Question: Have you heard any news lately about sweet Katie?
Answer: Do any of you remember me explaining to the baba that Katie will have to become accustomed to being out of bed and being moved, because we’ll be taking her home? We heard from her baba this week via our missionary friend. Doesn’t this sound like a report to make a mother’s heart sing??
“[The baba] said the weather has been really nice and she’s been taking Katie outside for walks a lot. The other child she takes care of is sick so she’s been spending extra time with Katie. She’s been spoon feeding her too. She said that Katie is doing well and smiling a lot. :)”
Question: What donations do you hope to take to the orphanage?
~Diaper rash ointment
~Bibs that are large, absorbent, and do not allow moisture to soak through
~Cloth burp cloths and sturdy baby washcloths
~Onesies and undershirts
~Non-bulky long-sleeve shirts
~Thick socks with good elastic
~Toys that attach to the insides of the cribs
~Other small items such as hats and mittens
Question: From one mom to another, I am wondering if you felt that bonded feeling toward Katie when you were actually there with her?
Question: Will Katie grow and catch up with other children her age once she joins your family? Is it likely that she’ll learn to walk?
Answer: Literally no one but God knows how Katie will respond to love and care. None of the doctors is even willing to venture a guess. Her doctor at CHOPADOPT has told us that they have never worked with an adopted child in this extreme a condition, and described her prognosis as “guarded.” So we’ll be watching along with everyone else as she shows us what she can do with loving care and proper nutrition. And the help of God.
Question: I was wondering if you will be able to have in-home therapy for Katie like you do for Verity? Or will you have to take her to therapy because of her age?
Answer: Because of her needs, the therapists will come to our home.
Question: Another question, which seems ridiculous to ask, is what about homeschooling? Since she is really nine, will you have to report to the district?
Answer: Yes, we will have to report for Katie as we do for our other school-aged children under Pennsylvania law.
Question: How are you and your children handling all this extra stress and excitement? Do your extended family members support you? Do you have practical day-to-day help from church, neighbors, friends?
Answer: For most of our family, there hasn’t been any drastic change. I would venture to say that we’ve had more immediate pressure on the family from Daniel working for several weeks than from anything related to our adoption. Most of the excitement lies underneath the surface of life as I train, correct, encourage, rebuke, and instruct children…
…go ahead and double the batch (because one recipe only makes five dozen)…look at these little boys working so hard and having self-control–I am so proud of you…the therapist just left, so if you start practicing right now, you’ll still be able to fit your two hours in before you leave for work…that is a very little hurt; dry up your tears and say “I’ll be okay!”…would you like to wrap more birthday gifts today after lunch?…do you see which way this “2” is marching? try again to make your “2” march in the right direction…time to get the supper in the crockpot; the recipe is on the side of the fridge…that is good obeying! look at that obeying boy!…are you sure the laundry machines are all running? do you think it will all be finished before the birthday party tonight?…awww, what a kind brother to share your toy! that is loving him more than yourself!…yes, I plan to give haircuts this weekend…if you put it away where it belongs every time, it will always be there waiting for you when you need it…no, I cannot come to the phone right now…that is an “L.” “L” says “l” like “lap”–see, “L” looks like a “L-l-l-lap to sit on!…please don’t come into the room talking, or you will be sure to interrupt…good job! you read that word all by yourself! you can read!…could you write baby bath and baking powder on the grocery list?…please talk one at a time so that I can hear what you are saying…that’s right–good job taking turns…yes, you may change to short sleeves, because I didn’t put your winter clothes in your bins yet…are you working hard or hardly working?…wow, you finished before the timer went off! You were being diligent!…Verity, put the lid ON, ON…take the lid OFF, OFF…YES!…oh, everyone, did you hear what Verity just said! She said “OFF!” Yay, Verity! Big girl to say, “OFF!”
[Is it any wonder I can be tired of hearing my own voice by the end of a day!]
So yes, I have been preparing for our trip, answering a plethora of emails, helping with the online auction, and so on. But as a whole, we’re moving along with our usual routine, making sure the basics are accomplished, with some extras thrown in. We have made many adjustments as a family over these past fifteen months since Verity was born. Some of the strategies worked so well they have become part of our family’s way of life.
Of course, everything does not always flow smoothly. We become aware of problem areas and try out solutions. Sometimes we cause logistical problems ourselves by trying to fit too much in, or by miscommunicating. We have inter-personal conflicts to work out, apologies to make. All part of the rich complexity of life in close relationship with people.
Underneath it all, we older ones are aware that a time of greater pressure is imminent. I will be separated from the family for a couple of weeks at the minimum. We will have more adjustments to make after Katie and I come home from the hospital, most likely for an extended period of time.
But we know that we are not doing this work alone. We are trusting in the Lord, and know that He will always send the help He knows we need, both in strength and patience and grace, as well as in physical provision. Just this week, a neighbor friend brought over many quarts of savory canned meat that she had processed from a forty-pound case of turkey thighs. What a blessing! God decided He wanted us to have it, although I couldn’t manage to can it myself this year!
And when our circumstances become very hard, we will accept that from His hand too, as His good and necessary provision for us.
But right now, I have such a strong sense of God’s hand working to cause every detail to neatly converge on the upcoming big day.
He has built our confidence in Him throughout the big, impossible challenges of the past months. Well, He has been helping me apply that confidence in Him to the many small organizational details as well. I don’t have to stress or obsess in order to get things done or be ready when the time comes. We can continue to work steadily, and know that God will undertake for us with the perfect timing of this trip, and all that follows. Just as He always has done.
And now I think I will take a chocolate cake-scented nap before the little boys wake up again, and we celebrate another birthday.