I am an ordinary person. Regular as the day is long. I
drink Diet Coke with my McDonald’s French fries. I love
Target and People Magazine. I drive a mini-van and spend
too much time NOT doing what needs to be done. I watch
Grey’s Anatomy faithfully. When I first heard about the
‘Waiting Child’ program that the CCAA has in place for
children with medical needs, I assumed, like most people
do, that is was for kids who weren’t ‘normal’. A child
that would probably have too many needs for us to parent
well along with our four other children who were already
at home. I don’t have the time or the energy, I thought.
And I adore ‘normal’ and ‘regular’. What I did not know at
the time, but soon learned, is that the children in the
waiting child program ARE normal. Not only normal, but
healthy. And wonderful. The more I learned about the
waiting child program while we were waiting for our
non-special needs referral back in 2005, the more I
realized that this was something our family could do.
Easily. There were definitely some needs that we knew
would be too much for us, but many of the needs seemed
very manageable. Even, dare I say it, easy. It took Chris
a few months to come to a place where he was ready to
consider taking on the additional responsibility of
adopting a child with special needs. He, as the head of
our household, had to consider all the logistical aspects
of what it might entail. But soon we moved forward in
faith that this was God’s plan and on February 7, 2005, we
received a call from the WC coordinator at our agency.
They offered us a referral to consider. A referral of a
little 7 month old girl with a minor heart defect. We
accepted her referral and have never looked back at the
traditional non-special needs program. Adopting a waiting
child has been such a multi-faceted blessing for us and
for our whole family. We didn’t start out on our adoption
journey as a rescue mission, but indeed we did rescue a
child. A tiny girl with a hole in her heart that needed to
be repaired. And we were, with the help of our insurance
and a wonderful children’s hospital, able to have her
heart repaired to normal. She will have a ‘normal’ life.
We can watch our ‘regular’ child grow up with the love and
safety of a family she might have never had in China. What
a blessing for US!
"If you give, you will receive. Your gift will return to
you in full measure, pressed down, shaken together to make
room for more, and running over."
Since bringing home Isabelle in 2005, we have brought home
her sister Sophie, another waiting child. And we have been
additionally blessed by being able to provide her the
medical attention she needs while watching her grow and
flourish in her new family. Every night when I go to bed,
I am grateful for the opportunity that God has given me to
parent these children. I have been blessed. We have all
been blessed. Our children have learned that children with
medical issues or disabilities are precious, capable and
every bit as deserving of love as a ‘normal’ child. We
have all been forever changed by knowing and loving our
precious ‘waiting children’.
Certainly not every family is cut out for the waiting
child program. It, in theory, does involve more risk than
the traditional route. But oh, the rewards that are to be
had. We can’t wait to bring home our third special needs
child. In caring and providing for him, we know we will be
rewarded with the sweet smile of complete trust someday.
And the unsolicited snuggle of true love. We know that
with his clubbed feet he might not seem ‘normal’ or
‘regular’. And we can’t wait to embrace him.
"No eye has seen, no ear has heard, and no mind has
imagined what God has prepared for those who love him."