Monday, October 12, 2015

A Moment with Pam: Portrait of an Adoption

 Pam is one of those people that just lights up a room. She is one of the very best hostesses and decorators I've ever known, and always makes you feel so welcome. I first met Pam through YoungLife, as she was a huge factor in getting it restarted in Liberty. She is a wonderful role model and woman of God, and I couldn't be excited and honored to be sharing her moment on the blog today. I'll admit, it made me cry more than once.

 I love the word hope. It has so many variations..."desire, wish, faith, promise, possibility” -- and when you’re dreaming of something that seems beyond reach, it’s a very powerful word. For years my husband Chuck and I had dreamed of extending our blended family by having a child of our own. After two failed pregnancies we began to wonder if God had other plans. We began to give up hope. As time moved onward, so did our age, and it’s funny how you begin to feel like the clock is running out. I don’t know why we put such pressures on ourselves because wisdom teaches us that all things come in their own due time. It’s also funny how when you develop a focus on one thing, that ‘thing’ starts to appear wherever you go! I’ll explain...Chuck’s office is in the sky, he’s a pilot (a fantastic one at that!) and during the winter of 2005 he would come home from his trips with stories of adoption that he’d heard from fellow pilots in the cockpit. It seemed odd that each week there ‘just happened’ to be another connection with someone that had adopted, and to be more specific, all of these adoption stories hailed from China. Those scenarios led to many talks and prayers between us and we realized that God was sending us a very clear sign...that should we choose to trust Him and be brave, our child would be waiting for us in China!

 In the spring of 2006, we downloaded the appropriate forms and initiated the grueling process of giving the government officials every last bit of blood we could possibly muster. I ran it like a race, determined to finish the paperwork in record time so we could expedite the undertaking. Weeks later we were given the green light and told our wait time would be 8 months. When you elect to adopt from China, the most obvious alignment would be for an infant baby girl. Their country has a skewed vision of girls and therefore has led to the abandonment of millions of precious little babies (but that’s a whole other ‘bottle of wine story’ in of itself). Suffice to say we gathered our prayer warriors, appealed our petitions to God, and clung to hope with all we had. In 2007 we broke ground on our dream home, which helped pass the time and distract from the always present curiosity of who this little bink would be. Her own unique room was created and we chose the name Isabelle for her. In Hebrew, the name Isabelle means ‘faithful to God’, and in French in means ‘beautiful’. We would soon discover she embodies all that and more!

The pic we sent to China as hopeful parents-to-be.
Two full years later, as 2008 was coming to a close, there still hadn’t been one peep of a parent-child match. We had a discussion with our social worker and made the choice to move our names over to the Waiting Child list. That list outlined different characteristics of children in the system that had certain medical conditions and kids older in age. Again, we simply put our trust in God. Entering into the third year it was impossible not to feel discouraged and doubtful that this dream would ever be realized. Political issues and international health scares had slowed the process and our faith was being tested.

Months later, in the spring of 2009, we began contemplating the option of a domestic adoption. We were told by our agency that things were not moving any faster in China. It seemed to us that if we were ever to expand our family, there might be a different route. Through a dear friend, we were connected with a young girl that was pregnant and interested in adoption. We met, contacted an attorney, and started a new ball rolling. (This section would require another blog post, because the process was filled with drama and uncertainty). One snowy night in March, after a particularly unpleasant visit with the young mama, I fell to my knees broken. I prayed and screamed out loud to God like a child. The flood gates opened up and I cried relentlessly. I begged God for a sign and told Him I would trust whatever He asked...even if that meant never having another child. I whole heartedly surrendered everything to Him. I was exhausted and empty.

