Sunday, January 12, 2014

How Could We Not?

It's so easy to write them off.
Pass them over.
The crib babes. The severe.  The scary.
The ones that are going to need help for the entirety of their lives.
It is so easy to pass them over.  Wonder whether rescuing them will even matter.
Will it even matter?  Will they notice??
I asked you a few days ago to pray for Joshua.
I am now asking you to read the story his Mama posted on their blog yesterday.
Read it.
He was a Reece's Rainbow crib babe.
 By Traci Adamson.... taken from their blog...
We are so blessed that so many people are praying for our dear son Joshua. I wanted to share a little of his story so that those who do not know him will have that blessing too of "knowing" him. 

His story actually starts with a little boy named Sean who friends of ours in SD adopted. He'd been in their foster care and was profoundly disabled--having seizures every few minutes and not interactive. This couple was asked if they'd adopt him and they said YES.
John and I were so amazed and touched by God's love in them. A few months later we saw them and we saw such a remarkable change in Sean (not having seizures, giggling when his daddy tickled him) that God got our attention.
Since becoming a Christian, John had long had an interest in adopting a child as God adopted us into His family through faith in Christ. We started to look into special needs adoptions...and a friend told us about how her brother's family were adopting 2 girls with Down Syndrome through an organization called Reeces Rainbow. We began following their adoption story on their blog, as well as other adopting families and learned about this great ministry, that seeks to connect orphans with Down Syndrome and other disabilities in orphanages around the world with forever families.
 We learned about the plight of these special orphans, who are routinely abandoned at the hospital and if not adopted by age 4, are placed in adult institutions and often do not make it due to conditions there. We saw the faces of so many precious children..waiting. We could not believe it and we grieved (every single one of us in our family) and we prayed. We knew we needed to do something and we realized that we had so much that they didn't have...LOVE, a family, health care, good nutrition. At the time we were living in a small 3 bedroom home in Rapid City but we knew that there was room for another one in our home and in our hearts.

So we prayed alot and God put on our heart to adopt a little boy named Slava on RR who has Downs Syndrome.
slava2008-6 slavaadamson

It actually was our children who set their hearts on him. I was overwhelmed by so many (how can you choose?) but my son said, "I like them all but that's the one we need to get") We adopted Slava (3 years old) in May-June 2009 and named him Sean, after our friend's Sean.
Before we left, we found out about a little 2 year-old girl named Lacie with Downs and we prepared to adopt her too, but when we got there she was not legally available yet. We were sad because we never thought we'd get to go back--it was so expensive and so very challenging to be across the world from some of our children, but we kept praying for her and 6 months later had decided we needed to go back for her.
                                              Lily  "Lacie" with Rob last summer...
 While adopting Sean we saw a little boy in a stroller who seemed to have a mild neurological condition--and we asked about him as I just felt a burden for him too. When we decided to adopt Lacie, we kept asking about him but they kept showing us a picture of a different boy "Taras" with the same name (our Joshua now) who was more profoundly disabled. Finally they figured out who I was talking about ... he was already being adopted. By this time, God had gotten our attention and we started to consider...could we adopt Taras too? Taras had a diagnosis (which we found out wasn't accurate) of abnormality of the 18th chromosome, agenesis of the corpus callosum (the part of brain connecting the two hemispheres didn't develop), microcephaly and history of seizures. He was said to be able to feed himself and understood what was spoken to him, but in the pictures he was always laying on his back so we knew he was very developmentally delayed.

After much prayer we decided to seek to adopt him and leave it in the Lord's hands...He could certainly close that door. While we had no money for this adoption, in addition to our many attempts to fundraise, God lead a family in Iowa we didn't know to put on a fundraiser concert to benefit a RR family, and we were chosen! Incredibly, this family raised over 22,000 dollars which paid the majority of our adoption cost. This encouraged our faith that this was God's will for us to adopt him, as well as others things that happened in our adoption.

