November is National Adoption Awareness Month. As an adoptive parent, I wanted to take this opportunity briefly share my heart on this subject.
Adoption is very personal for me. Without the miracle of adoption, I would not be a mom today. So here is my heart…..
To the couple who suffers from infertility, explained or unexplained, and wonders if they will ever be able to grow their family. I cry with you.
To the couple who seeks to adopt, but the paperwork and the cost make it seem impossible. I know what you face.
To the woman who is pregnant or has delivered and is standing in the valley of decision. I cannot imagine how you must feel. I pray that you make the decision that is best for both you and for your child in your UNIQUE situation. No matter if you choose adoption or to parent.
To the new adoptive parents who wonder how they will navigate this life in the best interest of their new child. I share your uncertainty.
To all parties in the adoption triad. Love each other, Support each other, Listen to each other and Respect each other.
To the parents who adopted through the foster system and wonder how to help their child grow up not being able to know their first family. I pray with you for wisdom.
To the countless family members and friends who support an adoptive parent, adoptee or first parent. Just be there. Provide support and a shoulder to cry on when needed. Live life with them.
And now to speak to my own story.
To my husband. We walked through all of this together. I love you and I love our family.
To our son. We love you and are so honored to be your parents.
To our son’s first family. We love you and are glad that we get to know who you are and that he will know who you are.
To our parents. We love you and know that you were walking through this along with us. You taught us how to be parents. Thank you.
To the countless friends who encouraged us and even helped us raise funds. Thank you. We love you all as our extended family.
To my readers. Thank you for following our journey. This month pray for all of those who are a part of the adoption process. Pray that no one is pressured or taken advantage of. Pray that only the best decisions are made. Pray that relationships are made instead of broken. Pray that every party is given access to the resources they need to deal with their part of this journey.
Yesterday I turned 40. Let’s just say that although some really great things did happen in my life during my thirties, there were also a lot of hard circumstances. I always thought I would be depressed at the thought of turning 40, and definitely never thought I would be announcing it to the world online. Don’t get me wrong, it does feel a bit weird and I’m not exactly a fan of getting older, but I find myself looking forward to my forties with hope and expectation.
At the time of my last blog post in August of 2016, we were newly taking on the adoption process. There were so many unknowns. Lots of excitement accompanied by fear and at times discouragement. How will we ever raise the funds? What will the
process be like? How long will we have to wait? It was quite the emotional roller coaster, but over and over again God proved to us just how much He loves us and that He is on our side. The funds steadily came in from the most unlikely places. Most of our adoption cost was funded by the generosity of friends, family and acquaintances. We were blown away. All of these people waited alongside us for Baby G to come home.
I believe it was in March of 2018 that we were home study approved, allowed to submit our profile, and were officially a “waiting family.” During the whole process we were impatient to reach that moment when we could “go live” with our profile, so to speak. Now we found ourselves in the phase of “hurry up and wait.” By the end of May, secretly both my husband and me were feeling discouraged. Would it be years of waiting? Would it be a lifetime of waiting?
I was a few months away from my 39thbirthday. At that point approaching 40 seemed a bit grim. Would I be entering my forties, still with no child for us to share our love with? I started praying, really pleading for God to somehow make it happen before my 40thbirthday, while feeling petty for even making such a request. God had done so much already, was I really going to be this whiny?
Other things started to change as well. I had an unexplainable feeling that it was time to leave my job. I had planned to stay there one more year while I attempted to build a homebased business, but something told me that the time to go was now. I turned in my notice and finished the school year. It was pretty scary to leave that job with no guaranteed idea of how I was going to supplement our income, but it felt like the right thing. As we had done every Summer, after I finished the school year, we packed up and headed to camp with our youth group. The week started off good, as usual. Our cell phone reception was horrible, so I had to keep mine turned off most of the time. On the second evening of camp I turned on my phone to check for messages and I had a voicemail from our adoption specialist asking for me to call her so we could chat. I immediately thought it was odd and the wheels in my head started to turn. I found a wi-fi connection so I could check email. There was a mass email that had gone out to all of the waiting families with our agency, just letting everyone know that some profiles had been viewed by an expectant mother. She had chosen a family and we were instructed to contact the agency if we wanted to know if our profile had been shown to her. Well now the wheels were really turning! Could it be? No, surely not. Don’t let yourself get too excited. Don’t set yourself up for disappointment. So many thoughts. Of course, I had to grab my husband to tell him. He was in shock too, and just like me afraid to fully let his mind go there.
