Hello all! We have been a little busy these days and haven't had a chance to post anything. But I have a treat for you today! My parents wrote Juliana's adoption story for the mom's blog that I also write for...Prayer of Hannah. I wanted to post it here as well because I think my parents and Juliana are amazing people and I am so blessed they are part of my life!
In 1990 I was a home health nurse. A patient assigned to me was an elderly woman who was bed fast. On one of my visits I discovered two toddlers sitting on the floor beside her bed, eating out of paper plates. She told me they had been left there by a family member, for her to care for. Now, this woman could not take care of herself.She could not even turn over in bed by herself. I immediately began to call some of her other family. The problem was solved quickly. That evening I told my husband, Haynes, about the visit I had made that day. We both agreed how sad it is for children to be neglected. I believe this was the day the Lord planted the desire in our hearts to adopt a child.
A few evenings later we watched a T.V. special about starving children being adopted in Romania. Over the next couple of weeks we talked about the children in Romania.We prayed and prayed about adopting a child. The idea of adopting began to grow in our hearts. You need to know…we had raised five children, and just sent our last child to college. The thought of raising another child had never entered our minds before. The Lord definitely works in mysterious ways. We decided that adoption was what God was calling us to at this point in our lives. The process began to take shape.We talked with a lawyer, we got in touch with other people who were in the adoption process, and we prayed and prayed.
A few weeks later Stacey, our youngest daughter came home from college for the weekend. That evening the exact same T.V. special was repeated again. At this point we had not mentioned a thing to any of our children. As the program was ending, Stacey looked at us and said, “Ya’ll need to adopt one of those children!!” I began to smile. She quickly said, “This is not funny! I am serious! You need to go and adopt one of these children!” I told her I was not smiling because it was funny…we then told her we had been discussing adoption, and planned on discussing the possibility with all five children that weekend, beginning with her. This was a very happy weekend for our family. All five children were thrilled and excited. They were all asking questions and wanting to help. We believe it is very important for all close members of a family to be in agreement about such an important event.
Then the real work began. There were mounds of paperwork, a home study, finger prints, passports, and plane tickets. With lots of prayers, and help from lots of friends, we were on our way to Romania...
Two days after arriving in Romania, we were traveling with a lady who wanted to adopt a little boy. We were told there was a little boy for adoption in a nearby village. Translation into another language sometimes does not always translate correctly. The little boy was a beautiful curly haired girl. She was wearing only a cotton jacket…and it had been snowing! I knew the moment I saw her, she was for us. Her name was Juliana. We fell in love with her and her name. Juliana was the fourth child of a young woman, age 18. After finding the young woman and talking with her and the government official, they set a court date.. The adoption only took a few minutes. The main question we were asked, “Will you take care and provide for this child?”
Juliana was a very happy child from the beginning, even though she was malnourished and had a severe sinus infection. She quickly learned where she ate and where the food was kept.She wanted to stay in the kitchen and play. Also Juliana wanted to be held and patted all of the time. This is where the bonding began. (Now at age 19, she still loves to be hugged and patted:)
From the beginning, Juliana was like a sponge. She quickly began to say words and interact. One of the most important words we used from the first day was “adoption.” My husband and I believe it is important to tell a child they are adopted from a very early age. Explain all of the details you can for their level. As time goes on, they will have more questions…answer them. Do not leave an opportunity for any surprises along the way. I think the fact that I was also adopted helped with a lot of the answers for Juliana.
Juliana is now a sophomore at Ouachita Baptist University, majoring in speech pathology. We have six children: Drew, Phillip, Stacey, Tracie, Jana, and Juliana. I can tell you without a doubt, there is no difference in the feeling you have for an adopted child and a child you birthed. It is amazing to see Juliana now grow into a lovely young woman! How quickly time flies and what a joy to be a part of this precious child’s life! The Lord has so blessed us! I look forward to what He has for us in the future!
Delight yourself in the Lord and He will give you the desires of you heart…Psalm37:4