The Post You’ve Been Waiting For……

Finally, the long awaited blog post.  Well, I suppose long awaited for the very few who choose to actually wade through this of mass of words.

Our time in India was incredible.  Absolutely incredible.  I really fell in love with the people of India.  And it is a gorgeous place.
I know we were silent on the adoption front while there, but we just had to be.  Our case got a tad bit too popular for some peoples’ comfort, and we really wanted to honor those who did such an incredible job on our case.  So, those of you who are adopting from India, no need to fear that you need to shut down your blogs or go rogue when there.  It was very specific to us.
While in India we were introduced to probably one of the most incredible people we have ever met in our life.  His name is Raj, and he was the biggest lover of God you could imagine.  He took us to his church while we were in Hyderabad, and it was by far the best experience our family had while in India. To see a church so alive to God…..so passionate about spreading the gospel…..and so obedient to God by helping the widow and the orphan.  Well, it was humbling to say the least.
And Raj himself was just this incredibly missionary minded man, who was so humble, and generous and kind.  He took us around Hyderabad, showing us the local sights, feeding us the BEST food….introducing us to his family.
It was hard leaving Hyderabad, because we never know if we’ll see him and his family this side of heaven.  But it was so incredible getting to know him while we were there.
On the adoption front things are pretty much a cake walk.  I keep telling other adoptive moms that I feel like I have survivor’s guilt, because things are just easy for us.  Vedika has melted into our family like she has always been a part of it, and yes I have seen some adoption issues, but they are SO SO SO SO minor, and easy to deal with, that I don’t feel like I’ve “joined the ranks” of other adoptive parents yet.
NOW…..when I say that, I don’t mean that everything is just easy all the time.  I can tell you about my own selfishness and difficult behaviors.  ha ha ha.  But just not Vedi’s.
There have been a few times when I thought I was just going to die if I had to stay in a hotel room with my family for ONE MORE SECOND in India.  I LOVE people, and Mike always disagrees with me that I am an introvert.  He thinks I’m all extrovert.  But that’s really not true.  I need quite a bit of time alone.  So, having no time alone has been pretty trying for me.
Now that we are home I definitely have more space to myself…..but not tons.  We spend a lot of time with Vedika, and that has been SO GOOD for bonding. And if we aren’t spending time with her then we are spending time with our boys, so I have gone from having TONS of free time, to having almost none.  That has not been easy for me.
I didn’t realize how hard that has been for me until Mike and I went out to our favorite Mexican restaurant last night.   I had been having a really hard day, and as soon as I saw our favorite waitress (who is also now our friend) I literally burst out into sobs.  Not just little tears rolling down my face.  SOBBING TEARS ON HER SHOULDER in front of the cook and all the patrons of the restaurant.  Mike was mortified.  He was like, “Um, do we need to go home?”  ha ha.  I said, “No, I need my bean burrito.”
Anyway……even though adoption wise I feel like we are on easy street, I still at least wanted to let you know it’s not like I’m just doing 100% okay all the time.  I am tired.
But, we just have so many blessings, it’s amazing.  Mike is still home for another month.  And since it is summer we have NO obligations that we have to do, so we can just stay home and play with our kids all day.  What a total joy and blessing that is.
Mike’s mom loaded our freezer with ready made meals, so that has been so easy for us.  And friends have given us gift cards to restaurants, and brought over meals.  Vedika knows A LOT of english, so we don’t have many communication issues at all.  We are really close to being on U.S. time again, so that’s awesome!!!!  The boys are a HUGE help to us, and play with Vedika, (and even watched her for our very quick Mexican meal last night).
And lastly……at the moment we have NO adoption debt.
We had a lot of people give us $ toward our adoption.  While in India we had NO IDEA what our $ situation was like.  So, once we got home I did all our bills, etc., to find out that we literally JUST made all our adoption bills, with a little left over for groceries.  Nothing in savings……etc.  Just what we needed to live off of until Mike’s next paycheck.  All I could do was praise God.  One, for providing so well.  And two, I just LOOOOVE the fact that we can tell every person who gave us $ that NONE of it was used for us.  It truly truly truly all went to our adoption.  That feels really good.
So, while there is SO MUCH more to praise God for, and to tell all of you.  This is all the time I have to write.  Please forgive spelling mistake, and grammar.  I am way too tired to try and write well…..and it doesn’t come naturally to me anyway.  ha ha.
I love you all.  And am SOOOOO thankful for all your support.  I couldn’t have made it these last 3 years without you.  To know it’s really over……that is more joy than I can possibly tell you.  It literally makes me want to spend every spare second with God.  Except, I don’t have many spare seconds.  ha ha.  But still…….I am in awe of Him right now.  And love Him more than words can express.
P.S.  No pictures, because I think I’m posting enough on FB.  ha ha.  Y’all are going to unfriend me soon.

