How in the world are we just a few days away from Brighten's first birthday? In some ways it seems like yesterday that we were packing our car and heading to Texas to meet our daughter. In other ways it feels like Brighten has always been a part of our lives. Jason and I keep joking that we are having a birthday party for Brighten to really celebrate ourselves and the fact that we kept another human alive for a full year :) I joke, but in all seriousness this has been the most sanctifying year of my life.
I'm not good at keeping secrets. Well, let me rephrase that; I'm not good at keeping my own secrets. I've always been a verbal processor, so I think that telling my own secrets is some sort of coping mechanism. But with adoption, sometimes telling too much too soon can hurt the people who love you, and can break your own heart as well.
Originally written on December 31, 2016. Held for contemplation and revisited on January 7, 2017.
These days my Goodreads list looks more like celebrity memoirs and less like a high school summer reading list, however, I'm thankful for having read some Charles Dickens in my day. Sometimes, authors give us words that make so much sense when we don't really know how to describe something in our own words. As much as I love Lauren Graham and her latest book is a such a delight, she just doesn't quite paint the picture of 2016. Charles Dickens on the other hand...
We finally made it. The last installment of Brighten's Storie. Even though it's been fun to relive some of this experience through these blog posts, I'm really excited to move forward to updating you on Brighten's now and all that we're seeing her do! Without further adieu, here is our story of our time in Texas with Baby B!
So, I've told you about how we found out about Brighten, all of the people who helped us prepare, a little bit about her history and her Brother, and now we make the journey to Texas. The story just keeps getting better and better.
What do music row, chicken and dumplings, and Needtobreathe have in common? If you're me, these things are what dreams are made of, but beside that, they are all stops along the way to meeting our baby girl, Brighten Storie.
Well, this time next week we will have a baby girl. That's crazy! It's hard to believe that we are living in our last weekend without a child in our home.
Our Brighten Storie...
This is a blog post I've dreamed about writing for the better part of three years. It's the dream half fulfilled, yet my heart feels so entirely full. It hasn't quite sunk in yet, but it is getting more real with every passing moment.
When I was a teenager, I heard a story about children in a developing country who heard about Jesus for the first time. Their biggest takeaway from the gospel is that Jesus is coming back. They were so excited about Jesus's return that they began waiting at the doors and windows of their homes so they didn't miss the opportunity to witness Jesus returning for His Church. I remember longing to wait like that, and feeling a sense of guilt that I didn't.
One of the biggest differences with our domestic adoption and international adoption is the preparation period. With our #journeytojudah in Ethiopia, we know that we'll have anywhere from 6 months to 16 months to prepare for his arrival, even after we're matched. With our #searchingforsunshine domestic process, we could get a call that a birth mother is in her second trimester, or that a baby has already been born, or anything in between. It's been exciting and crazy to think that our lives could completely change (for the better, of course) from one day to the next, or even one hour to the next. That is a new concept for us!
As I crossed over the Alabama state line into Florida, fields of green space on either side, I couldn't help but burst into tears.