Thursday, November 19, 2009

Shane and Brandi Plus Two

You know Shane and Brandi...Brane and Shandi...Shanandi...I talk about them all the time. And you also know that I think they have the biggest hearts in the world and would do anything for anybody. I love them to death. Well, about two weeks ago, Brandi tell us in Bible study that she and Shane are adding two new members to their family...TWO LITTLE GIRLS!!! BAAAAAH!! Two precious little girls from Ukraine...they're so beautiful. I can't wait to meet them! So, of course, I freak out and giggle and clap like I do, but it's still kind of hush hush, so I can't say anything. But then, they got approved to start the adoption process and yay!! Now I can tell everybody! Oh my gosh, I can't even stand it.

So...Shane writes this amazing post today (below)...and after I picked myself up out of my pool of snot and tears, I texted Brandi to make sure it was okay if I linked to it on my blog and I couldn't get her, so I chatted Shane and yessssss, I can. So, read this and you guys pray for Brandi and Shane and their daughters...dude, I have got to learn Russian ASAP. Blue knows Russian, but she and I are not on speaking terms right now.....


Into the Shane E.

EDIT: I apologize for this, but it's been brought to our attention that it's unwise, for various reasons, to use names and pictures when you're talking about adoptions. So this entry is, unfortunately going to lose some of it's punch after I get through trimming it down. I'll leave most of it up to share the news, but the specifics will have to go. I'll bold everything I've omitted or changed so, if you want to ask in person, you can:

I think Helen Keller said "Life is either a daring adventure, or nothing at all" or words to that effect. I've liked that quote for a very long time. Especially since it was uttered by a person who should not have, by all logic, been able to speak at all and who should have been so ill equipped to face everyday life that she had every reason not to try. I am starting to empathize a bit with this position in life.

One more tangent and I'll get to the point.

I feel like I've understood love and what it means to love since I was about 16. It was around this time that I started to view love, not as an emotion, but as a decision. A conscious choice to behave a certain way and be willing to do certain things for another person. I'm sure I had some help reaching this conclusion, but I can't remember from where. The most stunning example of love is, of course, Christ. In everything He did, but especially in His death. There is nothing that could convince a human being to go through that brand of agony, torture, and ridicule short of pure and abiding love. It was not an emotion or a warm, fuzzy feeling that held Him to the cross, it was a choice; a conscious decision to endure the punishment, that I deserve, in my stead. A decision to do what had to be done, irrespective of the cost to himself, and even to put His own life at hazard.

For me.

It is in this understanding of love, that I can tell you that I love these little girls.
(omitted pictures)

I love them having never met them and I love them because I've decided to.

This is S____, and her younger sister, M____. A couple of weeks ago, Brandi called me from Eastern Europe and informed me that they both were, in fact, registered and adoptable (we weren't sure of either). Now, I should mention that Brandi has known these two for several years and, on her first trip over to this particular region, bonded inseparably with them. It is only because of this that I waived my "no girls allowed" policy and told her to talk to them and tell them we wanted to adopt them and bring them here. She did, they accepted, and here we go.

S____ is a certain age and M____ is also a certain age, but a deifferent age than S____ so we'll be jumping in with both feet; straight into having a teenaged girl, plus one, neither of whom speak very much English. Basically, what we're doing is bringing in everyone who's having babies right now a couple of babysitters. So you know who to call.

So anyway, that's what we're doing. There's a lot of personal preference involved that I won't really go into, we've never really explored to option of "having" a baby, this is something we'd rather do. At least right now. I think there are enough babies. So don't go assuming we can't have a baby, a lot of people tend to do that when a couple our age adopts, this is not the case with us. Also, there's a lot of personal preference that has led us to choose to adopt older kids.

We're, right now, in the beginning stages of paperwork and are waiting on copies of documents like birth certificates and marriage certificates to come in from Birmingham, Montgomery, and California. It's a long, drawn out process but we have at least started the ball rolling. I hope we can go over to Eastern Europe again in the Spring so I can meet them, but that's up in the air. We'll keep everyone posted on the goings on. Please, if you're the type that prays, pray for us and pray for S____ and M____. Pray for their safety, for our sanity. Pray for our finances, our time, our patience, all those things that a process like this one tends to try. If all goes smoothly, the whole process should take 10-12 months. If things derail or go wrong, it could be longer.

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