Sunday, August 3, 2008

Thinking back to Ethiopia

As I was sitting here on our deck watching all 4 kids playing in the water of the Albemarle Sound, I think back to the day we brought the LJ, AJ and JJ home. They were so shy and quiet (then). They had no idea what was ahead for them in America. All they had was the fantastic tales told to them by others who themselves had never been to America. They had imagined downtown New York City with skyscrapers and millions of people. We lived in Ft. Mill SC, a suburb of Charlotte NC. They had imagined money just falling from the sky or the trees; Americans so rich that we all only wore our clothes once and threw them away (no need for washers and dryers). We aren't paycheck-to-paycheck, but we do live on a budget and watch for deals. They also imagined a country so self absorbed that they hated outsiders and "threw them off the tall buildings because they were from other countries". That is not too, far afield from the truth.

They didn't understand much of any English as I'd said before. They only knew that they should be polite and cooperative, so they nodded yes to everything. We gave them "American" Names and tried to explain it to them. They smiled and nodded approval. It wasn't until recently that they admitted to us that they didn't have a clue what we were talking about. We could have been explaining the theory of thermonuclear dynamics and had gotten across just as much. Now, they are not so quiet and shy.

We know that their love for and their comfort level around us is growing, because now they tell us what's on their mind (with respect), and tell us what they like and don't like. (mmm, maybe we should have kept them in the fearful, shy stage a little longer - like say 10 years). They were so afraid of everything and really everyone. Now they venture out on their own and talk and play with kids they don't know. They continually enlighten us with tales of life in Ethiopia. At times, it brings us to tears and at others to sheer laughter. They are comfortable enough to ask us for cell phones, which after two years we've done. (What have I done?)

God asks, demands us to love and care for these 4 children. He has also called us to open our hearts and our home to another 3 more that need a mom and a dad to love, nurture, care for and protect them. We are following Christ. And it is such an exhilarating joy to watch how God is "growing" our babies!


Chrissy said...

I just want to say thank you for writing about your adoption journey. My husband and I are in the paper chase process to adopt a baby from Ethiopia. Just when I was getting discouraged I was pointed to your blog for the CF Husband's blog. What an amazing blessing you are.

hennhouse said...

Praying for your family. We have adopted domestically through the foster care system. And we know our family is not yet complete.

Just praying.

Tamara said...

I just read about your blog on the CF husband's blog.

I am 26, single and in the process of adopting my first son from Guatemala. Once this debt has been paid, I would love to adopt again. It's an amazing blessing and I can't wait to have him home forever.

Heather Nicole said...

I'm also coming from CFHusband. Thanks for blogging about your adopting journey. My husband and I are still young, and are hoping to be able to adopt in the future. It is so helpful and inspiring to read a real story about the process. It gives us direction on how to specifically pray for our growing family, and now for yours!

amy smith said...

praying here in iowa for your beautiful family, and the upcomming trip back to ethiopia

Mills Family said...

Praising God for families like you! We are an adoptive family of a toddler as well. We are praying God will open the doors again someday to add to our family!

I look forward to following your journey from Ohio!

Christina said...

WOW! You have a beautiful family! It will be an honor to follow your journey and pray for all of you.
Best wishes for your journey!
Christina (California)

Lori Charles said...

I'm coming over from CF Husband's blog too. I'm so happy that you are helping this kids and encouraging others to adopt. The need is so great. Thank you for saying YES!
Praying for your family from Haiti,

Meg said...

I have always wanted to adopt and I hope that it becomes a reality for us someday. I have 2 kids already and it just pulls at my heart that there are so many kids out there that need a home full of love and safety. What a wonderful thing you have done and are doing for these kids. I look forward to reading about your journey. I came over from CF Husband's blog.

Irma said...

Another CF Husband reader here. I can't wait to hear the next steps of your journey, and I will pray for your entire family.

Do your 3-2-B children know that their family is waiting for them, or are they kept in the dark, in order to not get their hopes up in case something goes wrong?

Jill said...


We are adopting our 8th child - this time from Ethiopia. We too have heard "are you sure?" "how many can you handle?" "are you crazy, I could never do that!"

I hope you will stop by our blog as well and together we can bring glory to God through Him doing what we can't!

I've been so blessed by Nate's story and now yours.

You have such a beautiful family and through obedience the blessings pour out of their faces!

Love and blessings to you all!

Michelle Jamie said...

I have not read your blog yet but thought I'd just comment quickly before i do that.

We have friends who are missionaries, who were missionaries to Ethiopia for three years (and for various sensitive, political reasons - which I cannot say for future safety of mission activity there, they had to end their ministry) They are now missionaries in another country.

I remember the wife saying to me that the Ethiopian people are such beautiful people.

JJ&K said...

God bless you for giving these children the best life possible and opening your hearts to children in need!

Erica said...

Beautifully put! I'm enjoying your blog, we are six months in after bringing our sweet son home from Ethiopia. I'm excited to follow along on your journey as you seek Gods will for your family.

Agnes said...

So glad you chose to share all of this with our NHC family. We,Don and I, are praying for you as well as just what God might have us do to help bring this all about.Love you guys.

The Gang's All Here! said...

Also found you from the CF Husband blog. I'm thrilled to find another adoption blog to follow - it's such an exciting and amazing journey.

We are currently awaiting our Travel Approval to adopt our daughter, Aidan, from China. She's 11 mos. old, from the special needs program. Getting to the point of being able to say "we are waiting for TA" has been a crazy and sometimes painful journey, especially these last 3 months. But God is GOOD, and we are standing on HIS Word and HIS calling for our family.

Oh, and Little Miss Aidan is #5 for us - 4 bios. And I can almost gauruntee she won't be our last :)

Love your blog, I'll be back!

Cindy said...

Pam and family! Beautiful family!

I am Cindy-I found you through Nathan at CF Husband!! I LOVE your blog and will be back to read more. I am blessed with two very beautiful children from India..and two nephews from Guatemala..

I am from NC--so a not so far away blogger--nice to meet you, Internet friend.

Praying for your family to once again grow--can't wait to see the new additions!!

Anonymous said...

I just found your blog through confessions of a cf husband and i don't usually comment, but you have BEAUTIFUL children! May God bless your journey as you continue opening your hearts and home to more children!

Stacy said...

Just found your bloig from Nate's (CF Husband). What an awesome story and a beautiful testimony to the how the Lord works in our lives. I can't wait to read more & follow your journey :)

Honea Household said...

Your story is beautiful. I linked over to your blog from CF Husband. Our pastor and his wife are currently in the process and are VERY close to adopting a sibling group of 3 from Liberia. I gave her your blog address because I thought she could be encouraged reading your stories. Your children are beautiful!

Sara said...

what a beautiful family you have & I look forward to watching your family grow!

JuJu - said...

Hi Guys!
found you through Nate and Tricia's blog - nice to read about another family - BIG family;)
i am Mom to 6 and also one of the sponsors of a fun filled weekend of adoptive families called aguatoberfest - we get together once a year and have fun with other adoptive families from across the country - this year we are meeting in Myrtle Beach - we would love for you guys to come be a part of this:)
check out my blog and look on the side bar to go the Gfest blog site:)

it is open to all adoptove families - we have families with children from all over the world- as well as domestic adoptive families -
we will be praying for your new adventure and that things move easily and that your newest family members come home quickly:)

love to you and yours!

Julia McKenzie
James 1:27