Hague Orphan Immunization Bill

Monday, October 25, 2010

The Blessings in Disguise

There are particular times in our lives when we stop to reflect on how precious every moment truly is. Usually we don't expect or hope for tragedy to come into our lives and force us onto our knees, but sometimes it may be just what we need. You see, my husband, S, is a sher!ff deputy working in a local contract city and-- may I just say?-- he is one of the good ones! I love the fact that he loves his job and is very good at it. This past year, he was named Off!cer of the Year in his city, then went on to become Off!cer of the Year in the precinct where he works and was even up for Off!cer of the Year for the entire county! He is well liked at work, obviously. And he has a specialty that we can ALL appreciate, that being a Drug Rec0gnition Expert, where he has taken intensive classes on how to tell what kinds of nastiness an impaired driver might be consuming. Essentially, he goes out at night to look for impaired and/or drunk drivers and, hopefully, makes a dent in the problem or, even more hopefully, makes a dent in the person's life. This is all well and good, but generally, it is as far as I like to think about what S does. All I know for sure is he loves his job.

Well, a few weeks ago, I was sleeping in my bubble of limited information about what my husband actually does when I got a mysterious knock on my door at 3am. Anyone who was a *little* more prepared may have been alarmed by this... not me. I hopped out of bed thinking that it was probably S having forgotten his key (and I didn't want him to make such a racket and wake the kids up!). I wasn't even really that alarmed at the sight of two huge, burly uniformed 0fficers (keep in mind, I am only 5'2", so huge is a relative term) standing there. Even when I heard the words, "bad accident," "collapsed lung" and "taken to Harborview [the regional trauma center for the entire Northwest]," it still didn't register what kind of problem I was facing because, after all, that bubble I lived in was all-encompassing.

When we arrived at the hospital, things began to sink in. There were tons of c0ps standing around, waiting to be useful in some way and they all had the best intentions. But I can tell you, seeing S lying on a gurney, intubated and medically sedated, I kept looking around wishing, hoping that S was one of the ones standing around, not on that gurney. It was not as if I had never seen anyone in such a condition before, I am a nurse after all. Seeing someone you love in such a vulnerable place, though, is truly humbling.

Over and over again, I was being told that he was okay, everything was going to be alright, but that's not how I saw it. Yes, S was still alive-- THANK GOD-- yes, he was not badly injured, yes, there were people there to support me, but none of them had any idea how naked I felt, suddenly living in reality outside of my warm comfortable bubble. I broke down and sobbed for the first time of many right there in the ER. Those moments are still hard to think about. And I can't quite imagine what it will be like the days he goes back to work.

In retrospect, I have a little more information and a different perspective. It is one of a little more grace, a little more mercy, a whole lot more thanksgiving, and a whole lot less living in the future. When talking to the detectives about the accident, S learned that there were so many variables working against him that the physics of the accident don't really support the reason why he is alive. Essentially, it was a miracle. And on top of that, S came out with a lot of bruises, a few scratches, three broken ribs and THAT IS IT. He has recovered almost all of his lung function and will continue to do so until he is completely healed. If you ever needed a more clear example of Psalm 91, I think we have it here.

So, we've been shaken up a bit. Even after almost 10 years of marriage, I feel stronger than ever before. LilyJoy (and Samuel and Timothy) has gotten to spend lots of concentrated time with her daddy, which she has so desperately needed. We have seen a side of the law enforcement community that is just amazing!! I still haven't had to make a single dinner since the accident on October 5th! They really take care of each other. And I can see that I am needed in that community as well-- how would this experience have been different if the spouses of the other off!cers had been living inside a bubble? I still have some facing fears to do, but I am working on it. And everyday, I am so thankful he's still around.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

A Moon Story at a Particularly Appropriate Time of Year

Happy Autumn Moon Festival! I realize that I am a day late, but the moon is still around, so don't forget to gaze and admire its beauty.

I don't know what it is about the moon, but my sweet little LilyJoy has become quite enamored by it. This summer, we were coming home on the Light Rail from a parade in Seattle and it was fairly late in the evening. When LJ gets tired, she gets HYPER, so I needed a way to calm her quickly or she was going to run the length of the train. I grabbed her and held her close and pointed at the huge, round moon out the window. I kid you not, she was STILL, instantly. She sat and stared at the moon for a good 10 minutes while I quietly sang a hand full of moon songs that I know. Ever since that day, Little Joy loves to sing "I see the M00n (the m00n sees me)" to herself, especially when she finds the moon outside. Her little song sounds like "Nah nee moon, Nah nee moon, nah nee moon..." and then she hums the same tune, cutest thing you've ever heard.

Well, for the last few nights as we were getting her ready for bed, LJ kept looking out the window before the shade was drawn and saying "mine see moon! mine see moon!" and then the song would ensue. From my viewpoint, I looked out the window and saw nothing but clouds and kind of acknowledged her imagination, but brushed it off. Finally, the other day, I was on the floor with her in her room, changing her diaper and she said it again. I looked up out the window and realized she was looking at the reflection of the light in her room on the window! She has her own little moon to gaze at and adore. Sweet Little Joy.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

First Day of Kindergarten

My sweet itty bitty Beano, my little first newborn son got big! I'm not sure how it happened, but I guess that is the bittersweet point of being a parent after all. Samuel started his first day of Kindergarten yesterday. He was such a big boy and I couldn't be more proud of him. I decided that just for the first day, I would walk him into his classroom and help him find where his bag needs to go and where he would sit. He got himself all settled in, intently doing a dot-to-dot picture and I figured it was my time to exit. I told him this and without even looking up from his picture, he said, "Bye mom!" and kept right on coloring. Of course I grabbed him and gave him a big kiss and a hug! I only cried briefly in the car and the day went on. Little Mr. Independent!

