This adoption has been a whirlwind. We first saw her face back in January and at this point, we are merely waiting for word from our agency that we can travel to Ukraine. The time when Tom Petty’s words are ringing true…”The waiting is the hardest part”.

The differences between this adoption and our first are many. Different countries, different ages, different genders, different races, different waiting times! I’m sure there are people who may think we’re a bit foolish to adopt an older child. Teenagers are fraught with issues as it is, and a teenage orphan??? I mean, that’s total craziness. Let me say that we are well aware of the possible issues. We do not expect this to be a Disney movie. We expect it to be difficult. But why in the world does that mean it’s not worth it? So because it might be hard or inconvenient for us, we should allow her to grow up without parents? Sorry, but that’s insanely selfish and I’m not about using that as an excuse. So bring on the struggle. God led us here and He has not failed us yet.

One of the things that keeps us going is the fact that our in-country lawyer/coordinator has gotten special permission to communicate with our V. All communication goes through a social worker, but we couldn’t care less. We get to talk to her and get to know her a bit before we see her face to face! It was an unexpected blessing to say the least. Each letter we receive is like water in the desert. We have learned that she is an artist, and even had her work in a local student show! She loves her friends, music, and playing soccer. She is going to fit into our family just fine.

But I think about the other older children. Who will open their arms and homes to welcome them and fight for them? Do they know they have value? Who will stand up for them?

My heart is breaking for those who do not find families. Craig and I are “parenting from afar” our sweet J from L@tvi@, and my heart is literally in pieces for her. She is a strong girl, but how many of us would be successful if we left the “safety” of a children’s home, thrown out into the “real world” and all of the responsibilities and stress that it brings? It is KILLING me to not be there to walk alongside her, to care for her when she’s sick, to encourage her, take her to lunch, love on her with countless hugs and kisses.

We can’t save them all. So we continue to advocate, to encourage, to educate, and we will hopefully be a difference to our sweet V who is joining us soon.