adoption

I Will Come to You: The Beginning

Before we get into all the fun details about the girls and the announcement and the travel dates, I wanted to take you back to the very beginning. Before anyone knew we were going to adopt, before we even knew there were two little girls in Uganda that would capture our hearts.

I think it was college that I was first exposed to adoption as God’s heart for the fatherless rather than simply a way for couples who struggled with infertility to build a family. I was particularly moved by Steven Curtis Chapman’s story of adopting their three daughters from China. It must have been something that was always in the back of my mind, although I don’t really remember feeling like I was for sure destined to adopt. It wasn’t until I started dating Corey that these ideas that had taken shape in my heart really began to come together and the more we talked about our future with one another, the more adoption seemed to come up as something we would one day like to pursue. (I would like to pause here to say that I am so grateful that God brought our hearts to the same place individually and that one of us didn’t have to “convince” the other that this was God’s plan for our family. It really did make taking that first HUGE step towards our daughters so much easier.)

So, fast forward a year or two and Corey and I are engaged. Both of us felt really comfortable at this time talking about our future together and what our family might look like. We were excited about bringing kids into the mix and the two year mark seemed like a good time to possibly start pursuing adoption. Around our one year anniversary we kind of reevaluated and both of us said that yeah, we’d like to wait another year and in the summer of 2014 we’d start looking into adoption.

Well.

In January of 2014 Corey kind of floored by telling me he thinks maybe we should just start looking into agencies. I was, of course, kind of surprised because we had decided to not really revisit the conversation until the summer. I said sure, and we kind of casually started talking to friends who had adopted. We felt pretty strongly that we would pursue a domestic infant adoption, so we got a couple agency recommendations from friends who had gone that route. There were a lot of things that happened in the interim here (more about all that in the video that goes with this post), but one thing kind of led to another and it became very clear that we were being called to adopt internationally. Specifically Uganda. Even more specifically a 3 year old girl from the same baby home our friends had just been to. My mind was blown. I was excited and terrified all at the same time. But as soon as I saw her face, it was all over for me. I knew we had begun the journey we were meant to be on.

For the rest of the story, watch the video below:

Other adoption posts here. There are about 10 posts under that tab that I wrote while we were in process. 🙂

 

 

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I Will Come to You: Our Adoption Story

It was almost exactly two years ago that I sat with my best friend in my dining room folding little girls’ clothes. Timidly, I spoke her name out loud. The name I had uttered so many times before. Silently in prayers pleading with God to give her a family, quietly when asking my hurting friend if she’d heard anything more about her. But I had never said her name in a conversation so heavy with meaning for me personally.

Right now, I can’t believe that this same little girl is lying asleep on my bedroom floor next to her little sister. Curled up in a sleeping bag that her daddy bought for her because hardly stops talking about “when we all go camping.” In the moments when I pause to think about her and her sister all I can come up with is–how can it be??

On that day two years ago after a long discussion about the whys and the why nots, I had pretty much talked myself out of the very idea. She would not be my daughter—could not. There were too many impossible hurdles to overcome. I wasn’t sure why I felt so burdened for her. Certainly, it wasn’t the first time I had prayed for a family for this precious child.

But still….something was different. God seemed to be calling us to action.

This story has been a long time in the works. Maybe even longer than any of us realize. I have been hesitant to share the details of our adoption story. For so long everything just felt so raw. Like opening a not-yet-healed wound. Although, that’s a poor analogy because there has been so much joy. But the heartache that is so entwined with every adoption has hung like a shadow over me at times. As we near the anniversary of our time in Uganda once again, I’m filled with nostalgia. Everywhere I look I remember this time two years ago. How we were so prepared for our daughter. And then God knocked us off our feet again. This year I’m able to look beyond the pain to see how God brought us all together at just the right time. And in a way only He could.

Here is our story…

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A Huge Epic Life Update

Ok, fine, the title might be a little misleading. No big news here, but it’s been so long since I updated this space and actually finding time to sit down and write something certainly feels big :).

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I realized recently how nice it is to have something to look back on and see what I was thinking/feeling during a certain time in life, especially while we in the process of adopting our girl girls ;). I wish I had been better about writing here during the last year because it was such a unique one. But the truth is, I’m exhausted. Like literally I think most of what we’ve experienced in the last 12 months has felt like a complete blur because it was all so overwhelming with the highs and the lows and the life changes–some having to do with adjusting to life as a family of four, some things that we brought on ourselves that added to the stress of it all. I feel like I’m just now starting to climb out of the fog that has covered me for a year. Just the other day I was trying to think what I was thinking and feeling last year at this time (when we had been home with our girls for just a couple weeks), what our days looked like and what we were doing with our time. The only thing I could come up with was that I was tired. Just sheer exhaustion.

In a lot of ways this year has been a struggle. I’ve been so happy but there have been many days that I’ve felt overwhelmed, frustrated, and really alone. Adoption is such a funny thing, there’s so much support while you’re walking through it, but at the same time it can be a very isolating journey–for adoptive parents and adopted kiddos alike. There are a lot of things that happened surrounding our adoptions that I’m just now beginning to process. Part of coming out of the fog of the last year, perhaps. But while I feel like some semblance of peace has settled over our home life, these feelings of anger and confusion are starting to come to the surface. Obviously, things to deal with so we can move on in a healthy way. If you’re an adoptive parent reading this and processing things that seem overwhelming to you, you are not alone. Adoption is amazing, yes, but it is also hard and admitting that it feels like more than you can bear at times does not diminish the sheer miracle of adoption! In fact, I think it only serves to highlight God’s amazing grace.

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Our crazy family. Literally, this was the best picture we took. Sigh.

So, what about the good stuff? Oh friends, there is so so very much. These little girls are such a joy. There have been lots of shenanigans in the Hart household over the last year.

We’ve been busy with work and play…

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learning so much in homeschool…

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visiting our favorite aunties…

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and somewhere in there I got a little crazy and started my very own business (which, seriously, am I nuts?  …don’t answer that).

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This wasn’t a great all-encompassing update, but I hope it got you up to speed a little bit with what is going on with us. My goal over the next couple months is to write here a couple times a week. And maybe I’ll even start on that adoption story I promised you guys over a year ago ;)! Thank you for reading and following along with the life of our family.

 

 

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