And anyone who welcomes a little child like this on my behalf is welcoming me.
In January of 1998, my life was drastically changed. It was in that month that my aunt returned from China with a new, beautifully sweet baby girl. Olivia Chase Xiao Ming was the most adorably sweet, curious and beautiful little thing I had ever seen. My family watched her every day while my aunt worked in the following years, and I absolutely fell in love with her.
|Olivia and I - 1999|
To this day, Olivia and I are more like sisters than cousins. She is now 15 years old, incredibly smart, athletic, and still as strikingly beautiful as she was 13 years ago when I first laid eyes on her. We still spend a lot of time together, and I treasure that time, as it brings us closer together and reminds me of what God laid on my heart all those years ago.
|Olivia and I at my wedding (she was a bridesmaid) - 2010|
As my aunt went through the adoption process, I was fascinated by the whole thing. I decided to have Chinese Adoption be the thesis of my big 9th grade project (in my school district we did our big project as freshman, not seniors).
Through that process (learning about all the children in there are in orphanages in China (95% + girls), the lack of physical and emotional love they receive, the hard life that the girls that aren’t adopted face when they are too old for the orphanages, and the other huge challenges that face these kids), my heart changed.
I knew that someday, I wanted to adopt my very own little girl from China. I knew this wasn’t just a whim, but it was a desire that God specifically laid on my heart. I’ve never doubted that, and to this day, the pull is just as strong, if not stronger to adopt. I am so lucky to have met a man who wants to adopt and now, it is our desire.
Chinese adoptions are very expensive, upwards of $30,000.00. The adoption process is also very emotionally and physically draining. It takes about 3 years from beginning to end. There are a lot of stipulations that couples have to meet before they are approved to adopt, one of them being that each person in the couple must be at least 30 years old when they start the adoption process.
This means that we have a good 5 years before we can even start the process, which puts us out 8 years until we can hold our baby girl in our arms, in the best case scenario.
However, there are things that we can do today to get ready to welcome our little girl into our home.
We are already saving for the huge expense of adopting. This gives us plenty of time to save up so that we can bring her home without having to go into debt to do so.
We are continually lifting our daughter up in prayer (as we do for all our futures kids). While it is likely that she is not even born yet, we pray that she will be safe, happy, loved and protected until we get to meet her. That Jesus would be with her and wrap her in His love and bring her safely to us.That he would banish any feelings of abandonment, feeling unloved or unwanted.
We trust God that He will provide financially and emotionally and guide us as we go through the adoption process. I believe that God laid this desire on our hearts and that He will guide us through the process, act on our behalf, and begin paving the way and clearing any obstacles before we even know about them.
One of my husband’s patients has two adopted children from China. We have loved hearing their story and testaments on adoption. On their last trip to China, they brought us this beautiful QiPao for our future daughter. Before they adopted their first child, they hung one of these in their home, as a reminder of the little life they were working so hard for. We have done this same thing.
Even though our little girl isn’t born yet, will live thousands of miles away for the first part of her life, and has no idea we want her so desperately, we already love her more than anything.
“Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world.” - James 1: 27