Monthly Archives: September 2012

Out of Order

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I figured starting back to work would affect my Lupus.  I had my first week of not getting enough sleep and over exercising and I find myself out of order right now.  I am mostly congested, but needing to take some time off.  I started an outdoor soccer team last week and I am wondering if that is the reason or maybe it was the all day field trip outside that my work sent me on. Who knows?  I missed the adoption conference I signed up for to take a breathing treatment instead.

I thought about what all this will be like with a baby, but thank the Lord I have great family that is only five minutes away.  I am very blessed and hope to feel better soon.  Until then, I will enjoy the lazy days in the rain.

Marriage Today

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Well, well, well…turning thirty three will be here tomorrow.  I don’t mind growing older as long as I grow wiser.  This year has provided me some wisdom…to say the least!  I enter thirty three a different woman.  When I turned thirty two, I had no idea I was infertile.  When  I turned thirty two, I felt tired, but thought I was healthier than ever.  I had no idea I had an autoimmune disease or the effects of its presence on my body.  I considered myself wise at thirty two, but I had no idea!

Recently, I was beginning to feel bitter and uncertain about our path of infertility.  Looking around, so much emphasis is placed on biological genes.  Our world is designed to say things like, “She looks just like you.” “You are tall like your daddy.” “I know your dad so you must be smart”  I have said all these things all my life and I say them everyday in my classroom.  I began to fear if the adoption would fill the hole in my heart or if I was reaching to fix a problem that cannot be fixed.  I began to question if this was God’s plan or if we were making it His plan.  I prayed about it and talked about it, but the emptiness was still there.

I think God allowed me to listen for a while and hear only silence.  Then recently-He spoke.  A prayer warrior out of the blue, messaged me encouragement.  I stumbled upon the book of James which spoke of adoption, perseverance, and patience.  Then we were contacted by Marriage Today to film the story of healing in our marriage for their national banquet.  I had contacted them over a year ago to share how their ministry helped in healing our broken marriage.  In 2011, they were not interested.  In March of 2012, they contacted me to do the story and we were not interested since we were still struggling with our infertility.  Flash forward to October 2012 and the time is perfect.

We are honored and anxious to share our story with the nation of how we were 60 days away from being divorced when God began to change our hearts.  It is weird to share your biggest failure with the world, but we know our story will impact other couples as much as it has impacted us.  Anyone in our close circle will know we appeared finished.  Thankfully, God was able to speak to two broken hearts and the key is: we listened and obeyed.  We are here today because of that obedience and because of Marriage Today’s resources of how to start over.  Our marriage is not like what it was…it is twenty times better.  It needed to be for us to endure the trials we have just conquered.  Many marriages would break under the stress we endured, but ours thrived.  We grew stronger and closer as we leaned on God’s promises that He was not done with us yet.

Our child will benefit from our transformation and the legacy of a loving marriage that we will leave behind.  We are witnesses that mercy and grace can make anything new and forgiveness is powerful.  We could not have been the couple we are today without that season of growing.  It was a harsh season, but just a season and seasons change!

The good news is: I am so thankful for our renewed marriage.  We are far from perfect, but a much better example of Christ’s love than years before this trial.  I will take the bad first three years to get to the amazing last three.  Little did we know how much we needed to be knocked down to be built back up.  Thankful we did not give in when it hurt most.  We are a miracle that we are still together and we believe firmly this was all part of His plan to prepare us for this journey we are on today.

Staying Confident…

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And I am certain that God, who began the good work within you, will continue his
work until it is finally finished on the day when Christ Jesus returns.  Phillipians 1:6

I have never understood the term “hurry up and wait” until now.  I felt for the past three months that we were rushing to do paperwork, home studies, create books etc.  After we turned it all in around August, we finally got a chance to breathe and now we wait.  I am not good at being patient, so this is a test for me.  On one hand, I love the time building relationships in my classroom.  I never wanted to leave them so early in the year; I always wanted the opportunity to create the learning environment before disrupting it with an absence.  However, the waiting process causes me to start overthinking and in my analytical overthinking I begin to doubt and worry.

I feel like I am disappointing people when they ask, “How is the adoption going?”  My response has been, “Good…we are still waiting.”  I don’t know what the expectations have been, but I guess many assumed that we would be immediately chosen by a family since on paper we seem like a pretty solid couple.  The truth is we knew this could take a while and it had been moving very quickly (almost too quickly) before now.  Many adoptions take years and we are going on four months since we started the process.  But as we wait, it is so easy to start doubting the book we created, the agency we chose, if we should have tried fertility treatments…the list goes on and on.  But here is the deal: I have been here before and I must remain faithful.

