Saturday will mark four months since we were matched with our African babies. (They aren’t really babies, but that’s what I like to call them.) Four long months. Four months ago I was wondering, praying and worrying about having a transracial family and what issues that would bring. I was concerned about Parker and Abigail, and how they would handle having a house full of kids. I was concerned about the health of our adoptive children. I still think about those things, but it’s different now.
Every day I check my email over and over and over again hoping for a new picture of the kids. I stare at their faces, analyze every bit of what I see. Did their teeth change? Do they look taller? Is that the right kid? (No joke, sometimes it doesn’t look like them.) I think he grew. I think she’s losing weight. She looks happy. He looks mad. It goes on and on and on.
We are members of a private Facebook page that is made of up families adopting from our orphanage. I check the page every single day. (Maybe every hour, but that would be crazy, right?) This page is like gold. Pure gold. Whenever a parent or someone visits the orphanage we get pictures and sometimes videos! Videos! Did you read that?! The videos show life. I see my boy dancing, my little girl being sassy. I watch them over and over again. I laugh and I cry. It is so so good. But, it is so so hard. My heart is full.
The first pictures we received of the kids were taken in January. They have grown up a lot since then. Our boy has lost a few teeth and our little girl doesn’t look like a toddler anymore. I realize the years that we’ve lost and will never have. I don’t grieve anymore over the sacrifices our family is making, I grieve over the lost years of M and E.
We are now going through the court process in Congo. Our lawyer is compiling everything he needs to take our case to the judge. We hope that in the next couple months we will be declared their official guardians by the Congolese government. Unfortunately the road is still long after that happens. We don’t know what the timing will be. But, it will be several more months.
One fun thing is that we had to name our kids to go through court. We are keeping their first names and giving them family middle names. I can’t wait to introduce you to M. Jo Glidewell and E. James Glidewell!
It has been truly a miracle to see how God has put all of this together. There’s no other way to explain all that has happened. We started this process to adopt one child. We changed it to two not knowing how we would be able to do it. Our estimated cost of adopting two is $61,000. Yep. You read it. I’m going to be really vulnerable here….
We had $25,000 in savings when we started. God has put a few amazing people in our path that have given us about $8,000 towards the adoption without us even asking. Our savings account is now almost completely empty. The bank called about it. Hahaha! Yep. We’re broke. But, in the last four months we have put $42,000 towards the adoption. Do the math. It doesn’t add up. Somewhere, somehow, God has multiplied our money. We are financially broke, but richer than we’ve ever been before. Our bank is empty, but our hearts are full and free.
We’ve also had two amazing organizations step in to offer help. There is a group in Atlanta called Promise686 (http://www.promise686.org). They have a huge heart for adoption, foster care and removing the roadblocks that keep people from caring for orphans. They have given us a $3,000 matching grant. That means that they will match up to $3,000 of money donated to us. Promise686 is a tax exempt 501c3 organization and your gift is tax deductible. Also, 100% of all funds raised will go directly to cover our adoption costs; nothing will be taken out for administrative costs.*
Please do not feel pressure to give financially! We will still love you! But, if you want to contribute, you can donate online by going HERE.
We also have a friend who helps run the adoption fund at Johnson Ferry Baptist. They have given us a $4,000 interest free loan. It’s really cool! If we get to the point where we need money to finish this and we don’t have it, we can borrow up to $4,000 without having to pay interest. Yay!
This summer has been short and long. We’ve missed our annual beach trip and road trips. We’ve missed the camps, a few nice dinners and other activities that normally fill our days and…cost us money. But, all of that pales in comparison to the road we are traveling… the road to our forever family.
*Note: per IRS guidelines, promise686 maintains complete discretion and control over the use of all donated funds, but intends to honor the donor’s suggested use.