As I made my way through the next day, I felt newly empowered by my divine conversation the previous night. I was calm and knew in my heart that somehow, everything was going to be alright. At 3:00 that afternoon my phone rang...it was our social worker from the agency representing our China adoption. (Now, hang on to your socks)...they were calling with our match!! She specifically says to me “this referral came out of nowhere”. Gulp, pause, shock! She informed me that this little girl had congenital heart disease, was three years old, and absolutely beautiful. They’d send over her pictures and records and we had 24 hours to make a decision. The moment my eyes saw hers in that email, the decision had already been made. LiuSi Dong (her given Chinese name) had been abandoned outside a hospital on a park bench when she was six months old. To this day I pray for that mama that had to let her go...I know she loved her with all her heart.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        
First time we ever saw baby Liu. 

It would be another 3 months of legalities before we could fly to China, but on June 29, 2009, we met our baby girl for the first time. In that moment, all the pain, the waiting and the trepidations were wiped away. She accepted us without fear...took our hands in hers and trusted that we would love her forever.

Isabelle Liu Newton is ours through and through. We learned so much during that remarkable process, but nothing more true than this...be patient and trust in God. He knew all along she would join our family, but there were things for us to ascertain along the way. God indeed does perform miracles...a little tangible proof -- she was born in China the very week we downloaded the original forms, February 23, 2006. He put her here on earth the moment we chose to adopt, groomed us for her arrival, and now entrusts us with her future...His gifts are truly wondrous.

Isabelle today enjoying a Disney cruise! 

What a beautiful story! God truly is in control, and it's so beautiful to see the way in which He brought Isabelle into Pam and Chuck's lives. They are wonderful parents, and Isabelle is just a doll. Keep a look out for Pam's blog, which is in the works. She has so much wisdom to share! 


Like this Moment? Head on over to Moments Tab to see other inspiring stories. If you'd like to be featured in this section, let me know on the contact form.

Currently,

18 comments:

  1. Love this post thank you for sharing your experience!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Definitely such a great post from an amazing lady :) Thanks for reading!

      Delete
  2. Wow what a beautiful story, I got teary eyed reading it. I am so glad God has put them together. Isabella is beautiful. I wish the adoption process was easier than it is especially here in USA. So many kids could have homes if they made it a little easier. I wish to one day adopt at least one.

    Blessings to the family and you sharing their beautiful story.

    Maya
    www.healthymominabusyworld.com

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I teared up too, Maya! Isabelle is definitely a beauty. I was shocked by how hard the adoption process is. So awesome that you hope to adopt some day- I'm sure Pam can give you some important advice :)

      Delete
  3. What a beautiful story! They got just the baby that was meant for them.

    LiveLifeWell,
    Allison

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Isabelle was definitely meant for them from the start :) Thanks for stopping by!

      Delete
  4. Thank you so much for sharing this! Beautiful story.

    ReplyDelete
  5. This is beautiful! I love adoption stories and reading how God's timing is perfect through all hurt and the waiting.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Me too, Abby! Pam did such a great job sharing!

      Delete
  6. What a beautiful story and testimony of God's plan. My only grandchild is adopted. The process, whether domestic or international, is not for the faint-of-heart. (Visiting from #RaRaLinkup today and thanks for your comment to my blog.) Blessings...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That is amazing- what a sweet blessing for you! I totally agree- adoption is a long and daunting process, and it takes a lot of strength to make it through. Thanks for stopping by!

      Delete
  7. WOW. This is amazing. I love hearing other people's "God moments" like this when it's just clear that He's there, He heard us, and everything is OK. What a beautiful girl!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It is SO amazing! I love hearing these moments too- it's the heart of the whole "moment" feature :)

      Delete
  8. Kelsie,

    Thanks for featuring Pam's story! Absolutely loved it. How stinking cool how our God works. Isabelle is so beautiful and I just told my husband, (we have considered adoption from China) see look at her! We nee a little girl as well. :) Thanks Pam for sharing. Blessings to you and your sweet family.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You are spot on. God is the coolest (and most amazing!). I think you definitely need a little girl :) Pam is the sweetest!

      Delete
  9. Just beautiful! Thank you so much for sharing your wonderful story and your daughter with us. God is good!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It's beautiful for sure. Thankful for Pam's words!

      Delete

Have a question or comment?