Wednesday, October 6, 2021

Stories of Yes - Silas

 

Just over a year ago I got a phone call saying that the family of the little boy chose us.
I said, "Are you serious?" 
 
After I told my husband and then the kids, I looked at his paperwork again. He didn't pass hearing or vision tests, he doesn't eat by mouth, he has Down syndrome and he has IA. What is IA? Google. Oh no! He could have a colostomy for the rest of his life! Do they mean he's deaf and blind? Do I have to learn how to insert a feeding tube? I had not read this paperwork very well when I said yes. What does all of this mean? Can we possibly do this?? 
 
Yes. We're doing it. 
 
Four days later, we were allowed to meet this baby for the first time. Once I held him, I never wanted to let him go. He was the baby we had been waiting for. 
 
We called our son "Silas" and his first year was filled with surgeries, ER trips, more doctors appointments than I can count and ongoing physical therapy. It felt like a very long year. And it felt like a very short year. Because this same little boy who had no mama to hold him in the NICU now lifts his arms and yells for me to rock him. He snuggles his little face into my neck. He stares at my face with perfect vision, and he listens to my lullabies with perfect hearing. He climbs into my lap with no colostomy in the way. 
 
Silas was once "a little boy with Down syndrome and VACTERL and no mama." Now, he's MY little boy who wants to be tickled and eat bananas all day. He plays peekaboo with his siblings and screams "Dada!" when Daddy gets home from work. 
 
Silas - and all of us - have worked very hard this last year. But the truth is that God loves children and they progress so much easier when they are in a family who loves them too. 
 
Silas is such a beautiful and happy little soul who is made in the image of God...and he will ALWAYS belong in our family! 💙💛
- Jessica Peters

Friday, April 23, 2021

The Jameo family

 

In April, we served the Jameo family in Uganda as a form of "orphan prevention." Their father passed away, and their widowed mother struggles with providing for the children. The daughter, Bashira, who was under medical care for hydrocephalus at the CURE Hospital in Uganda, unexpectedly passed away last month. She was nine years old. We covered the hospital bill that her mom was unable to pay, along with the funeral expenses for Bashira. We pray that lifting those financial burdens will help Bashira's loving mama, and her siblings, as they mourn the tremendous loss in their lives. We are still working on plans to serve them going forward with education and more permanent housing. We will keep you posted and please pray for this family.

Friday, April 2, 2021

The Ott family

 

Meet our "Say Yes" grant family #8 of 2021 - the Ott family! 

Julie informed Matt on their first date that she would love to have adoption as part of how a future family was grown. Matt had agreed that he had a heart to adopt as well. After marriage, they were blessed with three biological children - Amelia, Eliza, and John. They say, “Though we both knew we wanted to adopt, we didn’t expect the excitement or peace we would have about the process of growing our family through the adoption of a child with special needs until Down Syndrome came into our hearts.” Both Julie and Matt had been touched by children with special needs throughout their lives and this need felt like such a natural fit for their family. The Otts spent time reading books to their children about Down syndrome to prepare them for their new brother, and it's clear - from this photo - that their mission was accomplished! Little Timothy James was born five weeks early, on February 27th, and after two weeks in the hospital, he is now home with his forever family!

Timothy James came home with the help of our Downright Lovable grant, specifically for families adopting children with Down syndrome. Thank you so much for your support of our grant fund so we can continue to bless open hearts like these!

{Photo cred: Heidi April Photography, heidiaprilphotography.org, @loveheidiapril}

Saturday, January 16, 2021

Stories of YES #60 - Two months

  

Two months have passed since we landed back home in North Carolina, and every day her little smile melts my heart with so much joy. Every day I look at her and I see nothing but God's love for us. This little sweetness is such a breath of fresh air. Just take a moment to look into those eyes...

She was worth it.
She was worth every tear.
She was worth every up and down.
She was worth every mountain climbed.
She was worth every nerve wrecked. 
 