Encouragement for those in waiting….

I am sharing the most beautiful newsletter on the subject of waiting.

A beautiful young woman at IHOP, Sarah Schlemmer, wrote this, and I asked her permission to post it for all those adoptive moms in the waiting process.

Hope it encourages you as much as it has me.

_________________________________________________________________________

 

Zechariah was godly, blameless, righteous, holy and faithful, but the years of disappointment had made his spirit hard and crusty with unbelief.  Even a visitation from an archangel like Gabriel could not penetrate through the hardness of his heart.  God used the prison of muteness to soften Zechariah’s heart and restore him to faith and prophetic discernment.  Let God’s holy saints learn a lesson, that we not allow the years to harden our hearts and dull our spirits to God’s powerful purposes.  – Bob Sorge

 

Disappointment had made his spirit hard and crusty with unbelief – every time I read these words they are like an alarm resounding within my soul, like an arrow shooting straight into my heart; I question, “Have I become hardened in the waiting?  Have the passing years and disappointments formed layer of unbelief within me?”

 

Because waiting is not neutral.

 

A season of waiting will lead in one of two directions;  the heart will be drawn into dependence on God or it will be pulled away distancing from Him.  There is a subtle residue that wants to settle upon the soul in waiting, a slow hardening from the heat of delay.  The pause is simply our opportunity to respond.  When we find ourselves in a season of waiting we can either lean into God or withdraw from Him – distance or dependence.

 

We get to choose.

 

In the trial of waiting, a dependent heart continues in perseverance – believing endurance – which produces hope within the soul.  But a distant heart grows weary in the waiting and begins accusing; unbelief slowly takes root, which produces bitterness within the soul.

 

It is in these moments, when the familiar cycle of pain comes again, when the hour is incredibly late and the night is the darkest it has ever been that we get to choose – distance or dependence.

 

If you are in a season of waiting for have been disappointed once again do not lose heart.  Persevere.  Choose now – this very moment – to lean into the One who upholds all things.

 

And remember that you are not alone.  Scripture is filled with the friends of God who endured long years of waiting with many disappointments along the way.

 

Joseph waited with a dream in his heart but was exiled from his family and ended up living in prison for countless days before it came to pass.  David was anointed king but had to wait for the throne and even became a fugitive in the process.  Abraham waited and carried a promise of descendants – as vast as the stars, as many as the sands of the seas – but did not carry a child in his arms for decades.  And the list goes on throughout those sacred pages.

 

Why?  I believe it is because the Lord is after something in the journey.

 

Waiting is a fire that burns away that which resists His leadership.  It burns hot until all that remains is a weak but steadfast resolve to say, “yes” to His ways.

 

Trusting in the Lord is not just waiting for the answer, but it is trusting IN the One who is the Answer.  Perseverance is not just waiting for our circumstances to change, but it is waiting ON the One who never changes.

 

How do we persevere?  Prayers mixed with tears are the weapons with which to fight the subtle hardening that tries to from within our hearts.

 

In the wrestle we must let the tears fall while our prayers arise – pouring out our soul to the Lord – this is the way to dependence.  In the long hours remember who He is and confess the truth again, saying it right to Him – “You are good, always good.”

 

Perseverance takes place here in these quiet moments, in these simple exchanges, when our prayers ascend and our tears descend.

 

An open, vulnerable, trusting heart continues to look up through the waiting, to look up after a disappointment;; like a child looking expectantly to his father once again.  If we keep our eyes fixed on Him, over the passing of time our hearts will remain soft – believing.

 

We get to choose perseverance – no matter how long the season of waiting lingers we can put our hope fully in the God-of-hope because He is faithful.  We get to choose dependence – no matter how impossible the situation looks – we can rest in the God-of-the-impossible because He is good.

 

Trust.  Rest.  Wait.  And then wait a little longer.  Persevere.  Endure.  Lean.  And then hold fast – one more day.  It is a holy season, a sacred time when you find yourself in waiting because we only get to choose dependence on this side of eternity.

 

To the one waiting, in any capacity; you have been given a holy holding place.  He loves you that much that He is willing to create this circumstantial nexus that would call forth what moves Him:  you, cracked wide-open before Him – vulnerable, bleeding….and hungry.  Let me hand you a permission slip.  Hope again.  Wrestle with the God of hope.  Your heart, exposed, will graft a new way to His.  – Sara Hagerty

 

“He loves you that much that He is willing to create these circumstances….”

