“It takes a village to raise a child.” Hillary Clinton became infamous among conservatives for this refrain, yet for many of us it’s a truth we embrace everyday. As a young mom with a baby and toddler in the house, I depended constantly on the kindness of others. In line at the grocery store, someone would distract the baby while I paid. At the library, the woman behind the desk would bear with our infintesimally slow pace as Naomi clumsily and happily handed the books over the counter. And it was the mama groups, nursery workers and David’s second set of hands that really saved me day after day.
Even more than I love having a village around me to help me raise my children, I love BEING the village for others. When I was that young mama in Annapolis, it was my greatest joy to deliver a meal to a new mother in our church or neighborhood. Even better was unexpectledly dropping off a bag of Trader Joes groceries (perhaps pasta with a yummy gourmet sauce, bag of salad, chocolate and a bouquet of beautiful flowers) at the harried 4 o’clock hour. Standing on the doorstep to pass over the bag of goodies, I would hug my mom friend in delight that she did not need to cook tonight, anticipating her joy as she set out her new flowers.
As much as I love to offer help to others, I often struggle to ask for help myself. I think this is because I usually see myself more fortunate, more favored than so many others. I am always sure there are others more in need than myself. That was why when we went to the mission field we only raised support because we were required to. Yet it was that support that kept us afloat so many demanding, difficult end-of-the-road days. The mission agency was right, we NEEDED that village around us as we went to serve on the front lines.
Now it is God prompting us to ask for help from our village and a new friends rising up around us as we bring our child home from China. This is our third time to have a child, but with an adoption, things are different. The cost, for one. Bringing home our precious daughter will cost us $35,000. Dirt cheap to save the life of a child and make an entire families dreams come true, but still, $35,000! Also, the difficulty. From the year long saga of paperwork, interviews and signatures to the international three week trip away from our two current children, adoption is a more difficult process than most births. We will have years of post-placement follow ups with social workers, an entire new language to help our daughter learn, and the attachment process to work through. No doubt we will need a VILLAGE (and a patient and empathic one at that!) around us this time around!
For now we are asking for help with funds. As miraculous as adoption is, the miracle of new life comes slowly. Our relationship with our child so far looks like three photos, a brief video and piles and piles of money and paper. We are paying at least $20,000 out of pocket for this adoption. Our hearts desire is to raise the other necessary $16,000 in funds. We ask you to give, not because you HAVE to, but if God has placed our adoption on your heart, if you know that you are called to walk this journey with us. We trust fully that whether through our funds or others funds He will provide fully for all our needs. He is Always Enough. In Africa, and in Adoption.
Donations can be made here and will be sent directly to our adoption agency.