I'm not going to lie, I am in the struggle of my life right now. Ever since Monday night when I checked my emails for the first time that day (I had an extraordinarily long day at work) and discovered an email from our adoption agency requesting a letter from Randy's doctor explaining some medical information, I have literally been reduced to a puddle of tears. What started out as mere frustration that I didn't get the email in time on Monday to move on it that day has now escalated into a lie planted in my mind by the adversary telling me man, a particular man even, is in control of this adoption. When Randy called the doctor on Tuesday requesting this most essential letter be written a.s.a.p. to keep the adoption moving on schedule, I found out today (the doctor's day off) that our request is still sitting on his desk untouched!
In explaining to the nurse the urgency of the matter at hand I caused myself further frustration, angst and emotional trauma in realizing that this doctor has no idea that a child's life literally hangs in the balance, and that it is seemingly up to him alone to make a way for our dear little Mei Mei to make it home in a timely manner. I explained further to the nurse that I would need to get the letter from them by tomorrow and hand-deliver it to the adoption agency in Albion, Indiana immediately. Because China is 13 hours ahead of us it is imperative we get the information to China by Thursday because our Thursday is their Friday, and the info needs to be in their hands before the weekend. Can you see why it is easy for my brain to jump to the conclusion that a man is deciding our little girl's fate?
Even though I know in my heart man decides NOTHING in God's business. And adopting the orphan, caring for the orphan, making a family for the orphan IS GOD'S BUSINESS. But Friends...I am having a very difficult time feeling what's in my heart right now.
And to make matters ten times worse, Sonya witnessed today her Mommy coming unglued over the whole matter, and it scared her and rocked her feeling of security and of being loved which is something I would never want to do to her. I mean, think about it - she is our first child, our first adoption, our first China adoption - why on earth would I ever want this precious little girl to feel first-hand the sting of mommy's heartache, especially over another child who is yet to join our family? Not that Mei Mei's physical absence from our family right now makes her any less Sonya's sister or my daughter and in need of care and concern. But to Sonya, Randy and I are all she has physically in her life, and I want to guard her little heart from what I might refer to as "adoption trauma" brought on by her mother's extreme fear.
I have been reading on various blogs just how adoption and the waiting can become all-consuming and even anxiety-producing . I can handle the wait better, though, when I am not being asked to produce something on our end to keep the process moving ahead. No, let me re-phrase that: I can handle the wait when I'm being asked to produce something that is in my control to produce. Please pray for me that God reveals Himself to my heart and my mind and my emotions so that I know He is the one orchestrating even this!
I wrote something today for the China Center of Adoption Affairs involving our first adoption, sharing about how Sonya is developing and thriving since the three of us became a family. My writing was inspired by a request from them to adoption agencies and adoptive families:
On the occasion of the Fifteenth Anniversary of the founding of China Center for Children’s Welfare and Adoption (CCCWA), we will hold a series of activities in the theme of “Adoption Month”, during which we will edit books, hold photo exhibitions, make publication videos, etc. to showcase the happy life of our children adopted by foreign families and introduce inter-country adoption to more people, helping them understand that being in a family is in the best interests of the orphaned and disabled children.
The following is what I penned in part regarding little Miss Sonya and what a blessing she has been in our lives. And really, as hard as it was for me to focus myself initially (under the circumstances), once I started writing, my love for Sonya flowed out of my fingers so effortlessly!
Luo Yi Er, born May 23, 2003, at one time residing at the Foshan Welfare Institute in the Guangdong Province; now Sonya Yi Hoium, now residing in Fort Wayne, Indiana – the daughter of proud parents, Randy and Cheryl Hoium - brought to America from China at only seven months of age.
How can I convey to you in simple mortal words the love we have for our little girl, now eight years of age, filled with goodness, love, generosity, kindness, mercy and compassion with a zest and enthusiasm for life who wears a constant smile? Our daughter, inquisitive, brilliant, beautiful and extraordinary, is “daddy’s little girl” and my “little helper”. How does a mother even begin to express her deep level of gratitude for a country and a people who showed us such great kindness and generosity when giving my husband and me this treasure, a little girl with such sparkle and vibrancy that anyone who meets her falls in love with her in an instant?
On January 15 of this year, Randy wrote an article for our adoption blog at http://yiandmeitogether.blogspot.com entitled “Nothing Better Than Kids” describing his journey into fatherhood and more specifically his fathering of our sweet Sonya. His words regarding his decision to adopt:
“To my surprise, what I thought to be an act of sacrificial love really turned out to be a beautiful gift to myself. Oh sure, the apprehension would return sometimes during our two year wait, along with moments of shear angst when learning what is required in an international adoption. But do you want to know something? Adopting Sonya is the very best thing I have ever done! My daughter is the "apple of my eye". I have come to realize what a precious gift a child is. I cannot imagine loving a biological daughter any more than I love Sonya. I am sure all the parents out there know what I am saying. For those of you contemplating this decision, I cannot say enough good about becoming a parent.”
Sonya, with an insatiable love for the outdoors, who would rather be dribbling a basketball or shooting her bow and arrow over playing with dolls any day loves to sing and whistle and build interesting things with cardboard boxes. She especially loves to do artwork. She attends a professional art studio called Garden of Arts where she is so inclined to bring to life on paper her natural, God-given abilities as a little artist.
I then go on to share Sonya's desire to pay her own way to China and how she is selling her very own art work to accomplish this goal, and I end with these words:
Sonya is looking forward to being united with a sister who shares a common heritage. When Sonya realized she would definitely be given the opportunity to travel to China with her father and me, she exclaimed with such fervor, “Yes! I get to go back to my country!”
Sonya's country, China, which I believe, as her mother, the Lord is calling her back to - to some day tell them about Jesus and His great and undying love for them.
Lord God of All Creation, please help me as Sonya's mother to hide and preserve Your Truth in Her heart throughout her growing up years and beyond so that I may serve as a catalyst for her to live and move and breathe in a godly manner, living in a manner which is pleasing and acceptable to you always. Lord God of all Creation, keep Your watch-care over our second-born as she goes about her activities and mealtimes today in the orphanage. Please, Lord, remove the obstacles that are slowing down our adoption so that we can bring Mei Mei home to us and provide her the proper medical attention. Bless her walk, Lord, and bless those who are taking care of her, giving them an extra dose of kindness today and every day to bestow upon all the children in their care. In the Precious Name of Jesus, I pray! Amen!