Friday, April 18, 2014


Our journey toward adoption began January 20, 2004 after nine years of infertility, empty arms, and aching hearts. I had finally reached the point of decision that it was not about birthing a child, but simply about becoming and mom and loving a child. After hearing a couple speak at church about their successful domestic adoption of two kids we began to feel the tug that adoption just might be the answer for us.
We entered into it with a preconceived notion that it was going to be a fast, easy, simple solution to growing our family. We applied to a local domestic adoption agency in our town on 4/8/04 and were placed in the waiting pool six weeks later. WOWEE!!! This was going to be so easy.  In no time flat would we be holding our son or daughter. This particular agency gives the birthmom all adoption profiles and allows her to select the family for her child. We submitted pictures and a letter to the birthmom encouraging her to pick us for her child. 
Little did I know this was only the first step in the longest journey of my life. Heartache soon set in as month after month our profile was shown but we were never the top pick for the birth moms. After 16 months of waiting to be selected I began to question why God would choose to keep us waiting. Adoption was supposed to be the EASY solution. Why had God chosen to keep me on this childless journey? What were we supposed to do? This was feasible financially. This was a child that would look like me. This was going to be THE solution.
International adoption started to find its way to my heart. While we left our profile active with the domestic agency, we began to research the international programs that were a fit for us. With a guarded heart we chose a well known agency that offered several country options: Ethiopia, Russia, China, Columbia... China seemed to be the right fit financially and the travel requirements were doable. Plus we were really drawn to wanting a girl, and this program offered just that! I began to allow myself to feel some excitement with the new possibility even though the referral times were stated at 18 months. 
We sent in our initial application -- you know the one that has questions your mom doesn't even ask you! Almost immediately after submitting it, I received a call denying our application. We were not eligible due to our weight ranges. REALLY??? That makes me an unfit parent??? Oh, I felt my heart falling into a million pieces. The agency coordinator sensed my sadness and offered information on a brand new program that had just opened up that she was sure we would qualify for: Vietnam. 
Okay, I had heard of Vietnam in my history books, but adoption? I asked for more information and she explained it too was an Asian country and felt we would have a referral within about 12 months.
My heartache soon turned to joy as I worked feverishly to compile all the necessary documents to get on board. FINALLY AN ANSWER TO OUR PRAYERS!! It just seemed to fit. We were approved in record time and placed on the waiting list for a girl on 8/7/06. VIETNAM REFERRALS WERE BOOMING! This was a sure thing.  It was really going to happen this time! As the wait continued I kept busy with furnishing the nursery and retail therapy.  I even quit my job to prepare for travel, shopping and motherhood. We were family number 127. There were 126 families ahead of us that were requesting a girl.
 After about 6 months, there were signs of a program slow down. Referrals were dropping. My heart continued to ache as other families I had met through my blog that were with other agencies were reporting referrals. Why  not me? Then we got refreshing news! Get our dossier together!! WOO HOO!! This means we are REALLY close to a referral. Our papers were logged into Hanoi in 6/11/07 along with $9,000.00. Surely this was for real!   Months and months went by, no news.  My heart cried out to God. I spent many nights sobbing in despair, crying myself to sleep, my heart broken, aching, wanting it to be my turn. I began to bargain with God, begging Him to please answer my prayer.
"Truly I have spoken, Truly I will bring it to pass. I have planned it. I will surely do it. " Isaiah 46:11
Then He spoke to me:
I will bring it all to pass with FAITH from you that I can. I promise to grant you what you desire when I am ready. Believe in Me to take care of You. You are not ready. If I alone stretched out the Heavens and my own hand formed all the earth, don't you trust me to take care of you? Fix your eyes on Me and  you will find refuge.
Wow. Once again grounded in hope and trust.  
Exactly a year later after submitting our dossier we were still waiting, however we had achieved the #10 spot for a girl. Only nine more referrals and then we would have our referral!
Patience: the bearing of provocation, annoyance, misfortune or pain WITHOUT complaint. An ability to suppress restlessness with delay.
