Sunday, October 28, 2012

And, we are Matched!

Thursday, October 11th my phone rings. It's 3:10 PM. I'm sitting at my desk at school and I check out the area code like always (weird, I know, but when you are waiting for a call, it becomes a habit).  I realize it's Colorado and I know that I am finally getting the call we have been waiting over a year for!

Yes, it was our adoption agency calling to let us know they have Lulu's file. Praise God is all I can say and think! I wondered what I would do and how I would feel. Surprisingly I remained much calmer than I thought I would, and I was glad that school was over and that I was alone. All I could do was write down everything she told me about my daughter on hot pink sticky notes. I told her we would like to take a look at the file, and so she emailed all that I could possibly learn about our precious Lulu. Inside I was praising God with my entire being that we finally got our referral call...

But, with this call came a big decision that we would  need to take the night to pray about. See, we had also inquired about another little girl last spring while we were waiting. We started wondering if there was something else God was calling us to as well. Another little girl from Maria's Big House of Hope caught our attention, and her file came through at the same time. We were offered to think about taking a look at her file too. If you are adopting a child from the "special focus" program, you can adopt 2 with the same dossier.  This other little girl was considered a special focus child (Meaning because of her needs, she goes into a category of more extensive special needs. These adoptions are processed a little differently, and usually faster.) This precious little 2 year old has down syndrome. We were very drawn to her and researched DS all summer. I even had to do a presentation for a class about children with down syndrome, and my heart was completely made over for children with "designer genes".  I can tell you I was torn apart that night and all the next day. I was suppose to be so very excited about Lulu's referral, and I sure was, but my heart was so heavy.

After a lot of prayer and agonizing hours, I finally made the decision. And yes, Ty left it up to me (and would be fine either way, wow, this man is amazing!) because he knew I would take the brunt of the medical appointments and therapy appointments, along with everything else that is a part of my daily schedule. Finally, I had decided that adopting 2 children at the same time would be too much for our family.  We are praying for this little girl, Claire, and we know that God will find an amazing family for her. Even now, typing about her, I am stirred up. But, after finding out more about Lulu and her needs, I know we are on the right path.

Please pray that Claire
finds her forever family soon!

I could finally begin getting excited about Lulu! All weekend long I researched her condition, Googling key words out of her medical papers. What I was finding on the internet was scary. (I had us going to Mayo Clinic in MN! Almost ready to book our hotel!) Monday morning I was able to make contact with a pediatric cardiologist's office, and by Tuesday morning I was taking quick notes on a paper towel in the teachers' lunch room! What a blessing this man was and will be.  Lulu has a congenital heart condition that is not fixable, but after surgery, it is highly likely that she can live a long life. We will find out more after we get her home and have more tests done. He told us everything she needs can be done at the Children's Hospital in Peoria. We are very greatful for that, and for how this doctor has been so great and patient with us without Lulu even being a patient yet.

Basically only half of Lulu's heart functions.  She was found at 4 months old and received her first surgery then. She is developing very well. As of May she weighed 26 lbs and was 34 inches tall. (She is 2 and will turn 3 in January)  She will need her next surgery soon after we arrive home with her. She will need follow up care the rest of her life.

All we know, is that we are grateful and feel so blessed.  My heart skips every time I think about how thankful I am that God would choose us to be a mommy and daddy to such a precious little girl. That he would choose us to love her and walk this scary path. I am in awe. I know we will grow an even deeper faith through these experiences yet to come. We know that none of us are guaranteed any days on this earth. We will be her loving family for as long as she is able to live here, and honestly, she may outlive us.  Dr. Chan said that with what can be done these days, people with her kind of heart condition are living longer than they have ever known.

And so, I think about her mother and my throat chokes up. I know that her mother probably could not have given her the care that she needs. I just wish I could tell her that we will, and that Lulu will be loved and will have a great life with many brothers and sisters and pets. She will be loved, cherished, and....SPOILED! :)  Ty and I both feel completely blessed.

God pointed out to me specifically that week:
Matthew 6:19-20
Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moth and rust do not destroy.

And so I felt more peace with Lulu's condition that week, and even now. I know that whether I get to spend 70 years with her on earth or 70 days, she is "one of my treasures in heaven".

I will share more as we go. I can finally share since we received our pre-approval from China. Next, in about a month or so they will send us an official letter of acceptance.  After that, we may travel soon. (Hard to say when, it could be Christmas, January, or early February.) Her Chinese name is Sun Lu. She was designated as "special focus" because of her serious heart condition, so we believe things will start moving pretty fast.  We were not expecting things to start moving this fast. We had believed we would have several more months to prepare! We listed our car on Craigslist yesterday and have a very good offer that we will find out more about tomorrow. Please pray that it sells. We have more than half of our adoption paid for, and were on track to finish it out. Well, then we moved.  More about that in a later post! God is good!

Blessings to you all.



Stephanie Gilbert said...

Do you know if precious Claire has found her home yet? I would be interested in adopting her if she hasn't.

Stephanie Gilbert said...

Do you know if precious Claire has found her home yet? I would be interested in adopting her if she hasn't.

Whitford Class Blog said...

Hi Stephanie. I am not sure if Claire has made it home to her forever family or not. The last time I checked in about her I believe she was matched, but I am not 100% sure. I will give you Judy Winger's email. She is from CCAI and is the one that would know that information. Her email is

I was not sure how to get back to you with this information, I do not have your email so please let me know if you got this.

Stephanie Gilbert said...

Got it, Thank you :)