Preston Party of Six

Preston Party of Six

Thursday, February 28, 2013

Question Marks

My mind is filled with question marks right now:

*When will I get an e-mail saying we are "LID" (Log-In-Date), meaning all of our paperwork is finally logged-in to the CCCWA, China's governing body for adoption?
*When will I get phone calls or e-mails with referrals of little girls in China needing a forever family?
*When will Jason and I accept a referral, saying "YES" to one special girl that we will call our daughter and welcome into our family?
*When will I get to put our daughter's picture in the frames beside her big brothers and big sister?
*When will we get to travel to China to finalize our adoption and bring Jenna home?
*Who is Jenna and when will I get to see her face?
*What province in China does Jenna live in and is she in an orphanage or a foster home?
*Who takes care of Jenna and is she being loved by her caregivers?
*What type of special need(s) does Jenna have?
*How is Jenna going to respond to me on the first day I meet her?
*How is Jenna going to respond to her new home and her new family?

These are only a few of the questions swirling in my mind as we approach the eight month mark since submitting our application to our adoption agency saying "YES" to God's call for us to adopt.  Now that I know our paperwork is finally in China, I seem to be counting the days and checking my e-mail even more I can only imagine how this must be once we get really close to traveling to get our daughter!

Most of these questions are so different than what I experienced with the three pregnancies I had with our biological children.  Of course I wondered what they would look like and until the 20-week ultrasound I wondered if I was carrying a boy or a girl.  But other than that, I knew that approximately 40 weeks after the sheer joy of discovering I was pregnant, I would give birth to a son or daughter and I would love my child unconditionally and at first sight.  In fact, as I drove by the hospital yesterday where our daughter Shelby and son Andrew were born in 2006 and 2008, I couldn't help but think how very different things are with adoption:  there are no prenatal doctor visits, no growing belly, no morning sickness, no ultrasounds, no kicks in the ribs, no back pain, and no natural birth labor pains. 

But oh there is pain...the pain of all these question marks swirling in my mind AND the pain in my heart knowing there are more than 147 million orphans around the world in need of a loving family.  One day most of my questions about Jenna will be answered, but until that day, I must continue to focus on the ONE who has all the answers and the ONE who is holding Jenna until I am able to wrap her in my arms. 

And when it comes to the other millions of orphans around the world who are still waiting to be adopted, I also must entrust them to the Lord and pray for families to open their hearts and their homes. 

Regardless of all the question marks, regardless of all the unknowns...adoption is a beautiful!

"And whoever welcomes a little child like
this in my name welcomes me." Matthew 18:5

Thursday, February 21, 2013


DTC...three letters that bring me tears of joy tonight!  Our dossier (LOTS of paperwork/legal documents) are finally headed to China today, February 21, 2013.  The "paper pregnancy" that I wrote about many months ago is finally least for a little while, for there is always a lot of paperwork involved with adoption.  But in the end, it will be SO WORTH IT when we finally see our get to bring Jenna Jean home!!!

Jenna...I still don't know what you look like or where you are in China, but as I sit here tonight rejoicing that we are one step closer to having you with us, I'm in awe as I consider that our Heavenly Father is with me here and He is holding you in China.  As much as I long to see your face and have you in my arms, I'm continuing to trust the Lord with each piece of this puzzle that will ultimately bring you into our family forever.  You are loved and you are treasured! 

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Reality Hits and Reality Hurts

Dear Jenna,

My heart hurts tonight as reality hit in a real way for me today.  I got an e-mail from a person that I don't know...she  was part of an e-mail distribution list to receive information about RACE for the Orphans that your daddy and I are organizing as a fundraiser for our adoption with the goal of making it an annual event for Raising Awareness, Compassion, and Education about the needs of orphans around the world.  The person stated that this is a misleading fundraiser since it is benefiting a family that is adopting from another country and that there are plenty of children in America that could benefit from a similar fundraiser.  MY HEART HURT as I read her e-mail.  I quickly forwarded the e-mail it to your amazing father and he provided the perfect response to share with this person, stating that we did not intend to be misleading at all but that we are looking for people to be part of the journey of bringing you home and the RACE is part of that process.  I am truly thankful for how your daddy responded, as well as other friends who encouraged me when I shared my heartache with them.

