This made me cry today:

Actually, I think I would have cried over that one any day. My heart is still strongly called to adoption, in spite of the disappointments. I also realized that I need to take some time to grieve for the daughter we will not have before I go looking for the daughter we will.


Bad News

I got a call from our adoption agency today. They told me that another family has submitted a Letter of Intent for the beautiful little girl who we thought was our daughter. Because her file had been transferred to another agency while we were reviewing it, the other family gets first right to claim her.

On the one hand, I am happy that she will have a family, that she will be going home soon. On the other hand I am really sad that she will not be ours. It's interesting how just a week can make all the difference. Her file had been on the shared list for almost a year, and we missed her by a week.

Which brings me back to the foundational truth that this whole process was God's idea first, and His timing is perfect. We will find our daughter and bring her home at the right time.

However, this little one will always have a piece of my heart.


Letter of Intent

Yesterday we wrote a very important letter. Our adoption agency asked that we write a Letter of Intent to adopt our little one. This letter was then sent on to China along with a request that her file be returned to our agency.

This letter required us to make certain promises. We promised to teach her about her birth culture and to treat her medical issues, to never abuse or abandon her, and to give her the same rights as our other children. We ended with this sentence, which sums up our heart for this girl: "She will be a precious daughter in our family."

I had wanted to use the words Daughter of this House, but I didn't think that would translate correctly into Mandarin. I've been thinking about the idea of being a Son or Daughter of this House for the last six months or so. The phrase keeps popping into my mind as I'm interacting with the neighborhood kids and my own. I have realized that there is a legitimate difference in the way I treat Frank from down the block and the way I treat my boys. Frank is not a Son of this House, and so does not have the rights and responsibilities of my own sons. If Frank leaves a mess or does something out of line, I can just send him home. If my boys do the same, it reflects on me and my parenting, and I need to help them fix it. When there is a special treat, my kids get first dibs, and hopefully we have enough to invite the neighborhood to share.

Okay, so that may seem obvious to you, but whenever I think this way I fight my American sense of everyone needing to be equal. There really is an advantage to being a Son or Daughter. It makes me feel really grateful that I am a Daughter in God's House, with all the rights, privileges and responsibilities that go along with that. I want to instill in my children what a great thing it is to be a Child of this House, and of God's.