Monday, August 16, 2010


So hard to believe, but true enough, we celebrated having LilyJoy in our arms for one year today! While we still have a long way to go, I think about how far we've come and I'm inspired, it really is what keeps me coming back for more. I remember thinking when we first got home, "I wonder what this will be like in one year?" And now we know :)
I do think that it is important to continue to reflect on where we have come from, so that on the hard days, we remember that we are indeed going forward. LJ still struggles with her relationship with her daddy (interesting, given that he was to only one she wanted anything to do with for the first month or so with us), but we are starting the long journey of reading what we can, asking questions and trying to make that important connection. She and I also have a bit of a roller coaster relationship as well, where we both begin to feel insecure every few weeks, but the between stretches are getting longer and the hard times less intense. She has also just recently started to give me spontaneous hugs and kisses, completely of her own accord, which of course I can't get enough of!

She still loves to drive her brothers crazy, especially Timothy, but what youngest child doesn't (asks this youngest child :))?

We look forward to the future, but *try* to enjoy where we are now, as hard as that may be at times. And we just continue to love our Little Joy... happy Forever Family Day, little one!!

Friday, June 25, 2010

A Wonderful Article on Finding Self

I love reading articles/letters/books written by adoptees exploring the process they are going through to find who they are and I thought some of you might also be interested. This is one such article from Rainbowkids, written by a young woman who happens to be from Jiangxi Province in China (same as LilyJoy). I can't wait to hear LilyJoy's story as she grows.

Monday, June 14, 2010

Busy Being a Family

Hello to all my friends out in blogland! I have been away from writing and even more unfortunately, reading on all the blogs that I held so dear during my wait. I guess that is just what can happen when you're busy being a family :).

One major even that occurred during my absence was my brother's wedding in Mexico to a gorgeous Guadalajara gal. We had so much fun, despite the fact that I was very nervous about the travel with 3 young kids part (which actually turned out to be way less of a big deal than I ever thought!) and the fact that my husband and Timothy got so sick right after the pictures and right before the wedding (and then proceeded to pass it on to every one of us in turn). So, the short summary of the trip is this: we flew to Puerto Vallarta and stayed one night, took a 4 hr bus ride to Guadalajara, attended the wedding, stayed 2 nights, took a bus ride back to PV and stayed there for a week. And while you may think that the PV part was the highlight of the trip, I would actually say it was the hospitality and fun that we had with my new sister-in-law's family! I really believe that there is nothing like being with people who are from the country you are visiting to truly experience that country. And these folks were really wonderful.

The whole trip was spectacular, but it was definitely a lot of being together in the same place-- we were ready to come home. So, I'll leave you with some pictures. Enjoy!

One rare photo of all of the family-- note Timothy's look of distress (this was just before he got sick all over our taxi back to the hotel).
Samuel rifling through Auntie's purse, Timothy not feeling so well and LilyJoy "practicing" to do her hair... what a crew!

My lovely new sister-in-law and my big brother.

All the sisters (and one lone brother). SIL has 3 sisters, my brother has 2. No other boys.

On to PV!
Yet another rare photo! Just Steve and I and the green blue water... ahhhhh.

LilyJoy didn't know what to think of the ocean at first. It really took her a few days to stop clinging in fear! By the end of the trip, she was splashing and enjoying the water with the rest of us.

Desperately trying to get a family pic-- all of us are technically in it, just one being a pill in the background.

Silly Lily and her glamor glasses-- she was highly entertained by these the whole trip.

Monday, March 15, 2010

Lucy's Day of Prayer

Reposted with permission by the author of 1001 Tears

For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well. –Psalms 139:13-14

The outcry for Lucy has been awesome. But ASIA is still looking for a family who already has their paperwork done to step forward and claim Lucy has their forever daughter.

Lucy’s best chance to survive is to come home and have lifesaving open-heart surgery with a mommy and daddy to support and care for her. Lucy has a long road ahead of her. She may even need a heart transplant.

Lucy needs a miracle.

I cannot stand by and do nothing for this child. Like so many others, though, we are not in a position to adopt again right now. But I can pray for her. I can pray for a family to step forward.

Wouldn’t it be amazing if we as a community could come together and cover Lucy with prayer for 24 hours? Wouldn’t it be amazing to see what God can do through this child?

Honestly, I don’t know how God will answer our prayers. I don’t know how Lucy’s life will end up. But what I do know is God will not turn his back on Lucy. She is not alone. While we may not understand it, her life has a purpose.

Will you join me on your knees in prayer for Lucy? Will you pray:

That a family will step forward and claim her as their daughter? Will you pray that once the family submits their letter of intent that China and the United States will expedite all their paperwork and they can hold Lucy in record time?

Will you pray for peace for this extraordinary family? Will you pray that even though Lucy has significant medical challenges ahead of her that they will find strength and support they never imagined.

Will you pray for Lucy? Pray she remains strong. Pray she can hold on for just a little while longer until her mommy and daddy find her.

The 24 hour prayer chain for Lucy will be on Thursday, March 18 starting at 6:00 am and will end on Friday at 6:00 am. If you can commit just one hour of your time, please list it in the comment section of the blog. Please list the hour you’ll be praying and where you’re from. I hope people all around the world will pray for Lucy.

Please help to get the word out by reposting this on your blog, yahoo groups, and facebook pages. Please have people link back to my blog (www.1001tears.blogspot.com) to comment, so we can see just how many people love and care for Lucy.

I think God has amazing things in store for this child. Please be a part of it.

I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you.--John 14:18