Monday, March 22, 2010

By way of introduction

I've thought all weekend about how I want this post to go... Reveal a lot? Reveal a little? Give a teaser? Spill my soul?

And I've not really landed on an approach...

My name is Karin, and I'm a new writer here at Spina Bifida Kids. Because I have a four-year-old daughter who is living with Spina Bifida. But there is so much more to my story...

We never intended to have birth children. We never even tried. In fact, we are in that 0.01% that you can read about in any birth control warning label. We intended to build our family through adoption. Specifically adoption through the foster care system. We both felt a "calling" if you will, toward adoption before we even met each other.

We finalized our first adoption in February of 2005. In March, our sons, Isaiah, age 8 (13 now) and Isaac, age 4 (9 now), started praying for a sister. Three times a day they prayed that they could have a sister. It was sweet. My Tim and I would peek at each other and sort of giggle each time. We knew that we would be adopting more BOYS, but their heart for a sister really started to work on us and we started to consider adopting a sibling group that included a girl.

By Mother's Day that year, I was pregnant.

Aside from being in complete shock and denial for the first six months of the pregnancy, it seemed to go well. I wasn't nauseous, but I could only keep down oranges and mashed potatoes. The boys were SURE it was a girl. Tim and I decided not to find out. We thought--this was one of the last great surprises in life.

I love surprises.

Three weeks before our child was born, we received the diagnosis of spina bifida and severe hydrocephalus.

I wasn't sure about surprises at that point...

And in January of 2006, just 11 months after our first adoption, Esther-Faith was born. Tim met her first, walked over to where they had me strapped down for the emergency c-section, and said, "We have a daughter. She's perfect."

In all my life I have had a few moments that sustain me when everything else seems to fall apart. That is one of those moments. He was overjoyed. And even though her spinal cord was outside of her body, she was perfect.

And so it is today.

No matter what we go through as a family, we choose to look beyond the diagnoses that each of our kids have received. Some of them are severe and require a HUGE amount of work. But we choose to see our kids through the lens of "perfect."


I'll be sharing many of our experiences with Esther-Faith here, but if you want to know how the others are doing, you can catch up with us over at the HennHouse.


Holli (and Mark) said...

Beautiful post, and already a devoted follower of your blog :) thank you for sharing your beautiful family with us!!!

Scasmflops said...

Beautiful story. God does seem to always give us His plan, whether we chose it or not. Thank you for sharing this... ps. My name is also Karen. :) Nice to meet you!

The Forest Minstrel said...

What wonderful boys you have. You can see the love they have for their sister. (and, NEVER discount the prayers of children! They believe they'll get thru to the Throne whereas adults believe God's busy and will get back to us later ~ a lesson, yes?)

HennHouse said...

Holli and Mark: It is my pleasure to share... I love the idea of this community and hope we can all learn from each other.

Karen: HI! If there is one thing I've learned, it is to stop making my own plans. :)

Forest Minstrel: I agree, my boys learned a POWERFUL lesson about prayer... and even more recently when she was hospitalized again for 21 days. I do believe that children have the ear of God.