Expect the Unexpected
My Mum and brother recently visited us from Australia. Last Monday evening we were having our final meal together as they were catching the train back to London early Tuesday morning. As we were saying our goodbyes and Cam closed the door behind them, he turned to me and said “have you checked your email?”. Well no, I hadn’t, but that question made me head to my email for sure… and this is I what I read.
“Hi guys, You are definitely not open to an 8-year-old, correct?”
And just like that our week changed yet again…
With one short email…
Wait! What? STOP!
And with that one short email, a whole new set of conversations and prayer commenced, and the week ended with us proceeding with an adoption of an 8-year-old girl from Lesotho.
So, strap yourselves in, buckle up and let’s go – but before we do that, let’s talk about a few things.
An 8-year-old? I can hear the chorus now. An 8-year-old? Yes – an 8-year-old (you did read that correctly). Obviously, we were not expecting this, so of course, it winded us somewhat too. You see, we are approved to adopt up to a 4-year-old, so any age older than that had never even crossed our mind.
But, of course we did not want to immediately say ‘no’ without a proper discussion. After all, it was not what we were expecting (have I mentioned that yet?).
Cam and I process things very differently. Over the years, as we have learned more about one another, we have learned (and continue to learn) how to help each other in this – especially when it comes to some bigger decisions for our wee family. After receiving that email and basically just staring at each other, we knew it was best for us to sleep on it and talk in the morning, and that’s what we did. The following morning we agreed that we would at least talk to our agency and find our more (than that short email), and so we did that. After talking to our agency we told them that we would go away and think, talk, pray and get back to them by Thursday.
Why say ‘yes’? On Wednesday morning Cam and I got out for a morning coffee to specifically discuss this. We went around and around, up and down and back and forth trying to figure out if this was something we could do. We had the pros and cons list, we came up with all of the reasons not to do this, but at the end of the day, all of our ‘cons’ just didn’t seem great reasons to say ‘no’ (for our family). And thus – we left our coffee date with a ‘yes’ – let’s start pursuing this. And so we did…and here we are.
So what happens now? Now comes the fun part of wading through a mountain of paperwork and being patient…and raising the funds we need. We have to amend our Home Study to reflect an older child, we have to submit an amendment to the U.S Govt to reflect an older child and then we start getting all the paperwork ready for both the Lesotho and U.S governments. And all this needs to be done while we are here in Scotland – which, kind of reminds me of the time when we organized a wedding in Australia, involving Americans, from Bogota, Colombia ;-).
How much will this cost? Let’s just go with A LOT! Having said that we are definitely not starting from the beginning again. For those who remember when we started the adoption process of two children from Lesotho back in 2013, we did a heap of fundraising and received a number of grants, which effectively was the reason we were able to say ‘yes’ to Calvin Jack immediately and have him in our home within two days of finding out about him. All that to say, we still have some funds available at our Adoption Agency that we can use immediately. Of course, these funds won’t cover everything and after getting a break down from our agency of what will need to be paid and when, essentially we will need close to $30,000 (this includes us travelling to Lesotho when the time comes). So, I am shifting gears and getting my head back into Adoption Grant writing mode ;-).
Will you pray with us? I feel there are so many things to pray about. So many things need to happen. Funds need to be raised, paperwork needs to be completed internationally, a little girl in Lesotho needs prayer, Calvin needs prayer, and our wee family needs prayer. Pray for Cam – especially as he seeks to complete his PhD while all this is going on.
And so here we are! On another unexpected adoption journey. In one sense, we say ‘of course’ this is unexpected – remember how Calvin Jack came into our family? Of course God would do something that we weren’t expecting that would remind us again and again, to cast all our cares upon Him.
So, as I said earlier, strap yourselves in, buckle up and let’s go.