Nathan and I went through a dark time in our marriage where all I could rely on were the promises of God.  For the first time, I felt completely out of control like my future had nothing to do with me.  I could clearly tell that God was with me, but He was being silent on purpose.  He guided me one step at time and only in looking back did everything make sense.  I feel like that today.  Things have fallen perfectly into place for this to be in our own will.   Satan loves to create confusion.  I must rely on that experience to see me through this one.  My prayer continues to be “if this is not your will then stop it today”…that is the same prayer I prayed before we got married, so when we were struggling then I knew it wasn’t a mistake.  We didn’t choose the wrong spouse or get married too quickly…we were being changed and change takes time.  I have to remain true to His promises and know He was good when things were moving quickly and He is still good when things seem to have stopped.

I look forward to sharing good news someday, but I will wait as long as it takes for God to create the situation that is perfect for us.  His plan is made and our job is to obediently follow it.   Please pray that Nathan and I will have the confidence and security to have no issues in dealing with our open adoption; it is not about us-it is about what is best for this child.  Pray that the birth mom/ birth family’s needs are being met and that she finds us when the time is right.  Pray for this child that might be already conceived, about to be conceived or even ready to be born. Pray God’s will to be done and for our agency to have the resources they need to serve this ministry.

The good news is: two of our friends have been chosen and are meeting or have met their forever families.  One was given a couple of months notice and the other was given a couple of days.  I am praying that our situation allows us the couple of months because you would have to pick me up off the floor if I only got two days!

Quick Lupus update: I feel amazingly and beyond belief great!  I am enjoying my class, have energy at the end of the day and realize how fatigued I was last year compared to this year.  My students this year are getting me at my best along with my soccer team and family.  Plaquenil is amazing and I am so grateful for my doctors and for good health.  Lupus has destroyed my fertility, but other than that and my purple hands and the medication I take daily, I almost forget that I have it.  Others have commented how much healthier I look this year, and though I don’t like the extra five pounds, I know I look better with it.  I am now being weaned off Prednisone in hopes to discontinue it all together.

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http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i6X71sXagUY

It has been over a week since I last posted an update, but the truth is not much has changed.  I love that my job keeps me busy since I am officially in the waiting phase of the adoption.  All summer, I felt driven to get ready for the home study, complete the paperwork and finish the adoption book.  I felt in control since I had so much to do before I could ever expect to receive good news, but now it is all out of my control.  I love to be in control and I am fairly impatient so this phase is a challenge…I wish I knew all the details ahead of time, but if I did, I am sure I would change it all.    I posted the video above because it is exactly how I feel during this time of waiting.  When you are pregnant, you have a due date, you are trying to eat right, take care of yourself and others know that you are waiting…in adoption, you get the luxury of continuing your previous activities, but you have no timeline and many have no idea that you are even “expecting”.  It’s a different path to building a family.

On a side note, more good friends and family have shared their pregnancy news with us which is awesome for them, but never easy for an infertile woman.  My husband innocently asked, “Aren’t you used to this by now?”  My harsh response, “No. It never gets easier and probably never will.  It hurts every time.”  Before we were trying to conceive, I dreamed of the day I would make that announcement.  I thought it was a right and an experience I was expected to have.  Then we started trying and I learned differently.  Even through adoption, infertility hurts. Not all people adopt due to infertility, but the many that do, that loss never goes away even if it is replaced with the joy of dearly loved child.  I am obviously thrilled for these friends (love is not jealous), but it makes you question, “Why not us?”  Thankfully, God placed a good friend in my path to contact me when she heard the announcement to ask if I was okay.  Crazy, but it felt good to know another woman that gets it.  You don’t want to be selfish in your own self pity, but it is hard to be strong.  I Corinthians 1:4 “When they are troubled, we will be able to give them the same comfort God has given us.” End side note.

So, anyways, in addition, to being a busy teacher (I feel even more driven in my lessons since I know that I might take extended time off) I have been reading books about adoption to better deal with the emotional side of this process.  After reading them, I am passing them on to my family so they will be better prepared as well.  Adoption is never easy and it is not the way most families are built, so with it comes a range of emotions that are difficult to understand.  Currently, I am reading Dear Birthmother by Sibler and Speedlin; it is considered the open adoption handbook.  It has opened my eyes to feelings and thoughts that I never knew I had.  It is comforting to know I am normal!

I also received the children’s books that I bought for our library in the nursery.  In addition to classics such as Goodnight Moon or Eric Carle books, I wanted to include books about adoption.  I bought This is How We Became a Family by Willis, Tell Me Again about the Night I was Born by Curtis, A Mother for Choco by Kasza, I Wished for You by Richmond, and God Found Us You by Bergren.    None of them are perfect for our adoption story, but they are all a start to giving our child book characters with a story like his/hers.  I look forward to rocking my child to sleep after reading one of these great pieces of literature.  Until that day, I continue to wait.

I Samuel 1:27

I prayed for this child, and the LORD has granted me what I asked of him

Hebrews 11:1

Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see.

The good news is: I am waiting with a purpose!  Our prayers have always been to have a healthy baby that God has chosen for us even if it takes a little longer.  It is hard, but we have to trust in His perfect timing at the perfect season.  This baby (wherever it may be) is well worth the wait!

Waiting…