Hello! We wanted to share an update here for everyone who has been patiently waiting and checking in with us along the way. I know it's seemed like we've been silent here and on social media over the last few weeks... There's a good reason for that! First, we have both been working hard on getting all of our financing together and turned in to our agency. We'll share more about that below. Hubby has been working 60-80 hours a week since the beginning of the year, we have both battled a couple of winter sicknesses (including walking pneumonia for us both most recently), and we have spent a lot of time preparing our home for baby girl.
OVER THE PAST FEW WEEKS:
We have soaked up the incredible joy this open adoption has brought us. We see God in so many of the details, working in the waiting and we can't wait to share more about this as the time becomes appropriate.
We have gotten to spend time getting to know our sweet expectant Mama. Through our agency, we've had scheduled phone calls and FaceTime chats. We have also been exchanging hand written letters with her. It has been wonderful and such a precious time of getting to know each other and embracing the beauty of open adoption. We have truly loved every moment spent talking with her and wish often that we lived closer to her. We feel that she's already part of our family and love her so much! She has kept us informed of her doctor's visits and updates on baby girl, we've talked about baby names, our hopes and dreams for baby girl's future and she has established a hospital plan in which she has lovingly considered us and asked us to be a huge part of baby girl's birth. As part of our expectant mama's birth plan, she would like for me to be in the room when baby girl is born. I will have the opportunity to support and love on our expectant mama during labor. I feel so honored that she loves me enough to want me there to support her and I cherish this bond we've formed already, even with the miles between us!
In addition to this awesome bonding time with our expectant mama, we have been fortunate to spend time with our family who threw us a beautiful baby shower at the end of March. We have also spent a lot of time in the nursery, adding little touches of pink and flowers for baby girl, washing and folding all her little clothes and just soaking up the moments in prayer over her, her birth family and her life.
We spent most of February and March fundraising, via our number wall fundraiser, which many of you are familiar with. At match, we had half of our total adoption cost ($43,500) and had no idea how God would supply. However, He moved in ways we were not expecting and that was largely in part in the hearts of many of you who gave above and beyond, blessing us more than you can possibly imagine.
Our total raised was $10,800!
Our funds in total were due to our agency last week and we were able to take a loan to pay the remaining 1/4 of what was due ($10,000). We intend to pay our upcoming travel costs and post placement costs (car rental + hotel stay for ICPC + 5 post placement visits with our homestudy agency at $250/ea.) out of pocket. We also have applied for six grants and have five outstanding applications still which could come through.
WHAT IS NEXT:
We await the call that baby girl is on her way!
Our expectant mama has a follow up appointment at the end of this week and we could be leaving as early as this coming weekend.
We would ideally love to be out west a day or so before labor so we can spend some time with our expectant mama.
After baby is born and birth parent rights' revocation period is over, baby will be placed with us (this could be as early as 48-72 hours after birth). Then, we will begin our ICPC (Interstate Compact on the Placement of Children) wait. This a paperwork wait that says we cannot leave the state with baby girl until our state and her birth state have completed their paperwork. Typically, this is a 7-10 business day period, however, due to multiple unforeseen circumstances, it could be longer and it could be shorter. We simply have to sit tight and wait on the process (sound familiar?). Of course there are several unknowns and many things depend on baby's health and other factors. We are diligently praying for smooth sailing and would love for you to join us in that!
During that time, we hope to make arrangements for a comfortable place to stay with baby girl, where we might have a kitchen to cook meals and spend time indoors bonding with her. We would love to stay in our birthmom's area so we can visit her as well if she'd like. If you have any extended stay recommendations, please let us know! Direct message or call us!
(GOD STORY ALERT!) We also have some sweet friends who are adopting their second child who is due one day after our baby is due, in the same area we will be! We have walked with this couple through much of their adoption process and have become so very close, even though we live on opposite ends of the country. We sincerely hope it works out to meet up with them during our ICPC wait to share a hug and rejoice in God's plan.
- Expectant Mama - safe delivery, good health, peace, God's exceptional comfort in her grief, loss and that His love will flood her soul and heart.
- Baby Girl - safe delivery, good health and comfort as she transitions into this world
- Hubby and I - safe driving/traveling, a comfortable place to stay during ICPC, a short ICPC wait, wisdom and peace as new parents away from home, bonding time as a new family, and that we will love our expectant mama BIG AND WELL during this time. That she will see Jesus in us.
- Our Mighty Family Adoption Grant Application (this is a LARGE grant that, if awarded to us, would cover our loan, our travel and post placement visits!).
As always, thank you all for praying for us and loving us through our adoption journey. We couldn't have done this without you and we feel so blessed to have you all walking with us. Hugs!