Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Whats in a name?

I love a good name story, and I always knew I wanted my kids to be given names that not only sound cool, but have a deeper meaning. And that it would be something that could point others to Christ. When we got our little girls pic, Ryan was totally the one who was head over heels immediately. We had thought through several names, with meanings about Grace, Joy, and Holy. I felt like when we saw her, we would know what to call her. After we sent in the email that we were ready to be her family, I got excited to name her, but none of the names screamed "THATS IT" so we thought through several more options. We finally settled on Abigail Grace Rainbolt. We will call her Abby Grace. I love the thought of calling her both names, but seriously the sweetest thing about it is when her brothers talk about her. They love her so much! They saw a cute baby at the park yesterday and Josiah told me, "That is a cute girl, and maybe her name is Abby Grace too. Abby Grace means she is really cute." HAHA! I love three year olds. Abigail actually means, "My Father's Joy" and for many years, Ryan and I have dreamed about raising a girl some day and when he talks about her he gets this far off look of peace and joy in his eyes and I know she already has him wrapped around her tiny finger. That baby girl is going to be so loved by him and all of us and she will bring joy to those she meets. Already they remarked that she smiles alot and seems to be happy in all her pictures. Not only is the apple of her Daddy's eye, but she is so deeply lover by her Father in heaven who has not for a moment left her alone. I find that I miss her, and imagine what she is doing. I unintentionally have been waking up early, and its about the time that she would be waking up in her place in China. I pray that she finds love today as she starts a new day, and that somehow she will be at little prepared for the change that is coming. I see another 1-2 year old girl and I wonder if she is that same size or see clothes and picture them on her. I hear a song about how God heals our hearts and I pray for her. I cleaned out a spot in the boys closet for her clothes.

We found out that the orphanage will not be able to do her surgery, but they said they will expedite her file so instead of June, we may go to china in April! Exciting and scary! We really are going into uncharted waters. We don't know what kind of heart surgery will be needed exactly... but with the fact that she seems to be doing better than many kids with open holes in their heart, we are very hopeful. She is still small, and even though this kind would usually have been fixed at 6 months, and she is 17 months, its not uncommon to see the kids jump drastically in size and catch up in development quickly after this kind of surgery. I have been researching and learning all I can, but its so hard to find answers to our questions since most of them cannot be answered by a doctor until they actually see the girl themselves. So we wait. Try to do it patiently. Seriously knowing that it will be sooner than expected is amazing. But we know that our baby girl is held safely in the hands of the one who created her. He has taken care of her since before her heart had its first beat. She is meant to be a Rainbolt, but more than that, she is meant to be known as a child of the King.

Abby Grace means she is really cute!


Friday, February 5, 2016

Bring on the PINK!

We are so excited to introduce our little baby girl, Abigail Grace. She is 17 months, and in China waiting for us!
The story of how we found each other is really a God story, and man, he is not finished with her, or with us! We were waiting for the email that has a picture and a file of a little kid... and then we have a certain amount of days to review, have a Dr look at the medical file, and then accept or ask for the next file. We were expecting it to come any day now... and then an email came with a bunch of special focus list of kids with more pressing needs. It had pictures and listed the reasons why the child needs a family more urgently. Some of them were bigger needs and some just require a surgery, but they all need a family. Ryan looked through the pictures like he did every time the email came, and this time he said, "Hey look at that girls smile! Do you think she could be our girl?" Strangely, I was the more "practical" one in this circumstance, and I look at her... pushed down the feelings of "OH WOW! Isn't she adorable?" and try to rationalize how the email would come just like I expected. We would KNOW immediately that this was our girl, just like we knew J and D were our kids the minute we saw them. I asked him why she would be on the list. And if its something that would affect her long term, and if it would require extra care that we could not provide while living overseas. You have to email back to request more info about each child, and I did not tell Ryan I wanted to get more info. That was on a Wednesday. Then Sunday we headed to church like usual, and I put the boys in the toddler class, and one of my good friends little two year old girl wanted me to hold her. As I hug this little cutie, I felt something. It felt like God wanted me to listen to Him and that He was saying, "don't be afraid. look at her file." I did not think I was afraid. I thought I was being practical. I thought our girl would come in a referral email picture and we would have that one MOMENT when you know someone has picked out the child who will soon be your own. This time it was different. It was a slow process of God letting me know that He was the one who set our family up, and even when it did not go like I thought it would, it is far more beautiful. Ryan, when I told him I wanted to ask for the file, of course, he had already requested it! When we got the file, I read through it. Most of it is full of medical terms and numbers that I have no clue about. I just now started to understand all the different heart problem terms! Thank you Wikapedia. But as I read what they said about her, I could not help but sob. In her tiny little life, so many hard things, but many people had stepped in to care for her. The reports were way more detailed than I expected, and they even listed what they feed her and how she likes to be held and how attached she is to her care giver. I just could not even believe how much God loved this little girl, and I was falling in love with her a world apart only through a file and a photo. One of the comments said that once she was able to become internationally adoptable, she was able to receive more treatment. We had several Dr.'s look at her file and give us their opinion. She does need heart surgery and it does need to be as soon as possible. She is still young, 17 months, but one Dr said it normally would have been repaired at 6 months. They said that once the VSD is repaired, she should catch up and it will not affect her daily life after recovery. So now we wait and see if the orphanage will be able to arrange surgery now while she is in China, which we requested for her sake, but we are not sure if that will happen. I personally would want to be the one with her during recovery, doing what Momma's do, and I would be able to ask the Dr. a million questions like a good heart Mom should.  Its been a real lesson in trusting God and letting go of CONTROL. When you have a kid at home, you control what they snack on, how cool the room is while they sleep, what they watch on TV... we can't control everything, but we do what we can. I do that with my boys without thinking about it. And then God gives me a precious jewel, whose heart is in need of healing, and she is so many time zones away... and I have no idea what kind of bed she sleeps in, if someone gives her kisses, what she eats, if she ever struggles with her VSD (a hole in the wall of the lower section of the heart) or how soon I can help her get the surgery she needs. When I start to freak out about all this that I can't control, I start thinking about how excited I am to be on this journey, and how thankful I am that this special little one is in my life to teach me a lesson in trusting God and letting Him show His power and ability to take care of things. I am sure it is only one of many lessons in trusting God and giving the control of my kiddos back to Him. A good friend who has great knowledge and kids with heart issues was chatting with me and said the thing that helped me the MOST since saying yes to Abby Grace (thanks Ellen) I told her how I felt over whelmed and wondered if i had what it takes to be a heart mom with all that it could entail... and she said, "He picks our kids, friend. And that means you already have what it takes to be a heart mom."
 More later on how we choose her name!