The truth of the matter is that not everyone is going to be supportive of our obedience to follow God's call to adopt you.  Not everyone understands that your daddy and I are so excited to welcome you into our home and call you our daughter.  Not everyone is going to understand why we want to adopt a little girl from another country since we are Americans.  Not everyone is going to understand that God loves the world and we want share His love by Raising Awareness, Compassion, and Education about the needs of orphans worldwide.

Reality hits and reality hurts.

But the TRUTH is that you, Jenna, will one day be part of our family forever.  The TRUTH is that God has a perfect plan for your life and part of that plan is for you to be our daughter.  The TRUTH is that we are trusting our Heavenly Father to provide us with wisdom, strength, faith, and love for the journey He has us on until we finally get to meet you and for the rest of our lives as your parents.  The TRUTH is that we cannot wait to have you in our arms, in our home, and in our lives.  The TRUTH is that your older brothers and sister cannot wait to play with you and teach you so many things.  The TRUTH is that we are asking the Lord to bless us with people who will support us in this journey.  The TRUTH is that you are loved!

I know these hits and hurts with reality from the world will continue to come...but I'm clinging to these TRUTHS and believe that He who is in me is greater than he who is in the world (I John 4:4).

I'm praying for you, Jenna.  I love you and cannot wait to have you in my arms and show the world the joy of adoption!

Love always,

Sunday, February 10, 2013

The Year of the Snake...Oh the Irony!!!

Chinese New Year is in full swing and it's hard for me to wrap my head around the fact that somewhere over the ocean in the large land of China, our daughter is hopefully getting to enjoy some of the cultural festivities that take place during this most important Chinese holiday.  Oh how I long to have our Jenna here in America to celebrate all of our special holidays with us, but I also look forward to incorporating her heritage and culture into our family by celebrating Chinese New Year with her for years to come...on this side of the ocean!

What is ironic for me is that 2013 is the "Year of the Snake" in the Chinese Zodiac.  Although I don't believe at all in Zodiac signs, the reason I think this is ironic and even funny is because I am
FLAT OUT PHOBIC of snakes.  I am not afraid to admit this and one day, our sweet Jenna will know this, as our other three children already do.  I HATE SNAKES!  So the other day while at a Chinese New Year celebration at my son's preschool, a friend of mine started to show me pictures from her trip to China to adopt her precious daughter...and she put a picture of snakes right into my hands not knowing that my reaction would be to FLIP OUT at the sight of them!  Yes, it's pitiful, but aren't most phobias??!!  After regaining my composure and catching my breath, I asked her why she had a picture of snakes in her China photo album and she proceeded to tell me that there are often aquariums filled with snakes along the streets of China.  My jaw dropped to the floor and my blood pressure quickly soared because hopefully sometime this year, I will be walking the streets of China with our precious Jenna before bringing her home to good ol' Newnan, Georgia and the last thing I want to do in front of my new daughter is FLIP OUT at the sight of snakes!  And with this being the "Year of the Snake," my hunch is there will be even more snakes out and about for all to see.  AAAAAHHHHH!!!

So what does this have to do with our adoption?  Perhaps not much for those of you that aren't PHOBIC of snakes, but for me, this is a stark reminder of the fact that nothing will hold me back from going to China to follow God's call of adopting a precious little girl in need of a forever family.

Jenna--whether it's the Year of the Snake or the Year of the Ox or whatever, I am so excited that this is your year to finally have a forever family and I cannot wait to see you, hold you, and love you.  Because your country is celebrating this special holiday right now, our adoption paperwork is on hold for a week or so, but I'm trying to be patient and cannot wait to get notification that our paperwork is headed to China.  Then we will be one step closer to having you in our arms! 

In the meantime, I'm going to start praying now that my eyes will be blinded to any and all snakes while I spend two weeks in China!!!