Last year on Mother's Day, we didn't even know that Maia existed. We knew that we wanted to adopt. We had considered some very special kiddos on Reeces' Rainbow and another waiting child site. We had talked with a doctor who specializes in international adoption about these children. There were a couple that we wanted to commit to, but we found out that the little boy had already been adopted and the little girl had a family coming for her. There were a couple of other kiddos that we did not feel would be a good fit for our family and they have come home to their forever families as well. On Mother's Day last year, we were impatient and anticipating - wondering if maybe God had different plans than parenthood for us. But He knew in just a few short weeks, I would receive an email that would change our life forever. Yes, the email telling us about a little girl named Anastasia who was waiting for a family.
About a month ago, it hit me that this year, I would be a mother on Mother's Day. Amazing, but still didn't have a whole lot of meaning to me. Until this morning. At church, our pastor asked all the mothers to stand up so that they could have a round of applause in their honor. As I stood up, my eyes filled with tears - truly... before Maia joined our family, I never felt like somone who HAD to have a child. My life was very full and GOOD! Mark and I were happy. And yet now that our daughter is home with us, life has taken on a deeper meaning. My life is fuller on many levels (many good, some challenging). Am I happier? Not necessarily. Am I more unhappy? Absolutely NOT! But things have changed and I am so thankful that God has found me worthy to parent this beautiful little girl. And if it is His will, I will also be blessed to parent a precious little boy. Yes... God is GOOD! And Mother's Day has extra special meaning this year.
We shared a little of our journey to Matthew this morning at church. This was right after the above mentioned honoring of mothers so I was already a little emotional. Sandy, our generous friend from church who is coordinating the fundraiser, gave a brief intro. She started by saying that there was a little boy in Ukraine who didn't have anyone to tuck him into bed at night, didn't know what it was like to be part of a family, didn't have a daddy to wrestle on the floor with... by that time, I was a blubbering mess. Mark, Maia, and I stood in front of the church to share. I could barely get the words out. When it came time for Mark to share his part, even my strong, "unemotional (his word, not mine)" husband couldn't speak - he was too choked up. But, we were very thankful for the opportunity to tell a bit of this story to our church family.
Afterwards, we headed to Wisconsin for the annual Mother's Day get-together with Mark's mom's side of the family. I remember the first year I went (six years ago). Mark and I were dating at the time. His family was so welcoming to me. It was a very special day. Fast forward to today and they were able to meet Maia for the first time. Another very special day! She had a great time and enjoyed playing with her cousin John who is also three.
Tonight, we got good news that our request for information letter was indeed submitted last week. So if all goes well, our dossier should be submitted this week! Please pray for this to happen.
And Happy Mother's Day to all women - not just those who are "mothers." Whether we have children or not, we all have the opportunity to love and nurture others. And a special mother's day thank you to a precious mother who gave birth to my beautiful daughter Maia Anastasia! You have given me a priceless gift!