Our Greatest Adventure
A little back story as to how we got here:
Since I was little I have wanted to adopt a child. I think it is a beautiful picture of what God has done for us; we were orphans and God the Father sent his Son, Jesus, to rescue us. The Bible says that if we put our faith in Jesus we are adopted into His family; HE CALLS US HIS OWN CHILDREN. My husband and I have decided that adoption is a very practical way that we can participate in His kingdom by caring for the orphan.
I always thought I'd adopt through the foster system. I wanted to help children in America who needed extra love and support. Through watching friends and family foster, and doing my thesis on the Foster Care System; we don't believe that it is the best option for us, right now.
I began to research whether or not we were eligible to adopt. I was 24 and most adoption agencies required you to be 27 and married for 3 years. When I turned 27 back in March I told Steve, "in June we'll be married for three years, do you know what that means?" He was a little apprehensive, and honestly, thinking back about it now, we never really talked about adoption before we were married (probably because I didn't think we'd do it this way-I was really set on fostering). He told me he wasn't sure he wanted to start adopting before we had our own kids.
Since Steve will finish school this coming May we began to talk about a family and the adoption conversation came back up. He was still a little apprehensive. In the beginning of the summer we decided to watch David Platt's Secret Church Family and Marriage videos on Right Now Media. As we began to talk about a family and adoption that same week David Platt spoke about the orphans. At the end of the video Steve turned to me and said, "Okay, let's do it." If you know Steve you know that he doesn't do anything without countless amounts of research. So I knew "okay, let's adopt." Really meant: "okay let's research!"
So we began researching different adoption agencies, researched how people could afford adoption, talked to adoption agencies to find out where we were eligible to adopt from, read blogs and books from people who have gone through the adoption process, and talked to other families that have gone through the process themselves.
As we started to research we didn't have a specific country in mind; we were thinking and praying through domestic and international adoption. We thought if we don't qualify for an international adoption, then domestic adoption is our answer. If we qualify to adopt from one country- that country is our answer.
But God in His great humor when we think we have nothing to offer, we find out that we are eligible to adopt from THREE countries (so we'll probably apply for one child from each country ;) )
As we've told our families and friends there have been several of the same questions that have come up, so we thought we'd tackle a few of them here:
Why international adoption and not domestic? In a domestic adoption you have to create a profile and a mom has to pick you. After you receive the baby they set a court date 4-6 weeks out. During this time the mom or dad can change his or her mind. We personally aren't sure if we are ready to deal with such a loss. After waiting for a mom to pick us and then taking care of a little one for 4-6 weeks and then possibly having to give the child back would be really hard for me.
But you don't even have your own kids! Wait, we don't?! ;)
Are you going to have your own kids? Might as well just get rid of the elephant in the room. A lot of people have asked us this as we've started talking about our hearts to adopt. Yes, we would love to be blessed with biological kids and if we get pregnant in the midst of waiting for our child we will consider it a double blessing.
How can we help? We feel that it's best to try and do this without going into debt (without taking out a loan). We are also excited to see how God provides as we do this. We are going to start saving money for our adoption now. We have a goal of how much money we'd like to save before we begin filling out the application (we also have a goal of beginning the application process by May; so if we save the amount sooner we will begin sooner and if not we will begin in May). I've read the book You Can Adopt Without Debt by Julie Gumm and we are going to follow some of her suggestions to help us out financially.
We wanted to let you know so you can be praying for us and our little one who doesn't have a name to us yet, but God knows his/her name.
The adoption process is a long one and so many complications can arise as we are dealing with two countries (America and the country we are adopting from).
If you're here (on my blog) you may know that I have a very small photography "business."
Many people have been asking me to take photos for them and then asking for a price. I'd like to use photography to serve you and give you beautiful pictures of your family and you can "donate" to our adoption fund.
If you'd like to help us financially with the adoption and want a family session or your Christmas card picture done, you can e-mail me at email@example.com put in the subject line: adoption (or if we're friends- text me :) ).
We've also had people who don't want their photos taken for various reasons ask if there was a different way they can contribute. We have set up an account with AdoptTogether. By clicking the link above it will take you to a place where you can give directly. AdoptTogether is a 501c3 organization so your donations are tax deductable ;).
**We know that fundraising is a controversial issue. Some people believe that if you don't have the funds to adopt then you shouldn't. Please know we don't want anyone to feel obligated to give.
We want you to know that we are working really hard to fund this adoption ourselves but many people have asked how they can help.