"" Life A Bit Sweeter: May 2011

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

God is in the Details

Today, I had the privilege of witnessing God bring to fruition the beginnings of a homeless man's dream.  It really is an amazing story and I can't wait to share all of the details within the next month.  But for now, I'll share this about it.  The very thing that was just a wish of this wonderful man is becoming a reality even down to the details.  What's so wonderful is that the donor had no idea about the homeless man's wish.  The donor simply sent an e-mail to me and another colleague out of obedience for what was stirring in his heart.  When I got the e-mail from the donor about the specifics of what he wanted to do for someone, I was floored.  It was so specific and matched up exactly with the homeless man's wish that I thought for a moment this must be a scam.  After doing a tad bit of Google research and probing, I quickly realized that no...God had seen this homeless man and was into the details of his life.

You know what that made me realize?  If God is in the details of this man's life, then surely He will be into the details of my daughter's life.  Where will the remaining $6K come from for her adoption?  I have no idea but God does and He's into those details.  When will I lay eyes on her for the first time?  God knows and is into the details.  Why is this process taking so long?  I have no idea but God does and He's into the details about why it can't happen today.  How this brings me such peace.

I'm trusting that God is into the details of my daughter's life in the same way that He is in the details of this wonderful man whom He also call His child.  

For you Zion Church folks who were wandering....yes, my daughter who I am adopting from Ethiopia is my Lazarus on the back of my puzzle piece. (smile)

Monday, May 30, 2011

What's the Scoop??? ....and I'm Not Talking Ice Cream.

So...here's the scoop. The adoption process has been taking so long that we were informed by our adoption agency we'd have to update our home study. (insert tears here). Basically, this just hurt my heart because out of the entire process thus far, the home study was the hardest for us.  Last July, I remember so clearly how tough the back and forth was with our background and medical records....ugh!!!  It was tough to say the least.

So now that I've sat a week in shock that the reality is that we have to do the homestudy update, I'm now ready to move full steam ahead this week and knock this right out!  Let's get it!  There's a little girl on the other side of the world waiting for me.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

My Name is Michelle and I'm Addicted to Adoption Videos (smile)

Yes, I have a sickness....

I love, love, love finding new adoption stories on YouTube and Vimeo.  To be honest, in these slow-moving adoption days, it's one of the things that sustains this mama.  Here are a few recent ones that I stumbled across.  What are some of your favorites?  (Of course this addict would love you to leave the links in the comments section...LOL)

Monday, May 16, 2011

Be Still My Heart....Tiffany's Story Will Blow You Away!

I first heard about Tiffany's story (okay...I know it's really God's story) from my DC/MD/VA adoption buddies over breakfast.  When I got back home, I wanted to read it for myself.  Now that I've read it for myself....I have to share it with you.

Tiffany and her husband had been matched with this precious little boy and were all geared up to go get him and bring him back home.  But then Tiffany uttered a small prayer to God:  shatter my heart.

So God did...in a MAJOR way.  NOT by coincidence, Tiffany meets Habtamu who becomes the catalyst for her prayer to God to shatter her heart...(read the first part of the story here: http://amomentcherished.blogspot.com/2011/01/my-answered-prayer.html)

In the sweetest way, Tiffany finds that she is also 'mother' to this amazing, young, handsome little boy as well....(read that part of the story here...http://amomentcherished.blogspot.com/2011/03/rich.html)

As if my heart can take any more of this story, Tiffany now fights likes any good 'mother' on behalf of her other boy who is thousands of miles away.  Follow their story and intercede in prayer on behalf of Habtamu and the many other children who find themselves living on the streets.  (read this final part of the story here...http://amomentcherished.blogspot.com/2011/03/other-boy.html)

So love how God is into the details of our lives.

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Breakthrough: Two GREAT AHA Moments About Our Adoption

Friday morning I was feeling a bit down but as I journeyed to my favorite Ethiopian Cafe in Silver Spring, MD, I received a great breakthrough of understanding about our daughter from a stranger.  It will forever ring deep in my soul...a local's view of Ethiopian international adoption and changing your adoptive child's name....some things to consider...

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Adoption....Not Some Half-Baked Decision

I was hanging around Vimeo looking at adoption videos and stumbled across this one....

Did you hear what she said at minute 3:13? She says,
 "What it means to me to think that his mom gave him up so that he could have a better life is that I better not drop the ball.  I better be the mom that she wanted to be but wasn't able.  I take it as a huge responsibility."

Enough Said.

Monday, May 9, 2011

4 Months DTE with NEW Focus on Celebrating!

Hey Friends!

I am so excited to share that as of May 7th, we are 4 months DTE baby!  That's right, 4 months ago our dossier (stack of adoption paperwork) made its way to Ethiopia to share our intent with the ET government that we would like to apply for adoption!

