This is the place where we are have documented the road we have walked in order to adopt our four children from Brazil and the road we are now on as a family. We are keenly aware that adopting is not just a process we've chosen to go through, but part of God's plan for us and for our children. May He be glorified through the process and through our family!

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

For the Record

Kim and I have been through many emotional and spiritual ups and downs over the past 4 months as we waited for an answer from the judge in Brazil regarding our petition to adopt Maynara, Abraão Lucas, Luana, and Brayan, and last night we received an answer to much prayer. For the record, I wanted to write about our experience last night as we learned that the judge said "yes" and granted our petition! Though we still have some "waiting" and paperwork to do before traveling to Brazil to meet our beautiful sons and daughters, we are in the "when" and not "if" stage. And, man, does it ever feel good!

Keep in mind as I tell this story that we have hardly been away from our e-mail for any significant length of time in the past four months. I have my e-mail open at work at all times and Kim has an iPod touch with wireless, which makes a little "ding" any time she receives and e-mail, so she has been checking constantly at home during the summer. Except for some odd times here and there, we probably haven't been away from our e-mail for more than 30 minutes at a time unless we were sleeping, sitting in church, or driving to Pennsylvania to see our parents. We have especially been following our e-mail pretty closely over the past few weeks, as we have had a couple of requests from the judge for more information, which wetired to turn around as quickly as possible each time. (All the while wondering how anyone ever got through this process without e-mail!)

Last night, however, I got home late, around 6:40, from work, and Kim had dinner prepared so we could eat before our friends came for Bible study at our house at 7:30 as they always do on Tuesdays. We sat on the porch enjoying our dinner, leaving our e-mail unattended for some time. We finished dinner, took the dishes to the kitchen and were going to take one more quick look at e-mail before people arrived when we saw something new in Kim's inbox:

Tuesday, August 11, 2009 6:44:52 PM
Re: no news yet [a leftover subject from previous correspondence]

Please call me on my cell right now

How could we have missed this e-mail by almost 45 minutes!? Not knowing what to expect, hoping for the best, dreading the worst, and hearts pitter-pattering, Kim grabbed her cell phone, put it on speaker, and called Luciana. Luciana answered, apologized for the background noise as her husband's family was visiting, and proceeded to talk to us about our petition.

I swear Luciana must have been watching too much American Idol or other reality TV shows, because the way she started out didn't sound good. Our hearts started to sink. In what must have been 10 seconds, but felt like 10 minutes, she said, "Now we've known all along that this has been in God's hands, and that He always knows what's best for each family. And you should keep this in mind as I tell you that..." That WHAT, Luciana, that WHAT! "...that they're yours!" Ours! We can call them "our" kids! Not just "the" kids! "And now we wait some more," she added. But that didn't matter. We were ecstatic, smiling from ear to ear, not even knowing what to say!

About that time, I saw a car pull up in front of our house. Our friends James and Mina were walking up to the house for Bible study. I ran to the front door, opened it and said, "we're on the phone with our adoption agency! The judge said yes! You're the first to know!" Kim talked with Luciana for another minute or so while Mina jumped up and down and James and Mina hugged and congratulated me.

After Kim hung up with Luciana, she called her family on her cell phone while I ran upstairs to call my family on my cell phone. Kim's parents were at a baseball game with 50 people from their church. Her Dad answered the phone, Kim told him the news, and he yelled, "She said yeeessssssss!" To which the whole of left field started shouting and celebrating. Those church folk of theirs have been praying along with Kim's parents for this for a long time.

I called my parents and my Mom answered. They are visiting family in Alabama and were on their way to have dinner with my Aunt and Uncle and their family. I told my Mom right away, she started crying, and told my Dad to pull over! We celebrated together with tears and smiles over many miles. She told me she has been carrying their picture everywhere and showing it to everyone.

I also updated my status on Facebook while I was upstairs on the phone. (Which explains the phone calls that we got during Bible study! Oops!) We got through Bible study nonetheless, prayed for the concerns of the group--and of course this great news!--and then proceeded to call our friends and family after everyone had left our house for the evening.

Whew. What an adventure. For many months I have been praying that the God would open the judge's heart to our petition and that she would see a family when she reviewed all of our paperwork, and not just a big stack of paper to deal with. It took about 4 months--far longer than we or our agency ever expected--but, with God's help, she finally did see a family! All the while, however, the petition has been in God's hands and His timing. We may not ever know why it took so long, but we trust in God's infinite wisdom that this was time well-used for His purposes and His kingdom.

Praise the Lord, for He is faithful!

Sons are a heritage from the Lord, children a reward from him.
(Psalm 127:3)

Praise the Lord for Maynara!

Praise the Lord for Abraão Lucas!

Praise the Lord for Luana!

Praise the Lord for Brayan!


Kiki@Seagulls in the Parking Lot said...

Love the story, I just love details. Thanks for sharing.

We're so excited for you 6!

Trixie said...

I have to second what Kiki said. I wondered how it all played out when you heard your news, and I relish those delicious details. I'm just tickled to death for all of y'all, but mostly for those four little ones. Make sure the blog is backed up! You don't want this wonderful record to get gone somehow!

The Princess said...

Yes, I cried and cried in between repeating, "The judge said 'YES'" and "We have 4 grandchildren!" I looked a mess when we got to the restaurant, except for the giant grin I couldn't seem to get off of my face. I called my parents and when my daddy answered he thought we had been in an accident or something so he handed the phone to my mother who finally understood what I was trying to say. Jim said, "You have said all along that the first time you saw the children you knew they were your grandchildren and you were right." I said, "The only times I have been this happy were the two times the doctor daid, 'It's a boy.'" As soon as I got to a computer after we got back to where we were staying I sent out an e-mail to everyone I know to let them know all of our prayers have been answered. Now I don't have to ask, "Do you want to see the photos of the four children who I am praying will be my grandchildren?" I can ask, "Do you want to see photos of my grandchildren?"

Pat & Heather said...

Sorry for that phone call during Bible Study...wait, no I'm not! I was (am) really excited for all 6 of you! What an answer to prayer! What was funny was Kim asking how I knew. I told her on Facebook. Who put it on Facebook? she asked. Your husband... =)