November is National Adoption Awareness Month and the hope is to bring awareness to all people that there are 147 million orphans in the world who need a mom, dad, and family to love them! Adoption is not perfect, beautiful, or simple. It is messy, expensive, and often times heart wrenching.
Adoption was not my lifelong dream as a child. I grew up, like many other girls I knew and wanted marriage, pregnancies, and the perfect life I dreamed of. I sat in my church pew many times planning what my wedding would be like....what flowers I would use, where the bridesmaids would stand, every detail has been etched on the back of church bulletins through the years! But, for whatever reason it never came for me. Therefore pregnancies and babies never came. And that was a hard pill to swallow for this girl who loves children!
And so, as I matured into adulthood and life happened, I gradually began thinking about another dream. A dream that only God could have prepared and planned for for my life. A journey that was all his...because I never thought in a million years I would be a single mom to a Chinese daughter!
Honestly adoption for me was a selfish answer for motherhood. At the time I wasn't thinking about "saving a child" or "rescuing her from a life of _____"; I was simply looking for a way to be a mom. But, as I was in the process I became educated in orphan care, abandonment, and all the issues that rip your heart out! So at that point I truly understood what God had done in my life...he took some of my dreams away so hers could happen. That's becoming a mom!
So as I look at pictures of her at her orphanage, like the one below, irony isn't lost in the fact that her only toy on this day was an empty basket and now she has a room full of toys. Or that she was wearing clothes from a shared closet and now she has too many to count. Her life is changed forever and ironically so is mine!
So, throughout the month I may share some about my adoption experience in hopes that in may encourage someone to learn more about helping those 147 million orphans. Whether it's through prayer, financial donations, or actual adoption. I hope that you'll think about it!