I love this season

I love this season
"For everything there is a season..." Eccl. 3:1

Sunday, January 15, 2012

My favorite Christmas present

God began speaking to our hearts last year, readying us for another little one, calling us to adoption a second time, as a way to increase our family.  Sure, we could “’try” for more biological children, but His call was unmistakable.  What started as a small tug at my heart continued increasing until we knew it was time to step out in faith in pursuit of adopting another child.
I had thought about Sarah many times last year, Caleb’s birth mom.  I was so overwhelmed by her gift to us on numerous occasions as I held Caleb.  God kept bringing her to mind last year off and on, and I’d think about her and pray for her as well.  It got the point that one day I asked Garrett if he thought maybe Sarah was pregnant again.  We knew she’d planned on having her tubes tied, so it was doubtful.  But yet, I just couldn’t help but wonder….and I began nesting like crazy.  I was rearranging things, taking things from Caleb’s room and packing them into plastic boxes, labeling them into the preemie, newborn, 0-3 months…you get the picture.  I stored these things up in the attic, right on the edge, for quick, easy access.  I also put all the baby gear like the infant car seat, pac n play bassinet portion into the guest room closet.  I hung two items of baby clothing into the closet, one little Ralph Lauren girl’s outfit and the navy suit that Caleb wore the day we had parent/child dedication at church.  I kept finding myself cleaning out everything, and getting ready.  I even commented to many of my friends that I was nesting like crazy…which meant somewhere out there…a birth mommy had to be getting ready to give us the one of the greatest gifts we could ever receive. 
All this nesting, preparing for adoption, and thinking about Sarah led me to write an email.  I discussed it with Garrett and I got the green light.  So…I wrote an email to Sarah’s Aunt, who’d been the one who’d helped Sarah locate an adoptive family for Caleb.  The letter dated Oct. 17, 2011 basically said that if Sarah ever found herself considering placing another child for adoption that we’d be extremely interested in praying about being adoptive parents to her child.  My hope was that Sarah’s Aunt would see Sarah and relay that message to her.  About a month later, I received a reply from Sarah’s Aunt.  The reply wasn’t anything related to pregnancy but sort of an update on Sarah’s family and on her own family. 
About a month later, we attended an orientation meeting as prospective adoptive parents held by the Department of Family and Children’s Services.  Mid December, we had the DFCS come into our home for a home study.  We were to attend classes in January and then upon completion, enter the adoption process.
Dec. 20 was the 3rd anniversary of our precious infant son Gabe’s home going.  It’s always a bittersweet day for me personally.  The following day, Caleb and I met Garrett for lunch.   We were eating at El Maya when his cell phone rang with a 251 area code.  He shared the area code with me and I knew it was either someone affiliated with Pastor Ed’s church in Mobile or maybe, just maybe it was related to adoption.  Garrett chose to answer, a God thing, he doesn’t take many calls while we are having family meals, and said, “Hi, David.”  I knew immediately who was on the other line.  It was our lawyer from Mobile.  He had no reason to call.  Garrett was listening intently and I was picking up clues left and right.  We’d both stopped eating, and before he hung up, I was ready to pull all the preemie and infant clothes out of the attic, and get on the road to meet our new baby boy!  Sarah indeed was pregnant and was interested in placing her baby boy with us as adoptive parents.  Incredible!
We began packing, running to the bank, going to get fingerprinted, and making tons of calls associated with the logistics of an adoption.  We were not home study “updated” at this time.  The home study update can take up to 60 days!  But, with God, all things are possible. 
I will leave all the minor details out, but about 5:30 CST, we got a call that Sarah had the baby and it was a girl!  Incredible!  None of my baby boy clothes would work!  But, praise the Lord, I have plenty of pink now…God totally covered all those bases.  It’s been my experience that where He guides, He provides…always.
We met our precious, Chaney Elisabeth Grubbs on Dec. 22, 2011, the day after she was born.  It was wonderful and so déjàvu-like to be in the same hospital talking to Sarah and having the privilege of being parents to her precious child again.  She had intended to have her tubes tied and was unable to do so.  Bottom line, God had intended for us to be parents again, and for Caleb to have a biological sister to grow up with in this world.  Incredible.
God’s fingerprints have been all over this adoption. These days have been unbelievable.  It is awesome to see immediate connections between Caleb and Chaney.  He kissed her the first chance he had and continues to greet his sister with kisses almost every time he can.  I can’t wait to see what the Lord has in store for these two precious children who are only 16 months apart in age.  I am honored to be chosen as their mommy.
How you can pray:  We don’t know when we will come home…but when the process is finished…we will get to eventually…lol…but there is no firm date.  It’ll probably be another couple of weeks that we’ll be here.  We are renting an apartment during this time.  Family and friends have been gracious to come to stay with me as Garrett is working and unable to be here.  Each of these ladies has been such a blessing.  So many friends in Dothan have loved on us in different ways and it’s meant so much.
While learning how to do 2 kids verses one presents new challenges, what has been the most stressful  is being tired and still dealing with all of the things that we had to do for our home study and for all the legal part of it.  Pray for continued renewing of our strength.  It was hard with the family separated and the kids being sick either in Albany or when Chaney was hospitalized.  That stress has since been relieved.  Also not being with Daddy is hard.  I have much respect for those who don’t have Daddy around.
We weren’t planning for another private adoption, we were planning on a state adoption, so praying that the Lord continues to supply us with what we need when we need it.  Pray that the ICPC process (the process that keeps us in Alabama with baby Chaney until all the legals are completed between Alabama and Georgia) goes quickly.  Last time we adopted Caleb, we were here in Alabama for 3 weeks total, but he was hospitalized for 10 days of those 21. 
It’s been 25 days since we’ve been here, our home study was just completed, so I am hopeful and prayerful that we will be able to be home 11 days from Wednesday (which is when the home study and some paperwork that the lawyer needs from us that we just received Friday from them will arrive).  We all miss Daddy being part of our lives. 
Chaney will be 4 weeks old this coming Wednesday, Caleb just turned 17 months old this week and will officially be a toddler next month.
 It’s been a great adventure for sure; a God sized adventure and I am trusting that He will continue to bring us home in His perfect timing and will keep me in perfect peace until that day.  In the meantime, we covet your prayers.
We can’t wait to introduce Chaney to our Sherwood family, family, friends, and to our community!  Thanks for praying; it’s been felt.
“But I have trusted in Your faithful love; my heart will rejoice I Your deliverance.  I’ll sing to the Lord because He’s treated me generously.” 
“….and run with ENDURANCE the race that lies before us, keeping our eyes on Jesus, the source and perfecter of our faith…” Heb. 12
“Now without faith it’s impossible to please God, for the one who draws near to Him must believe He exists and rewards those who seek Him.” Heb. 11:6
“Proclaim with me the Lord’s greatness; let us exalt His name together.” Psalm 34:3

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