In the Beginning: Our Adoption Story, Part 1
Photo credit: Emily Higginson
I lay on the floor, sobbing, in the dark.
Industrial grade carpet scraped my cheek. The already small room began to collapse in on me. Cool air drafted under the door with streams of light from the other side, blurred and shimmering through my tears. Dancing dust mesmerized me, hovering just above the ground.
I will die and dissolve to dust.
A strong voice outside faded into strains of music as a hundred voices rose together. I lay alone, exhausted, tears spent, body limp, unable to stand.
Only one thought managed its way through the haze.
How did I get here?
“I found it! Can I get it, do you mind? We saved the money; we should have enough. It’s the one!” his voice rang through my little blue cell phone. I could feel his excitement pulsing. “I was driving to dad’s house and saw the For Sale sign. Do you want to come look?”
Tickled by his enthusiasm, I agreed to pick up the money from the bank.
Arriving home, I found Hubby standing with a tall young man in our driveway. He leaned against a black Fox body Mustang, the new acquisition. Hubby had a list of cars to restore, including this new-to-us old car.
“I’m pastor at the brick church down the road. We’d love to have you visit sometime,” the man said.
The following Sunday, we attended.
“You’re here!” he said, surprised.
“You invited us,” we said. After three years of looking for a church where we fit, the gentleman who said the closing prayer added, “Remember, a visitor is just a friend we haven’t met yet!” Hubby and I looked at each other, smiling. The man had echoed our former pastor, a beloved friend lost to cancer. This was home.
Thanks to that car, we became regular attendees at the brick church. We joined a Bible Study and met Kay, the youngest-looking mom of five I’d ever seen. In addition to her own children, she had two semi-permanent foster children and provided respite (short-term) care for foster children needing temporary placement.
She amazed me.
We became good friends; Hubby and I loved her kids. Finding our niche, we helped the youth director and chaperoned events. Leading a youth group for a missions trip highlighted our life-so-far.
Having found our place in the community, we thought, “it’s high time we start a family.” We’d always planned to adopt first, hoping to make clear to our children that we’d chosen adoption.
A couple of years, a failed attempt to buy a bigger property and several adoption agencies later, we began to accept the possibility that our small home wasn’t meant to hold children.
Every opportunity slammed shut, tighter than a locked vault. My dreams filled with visions of standing in a hallway filled with locked doors and no way out.
Then, a friend called. “Will you look at a house with me? I want your opinion on how much time and money it’s going to cost after I buy it.”
We wanted to see another house on the same road (perusing empty homes was something of a hobby) so asked the realtor to include it on the tour. Stepping into the kitchen, I just knew. This was our house. Hubby had a similar feeling, walking through the large workshop.
Thanks to the property we’d tried to buy (we learned that twelve people owned it, one of whom was a felon–which apparently precludes the individual from selling property), money was already set aside for a down payment.
It needed work. A lot of work.
I called the realtor and made a ridiculous offer. No way would they accept.
Two weeks before closing day, Hubby led another missions trip. This time, I stayed home due to responsibilities at work.
On Saturday, less than a week from closing day, I drove to church to pick him up.
Kay was already at the church when I arrived, waiting for her older children who’d gone with him.
Even more enthusiastic than usual, she called across the parking lot “Come see what I have in my van!”
Puppies? A couple new chickens? I couldn’t guess. She always had an adventure brewing. They hit a deer in the road, and now they have it in their van, and it’s going to wake up and destroy the vehicle. No, never mind…that’s a movie.
I jogged across the lot. “Whatcha got?”
She opened the van doors. “They need a place to live.”
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