Sunday, January 31, 2010

Lightly, not tightly

This might be a long post, I apologize in advance. Some of these are just my thoughts I need to document for me, some are in response to questions I've gotten over the last couple months.

We've been back from Guate 2 and 1/2 years now. In that time, pretty much every option of increasing our family has been on the table. Fertility stuff, international and domestic adoption, even embryo adoption. And to be honest, we've really enjoyed our time with Eliot, knowing he won't always be an only child.

We'd actually never really considered the foster care system. Not that there was ever anything wrong with it, in fact, we've known several families that have done it. But for whatever reason, it was never on our radar.

Then we moved to the city. And planted a church. A church dedicated to restoring the city.

Then we met Emily. Emily runs an agency dedicated to helping/educating/training families wanting to foster or adopt. Not only does she run the agency, but she has four beautiful girls adopted from the foster system. We met for lunch one day. It must have been some powerful pizza cuz some serious light bulbs started going off.

As I processed the idea, I had a few things I had to come to grips with if we were to go forward with this. First of all, we would be taking a risk, maybe risk after risk, of falling in love with a little one, only to have something happen. The birth family is a major player. We're not used to that. We would have to hold lightly, not tightly to the idea of adding to our forever family until further notice even though we'd have a little one in our home.

Secondly, this journey isn't and CAN'T BE about me and my needs to be a mom. I could easily argue that a main motivation in Eliot's adoption was ME. This process is different. The focus needs to be on what's best for this particular child, and that may be chillin' with us for months while their birth family figures a few things out.

We have to trust that each child will be in our home for the exact amount of time they're supposed to be and while they're here, we will love on them as if they were going to stay.

And to be honest even further, we started the journey down the fertility road. Minimally, understand, but we opened the can. We (I) didn't even make it two rounds. I couldn't justify the time, energy and money. I turn about 7 kinds of ugly once you start adding stuff to my system. And the worst part? The constant wondering if it's a 100% waste of time. It didn't make sense.

Similar to fertility, there's no guarantee in fostering. Essentially, we could be spinning our wheels. The difference? In the meantime, we're using our time, money and energy to love on kids whose worlds have been turned upside down, hopefully adding some stability and protection, and doing a little bit more to restore the city.

We know this route isn't for everyone but secretly I'm hoping that by being open with you, that it'll sneak onto your radar. We've already heard some alarming statistics and the need for more families. And some of you out there have more to give. You're not done.

If you have questions or just want to hear more about it, please ask. It's my new favorite thing to talk about besides Tenley on Wings of Love.


amanda said...

I love this post, Katie. And I love your heart even more.. and Russ' too. Adoption/Fostering is something that has been on my radar for as long as I can remember... and I have a feeling that years from now when that moment comes for me, you and your family will be on the forefront of my mind. As inspiration, a source of encouragement and a wealth of wisdom.

Whichever child comes into your care, for however long they are with you... they will be richly loved and greatly cared for. They will laugh a lot and smile often. You will leave an indelible mark on their lives... regardless of the outcome.

You're good people, Katie Mohr. I'm glad I get to know you.

Anonymous said...

Katie- I Love reading your Blog! I think what you are doing is totally awesome! I have been a foster parent for 2 and 1/2 years now and I am preparing to finalize the adoption of my 5 year old son. I can't wait to see where this journey takes your family!!

Tracy Embrey

becky c said...

love this idea. to be able to meet that child's need when they are in need is going to change your family and i'm sure it won't be easy but i can't believe it won't be without blessing.

Unknown said...

LOVE your thoughts!!! You will be a blessing to any little angel that finds their way into your home. You and Russ are an awesome couple and I can't imaging a better way to have 'your fingers in the dirt' while you're 'planting' a church. I'm a gardner, hence the analogy. Blessings to you and your new family (I'm thinking the Lord's going to use you in really cool ways!!) This could be your 'silent' mission field as my friend that fosters special needs kids like to say.

Soulfuldancer said...

this post made my heart hiccup and I almost lost my breath for a second. Know that I will be praying for you all as you wait to see what God has in store. YOU ARE LOVED!

Jacob, Lisa and Charlie said...

Could I love you anymore? I think not.

Amy James said...

Love hearing about your journey into this crazy world of fostering. Your heart is beautiful and God will do mighty things through your family. It is a very delicate place to be involved in someone's family, but as always you will find many blessings for each hard thing. I fell in love with your family reading your blog as you went through the adoption process with Eliot and am so excited to continue "watching" your family in this new journey. I hope to get a chance to chat with you sometime about this :) Thanks for sharing!

erin said...

Love this post Katie. Thanks so much for sharing with us. But, more importantly for being open to where God is leading you.

sarah ward said...

great post, we're excited to get to know you all some through class. it'd be fun to get together sometime outside of class.

The M. Herndon Family said...

Can you connect me to Emily and her organization? Doing some searching ourselves...Thanks! (