Well, we've begun a new chapter in military life titled : Deployment. This chapter intersects with a chapter called "Homestudy". So once again I am reminded of how much I depend on God to sustain me through life and how much he answers. My faith is such, that I know God cares about me and my simple ordinary life. No, it's not that I think I am something extra special, it's just that I know that God thinks I am. He thought I was special enough to die for and more importantly live again for-that I may live. And these last few weeks it hasn't been the quiet whisper in the stillness faith, it's been as if He's been writing "YOUR WELCOME" across the sky each evening.
If you're reading this, then chances are you know our family and know that soon after the earthquake in Haiti, Mike was placed on orders. If you're reading this you also know that it's been our desire to adopt for YEARS. Well we had decided to begin the process of a new homestudy this February. With word of "orders" I immediately called the one agency I had information on and explained the situation and would I be able to pursue a study with my husband deployed. She answered that for the most part, yes. But, there were some things that Mike would have to do. For the next two weeks she daily set tentative appointments or told me her available times so if by chance Mike could leave post to make the 40 minute drive to Virginia Beach she would be available. Along with this there were things like "who will coach Shep's basketball team" (me?) and "we need to get the younger two boy's their "deployment bears" (Keilah and Justus got animals from Build-a-bear during the last deployment that had voiceboxes with a message from Mike. I wanted Shepherd and Asher to have one also-but it also required a drive to Va. Beach).
The social worker at Jewish Family Services was VERY gracious. Last Friday we finally set an 11 AM appointment. Mike was assured the night before that they would have the day off before a Sunday departure. Only friday AM, he was told he had an 11 am meeting. Mike lovingly stood for his family and told them he wouldn't be there due to this meeting, which had already been rescheduled. We arrived at the meeting and the worker was wonderful. We learned that we would only need to do an update on our prior study (it feels like a full study but costs 1/3 less). And that once Mike signed the papers, got a fresh copy of fingerprints for another FBI background check, and a medical report that I could handle the rest. Fingerprints were done that afternoon and off to Build a bear where we got the boys their much loved bears. Mike texting in the passenger seat the whole way. We got to spend a wonderful day together. Thank You God! Then at 7:30 we got a call that Mike was to report in 2 hours. WHAT?!!
OK, we're military we can handle this. So, quick pack his bag, grab something to eat. Give a hug and "bye dad" as we dropped him off. During this time Keilah began complaining of an upset stomache. I wrote it off to nerves, forgetting that Justus, Mike and I had all been home this past week with a stomache bug ourselves. We got home and I realized that it wasn't nerves, Keilah had the same bug. My mind began racing. Man, did Murphy sure move in quick. OK, how am I going to coach my first basketball game across town, get Justus to his game-also across town. AND keep Keilah home for the day? How, because God provides, not only for me, but for Mike. Because Mike was very disappointed that he didn't get to do one more game with the boy's since their prior weekends games had been cancelled by snow. At 11:30 I was picking up Mike, there weren't enough seats on the flight. Mike and the boys got their time, and I got to keep K home for the day. THANK YOU GOD. This also bought Mike time to have the medical report completed here. Well, my military friends know how hard it is to work with Military hospitals sometimes, especially if your the soldier it seems. Mike could get an appointment a week out . Me, I could be seen on Wednesday, and the kids didn't need appointments, the docs would complete the paperwork based off their last physical (THANK YOU GOD). later that day Mike learns he's probably leaving Wednesday. So on Tuesday AM he manages (again THANK YOU GOD) to get into a clinic for a physical and lab work AND the doc says I can bring in the paperwork once the lab results are in. The ONLY explanation I have is that God opened these doors to provide for this need.
Then today I have my appointment. I drop off the paperwork and am told it should be done within 72 hours. (By the time I get home I have a message that 2 of the papers are ready). I go to my appointment and the doc is very nice. When I tell her I'm probably due for a Pap. She looks at the calendar and says...I can squeeze that in now. While I'm waiting for the nurse to come set up the room and get me my lovely gown. I see that the doc sitting across the hall is none other than Mike's. So, I take a deep breath, totally break protocall and knock on his door. Explain who I am and he immediately says "Oh yes, I've got those lab results it's all normal. Bring me the papers and I'll complete them now." THANK YOU GOD THANK YOU GOD. All this is done just about before the nurse even comes for me. Now, I go back in 2 weeks for my results (Mike had most of the tests that take time already in his file for military readiness) and our social worker comes Monday for the home visit.
I needed these "Yes's" because after 18 months of NO in KY, I was beginning to question whether this desire of our heart is really in God's plan for us. I am thankful for our 2 foster daughters from KY and learned some valuable lessons. Which was probably part of God's plan to teach me perseverence and appreciation. Completing our homestudy is just part of the hurtle to adoption. But, after going through this process once before-it can seem like a HUGE hurtle and the manner in which it has been coming together for us this time has the fingerprints of God all over it. I'm certain there will be frustration in the process (like having a study and not being able to find our kids) But, I also trust with ALL my heart that God knows who and where my children are and He is caring for them until they come to us. How do I know there are children out there? Because daily it feels as if two people are missing from our family and I can't stop until either they are here or God takes this feeling away.
Oh, and another little way God ordered my steps. Mike left last night. God knew he would leave last night. So he planned for my appointment to be today-so that I would Have to go out, that I would have to find someone to watch the kids, and that friend would invite me to hang out with her for awhile after. He provided too much JOY for me to sit at home and wallow in self-pity and focus on what things had gone wrong (according to me). Instead I can clearly see (for the minute) how those things that it would make sense to call "bad" have actually been blessings. The snowstorm and illnesses provided for several days of quiet family time. Days that would otherwise have been filled with running around and errands we were home enjoying precious time with Dad before a 6 month separation.
So once again I find myself facing a time in life, which by all "reasonable" expectations should be called by any number of negative names and instead find myself excited by the prospect of how God will show himself faithful once again. Knowing that his creativity and love are endless. And, I'll try to remember to share the journey, if for no one else...me. That I might have a light during those times when the darkness threatens to close in.