For a long time this day was sheer torture, desperately wanting to be a mommy, watching all my friends so joyful in their families. I felt so empty, so broken.
When we started our adoption process, I found hope. But that light was at the end of such a long tunnel of waiting. Then there was a precious, joyous surprise in that tunnel named Arella. And one day, we finally reached that light and brought home our little Zoe.
These days are busy and full, and on occasion overwhelming. I absolutely love watching these sweet little girls play and be silly together. I love watching them learn to help and comfort each other. I love watching them teach each other and discover together. I love finding them hugging or tickling each other. I love when they go to kiss each other goodnight, and they start giggling uncontrollably. I even love the hard times, too- the fighting, the domino effect tears, the sleepless nights, the heartache. I love that God is using them to show me just the smallest glimpse of what unconditional love looks like and how to give it... and receive it.
I realize now how unconditionally my mom loves me. How even when I ran from everything good in my life, she loved me. She loved me enough to never stop praying for me, and she trusted God to bring me back. It was a tough road, but He was faithful. And I am thankful to Him for my mom and her love for me.
My mom, Arella, Zoe, and me today.
Looking back on this day over the last several years, I can now see the beauty in how God is unfolding our family story. It is much more beautiful than I ever imagined.
In 2009, I couldn't keep the tears from streaming down my face during church, praying and hoping for children, grieving that maybe that wasn't God's plan for my life. In 2010, the tears came hard again, but this time a mix of emotions- both joy knowing Zoe would one day be in our lives, but knowing we would have to wait long, painful years for her. In 2011, tears leaked out as I was 37 weeks pregnant and a sweet little girl in church gave me a rose, telling me I was a mommy (Arella was born 3 days later). In 2012, I held a one year old Arella in my arms, and we knew we were only months away from bringing Zoe home. Today, we dedicated Zoe at church and are looking forward to baby girl #3. Yup, that's right. We are so in love with being parents, we just can't stop!
We began another adoption last week, this time through Ethiopia. I mean with these two cuties, how could we not want more?!
Stay tuned for more adventures....