Thursday, June 2, 2011

Wishes Sometimes Do Come True

It's time for a confession.
A little over a month ago I learned that an organization was giving away iPads to needy kids. I don't know if Aaron really qualifies as "needy" anymore, but I submitted his story in the hope that he might win one.

Now before you roll your eyes, let me explain...

I am NOT big on electronics for kids. In fact, I am rather the opposite.

While all of Ben and Elijah's friends had every single electronic gadget known to man-- Playstations, Nintendos, Satellite TVs, DVRs and so on-- my sons were outside slaying giants with sticks and fake helmets.  They spent their first 10 years with only occasional computer time, very limited TV time and a whole house full of books.

It was not until Ben was 12, when I happened upon a cheap, used and outdated Playstation at a yard sale, that I relented and allowed them some very limited gadget time.

At first they played like there was no tomorrow.  I worried that I had made a BIG mistake.  But my boys had spent 10 years slaying giants, and the joy of those hours whispered in their ears.  After they got over the thrill of owning their very own gadgets, they soon lost interest.  We do have a Wii, but they have yet to show it to Aaron. They just don't play it anymore. It doesn't hold their interest. Their little handheld DS games were gathering dust until they taught Aaron how to use them.  The Playstation now resides in a box in our garage.  They do play games on the PC, but most days you will find 1) Elijah creating something next to our garage or reading a book and 2) Ben swimming, studying, playing his guitar or talking to his friends (on Facebook, I admit it).

I said all that to say that I am NOT a gadget lover. I do not enjoy seeing kids playing with gadgets when they could be playing more creative games. And the whole texting phenomenon drives me a bit crazy. I am old-fashioned. I am big on books and creative play. 

But despite my feelings about gadgets, I really wanted an iPad for Aaron.


I may not be a gadget lover, but I am a realist.

Aaron has limited use of his hands. For now, to be brutally honest, he has almost no use of them.  He struggles with the simplest tasks. And though we will start addressing his arms and hands at Shriners in August, there are no easy fixes and no guarantees.

Because of this, Aaron is going to need gadgets. He's going to depend on them-- for communication, for school, for work. They're going to be so important for his education.
But we didn't have the money to get him one, so I submitted his story in the hope that he would be chosen. 

40 kids were chosen. Aaron was not among them.

I was bummed. I had been certain that he would qualify. Who has had fewer advantages in life than someone like Aaron? But somehow, he didn't meet their criteria. He didn't win an iPad.
Then, a week later, I got an e-mail from the Goodman family.

They have been trying to adopt the sweetest little girl, whom they're naming Caroline (Heather on RR).



Their story makes me beyond sad. 

A little while ago, Aaron's former country passed a new adoption law. It came out of left field.  No one saw it coming.  I haven't mentioned it on this blog because its terms remain uncertain, and it's not official policy yet. In a nutshell, though, it says that children under the age of five may NOT be adopted by foreign families unless they have certain special needs or unless they have a sibling who is older than five.
All Reece's Rainbow children have special needs, so this SHOULD mean that Caroline is exempt from that law.

Unfortunately, the list of  "special needs" is rather short. It does not include heart defects, which is what poor Caroline suffers.

Right now, no one knows how many children will be removed from Reece's Rainbow based on that very short list of  "special needs."

Fortunately, people are working to ensure that no Reece's Rainbow children will be left off the list. But it remains a matter for serious prayer. Because it is such a big unknown, it is useless to speculate about what might happen until they sort it out over there. For now we can only pray, wait and wonder.

But the Goodmans are realistic enough to know that there's a good chance Caroline won't make the list. So they're grieving, praying, hoping-- and choosing to be faithful to the Lord's leading in their lives.

That's where Aaron comes in.

With their own adoption process on hold, instead of becoming bitter or angry, they continued to support other families whose adoptions were progressing. And because they donated to an adoption fundraiser, they actually WON an iPad.

They were thrilled. And when it arrived, they enjoyed it.

But after a short time and some prayer, they decided that Aaron needed it more.

It shocked us. We had never told anyone that we wanted an iPad for Aaron.

What an unbelievable gift.



The only thing they wanted in return was for us to pray for their sweet Caroline and for all of the other Reece's Rainbow children who may get left behind by this new law.

How can I not pray?

107 of our Lost Boys from Aaron's institution didn't make it onto the "adoptable" list years ago, and now they are stuck forever in an unforgiving system. They sit in an empty shed in Eastern Europe. 

How can I not pray when I remember that other Lost Boys and Lost Girls will join them because of a new law that requires them to wait until they turn five before they are eligible for international adoption?

How can I not pray knowing that older children are far less likely to be adopted, and that older special needs children stand an even smaller chance?

How can I not pray when my little special needs son is happily playing beside me learning his English letters on his new iPad....



How can I not pray?

Please join me. Pray for the Goodmans and for the Other Angels on the Reece's Rainbow site.

Pray that that special needs list across the ocean will grow, so that no child will be left behind.
And while you are at it, drop a line to the Goodmans on their blog. Let them know you are praying for them and for their sweet Caroline.

9 comments:

  1. Oh, my goodness. I have cried over many posts. But this makes my heart cry in gratitude and blessing! Praying for sweet Caroline's family!

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  2. Felicidades! what a great gift :) God send!

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  3. So amazing... both the bike and the iPad! What great blessings:)

    Thank you for sharing Aaron's smile with us as he uses his new 'gadgets'!

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  4. Oh wow! So many blessings!

    Brooke Annessa
    www.theannessafamily.blogspot.com

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  5. How wonderful. I pray that Ipad will bless Aaron in many ways. I will also pray for their family.

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  6. "The List" was a topic of discussion on the last chat I was a part of. The current list does not included Cerebral Palsy or Apert. I am praying that the new list includes both of these.
    Aaron always makes me smile. :)

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  7. Today we were able to confirm from a worker that Caroline is still there at the baby house. This is one ensuring step for them. Now we pray she can come home!! Ethan had only had three more months left before being transferred. Whew thank you Lord. Pray for these sweet angels.

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  8. I should know better than to read your blog at work. I'm just never sure when you will make me cry. :)

    What an amazing gift for Aaron and I am praying for the Goodmans and Caroline.

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Loving words from kind people make our hearts glad!

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