Because many families celebrate their DTE anniversary each month in a special way, I decided that our southern-fried, Paula Deen lovin' selves would try one new healthy food option each month.  The first month we tried Kashi cereal.  The second month it was a milk taste test (almond vs. coconut vs. our regular vitamin D).  The third month, we jumped way out of the box and opted for sushi.  This was great but as I become more and more challenged to think outside of my own little world, I realized that I needed to change things up a bit.  Instead of trying new things to implement in our diet (I can do that any old time), we needed to shift our focus back to why we're adopting in the first place....the need to serve others and get uncomfortable.

Beginning in May, as we celebrate our DTE anniversary, I will begin finding new ways to serve others through volunteerism.  There was no better way to get things kicked off than yesterday --- Mother's Day!  Yesterday, our Pastor, Keith, and his wife, Vicki gave away over two thousand roses to all of the women who attended.  The lavender thornless beauties are her favorite flower. We knew we would have leftovers so I asked Pastor Keith if I could identify a couple of places to deliver them.  He shared he was thinking exactly the same thing about donating the remaining flowers.  So....while my honey and the kids were preparing Mother's Day dinner for me, I decided to spend my time delivering flowers.  With the back of my truck full of flowers, I was off.

My first stop was to a women's and children's homeless shelter.  What a blessing!  As I dropped the roses off, I was able to talk more about ways that I can further assist the residents in this transitional home.  In fact, today, I've started collecting disposable diapers and shower shoes for the residents.  I'm hoping that this is just the beginning for what my hands will do at this shelter.  So excited!

The next stop was a rehab nursing facility where a friend's mom once stayed.  I remember this particular facility always bothered me because of the condition of the facility and the lack of care I 'felt' the residents received.  In fact, we moved her from there after the first couple of days.  No greater opportunity to serve than a place where I thought there was a problem.  (See a problem? Be a contributor to its resolution and not just a nag.)

So in I go with the buckets of roses.  First reception...not so warm but that's okay, I was determined to keep it movin'....I had residents to see!  Imagine my surprise when I found out there were over 100 female residents divided up in the facility on two floors.  (Mind you...this chica had on heels today with a fresh pedicure.)  I quickly got over myself and loaded my arms with tons of flowers.  I had a ball as I went into each resident's room, greeted them, shared why I was there and then presented them with the roses from Zion.  I quickly made friends and then it was off to the next beautiful resident.  They were so appreciative and my heart was full.

Now one of the funniest moments for me was when I hit one area of the second floor and the nurse said, oh there are more patients back there...enter the code.  (The fact that I needed a code to enter should have been my first clue.  *chuckle*  She never told me that this was the wing of the hospital that houses elderly patients with mental challenges.  Actually, I'm glad she didn't because I wonder if I would have been apprehensive about going....honestly, yes.  So picture this....me, sandal high heels, an arm full of roses....and my unawareness of peas or something green sloshed on the floor...boy do I hope it was peas!  LOL.  As I stood in the community room trying to figure out who to serve, while walking aimlessly, I hit the glop but was somehow able to keep my balance and still serve the residents and enjoy them all.   

Throughout the course of my visits, I came upon some really sweet people and the one who sticks out is Ms. T.  We spent a little time together and she commented on how much she loved my nail color (they're a bright green...yep, I'm experimenting y'all --smile).  She said if she had a camera, she'd take my picture with my arms full of the roses.  I told her, I had one better...I had my camera on my phone and I'd take a picture of me and her together.  Bingo! We enjoyed our cameo together and I promised to come back to bring her a printed copy.  What a day! What a day!  Probably one of the best Mother Day's I've had in a really long time. Happy Mother's Day to you all!  (Sorry...I blocked out Ms. T's face a little to protect her privacy.)

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Smack Dead in the Middle!

How do I begin to articulate what I'm feeling.  I'm not in a rut because I'm definitely not experiencing sadness or frustration or anything like that related to adoption.  Perhaps I feel disconnected because I've just been so busy at work.  Perhaps my disconnection is because I have been out of the loop with my adoption buddies via our Yahoo Discussion Group, Facebook, and Twitter.

or...Is it just that this journey is just such a long one that I feel like a kid in the back seat with her parent in a dialogue like this:

me: Are we there yet?
parent: No.
(few minutes later)

me: Are we there yet?
parent: No.
(few minutes later)
me: Are we there yet?
parent: No.
(few minutes later)

After a period of time, the child just stops asking.  Maybe I've just stop asking, "Are we there yet?" in this land of the in-between.  Ya know...the land where we aren't in the very beginning exciting stages of the adoption filled with lots of action and we're no where near our referral yet.  So...I busy my hands to other things....and we wait.  Hopefully, I'll snag some time soon so that I can get plugged in again soon. 

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