Thursday, March 01, 2007

Sometimes saying "no" is hard...but good.

What a crazy week this has been. I think I will sleep long and hard this weekend (Eric always gets up early with the kids while I sleep in on Saturdays). I don't have anything to share on the Bright front, so you'll just have to read about a few decisions I (and Eric) have made in the last 24 hours instead. ;-)

I've hinted several times in the last several months that I might start working in adoption again. I can finally share about that today. I was approached by the director of the now de-funct agency that I used to work for back in 2001-2003 in late Autumn. The last few years she has continued her humanitarian work in Vietnam and they have an opportunity to have an adoption program there. Thing is, she doesn't have the time required to run the program. She wanted me to be involved. She has introduced the program to another adoption agency in hopes that they would take it on, but only if I would be the coordinator (it's her baby and she wants someone she knows and trusts to be directing it). This agency is very interested and would be fine with me coming on. It looks like this is all going to happen.

The problem is that I have felt conflicted about my involvement in the project from the very beginning. For one thing, I think it's VERY hard to run a clean program in Vietnam (and I only want to be involved in clean programs). For another thing, it's a very time-consuming job--a job you've got to have passion for. At the same time, there is a part of me that dearly misses the daily involvement I once had with adoptive families...helping them with paperwork and sending them update photos...referral calls and travel news. So I've gone forward telling those involved that I will be on board if everything works out.

At the same time all of this has been going on, my heart continues to grow more and more in love with Ghana. I research various orphanages and spend nights laying awake thinking about what donations I want to pack for our next trip. I think about all of the children there that don't have even a hope at this point of ever being adopted. The situation in Vietnam is bad, but *most* of the provinces and orphanages that allow adoptions are being served. It all boils down to me not having the passion for Vietnam that I think I would need in order to do justice to families. So last night after months of praying and thinking about this I decided that I was going to call those involved and let them know that I just can't sign on. I'm saying no. Say a prayer for me because that phone call will be hard. I hate disappointing people.

Yesterday I got this call from my mother-in-law asking if we'd be interested in adopting a baby this fall. A domestic situation had come to her attention and would we be interested? My gut response was to say YES! After all, isn't that the "gold standard" of adoption dreams--to have an adoption situation fall in your lap without you even looking?! We talked to Eric's cousin last night (who is friends with this potential birth mother) and it really does sound like a good situation. It also sounds like we would have a very good chance of being chosen to parent this mom's child. But you know what? As I prayed about it last night (ahhh...the joys of insomnia!) I realized that Eric and I were thinking about US, not our children. We've always said that we have to put the needs of our current children in front of any adoption situation that came in front of us. There is no way that it is "best" for Bright to have a newborn enter the scene less than 6 months after he joined our family! There's no way. So this morning I called and let them know that Eric and I weren't supposed to be this baby's parents. We said no.

So that's two situations just in the last 24 hours where it's felt really hard to say no because they both seem like situations we would like to say yes to. At the same time, I have such peace. Such peace. I feel like the Vietnam thing is a huge monkey off my back now, and I have renewed joy in the thought of Bright being my baby and having HIS time in our family before another child enters the mix.

I was just about to write, "I don't know if I'll ever be involved in adoptions again." But that's not true. I know I always will be involved in adoptions! LOL! It's in my blood. And I think God has put the passion for Ghana in my heart for a purpose. I don't know if that's just for humanitarian reasons, or because we have another child there, or maybe if I'll get to be involved in a more "formal" way in Ghana adoptions. I just know that Ghana is supposed to be my focus right now.

Have I said lately how much I can't WAIT to get back there?!


ManyBlessings 3:30 PM  

YOU need to start a program in Ghana. Seriously.

Anita and Family 3:48 PM  

You're very sweet Dawn. (blush) I'm open to whatever God throws my way, but if I "worked" in Ghana adoptions I'd have to unsubscribe from my own new Ghana list! LOL!


Christina/Mrs. Broccoli Guy 10:26 PM  

Like the saying goes, There's "good" things and then there's "God" things... and you chose the latter. I think you (and Eric) have made wise decisions for your family.
I agree with you on Vietnam... it takes a strong experienced agency to withstand the pressures to work unethically there. Many have good intentions, but few are truly up to standard, IMHO.