You saved me

Imagine these situations:

1. A baby is born. A woman is holding her new child and then realizes that she isn’t able to take care of it. She calls the streets of a third world country (India) her home. A decision must be made. What to do with this baby she holds in her hands. Not much time later, a different lady opens the front door  of an orphanage she works at. To her surprise, she finds a child wrapped in a blanket on the porch. No name, no mom around, no card, but just a baby who is alone, probably hungry, and in need of help. The lady takes the baby into the crowded orphanage and decides that the orphanage will be her new home for the time being.

2. It’s extremely hot outside in Peru, and a woman sits in her home to find out she is pregnant. She already has 4 other children and all the fathers left her once they found out she was with child. The man she had been with is outside waiting for her. Does she tell him she is with child or let it go so that someone will stick around? After debating, she mentions the fact that she is pregnant. Fast forward nine months: she delivers her little girl and yet the father is nowhere to be seen. A single mother of 5 tries to balance providing for each one of her children, but knows this little girl won’t survive if she keeps her. After 9 different foster homes, the woman knows that someone else will be able to call her little one theirs.

3. Crowded streets, lots of people, and tons of humidity is where this next scene takes place. A younger woman finds out that she is with child. She knows she hasn’t been making the best life decisions with staying sober, eating right, or simply taking care of herself and her baby while her child was in the womb. The baby ends up delivering early and the lady knows that she needs someone else to provide for this extremely little girl. Facing the reality that her child needs more than what she can provide, she decides to put her baby girl up for adoption.

Maybe some of you all will think that these sound like extremely sad stories? What a rough life, right? Why didn’t those women plan for their children, what happened to them? Well…some of you may have guessed, but those children are my sisters and I. These were our stories. In our first few months or even years of living we were children who were left, became too much to handle, or not the best taken care of. For me, I don’t remember any of it. I don’t remember being extremely ill, I don’t remember my birth mom or siblings, nor do I remember thinking I identified as any of those things. I was a baby. But the really cool reason of why I don’t remember any of that, is because the woman who adopted me (  my superhero mother) changed all that for me. She gave me life, made sure I was important, never said I was too much to handle (even though I feel I was sometimes), and gave me the best care that a child could ask for.

Today is the blog post where I get to rant a bit about how incredible my mom is. Today is the blog post of my families’ beautiful story of how we came together. Today is the blog post where I get to say, “I am celebrating adoption day!”

To adopt: “to legally take another’s child and bring it up as one’s own”. 

All right one more time, please visualize this:

1. A woman is sitting at home. She has a great job that makes sure she is financially stable, has a loving family in another state, created some awesome friendships, and yet she wants something else. She would look around and see her friends getting married, start families, etc. Instead of waiting around for a prince to come sweep her off her feet, she decides she wants to take action. The woman starts looking into adopting and decides she wants to start internationally. The process is taking a while and the first child she is wanting to call hers is very very sick. Many people are telling her to stop the process, because why would you want someone who is “broken”. Confused and appalled, the woman keeps the process going. She knows that the child she sees in the pictures from a crowded orphanage in India is suppose to be hers. After a year of still waiting, the broken hearted woman is asking God why the little girl can’t come home to her already. She continues the process, but also decides to look into adopting another child…a little girl from Peru. This woman (my mom) is a traveler, hard worker, and a superhero. After a few trips to Peru to meet the child, she knows that she wants her as well. Both children that she is trying to adopt are very sick and come from very broken places. More people tell her to stop the adoption process, and find a better child. Not listening to their “advice” she keeps moving forward. It’s Springtime, it’s been almost 9 months for the adoption process for the child in Peru, and a year and a half for the now toddler in India. Within a week, two phone calls come in that change this woman’s life. Both children are able to come home to her- she is almost an official mother! Between two different trips (one to NY to pick up her child from India) and one to Peru there comes that beautiful morning where Charissa wakes up and has her first breakfast with her mom (Gma flew in from Washington), and her two beautiful daughters.

Pretty incredible right? This woman defied all reality and said yes to some broken children who just needed love. She gave us so much more than love. She gave us life, safety, security, friends, family, respect, intentionality, joy, adventure, education, etc. The list could go on and on, but I won’t ramble about it too much.

My mom saved us because she loved us before she even knew us.

She showed us the way that God loves His children even before I knew about God. She said yes to the broken and mistreated, even when nobody else wanted to say yes. She accepted the challenges ahead with out knowing what they were going to be, because she trusted God’s heart for these children. All she did was show love.

Now picture this scene:

A happy family of three lives in a pretty nice house. The kids aren’t sick anymore, and they are getting older and older. One is in 2nd grade and the other had just started 1st grade. A new school, new home, and the mom is wanting a new child. Difficulties come about with an adoption that was in the process for a child in Guatemala, and the mom is heart broken. Finally, she feels as if God is shutting the door on the adoption and mentions to God that she gives it all to him. Not even a month later, a new child is introduced to her, she falls in love with this little girl, and starts the process. Not only does she start the adoption process, but God helps out and within that month she boards a plane, flies to Atlanta, Georgia, and picks up her new daughter. A premature AfricanAmerican baby is held by my wonderfully Red-haird, white  mother. So much joy in her eyes, as she can’t keep her eyes off this doll like baby. Her family is complete.

God’s timing is a beautiful thing. I have seen it. I am not sure what things were going wrong for the adoption in Guatemala, but the gift of having my little sister Jaci was so special and easy! God was practically handing a baby to my mom with her not having to wait, not having to change anything, but just accepting the gift and say thank you. Jaci was so little, and so fragile! My mom had never adopted a child so young, but she still said yes. She said yes to this beautiful child who my mom will give up anything for. A daughter who can feel the love, even when she may not want it. A child who is so precious not only to my mom, or me, or my sister, but also to God who loves her beyond anything she can imagine.

I love my family. I love our stories.

I love how God created us to be there for one another, to love one another, to struggle with one another, to forgive each other, to take care of each other, to laugh with one another, and to live life together. I wouldn’t have it any other way and I am beyond excited to celebrate adoption day together. We get to eat, take pictures, eat, spend time together, see loved ones, and adventure today. It’s going to be great!!!

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