Two months home and she has grown a whole inch.
Two months home and she has perfected using so many words in the right way.
Two months home and she loves to go to church and get her church clap on.
Two months home and she has celebrated three family birthdays and three major holidays.
Two months home and she has bravely faced many doctor's appointments and one surgery.
Two months home and this face is what two months in a family looks like!
 
She tells us about many friends who need Mommies and Daddies and Mawmaws and Pawpaws. When she talks about her friends at her "Ashwini Piper Home," this momma's heart begins to beat fast. And my throat tightens. And my eyes get watery. Because no child should have to experience the brokenness of searching for families for her friends. No child should ever have to shoulder that burden. But my child, and many others, sit in the same spot as we do - longing for those who remain to find forever families too.
 
Thank you to every person that has taken the time to pray for our family. Thank you to every person that donated even a dollar. That dollar was not in vain. That dollar was LIFE. That dollar is this smile. That dollar was one less orphan. 
 - Tiffany House
 
 
{The House family was a recipient of our "Say Yes" Downright Lovable adoption grant in 2020.}

Sunday, December 13, 2020

Stories of YES #59 - God's most precious jewels

 

"What if we had said no?
 
We could have. 
We should have. 
On paper it was a bad idea.
Many told us we shouldn’t do it. 
Many said it wasn’t wise.
 
We already had 3 jewels.
We didn’t have the finances.
We didn’t have space in our house.
We were already so tired.
We didn’t plan on having more jewels.
We were already deep in trauma parenting.
 
Parenting was already so hard.
What would people think.
How would we do it.
 
This was what we considered. These were some of our obstacles when we were praying through adopting our Kody.
 
This is what we have considered and prayed through every time we’ve heard God call us to adopt. Usually the list of why not to do it is bigger than our reasons to do it.
 
But God. He still called us.
But God. We still said yes.
But God. He still wants to use us to take care of His precious jewels.
 
Right now there’s about 100,000 kids in the United States in foster care who ARE paper ready and waiting for a family. And so many more also waiting globally.
 
I’m so so thankful we said yes. We didn’t have to. We could have said no.
But God. He writes the best stories. This jewel is amazing and I love being his mom. As is each one of our jewels."
- Maria Hansen-Quine

Monday, November 30, 2020

Giving Tuesday 2020 - A Wish for this Child-Headed Household

 

 

This "Child-Headed Household" in Uganda is held together by two teenage sisters looking after their younger siblings. Their mother is deceased and their father abandoned them. Well, those smiles are there because of your help, and this precious family is now the focus of our #GivingTuesday mission!
 
Maria and Olivia - 15-year-old twins - have been raising their five younger siblings on their own since February. The younger children are Fiona - 13, Charlotte - 9, Stella - 7, George - 5 and baby Leo - 11 months. Since they've been living alone, all of the children dropped out of school, one was trafficked (she's just been located and reunited with her siblings), and the seven and five year old have been threatened with kidnapping. The youngest was placed in an orphanage three months ago, after being treated for severe malnutrition, and the orphanage has agreed to resettle baby Leo, back with his family in two months! Because of our donors recent support, our partner organization has reunited Fiona (the sister who was trafficked) with her siblings, hired a live-in caregiver to keep the kids together, provided new bedding, clothing, food, and essentials, and installed steel doors and windows to keep the children temporarily safe.

After a full evaluation, it's been determined that their house is - tragically - not repairable. Not only that, but we'll need to provide for a plot of land for them to build upon. Because of the outpouring of support from our initial plea for this family, along with support through our Facebook Holiday shop, we've already raised $4,000 for this project, which means that we only need to raise $6,500 to make this happen!
 
Will you join us in giving these children new HOPE on Giving Tuesday? Your involvement is critical to our success in funding this new house for these children. Thank you!
 
Cost breakdown: House: $4,998, Kitchen: $405, Latrine: $473, Tippy Tap: $27, Rain Water Harvesting: $540, Solar Power: $270, Plot of land: $4,000

DONATE HERE