Week 27 + 28 +29

It’s a…..

SURPRISE!

Did you fall for it?! I’m terrible. 🙂

BUT I got you here and hope that you may be enticed to read the rest of this update. If you read to the end you *might* learn what we plan to do about sharing the gender!

It has been a FUN, information-filled few weeks. The last I wrote was literally hours after we found out we were matched. That following Monday we had an hour long phone call with Mama A’s social worker who is now also our social worker. She is the ‘in-between’ person and the one that communicates between both parties. We LOVE her and feel so blessed to be working with her. She has worked with Mama A during all of her other adoptions and pregnancies and so she knows Mama A VERY well and they have a great relationship- what a blessing!

Our social worker was able to tell us all about Mama A and we feel that we know her so well already. This is Mama A’s 8th child. She has placed 6 for adoption previously. As you can imagine, her lifestyle is completely different than ours. Yet, we love this woman. It is so eye opening to learn about how others live, how one choice leads into another, and another, and how difficult it is to break those patterns. Our biggest struggle is not wanting to come off like we have it all together. We are broken, messy people too. Our number one goal is to love Mama A for exactly who she is. It is an odd feeling- being so deeply connected to another woman, who lives across the country, whom we’ve never met.

We hope to have a phone call/facetime with Mama A soon. We might also get to visit her in the next few months (depending on schedules, Covid, etc…). For almost all of her previous pregnancies she’s been induced, so that may make our final travel plans a bit easier. In the past, Mama A has allowed the adoptive parents in the delivery room with her and has given them her child for skin-to-skin right after birth. This would be a dream. Ultimately, it is her decision and we will respect whatever she chooses! Covid policies could also effect that a bit, but we’re praying Covid is a thing of the past by March!

Last week we received ultrasound photos AND the gender! That made this all feel SO real. So, so real. It also makes us that much more nervous.

A few people have asked me, “So the baby is yours, right?”

With grace, I respond. (For future reference, this is quite a bold and offensive question, avoid if possible.)

The baby has never been ours. The baby is Mama A’s. She is the mother. She is carrying this child. She can still choose to parent. This is our reality.

Adoption doesn’t come without risk.

However, we are CONFIDENT of this: our God has a good, good plan. We truly believe and hope that after our season of loss, this is our rainbow. We feel peace. We reflect on God’s faithfulness so far throughout this journey. We can’t deny HE has been intricately weaving every part. HE has shown up over and over reaffirming this decision. We also know that if mom would choose to parent, we will be okay. We would be devastated. We would grieve. But our God would pull us through. We are hopeful and realistic and we’re learning to balance all of that.

Our social worker has assured us over and over, that this is the best choice for Mama A, and Mama A knows that. It is reassuring to know Mama A has walked this road before. She knows what to expect. In the past, she’s been consistent with her adoption plans.

We give that all to God and continue to be excited. I’ve been waiting my whole life for this moment- to buy baby clothes. To refer to our child by name. To make a baby registry. To share ultrasound pictures. I was made to be a mom and I’ve never felt that desire, so deeply in my bones, as I do now.

Back to baby’s gender. Greg and I said, even from our first pregnancy, that we wanted to keep the gender of our babies a secret. EVERYBODY does gender reveals and I despise them. I will NEVER do one. That’s what I said.

I eat my words.

I’m finding I’m eating a lot of my words.

A lot of my words were based in jealousy. They were said in hurt. My heart was grieving.

We found out the gender last week and since then, I’ve been slowly DYING inside.

You guys. I can’t keep a secret to save my soul. I texted my best friend. I texted my teaching partner. We told our parents and siblings.

THEY ARE ALL SWORN TO SECRECY so don’t you dare try to get it out of them. 🙂

BUT…we will share the gender with you. Eventually. However, there is a twist.

We still need quite a bit of funds. We feel guilty everytime we ask for more support. But, we find if there’s a little something in it for you, it makes us feel a teeny, tiny bit better.

Insert the Gender Reveal Fundraiser. We have a plan. We think it will be fun/special/exciting/etc…we will share more in a week or so about the details. Stay tuned.

Before we start that fundraiser, we want to be honest about our funds situation so far. We have been SO open about the financial aspect of this adoption for two reasons: 1) we feel that if people are supporting us financially, it’s important for you to see how we are using the money and 2) education is power- for others considering adoption or using our blog to learn more about the process, we want to be open.

This is where things stand. Our adoption case was a bit more than we expected. We will need to pay $55,000 to the Adoption Centre of Kansas. We have already paid $10,000. That $10,000 is the only money at risk (it’s a lot, but it’s not ALL of it). This means if mom would choose to parent, we would only be out that money.

We will have to pay the remaining $45,000 once baby is here.

We also have $6,000 on an interest free credit card (interest free until Nov. 2021). These are expenses that we had to pay before we had done ANY fundraising (home study fee $2500, consultant fee $4200, Fingerprints, background checks, legal stuff $2000).

We will also need about $2000 to travel.

This means we still need $53,000.

After paying the $10,000, we have $25,000 in our adoption fund.

We have our $20,000 adoption loan.

We still need to ‘raise’ or come up with $8,000.

We are PRAYING for a grant. One of our grant reviews kept getting pushed back because we weren’t matched. We should hopefully be getting that one reviewed on October 1. We heard from a different grant that they will review our application in November. There are 3 others we’ve heard nothing from, but they could still be reviewing applications.

We are still weekly returning pop bottles. Every little bit helps!

I also opened an Etsy shop and have raised some great funds that way! THANK YOU!

Our gender reveal fundraiser should raise us about $6000.

We’re also hoping for a Trivia night fundraiser this winter.

We CAN do this. We are feeling confident about the financial aspect and we’re even quite hopeful we won’t need the entire $20,000 loan.

Where God guides, He provides.

We literally could not do ANY of this without all of you. Tears fill my eyes as I write this. We started this journey with $2000 in our savings. We had NO clue how we would do this. We were terrified. And here we are. So close to our goals. When we say you are helping bring baby P home, we literally mean, YOU are helping bring baby P home. I hope that in heaven someday, everyone who supported us in this adoption can stand together and we can show our child- LOOK these are ALL the people that loved you and helped make our family. And we will hug tight each and every one of you (because Covid will NOT exist in heaven). The family of God is a beautiful, beautiful thing.

Ok, now I’m rambling. I feel like I’ve been a bit all over the place tonight.

But you guys.

Our hearts are so, so happy. And it feels so good to be RIGHT here, right now.

Blessings!