Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Part 2 - Choosing to love

(If you're just joining the story, be sure to read Part 1 first!)

The morning after I asked my husband, Jeff, if we could sponsor a child at New Day Foster Home while we prayed through the decision to adopt, a baby girl with captivating brown eyes arrived at the foster home.  She needed sponsors, and I had just gotten the go ahead to sponsor a little one. I signed us right up! At just six months old, there was a good chance we could be her sponsors for a while since most children are not adopted that young from China.  Everyone in the family was excited to be sponsoring such a sweet girl and we hung her picture - the very first one I ever saw of her - on our refrigerator where it has hung since.  The kids wanted to send her presents immediately, as the foster home allows gifts sent to the children.

Christmas 2012 was approaching and it was such fun letting the children pick out presents to send to the foster home.  We sent our sponsor child a gift as well as another child (they let each child have three sponsors at Christmas). Packed into a box we wrapped a pink ball, a "so adorable" outfit, a cup, and a few donated medical items for the foster home.  We waited to hear if the package arrived safely - our first time ever shipping anything to China.  Pictures soon were posted of the foster homes Christmas party and we saw her with the gifts we sent! Sitting in her foster mamas lap, she looked sweaty all bundled up in many layers (China mamas dress their babies in many layers during the winter as many buildings are not heated there and it can be very cold), and slightly overwhelmed by the festivities (like most babies her age).

We had also made an important decision that December to go ahead and start our paperwork for adoption.  How exciting! We were nervous too! Adoption is so much a leap of faith - jumping in not knowing where it will take you or where the funding will come from to complete it. We decided to jump.

Being sponsors of a child at New Day gives you many opportunities to watch that child grow.  Monthly updates are sent with a short description of what the child is doing that month - like what new thing they have learned to do (crawling or walking), what they like to do and how they are doing.  Each monthly update also comes with a recent picture of the child.  We also get a calendar each year made with pictures of the children.  It's so fun watching them grow knowing we are helping in a small way and we pray they will find their forever family soon.

Our homestudy was nearing completion in the Spring of 2013 and our sponsor child at New Day had grown very special to us.  Those who knew were adopting would come into our home, see her picture on our refrigerator and ask us if she was the one we were adopting.  No, we just sponsor her - was always our response. And then I'd tell them about New Day and the wonderful care they give the children!

Her first birthday was in March and again we watched from afar as the present we sent made it's way to her. This time we sent a warm fleece outfit and a blankie (a small square with pink stars and pink silk trim).  The blankie was a set of two and by this time I had started to wonder who we would be matched with so in my wondering, I kept the second blankie of the set.  Wouldn't it be special if we were matched with her and I had the matching blankie to show her one day???  Totally silly of me to keep it.  The odds of being matched with her were one in a million.  Yet I stuck it away and mailed off the second package we had ever sent to China.  (Part 3 tomorrow)

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