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Tuesday, April 29, 2014

What would Jesus Do?

Yes, I know that is an outdated cliche, but it is exactly what comes to mind today.

This morning, we went to St. Louis, for our federal fingerprinting, for the twin's adoption.  On the way home, we went to Collinsville, to let Britt and Brianna show us a part of their life we don't know much about.  We went to the library where they spent most of their free time.  We ate at their favorite restaurant, Bert's Chuck Wagon (which was VERY good).  We went to a park they played in, and visited the GIANT ketchup bottle.  And then Britt wanted us to take her to her trailer, where she lived.  And then Britt wanted to get out, and say hello to her birthmother and grandmother.  So, with lots of anxiety, we let her.

She wasn't there long.  But she was very sad when she came out.  She said there was an eviction notice on the door.  She said the floor was falling in, and the house was filthy.  She said both her birthmother and her birth grandmother looked very unkept and unhealthy.  She quickly realized that most of the things her birth mom has been telling her are simply lies.  She was very sad.  She said, "Mom, we have to help them".  And I agree.  Sort of.

This is hard for me.  These 2 woman abused my kids.  They beat them, neglected them.  Allowed them to be sexually abused.  Made them watch horror movies and laughed when they got scared.  They even laughed as they beat my children.  Birthmom had "physical" relations with her various boyfriends in front of my kids, so my kids lost their naivety at a very early age.  They have tried each year, to claim my children on their taxes, so they could gain more of a refund.  I truly, with all of my heart, believe that Brian is the way he is today, because of the abuse and neglect that he lived with in his 10 years in that home.  Not long ago, they made comments about "coming after Bria" (their little sister), even though her adoption is complete and final.  I harbor a lot of anger toward those 2 women.
The hurt my kids over and over, and then handed them to me, and let me try to undo the damage.  Which is a lifelong mission.

But.....all this being said, WHAT WOULD JESUS DO.  He would forgive them, and try to help them.  I think that is what I need to do.  But it's gonna be really hard.  And I am not even sure where to start. So, waiting on God to nudge me in the right direction.  Which, I know He will.  *sigh*  God bless!

Sunday, April 20, 2014

Happy Resurrection Day!

Our God lives!   I love Easter, although it is hard for me.  Dale always wants to watch Passion of the Christ, and although I LOVE the message, I hate the beating and the crucifixion.  It is SO hard for me to think about Jesus enduring this punishment that He didn't deserve, but I did.  I cannot stand the thought of anyone getting hurt.  And dying.  But He did this, for me, for you, for all of us!  Whew!

It has been a good week.  Brian came home on Tuesday.  He is doing well.  We changed his meds around, changed many of the things we do at home to accommodate for him, and we are getting lots of help.  Tomorrow he has an eval at Heritage Mental Health Center.  Tues we go back to visit his psychiatrist, and Wednesday we meet with our family therapist for the first time.  So far, he has had no rages or arguing.  He had a very unpleasant time at the hospital, and was picked on a lot.  He does not want to go back there.  And we are hoping that alone will be enough to curb his rages.  I talked at length with a friend who is having similar issues with her son, who has been home 3 years now.  As much as I love adoption, there is this side of it.  The ugly side, where it doesn't work out so well.  But, I know our God is the almighty Healer and the God of Restoration, and I am praying for both in both of our situations.  I know God does not want either of these boys to be alone, without the love and support of a family.

We got new pics and an update on the twins!  They look great!  And it sounds like they are doing very well!  We go for our fingerprinting appt on the 29th, so things are moving along quickly.  We have to have our dossier in China by June 10, but I think we should make it with no problem.  There is this pretty cool timeline going on with our adoptive families right now~!   Stines are traveling in April, Laws are traveling in May, Powells should travel by June, Browns should travel by July, and we should be traveling by Aug!  This means for the next few months, we will welcome a child home each month!  This is awesome!  Praising God!

