Part of my family’s journey as makers includes how we are building our family! You can read my first post about our adoption here. Each time we share our plans we generally receive the same questions, so I thought I would answer a few of them here!
Our daughter is very excited to become a big sister, she already loves telling her friends about our adoption!
This question is kind of funny to me, because when you’re pregnant, no one asks “WHY” you’re having a baby, but it does make sense so I really can’t fault anyone. My answer typically varies on how well I know the person, but it can also vary because I have a hard time articulating the answer!
Adoption is a process I have been drawn to since I was a child. It was always part of how I envisioned my family coming together. The only way I can explain it to myself is that God placed this calling in the deepest part of my soul and it’s never letting go.
I also grew up familiar with adoption. My father and his two siblings are adopted, my mother was adopted by her stepfather, and she has three younger brothers who were adopted as well. My grandparents and great grandparents also fostered many children over the years. I came around long after all their adoptions were completed of course, but seeing the positive relationships that resulted certainly informed my perspective. My husband did not grow up quite as familiar with adoption, but he always knew that this is something I wanted for our life. I believe that God called him to adopt through my desire, and I am grateful to have a partner who is willing to do it with me!
Choosing an agency was the first major step of our journey. All God’s Children answered our MANY questions and helped us narrow it down to our current program.
Where are you adopting from?
There are many choices when it comes to adoption, which is fantastic! We researched different options; domestic, international, open, closed, etc. Ultimately we chose a local, Christian agency who has a great reputation not only for adoption, but for supporting orphan care worldwide. If you are interested in learning more about our agency, you can visit to All God’s Children online.
All God’s children facilitates both domestic and international adoption. We decided against domestic adoption primarily because the current trend is for open adoptions, and that didn’t feel like the right fit for our family. It can vary, but typically an open adoption includes ongoing contact with a child’s biological parents. This means we went for international adoption! After discussing the aspects of many of the different international programs, we felt led to Bulgaria.
I’ll be honest here, and tell you that we would not have chosen Bulgaria ourselves. When we imagined adopting, we would have chosen Taiwan (a country we have both spent time in and love), or India (another country we have loose connections with), but these countries have policies that prevented us from going in that direction. Other parameters that guided our choice were the types of special needs in different countries, whether they are part of the Hague Convention (the governing body that prevents human trafficking and protects the adoption process), and their level of communication. Bulgaria is known for being a very stable program, they communicate well, take excellent care of families when they are in country, and the children have more mild special needs. The largest downside to Bulgaria’s program is that a wait to be matched with a child can take as long as 3-4 years. We felt that God led us to this program through all of the parameters I mentioned above, so we are trusting Him that the wait is meant to be and that our child is in Bulgaria!
Our wait has felt so long already, but we try to focus on having fun with our daughter and making special memories before our family grows!
What is taking so long?
Most people we know are vaguely familiar with international adoption from China. The process in China seems to typically take 18 months to 2 years to complete, much shorter than our journey! The length of time that adoption takes for a family has to do with a countries procedures, the number of children available, and how open families are to children with special needs.
There are several things at play in Bulgaria that lengthen the process. Currently, Bulgaria is hard at work transitioning orphan care from institutionalized care to foster families. This is a huge benefit to a child’s development! There is also a 3 step process in country that takes about 18 months for each child before they are available for international adoption.
Obviously, we are not the only family looking to adopt from Bulgaria, which means that there are also many families ahead of us in line. The process does not strictly go in the order, but if a family ahead of us is a good match for a child, then they will be chosen before us. All of this is a HUGE exercise in patience and trust in God’s timing!
To be Continued…
There are many more questions I could answer, but this feels like a lot for now. Let me know if you have any questions, and I will save them for a future post. Thank you for sharing in our journey, and thank you to our friend, Ali Murray for taking all the beautiful photos of our family!