Saturday, September 11, 2010

gotcha day

here at the ol' homestead it's gotcha day. 2 years ago gabe became a part of our forever family.
since i don't think i've shared the story, i thought this would be a good time to do it. i was going to write a book about our experiences with this, but since i now have four children, that'll probably never happen. this is long, but i think it's worth it. here's the story of how we began:

gabe came into care just after he had turned one. i worked with him on my caseload when i was an early intervention specialist. i loved his squishy forehead and lovely chubby cheeks. he was the cutest little guy i'd ever seen. in late december of '07 the foster mom let me know he would be available for adoption. without thinking, i let her know that maybe my husband and i would be interested in adopting him into our family. this probably was a bit premature, since my husband had never even heard of this child. we had always talked about fostering and adopting, but we had also talked about WAITING to do it. foster mom liked this idea and got pretty excited, which made me realize that once again that i had spoken without thinking OR checking with my husband. nevertheless, i spent the next 90 minutes of our appointment plotting and planning how i would present this idea to the hubs.

i have been told that i tend to jump into things too quickly. i really enjoy planning outlandish things but then freak out and don't actually accomplish any of them. it's a cycle and i'm quite fond of it. but turns out there's a problem with this because it doesn't require any trust in God.

so as i met with my husband to discuss the possibility of adopting a child 3 years earlier than we had ever expected to start a family, i pretty much vomited out as much information as i could. yeah, i'm definitely not the play-it-cool and wait-till-he's-in-a-great-mood type. once i let him know my plan, he quickly said no. there were lots and lots of reasons why adopting a child at this time would not work out for us, and he listed all of them.

but i pressed on. and not tactfully or graciously, i might add.
by the end of the dinner, the hubs had agreed to attend a meeting with me in january about fostering. after that, we would see.

after that meeting, the hubs was as burdened as i was about fostering, and he said he felt comfortable going forward to the next step of the process. so we agreed to pick an agency. and the hubs let me know that if obstacles came up, that would be God's way of letting us know He was closing a door.

no obstacles really came up. although gabe's casemanager wanted him and was proceeding with trying to adopt him as well, we pursued getting licensed as a foster family to foster-adopt gabe. the thought occassionally crossed my mind that if we got licensed and didn't get gabe, this would all be for nothing, but i trusted that God had His hand in this and that He would show us what to do.

we got licensed faster than any other couple through that agency. 6 weeks. all the pieces fell into place. it was between us and the casemanager. the agency would choose.

i got a call on a wednesday that the agency had not received our homestudy. after a day of panic and hurried phone calls, it got sorted out. by thursday afternoon i had a voicemail from the adoption worker.
--in a serious and hushed tone, "marge, when you get this, please call us back."

uh oh

when i called they said, in a serious and very sad voice, "ok marge, they've made a decision. and...well...i guess i'll just read it to you. ahem. 'we, the state, have determined that marge and her hubs (changed for the sake of privacy) are the best fit for this child."

she was so mean to trick me into thinking we were not being chosen. ;)
well to make a long story short, they had me on speaker phone and i screamed so loud with excitement that several other office members came in to see what the commotion was all about.

and that was it. we found out that thursday, and the following wednesday we had gabriel in our home playing with a train set. and we've never been the same since.

after a mandatory 6 month waiting period with gabe in our home, he was adopted into our family forever. and that, my friends, is why we celebrate "gotcha day."
ps: with this story usually comes a lot of questions. please don't ever hesitate to ask us about fostering or adoption. and please don't hesitate to send friends who are considering it our way. we love to encourage others on this journey.


  1. What a wonderful account of God's timing and grace!!! I don't think I've ever heard the entire story.

    Seriously, this boy couldn't be a more perfect fit for you guys!!!! Your family is just too precious!!! I can't wait for your next Gotcha Day!

  2. Love it! He just could not have found a better forever Mommy than you!


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