The other kids are doing great!  Bronwyn is excelling at gymnastics!  There is a flip she has been trying to master for months, and she has GOT IT!  Britt joined the praise band, Toby is finally over his sickle cell issues.  Meng and Rory are LOVING exploring the neighborhood on their bikes.  Brianna is learning to play our new piano.  Brian is thrilled to be home and back to school.  And Keagan is figuring out his way though the bike trail, and spending a lot of time with Timmy, who is staying with us through the remainder of the school year.  Patrick graduates on June 14, and will be saying goodbye to Kmart, which I think he will enjoy!  LOL

And Daley.  I know this is a long blog already, but I gotta share this.  On the night that Brian went nuts on us, I was home in bed alone.  I began to shake, and my heart began racing.  I felt like my heart was going to explode in my chest.  I have never felt this way before, but looking back, I think I was having some sort of an anxiety or stress attack.  I began to pray for God to end this horrible feeling, and then Daley began to cry in her bed.  I was angry.  I thought, "Really, God?  I cannot take care of myself right now, and now I have to take care of Daley?"  I got up and brought her to bed with me.  And the very minute we laid down, she snuggled up to me, closer than she ever has before.  She nestled her head into my chest, and immediately my anxiety stopped.  Gone!  Over!  Wow!  And then I Cried.  All of the countless nights I have cared for her, through seizures, through ear aches, through muscle pain, were worth every minute, for that one night she cared for me.  She is SO special to me!  My life will never be the same because of that little princess!

Blessings my friends!

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Peace and Hope

Well, it is Sunday morning, and I would LOVE to be in Kidville at church right now, but instead, I sit waiting for the AAA guy to come unlock my van (the keys are inside).  Everyone else piled into Dale and Patrick's cars, so Daley and I are just sitting here alone, watching her favorite, ELMO!

It has been a good week.  Things have calmed down.  Dale and I had a good visit and phone call with Brian yesterday.  We know there are things he has to do differently and there are things we have to do differently.  We are trying everything we can, and hanging onto the HOPE that God will work out the things we have no clue about.  

We mailed off our USCIS paperwork last Friday, and received notice that it was received from the lockbox on Thursday.  Praying for a speedy fingerprint appt, and a quick pre approval!  We have also requested updates and photos of the twins!  That would be awesome!

Otherwise, things are clicking along.  We have just about 6 weeks of school left, and also 6 weeks until we all take a much needed vacation!  Dale is still working too much, and working too hard, but he has had an opportunity for a new position come up.  There is a local doc who is needed a PA in his neuro-surgery practice.  Praying God puts Dale exactly where he wants him!  But it is sure nice to have options!

Well, good news, the AAA guy just got here, and the keys are in my hand!  God is good, the man was nice, and this was easier than expected!

Love you all, have a blessed week!

Thursday, April 10, 2014

And so the devil attacks.....

Well, I am sure we have ticked off Satan, since we are claiming 2 more orphans, and planning on sharing Christ with them the moment they are able to understand!  But I could use my prayer warrior friends to support us this week.  It has been rough.

Sunday afternoon, we decided to go for a bike ride, as a family.  Dale asked Brian and Meng to scoot back, so I could get my bike out of the garage, and Brian flew into a rage and attempted to punch Dale.  Completely unprovoked, very aggressive.  Very scary.  He was sent to his room, and amazingly, he went without arguing.  Later that evening I asked him to please sit down, while he ate his pizza.  He flew into another rage, screaming about how I am so mean, and I have to stop hitting him.  Dale and I made the decision to start him on the medication that his doc ordered him, if his behaviors were erratic.   At bedtime, I handed him his meds, and he began screaming about how I was poisoning him, trying to kill him.  Sweet Brittany, tried to reassure him that his meds were OK, and they were to help him focus and control his emotions.  Well, that enraged him even more, and the next thing I knew, he punched me in the chest.  Hard.  Britt dove between us, like she has done before, and he began to punch her and punch her.  Dale jumped between them, and then it just sorta went crazy.  Dale was trying his best to restrain Brian, but when Brian rages, his strength is enormous.  After a few minutes of watching Brian punch, scratch and attempt to bite Dale, I called 911.  I have never done this in my life.