 

Can you look at your delay or disappointing circumstances and see the deep love of the Father pursuing your heart?  If not, look a little closer.  He is working it all together for your good, because He desires all of you.  He is actively, presently and continually pursuing your heart, until He has it all.  A fully given and dependent heart is what He is after.

 

And He is waiting too; He is waiting for you to look up.

 

Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.  Hebrews 12:1-2

 

Life While We Wait

Well….

We are just trying to keep busy around here.

But in a really wonderful way.

Everything is just exciting.

My mind is constantly (and I mean CONSTANTLY) thinking about Ind*a.

I’m thinking about what I need to pack.

(I may or may not have already bought travel size toothpaste for every one in the family.)

What it is going to be like when we travel.

And daydreaming ALL THE TIME about V.

photo album V-2047

I mailed her photo album off a few weeks ago, but I don’t think it made it there yet.

Eek.

I am nervous it got lost.

But that’s okay, even if it did, making a new one will just give me something to do.  :)

I also have been keeping busy by learning how to make some foods that are really prevalent in the area V lives.

spices in pan-2085

 

Sambar….or Sambhar.  Not sure the right spelling.  I’ve seen it both ways.  :)

 

spices in coffee grinder-2094

 

sambhar masala-2098

 

vegetables for the sambhar-2100

sambhar-2105

 

And with the Sambar I also tried my hand at making dosas.

 

dosas-2107

 

Not perfect.

But I hope with practice I will get better.  :)

Anyway…..I keep telling everyone that if I was independently wealthy I would totally vacation this entire waiting period so I could distract myself during this time.

But, since that is not a possibility, I told Elijah tonight that we will institute a new subject into his homeschooling.

Geography.

And we will write out detailed plans of what we would do if we could vacation in certain parts of the world.

I figure it’s the next best thing to actually going.

And for all those who are still reading…….

The next step in our process is we are waiting for our court affidavit.

That should be coming in about another month or two.

After the court affidavit it will take probably another 3 months to get our court date.

So….hopefully we will travel this summer.

Yipppeee.

Until then, I will be vacationing in all sorts of exotic locations……in my head.

Elijah's hands wrapped around pillow-2066

 

And I leave you with my massively cute boy.

 

feet Elijah and Ruthie-2081

 

And dog.

 

 

 

 

One of the Gifts of Adoption

Leslie and I-2068

 

I have said it a thousand times before, and I will keep on saying it.  One of the greatest gifts the Lord has given me through this process (besides so much more of an understanding of Him) is people.  I have met the most AMAZING people in this journey.  People who live all over the U.S., who cheer us on, and pray for us, and support us in so many ways.

Leslie is one of those people.  I met her right in the beginning of our process.  She has consistently been someone who has walked through some really hard times with us.  She would send me the absolute most hilarious emails to cheer me up, when things would get hard.  (She really could be the next Erma Bombeck.)  But, what was always so special to me was all the time she would spend composing them, when I know she had so many other responsibilities begging for her attention.  And how could I ever thank her enough for all the times she would listen to me on the phone, crying….wondering if V would ever make it home.  Her words always encouraged me to fight one more day.

So, you can’t imagine how ecstatic I was when Leslie booked a flight to come visit me.  Every day was like torture waiting for her to get here.  I did so much planning of all the places I wanted to take her, and all the things we could do.  And we did a lot of them.  We ate Indian, Mexican, and Cajun food together, went to the movies, went thrift shopping, played games, watched more movies at home, ate pizza, and talked and talked and talked…..  It was FABULOUS.

But what was the best for me was finally meeting someone who had become one of my most important lifelines.  And how insanely blessed I felt that she would take that time away from her family to spend it with me.  Every second was precious, and I will cherish it forever.

Thank you, Leslie.

I love you.

 

 

Obsessed

Ticket to Ride-2030With playing games.

 

Ticket to Ride 2-2031Especially this one.

Ticket to Ride.

As a family, we are just in such a weird waiting season, that spending time together and playing games has been such a blessing.

Bingo 2-2039You could even say, I’ve become slightly obsessed.

 

Bingo 1-2037

 

I may have bought this Bingo game, along with over 100 extra Bingo cards.

We could have a serious Bingo party at our house.

Anyone want to join?

 

 

Giving Y’all the Scoop

Sooooo…….I haven’t been trying to keep this from all of you…..

It’s just I kept hoping any day now this news would change.

But, since it’s been two months now, and no change in sight…..

Here it goes…..

WE DO NOT HAVE OUR NOC.

:(

I know, sad right?

Someone was misinformed.

And then misinformed our agency.

And then misinformed us.

:(

Yuck, huh?

But, I am doing really well.  And someday soon I’ll write a great big post on it, that I do not expect you to read, because who has time to read about other people’s lives in that detail.

Just know God truly comforts those who mourn.

Amen.