Doesn't 777 days of waiting count for patience? Soon rumors began that Vietnam was going to close all adoptions on September 1, 2008 due to black marketing of babies and other agencies that were executing unethical adoptions.  We were assured that all dossiers in country would be grandfathered in.  August 1, 2008 the dreaded news arrived in my inbox.. only families with referrals by September 1, 2008 would be allowed to complete their adoptions. All other dossiers would be returned (minus the $9,000.00). 
At this point, I knew it would not happen for us. All of this waiting, hoping, and trusting to yield nothing but another heartache. How much more was I supposed to endure? I totally believe that God allows us to endure trials and heartaches so that we will call out to Him in our desperation. He knows what is in our hearts but requires us to put into words His name and our requests and cry out on our knees before Him. My heart was still holding on to the hope that I would see my daughter. 
Adoption is not for the weary or the faint at heart. It is for the strong and faithful. Nothing is certain.  And I am a planner by nature, so this was SO out of my comfort zone. This had become the most emotional experience of my entire life. I was clinging to God in desperation, hanging in the balance of uncertainty was taking a horrible toll on me emotionally and physically. Through my tears I thanked God for where He had brought me and asked for more perseverance to continue in this journey.
James 1:2-3" When troubles come your way, consider it an opportunity for great joy. For you know that when your faith is tested,  your endurance has a chance to grow."
Our anniversary, August 21, 2008 we had gone out to eat and were discussing our options. My sister had told me about a small orphanage in Taiwan that worked with Christian childless couples. It was worth a shot. We had two options: Stay in the Vietnam program to retain our $9,000.00  and hope it opened back up in 2010 as projected, or inquire about this agency and start all over again. We decided to leave our papers active with the Vietnam agency while pursuing the Taiwan adoption. If we got a referral from Taiwan we would withdraw our placement with Vietnam and forfeit our money and move forward. I was literally laying my heart on the line for the last time. This was our last hope. 
Little did we know our daughter was being born on this exact day!
We applied and were approved within a month with an orphanage called The Home of God's Love. 
November 1, 2008 we were officially placed on the waiting list for referral. I hold the world's record in patience at this point, so let the waiting begin. Somehow, though, my heart was at total peace.   
Christmas morning 2008, 4:38 AM. the phone rings..... it is TAIWAN. This very loving sweet voice tells me that there is a 4 month old tiny little peanut that would love to be our daughter! I must have fallen out of the bed! THESE ARE WORDS I NEVER THOUGHT I WOULD HEAR! I HAVE A DAUGHTER! SHE IS MINE! MERRY CHRISTMAS TO US!  How totally incredible that my Christmas present was my daughter! 
Now I was on the fast track to getting the papers all together. This time it was different.  I knew there was a tiny 10 pound baby waiting for us. I would move all mountains to get to her. The court decrees came in amazing timing.  The courts granted us permission on 4/14/09 to adopt Kaylee, first decree was issued on 4/28/19, and final decree was issued on 5/1/09. We were on a plane to Taiwan on 5/6/09. I would celebrate my first Mother's Day in Taiwan!!!!
I was beginning to see God's ultimate blessing and plan unfold. Every step I endured, every day I had to wait was necessary to bring me closer to Him, to trust Him. He was preparing me for THIS little girl. She was born on our anniversary, placed in our hearts on Christmas Day and placed in my arms on Mother's Day weekend. After 1932 days of waiting, I was finally embracing the most incredible human being EVER! She was the result of ultimate faith. If everything always went the way we planned it, our eyes would never be open to see the result of being faithful to God and trusting Him. 

"Our tears and prayers poured out to God will never be lost. Rather He stores up His mercy and His blessings and allows them to fall upon us in His time"- unknown
If I had known how long and hard this journey was going to be, how many uncertainties were ahead, how many times my heart was going to break, would we have still embarked on this journey? I really don't know. But what I do know is that my God is sovereign. He is faithful to those who call upon Him. He made me wait longer than I wished in order to bestow a greater blessing than I could have imagined. He planned this journey to draw me closer to Him in trust and faith to finally hold the most incredible, amazing little girl ever. She is absolutely more that I could have ever dreamed of. SHE was the ultimate JOY in the journey.


  1. Wow! Thank you so much for sharing your story. Everyone's "waiting" story is so relative, especially based on what they have been told and expectations.....yet God is not! He is constant and faithful. Again thank you so much.

  2. Beautifully written, Melanie! The wait. It's so excruciatingly painful, but SO worth it in the end!