We still new even though we were running to different doctors all the time that we wanted to adopt.... I stumbled across a blog about adoption and gradually started following more and more adoption stories until I met my sweet friend Amanda! Amanda was adopting a little blind boy from Ukraine and when I say the sweet face of one of his orphan buddies, I fell in LOVE!!!!
This is Bogdan who we were going to name Logan.
Hubby and I both knew that he was our son.
He was born with FAS (similar to what we had gone through with Cody).
I felt very confident that we could be good parents for him.
We were lucky a friend that I met online was heading to serve a mission in his region.
She visited with him 5 times a week. She taught him to say Mama and sent me a video of him saying it. I saw pictures and videos multiple times a week. We fought hard to raise funds.
After about 4 months of working to adopt our sweet boy, the unimaginable happened!!
He was taken and moved to an orphanage that did not allow Americans to adopt.
Our dream of having him as a son was lost forever.
I was physically sick. I felt as though my child had died.
To this day. Logan is my son!! I love him still!!
After this heart break, hubby and I decided that we could not adopt internationally because there was just too much risk..... We moved onto fostering to adopt in hopes that things would work out differently, but after 2 failed "attempts" through them we did not know where God was leading us.
I knew I was supposed to adopt, but maybe now was not the right time. Hubby was determined that we should not be adopting at all.... ever!
That was until just a few weeks later we saw this blog post...
That is when I saw this face!!
I thought to myself.... Look at this tiny baby. But he is not a baby.
He is FIVE YEARS old!!!
Weighing in at just 16 pounds!!!
My heart broke for MY son. I knew, but I was afraid.
Just weeks before we had decided that we would not be adopting at least not for a LONG time.
I finally got brave after talking to some friends and staring as his picture for HOURS!!!
Imagine my surprise when hubby said "If you can raise the money in 1 month to commit, then we can proceed." He later admitted that he knew Adam was our son too, but he was afraid. Who wouldn't be after our previous 3 experiences.
Everyone rallied behind me and helped me raise the nearly $5000 we needed to commit to our son. I began selling puppies. Spending hours outside EVERY day (except Sundays).
I was shocked at how God provided for us!!
It was August 3rd when Kevin agreed that Adam was meant to be our son!
On August 27th we officially committed.
Less than a week later our sweet son received a shunt after 5 years of suffering.
These pictures and the video were taken after he was admitted to the hospital before his surgery.
These were taken a few days later after his surgery.
Does this look like an almost SIX YEAR OLD child to you??
I saved the best for last. They believe this may have been his first time smiling... Sad that he had nothing to smile about, no touch for over 5 years.....
We have managed to raise nearly $23000.00
which is awesome. We saw this little man's face and knew that we had 2 sons waiting on us
Meet Matthias (Alvin on RR)
This is the ONLY picture we have of him.
We do not know much about him, but we know he is our son also.
We believe our adoption of these 2 boys is going to be about $32000.00
We are getting soooooo close!!
Tomorrow is our day on a fundraiser for Forty to Forever.... You can read more about it here
I believe when you donate you have to put Mitchell family in the comments!!
You can also donate to our FSP at the top.....
We need it to be about $10,400 for our first trip.
We could be traveling in as little as 2 weeks to meet our sons, so please help us if you are able!!
I will leave you with this link to a beautiful video.... our son is the very last picture!!