9 Nov

It was wet-marshmallow sticky, and hot, hot, hot in March 2007, in Hefei, Anhui Province, People’s Republic of China.

We’d done it.

We made it.

With four international adoptions in five years, life had been a little rough for our family, but we survived, and we were on the other side of the world standing in a Civil Affair’s office that smelled of old books, bureaucracy, and sour laundry.

“Gotcha” Day was here.

Xiao Dian and Xiao Zhong were about to become Aeren Renae and Trenton Allen. Their short lives spent drinking recycled sewage water and living on the side of a mountain, five hours from the nearest village, in an almost-forgotten orphanage were about to be traded for a family. A home. A community of faith. Friends. Food. Water. Texas and Dr Pepper.

Aeren, who had been left to waste away in a hospital bed with no mental stimulation to speak of after facing death from unsanitary living conditions would get the medical treatment she needed. The cerebral palsy that destroyed any hope for a normal life five minutes before she crossed into the office would instantly morph into a starting point, not a finish line.

Trent, born without a foot and so heart-breakingly ashamed of his “deformity”, would finally be able to wear two shoes. He would be able to run. To play. To be a boy.

My parents fought hard for them. My entire family sacrificed – but not out of a sense of “doing our Christian duty”. We fought because they were US. They were Rutherford’s. They were our brother and sister, daughter and son – we were called to them. But they weren’t the only ones waiting that day.

A young boy who was about 5-years-old had arrived before any of the rest of us. He was sitting at a table, next to a representative from his orphanage, clutching a small photo-album until his knuckles turned white. It was a simple photo album, filled with pictures of his soon-to-be Forever Family. As soon as we entered the room he stared at our faces. He was disappointed we didn’t match any of the faces he had most likely spent countless hours burning into his mind, waiting for the day when they’d arrive and say,

“Hello, son – welcome home”.

But it didn’t damper his excitement for long. Soon he was running to each of us, grabbing our hand and pointing to the one picture that mattered more to him than any of the others.

“Mama!” he shrieked, over and over, “My mama is coming!”

It was one of the only English phrases he knew – but it was all he needed to tell us.

Children like these. . .

Are waiting for us to stop groveling in our despairs, to stop worrying about whether we can afford the latest car, the best higher education, the hottest clothes, to leave our failures and our mistakes behind us and push forward.

To bring them a future, and a hope.

What are you waiting for?

Please contact me if you are interested in these children. Their cases are classified as urgent.

9 Responses to “Waiting.”

  1. Rae at 2:37 pm #

    Great post! I think that unfortunately many Christians are waiting for a “need” before they will adopt. They either “need” to “need” to have children (fertility issues) or they “need” to “need” to save the world. Otherwise they don’t even think about adoption.

    • I completely agree, Rae. It’s seen as some kind of Tier 2 solution to building a family. Being pro-life means so much more than just speaking out against abortion and capital punishment.

  2. Lianna at 5:15 pm #

    AMEN!!! When I am married, this is one of my dreams…
    Your family is so blessed, and your siblings are so blessed that to be a part of your family!

  3. Kimberlie at 8:30 am #

    I remember that time. I remember the desperate call for donations to dig a well, remove the lead paint on the walls, and buy heating/cooling units for a building that suffered from bone-chilling cold in the winter and staggering heat in the summer. $5000 was needed. In under 24 hours, that entire amount was raised and then some. TWENTY.FOUR.HOURS. That’s what we can do when we come together and make a little sacrifice for others.

    I don’t care what people say, poor in America is not like being poor in a third-world country. People need to really “get” that.

    Love your heart! As a mama to three little Dumplings with one waiting, thank you for raising awareness about the plight of the orphan and sharing your “orphan no more” story. Aeren and Trent are amazing children. Thank you Jesus for bringing them into this world to be a light for you!

  4. spilisz08 at 10:29 am #

    Thank you so much for posting this. I have felt a pull to adoption since I was a teen, so I pray that God will bring us to a place where we can do this. These children are beautiful.

  5. priest's wife at 1:17 pm #

    Oh you secret Vatican spy…..showing PICTURES is the oldest trick in the book!!!!! 🙂

    True story- my oldest daughter’s Godparents were looking to adopt one more kid from Russia (I think at this point they had 3 bio and 5 adopted kids)- the agency sent them a video with 3 kids on it.

    End of story- they adopted all three

    • WOW! That’s so amazing! I love stories like that. Prayers for your friends and their children!

  6. Elizabeh at 8:38 pm #

    This is so touching! I have always wanted to adopt kids from Africa, especially. It’s so great to read this from the perspective of the adoptees’ sibling!


  1. Finding My Passion in Adoption | My Thoughts Along The Way -

    […] it’s someone else’s problem? Read my friend Kassie’s post from yesterday over at Secret Vatican Spy.  Don’t know anyone who’s adopting? Give to an organization like Love Without […]

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: