Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Six months ago today...

...a quiet young man walked into our lives, and our world was forever changed.  I have no pictures of the day - our new son really disliked getting his picture taken and I figured doing something he hated would be a very poor way to start things off with him!  However, it was a wonderful day.  We signed all the paperwork to complete Joshua's adoption within about 15 minutes of meeting him.  Due to the fact the adoption had to be completed before his 14th birthday they had given us special permission to complete his adoption on the same day we received him as opposed to waiting the usual 24 hours.

Getting approval to adopt Joshua was not easy.  Our adoption agency doesn't allow the adoption of 2 unrelated kids at one time, and we were already in process to adopt Micaelyn.  It took many weeks, far too many committee meetings, extra interviews with social workers (for our kids as well), and lots of writing.  In the end I wrote around 37,000 words in defense of our ability to adopt Joshua along with Micaelyn.  For every question that was given I had a solid answer.  My husband (who loves my writing ability and was apparently quite proud of my effort) said I left our agency with no argument.  However, the words were not my own, they were my Father's.  God put the words in my head, worked through me to fulfill His purpose.  He softened the hearts of the people in the agency who were against us, and He gave power to those who cared enough about a child to realize his life was more important than their rule.

In the end we were right - we were capable of successfully adopting both children.  Joshua and Micaelyn are both doing wonderfully.  Our agency states they do not let people adopt two unrelated children at one time because "this is in the best interest of each child."  Given the likely alternative for Joshua (life as an orphan) there was virtually no way for them to argue that our adopting Joshua was not in his best interest.  For Micaelyn the case was not as obvious.  However, I argued that as a little girl she would probably have a very difficult transition and Joshua may be able to help her through it.  I truly believe this turned out to be the case.  It was just after we got Joshua that Micaelyn started showing signs of happiness (see the pictures on my previous post of her on her fourth day with us - this was the day after we got Joshua).  By the second day with Joshua, Micaelyn had truly opened up.  Her grief turned to joy, her tears to laughter.  To this day, even though they have little interaction with each other it is obvious Micaelyn has a special attachment to Joshua.  She loves all her siblings, but she seems connected to him.  To imagine not having adopted BOTH children together is nearly unimaginable!

It took a huge battle and a true miracle from God to get our agency's approval to adopt Joshua along with Micaelyn.  On the day they told us we had finally gotten approval they said we were not the rare exception to their rule, we were the only exception.  While I was happy for us, I prayed our case would open the door for other families to adopt 2 kids at one time so more children could find families.  Miraculously there have been 2 other families since our battle to get approval to bring home 2 kids at the same time (in both families the second child was aging out just as Joshua was).  I am grateful to our agency for giving more children the chance to be loved.  The battle to get approval for Joshua's adoption was very hard on us, but it feels wonderful to know God worked through us to help other orphans find families.  Perhaps the success stories of these adoptions will help to bring even more children into the arms of love!
Joshua still doesn't like to get his picture made, so I have to catch him when he doesn't notice.  Thank goodness for a zoom lens and the ability to crop photos since I'm usually pretty far off (trying not to be noticed by him).  However, he is a really good kid, a true blessing to have in our home!  It's so hard to believe we almost didn't get to adopt him just because we found Micaelyn first!


FaerieMama said...

beautiful post, Jennifer. I hope I get to meet him some day:)

The Kings said...

Loved seeing these posts today. I often think of you and wonder how you are doing!


Jolene said...

Oh what a beautiful post! Here we sit in the same situation...on the paper trail for one child (age 4) and considering a second child (age 2). Only God can...that's exactly how it is. Only God Can. He can soften the hearts and prepare the way. Gods many blessings to you family!