Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Shock, Awe, Patience & Grace

When last we left off, we had announced a big matching grant opportunity through Lifesong for Orphans. Quick recap: we had to raise $2,500 in outside support to get an additional $2,500 from this organization. So we opened it up to you fine folks and well, you responded...big time! We not only raised the $2,500, but thanks to your support, we doubled it! With the matching grant included, we have currently raised over $7,600, which puts a HUGE dent in our overall adoption expenses! As we've said on numerous occasions, "thank you" doesn't come close to expressing our gratitude. We cannot wait to gush to our future son or daughter about the ways that so many amazing people played a part in bringing him or her home to us. If you are still interested in contributing to our adoption fund, please feel free to do so through the "donate" button on the right. While your dollars will no longer be matched, Lifesong for Orphans is still collecting funds on our behalf, and all contributions are tax-deductible.

Switching gears now. Our house looks completely different than it did a year ago. Definitely much more baby-proofed than it used to be. With all the work we've done to get our house ready for our baby, I'm guessing that a pregnancy counselor would say Tara is in "nesting mode" right now. Whatever the terminology, her desire to get our house ready has been motivational for me to say the least. Here's a snapshot of our handiwork:

Man-cave no more...

The hardest part about getting everything ready is not knowing when that day will come. Imagine going to see your favorite performer. You're waiting for the house lights to dim and the music to start. The anticipation heightens throughout the room with each passing minute until you feel like you just can't stand it any longer. The longer you wait, the more you feel like you can wait no more. Yet despite the agony, you know that the performer you came to see is more than worth any length of waiting. Now imagine that feeling of anticipation magnified a million times over, permeating through you every waking moment. Always agonizing, always hoping, always waiting...yet knowing that one day, the real show will begin. This is the life of the waiting adoptive couple.

We'd also like to take a moment to address something that's been in the news a lot in the past week. This past January 22nd marked the 38th anniversary of the controversial Roe vs. Wade Supreme Court decision, which has continued to simultaneously spark much outrage and celebration. As adoptive parents-to-be, and as individuals who believe human life begins at conception, I don't think it's any secret where we stand on the issue of abortion. However, we also know and love people who have made the decision to abort and, while we could never agree, we've witnessed the circumstances that pushed them toward that decision. And no matter what, our love for these individuals will never decrease. One thing we've unequivocally learned is that no matter a person's political or religious viewpoints, no one is a fan of abortion itself and in a perfect world, no one would like to see any child aborted. We hope and pray that, as time continues to pass and more and more awareness is generated, the beautiful practice of adoption would be cultivated so deeply throughout the pro-life community (and quite frankly, throughout all communities), that many more individuals -- especially young pregnant women who feel alone, condemned, and desperately out of options -- would instead feel esteemed and choose to give their children the gift of life and a new family. The pro-life community has, by and large, offered little grace and few tangible alternatives to these women, choosing instead to dictate their feelings in the voting booth and at the dinner table. If we wish to see a drastic reduction in abortions, the change in culture starts not simply by undoing the law and spewing hot air, but by both fertile and infertile couples taking action and embracing the necessity and beauty of expanding their families through adoption. This is the world we envision, and this is the world we will continue to work towards.