A special thanks to you all for your interest and prayers regarding our foster and adoption journey. It certainly has been an eventful one.
Four years ago, Daniel told me to go ahead and see if I can track down a foster agency of some kind. With no internet access, I resorted to the phone book. Each time I picked up the phone and made a call, I was directed to another party.
Finally, at long last, I was connected to the right person. When I hung up the phone 30 minutes later, I found myself repeatedly staring into space. It hung heavy on my heart. When Daniel returned home from work, I told him every detail I remembered.
After a long story and many little miracles, we were thrilled to have the foster license in our hands nine months later. It stated that we could take two children under the age of two.
“Are we crazy?” I wondered repeatedly, but then there was no way around the unwavering reality that God brought us here.
By this point, I was halfway through my third pregnancy. We had no idea how everything would all fall into place but hung to the reality that there really is One who has a perfect plan for us and the dear little children out there who need us as their mom and daddy.
Three weeks later, when Daniel called me, I basically leaped through the phone line. He ever so calmly informed me that he had a call from DCFS, telling him that they are looking for a home for a 15 month-old girl and her newborn brother.
From that first moment, both of us were filled with eager anticipation, yet so aware that children don’t get their emotional needs met on their own; we didn’t want anyone falling through the cracks. I admit, I also wondered what people would say about this crazy couple.
Still, there was no way around what God was putting in our paths. It was up to us to pick it up and take another step in faith.
I had a zillion unanswered questions churning in my head. After more discussion, I picked up the phone and told the caseworker that yes, we have decided to take these dear children.
After Daniel returned home from work, we had a driver take us to Walmart. As I write, I can still feel the exhilarating feeling of shopping for my babies, whom I did not know.
I reached for diapers, formula, and we picked out another car seat. Is it true? Is this happening to me? It was a dream come true, yet I had no idea what the future would hold.
There was the stark reality of perhaps bonding with these children as my own, only to have them move back to another home. I was determined that I would not refrain from loving them in any way in case my heart would break one day.
“What if no one would love me in case their heart would break?” I reasoned.
That night Daniel and I tossed and turned as we thought of the babies coming at noon the following day; it all seemed so unreal and uncertain. Deep down, there was an abiding assurance that the God who orchestrated it all would also see us through anything ahead.
Now here we are, three-and-a-half years later, and we are signing stacks of papers; yes, we are on the very last steps of final adoption!
As I look back, I heave a gentle sigh. No, I had no idea what journey lay ahead of us. I’m glad I didn’t. Yes, it has brought more joys than I could ever tell, and yes, we have learned a lot about dealing with trauma children.
Life is a journey, and there is always more to learn. Many others who have traveled the same path have been there for us along the way.
Family and friends, you all, have been there for us way more than we ever deserved. We look at it as the love of God flowing through you, into our hearts.
As I mentioned a week ago, we had planned to sign papers at the attorney’s office. We sat across his desk with the two foster children and Elijah and Joshua. The children were all eyes and ears, trying to grasp this whole adoption thing. Jesse wondered what the attorney would do with us; Elijah declared that he wants to be adopted too!
After 30 minutes’ worth of going through papers and signing, we stood to leave when Jesse became all distressed.
“I didn’t sign any papers yet!” he declared. “Oh sure, you can sign, too,” we assured him. Getting a piece of scrap paper, Daniel helped Jesse sign his name.
Of course, Hosanna and Elijah wouldn’t be left behind on such a privilege, as they echoed the request. Soon there were three signatures on the scrap paper, which the kind attorney told them he would be sure to file.
We walked out of the office with glowing hearts. It seemed too good to be true.
Now wrapping up, I asked Julia for a simple recipe to go with a lengthy column. She popped up with this easy cookie recipe. Enjoy!
Three-ingredient Peanut Butter Cookies
1 cup peanut butter
1 cup sugar
Mix together, shape in small balls, and roll in sugar. Place on a greased cookie sheet and flatten with a fork.Bake at 350 for 10 minutes. A yummy melt-in-your mouth cookie!
Gloria Yoder is an Amish mom, writer, and homemaker in rural Illinois. Readers can write to Gloria at 10510 E. 350th Ave., Flat Rock, IL 62427.