Baby Z snuggling Daddy
Our dear Baby Z is almost three weeks old, and we've been asked numerous times, "Are you done adopting?"
Many parents know that going from two kids to three is HARD. With two kids, there's one parent per child. When one kid is driving you batty, your Other takes over. Taking two kids somewhere by yourself is quite possible (you should see our Target bill!), even enjoyable (like when I took my little ladies to Starbucks one day for hot chocolate and scones----lovely!). A parent has two hands and with two children, there can be the death grip on each one as you all toddle through a parking lot.
Today started the reality of having three kids and being a stay at home mom. Taking Miss E to and from school, doing chores, getting them down for naps, keeping the house in reasonable order. I CANNOT function well when my house is a mess beyond the every day scatters of toys and the ever-present stack of dirty dishes. Someone always needs something: food, attention, praise, discipline, a kiss or cuddle, a playmate, a peacemaker.
So experienced parents get that life with several kids is hard, especially when the kids are 4, 2, and brand new. I believe this is why the question, "Are you done?" comes up so much.
Someone asked us yesterday, "Are you done acquiring children? Or should I say it another way?" (This made me laugh...since I think saying are we done "having" children is inaccurate considering we didn't have them).
Here's the deal. God has a plan for our family. It's clearly evident that this plan has been in place for all of time. Quick recap:
Steve and I meet->fall in love->continue our educations->Steve graduates college and starts up the career ladder->we get married->I graduate and begin teaching->diabetes diagnosis and immediate decision to pursue adoption (by Rachel)->Steve gets on board with the adoption process->we wait and wait->we explore transracial adoption (with several very interesting encounters with transracial families which clearly show us that God is saying we're going to adopt transracially)->Nov 2008 we get THE CALL for Miss E->one and a half years later we start getting paperwork in order to adopt again, knowing it could take some time->Steve's grandfather dies and on the same evening as his visitation, the DAY we start waiting for baby #2, we are chosen for Baby E->, July 2012 we get a call for a toddler boy we cannot take due to lack of proper paperwork->we start the paperwork for baby #3 knowing the call for the baby boy is God's prompting to get our "ducks in a row"-> FBI and IL DCFS contract dispute makes us believe our process could be significantly delayed->one week after hearing this news, our paperwork appears in our mailbox!->a few days later, we are matched with a baby due in January->Baby Z is born on my b-day and we get custody two days
So, when we are asked, "Are you done?" All I can say is, "That's up to God." There is absolutely no reason to reply "yes" or "no" based on my very limited foresight, plans, or intentions. There is simply no human explanation for why our lives have evolved as they have.
I've been thinking about how crazy-awesome our family is now. A mom and dad, three kids, three open adoptions, four involved birth parents, five involved birth siblings, an large extended network of friends and family in our kids' birth town, an adoptive mom support group of 40+ women, an adoption book, a slew of articles, and new connections almost every single day.
What an incredible life I have been blessed with. A life I never planned for, scheduled, plotted, or prepared for.
Will more kids enter our family?
Ask the Big Man upstairs.