By the time the police came, Brian and Britt were in the kitchen, and Brian had calmed, but still looked crazy and frightening.  One officer kept Brian in the kitchen while the other interviewed me in the living room.  At one point, the office chuckled, and Brian began raging again, screaming that we were making fun of him.  He threw some papers at Dale, and then literally lifted the end of the dining room table and attempted to throw it at Dale.  It took both officers to get him to the ground and handcuff him.  It was awful.

He was taken to St. Marys, and admitted to the mental health floor.  After a day, the called to tell me he had excellent behavior there, and they were sending him home.  I was not ready for him to come home yet!!!  My family is a mess from all of this.  Thankfully, his doc had him admitted to Lincoln Prairie in Springfield, and he is still there.  They are evaluating him, and they suspect he may have a diagnosis of schizophrenia.  DREAD.

So, what do I do with all of this.  Part of me thinks I have no business adopting more children, with this new crisis.  The other part of me, says that Brian needs help, and we are getting it for him.  We have truly tried everything we can think of for him, but his rages continue to get worse.

We now have a team working with us.  Therapists for him, family therapists for us, and an adoption preservation worker, who will help us decide when it is safe to bring him back home.

It is a very sad situation.  I know that the Bible is FULL of Jesus healing people with mental illnesses and possession issues.  I think we need to pray for Brian as hard, or harder than we have prayed for the twins.  He is a child of God, and needs his family.  And we would like him home with us.  Sigh

Thanks for listening.  Prayers appreciated.

Sunday, April 6, 2014

Yes, it's real!

Ok, I have had almost a week now, to finally get it into my peanut brain, that YES, I am really gonna be a momma again! Actually, I already am, I just don't have my boys home yet.  They are sitting, waiting, in a very poor orphanage, half-way across the world!

MD is the woman from IL, who controlled whether or not we received IL endorsement for this adoption.  We could not adopt without it.  MD, from what I am told by many, is anti-Christian, anti-homeschooling, and especially anti-large family.  MD told our social worker originally that she could not approve us.  She said many negative things about our family, and about large families in general.  She requested additional information from us many times, which we thought was odd if she was planning to deny us anyway.  What she did not know was that we were not planning on going away.  We had some state legislatures and a few attorneys who were willing to help us battle a denial, if we were to receive one.  And we had the most amazing social worker, who listed to God, and let Him speak through her.   God moved Mary's heart!  He changed her mind.  I know it was Him, because HE answers prayers, and He grants us the desires of our hearts.  And, because He wants no child to be alone and without the love of a family.  And, because we didn't have to get anyone else involved, He gets all of the glory for this decision!!!  Praise God!   Halelujuah!!!!!

I am SO proud of my family.  Ever since our home study was submitted to IL, we have declared every Monday "Wen and Wu" day.   Each Monday, for the past 8 weeks, several of us have fasted the entire day.  Several have fasted half the day.  And we have all dedicated the day to praying for them every single hour of the day.  Brianna used her iPod alarm, to remind us each hour, so we didn't get so caught up in school, that we missed.  And the boys have been the first and last thing we have prayed for every single day since we began this process.  Truthfully, we have been praying for the boys since the moment we saw their photo, over a year ago!  Our family has grown so much closer, and have prayed so much, it has been AWESOME!

So, the plan now is to wait some more!  LOL  On Friday, we submitted our paperwork to USCIS, to apply for immigration for the boys.  After that approval, our dossier goes to China.  I am getting conflicting info on how long all of this will take, but I do think we should travel by fall.  Not soon enough!  LOL

Thank you, dear prayer warriors!  Know that God heard and answered all of our prayers!  Know that God cares for the orphan!  Know that God's plans are perfect!  And learn from me, not to worry and stress, cause let me tell you, I have been, and have gained NOTHING from it!  Trusting is the key here!  God is good, all the time!

Cecil Le Wen and Ervin Le Wu, mommy loves you!!!

I cannot figure out how to flip this photo around, but this is the "official" letter.

It is VERY hard to see my boys in this photo, but if you look at the photo on the LEFT, Wen is the little guy in the front middle, in the orange shirt, and Wu is in the back left, with the red shirt on.
And just for fun, this is the first photo I ever saw of them!  Love at first sight!