When we arrived in Ukraine and met Joshua, we realized that the information we'd received was not accurate. He could not talk, could not feed himself (had to be bottle fed), he couldn't sit up (had no trunk control at all), and we didn't know what he could understand. He was profoundly impaired and much like an infant cognitively and bigger than the pictures as he was older.
 Honestly, we were a bit overwhelmed...could we handle a child that is dependant for all care? We had to make a decision to accept or decline his referral within a couple days, so we spent time with him and we prayed and we cried and we prayed and cried some more. Ultimately, we knew that we could not leave him there. His fate was certain...even then they were preparing him for the institution transfer by introducing puree banana on a spoon. Our translator told us that they don't do bottles at the institution and he'd be laid out on a mat on the floor there--there was no way he would get adequate nutrition and we knew from our therapy experience that he would aspirate and die.
 We thought of the verse, "whatever you do for the least of these brothers of mine, you do for me" and it was clear...we needed to bring him home. Our children back at home kept praying and posting messages on our blog, "please bring our brother home! God will help us!" We had shared with them realistically the lifelong challenges there would be and they remained resolute...this little boy laying in his bare crib most the day who was seen as discardable was their brother whom they loved. God had miraculously provided the money to bring him home as well....


So we said YES and started the journey of adopting him. Joshua ("Taras") and Lily ("Lacie") came home in August 2010.
One thing that I had wondered about alot when we had been struggling a little with whether we could adopt Joshua was how I'd have a relationship with a child who didn't seem to respond to us or interact. I will never forget a couple months after we adopted him going in to check on him in the middle of the night (Joshua likes to "party" then) and suddenly he looked right at me and smiled...he focused on and "saw" me! It was awesome!
This was a blessing to me to realize that we would have a relationship with him and not just take care of him. He would continue to show he would follow me with his eyes when I'd walk around the kitchen and when we'd hold him he would get very excited...and vocalize loudly! He also started rolling both directions, started having bowel movements some on his own (vs. suppository), and was able to eat some pureed foods by spoon on good days. Joshua loves to go outside and look around. He loves riding in the car especially with the windows down so he feels the air, and he loves music and to hear us singing at home or at church...he often will start squealing loudly at this time.
Joshua needs alot of care. He is dependent on others to feed him, bathe him, clothe him, and position him. He is always wetting his diaper and clothes. It is messy to feed him (lots of laundry) He takes medicine for seizures. He has difficulty with regulating himself and can fluctuate from crying to laughing, and often he can't be consoled. He has a "stridor" breathing pattern when he gets really upset which is scary (loud inhalation and exhalation) though most of the time is very calm.
 It has not been easy... trying to get him to feed has been challenging sometimes, having to wake up often in the middle of the night to try to settle him down because he's having a good old time squealing and laughing or is crying, taking him to many doctor appointments, etc. People often do not understand why we adopted this special boy or sometimes they give us too much credit for doing it. I know that this was truly a God thing--God showed us his need and gave us the heart to bring him into our home. We can take no credit for what God did. He has so lavishly loved us through the sacrifice of His son Jesus Christ that we may know Him and have eternal could we NOT serve Him in this way?
Joshua is still in the hospital.
Please pray for him.
His family loves him.
Just as he is....
They love him very much.

You can read MORE of Joshua's story HERE.

Please keep praying.

P.S. - All the boys pictured above came from THIS PAGE

They each need someone to love them.



  1. That is a beautiful story Julia. Thank you for sharing it. I have been praying for Joshua.

    Sue H.

  2. What a beautiful family and such an incredible story...a powerful testament of why adoption is so important. Thank you for sharing their story here so that it can reach more hearts. We'll be praying for them and their sweet boy.

  3. Thank you for posting the picture of "Daniel," the last boy pictured before sweet Joshua's hospital picture. We are one of Daniel's prayer warriors and I think about him and pray for him daily. He was born in January 2006 so he will be 8 at some point this month. He's got an amazing grant available compared to a lot of the other children on the RR page. What a birthday present that would be for him to have a family soon.


Loving words from kind people make our hearts glad!


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