The next morning we went to find a land line to call our adoption specialist. We heard the words that we never thought we would hear- “You’ve been chosen! This mom wants to meet you!” We were overwhelmed. Here we were in early June and this baby, a boy, was to be delivered by c-section on July 10. Just as a side note, the average time that a family waits for an adoption with our agency is 3 ½ years after submitting their profile. We were around the 3 month mark.
We scheduled a meeting for when we returned from camp. We were excited but still scared and guarded. This was just a meeting to see if mom really liked us enough to move forward. We were going “under the microscope.”
We got back into town and prepared for our meeting. Wow, some big decisions on both sides would be made at this meeting. We were discouraged when the meeting was canceled. Due to unforeseen circumstances, it would have to be rescheduled. So, we were given a second meeting date for one week later. Uh…… more time to think.
The day before the meeting, June 28th, I was at church in a rehearsal when I got a call from the agency. I assumed they were calling to confirm our meeting for the next day, I was praying that it wasn’t another cancellation. When I answered the phone, I was informed the baby had been born that morning! Wow! This changed everything. We had to go ahead and decide, without ever meeting mom, if we were going to bring this baby boy home. We had a matter of hours to make a decision to commit or not, and even if we commit mom can still change her mind. I ran home to talk to my husband so we could decide together. We cried, we prayed, we pondered. We decided that if mom still wanted us, this was our son.
The next day we drove 2 hours to meet mom and her family at the hospital. We all clicked instantly. We had heard horror stories of these hospital meetings not going well due to prejudices on the part of hospital staff or high emotions of the first family and their friends. We experienced none of this! This family welcomed us with open arms as one of their own and the hospital staff could not have been nicer. We visited with the first family all day long and then spent the night in the hospital with a little 5 lb 2 oz baby boy beside my bed.
Although we were feeling so much joy and our dream was coming true, we couldn’t help but feel a measure of sadness as well. While we were in our room rejoicing, a woman was down the hall in her room, pondering the hardest decision she would ever make. The following day, we spent more time with her and then in the evening we loaded up our car for the long drive home with our miracle baby, Landon.
Not only did I become a mom before my 40thbirthday, but God did me one better and made it happen even before my 39th! God is so good and cares even about things that we may think are silly. If it matters to us, it matters to Him.
So, to make a long story longer….. What have we been up to since August of 2016??????
We have been living our dream. Raising our son, maintaining a good relationship with his first family and now focusing on our health. We want to not just be there, but actively there for our son for the years ahead.
Since July 15 of this year, my husband and I have been on a journey of health and wellness. We have drastically changed our eating habits and have not only dropped weight, but have been feeling better and healthier. I am down a total of 26 lbs and 2 jean sizes!
We are continuing on this journey for the long haul, and I want to take you with us! This blog will now chronical my adventures in motherhood, our health journey, faith, fashion, DIY, recipes, product reviews- you name it, I will be sharing it.
So truly, welcome to my world…. Only this time it’s a whole new world! Here’s to my Fabulous Forties!
Sorry, I have been absent on the blog for a bit…. I got some nasty crud and had to take some time to rest. I hope you all have been well.
Last weekend I posted this picture with the promise of further explanation.
So…… the announcement is…….. I am re-launching Kellie G. Designs starting with the “chosen” line! The first product for my new line is a coffee mug with the word “chosen”. The proceeds for this line will go specifically towards financing our adoption! The word chosen is significant to me because that is so beautifully sums up adoption. I may not be able to conceive a child of my blood but I can choose to adopt a child who needs us to love and raise them. Our future child will know that he or she was chosen and fiercely fought for….That not only were they chosen by us but also by their Heavenly Father. And really, can’t we all identify with that word? All of us who are in Christ are chosen and adopted into His family! We were all orphaned by sin but now God offers us relationship through His Son. All who want it can be part of the family of God.
There’s another part that I am especially excited about! 10% of the profit from these mugs will be donated to Show Hope.
Show Hope is an organization who, among other things, aids families in adoption both domestically and internationally. I’m am so excited to be able to, not only finance our adoption but also to contribute to an organization who will in turn make it possible for others to make their own adoptions happen! To learn more about Show Hope visit showhope.org
I am so excited about this new chapter. I believe that God is making a way for me to be able to not only help finance our adoption but also to be able to help better support our growing family. I am looking forward to this great adventure that God is taking us on through our family life, ministry and now business!
For now, if you order directly from me the mugs will be $7 + $4 for shipping. I will be posting more details soon on how to order and they will be showing up in my Etsy shop soon.. In the mean time if you are interested just post a comment on the blog or on the “I Am Kellie G” Facebook page. Also, please be aware that these mugs are hand painted so it will take time to produce. However, I will get them out as quickly as possible. You can also talk to me about custom orders!
Yes, I am alive and cancer free. Praise God! I’ve talked about my heartbreak, my fears, my loss……. But now, on the other side of my heartbreak, God is working in my life. He is so good and now I know that He definitely sees around the corner.
Let’s back track to a moment in my story that I didn’t cover before.
I was in the shower one morning before I had met with the oncologist for the first time….. During quiet moments like these the head games were attacking relentlessly.
I remember just starting to cry. I started to pray. I told God that I did not understand what was happening or why. I told him I was scared. Then I said words that I never thought I would be able to say. “God, I trust you with my life, and I trust you to give us a family in the way that You see fit.” This control freak had finally learned to let go.
Everyone’s life is a story. Some stories are just beginning, some are halfway written, and others are nearing the conclusion…… And then there are those whose stories are kind of being re-written. A long time ago I had written a story for myself but God has shown me time and again that what I wrote may not always be so. Sometimes life just deals you an unfair hand. I had no motivation write anymore, but God picked up the pen and started re-writing those chapters that were now just fiction.
I look back and see that God has been preparing me for this moment for so long. Why have I always been so stubborn? Why did I have such a problem letting go and trusting God with my future? Well, I don’t really know why, but I do know I will never again question God’s faithfulness. Looking back, I see that God had been preparing my heart for years……..
Since I was a teenager I had always wanted to adopt as well as have my own children. My heart broke for children who had no one to love them and raise them in a stable home. I knew that if I ever had the opportunity, I wanted to adopt. I even think back to when I was first married and the major earthquake in Haiti had just happened, so many stories of the countless children who had been orphaned by this catastrophic event. I remember telling my husband that I so wanted to adopt a Haitian child. My heart would ache every time I saw a news story. Of course, at the time he thought I was a little crazy and we laughed about it, but that seed that had been planted when I was so young was growing.
About 2 years or so before my diagnosis and surgery, a representative from Convoy of Hope had come to our church to speak to us about how our giving to Convoy of Hope touched so many lives….. Then he started to talk about orphaned children. He told a story about a baby who had been abandoned in a public toilet, miraculously survived and had been adopted by a living family. He spoke about how God loves those children who cannot be raised by their birthparents and need Godly couples to step up and parent such children. I cried the whole time. I felt like God was speaking to me about adoption but I did not tell anyone. I second-guessed myself thinking it was just my desperation to have a child that was surfacing. Looking back I know that God was really whispering to me.
And now here we are. We have just begun our adoption journey and are so excited for this new chapter! We are grateful for your continued prayers and support.
We are praying for our future child and his or her birth mother and father. We have taken our first required classes and now we are moving into fundraising mode.
Adoption is expensive and not for the faint of heart. There’s LOTS of paperwork and phases that we will go through as well. I was a little worried when we first decided to start the process. I kept wondering when I was going to be disappointed, but at every step so far God has just confirmed that this is for us and I have become more and more encouraged instead of discouraged. We are trusting that God will provide and help bring our little one home. After all, He is faithful.
At this point my blogging will become more diverse in subject matter, but don’t worry…… I will continue to write about this journey to adoption as well. Again, I cannot thank you all enough for your support!