Tuesday, November 28, 2017

She Was Our Secret

Back in February, when we were going through the homestudy process, we were approved to adopt two children.

But it was a precaution. It was a just in case Mary had a sister. It was only for emergency purposes. It wasn't on our radar to get two. We spent the first 6 months of our process with one child in mind. Mary.

But the day we received our travel dates we found out about another little girl at Mary's orphanage. Our facilitator begged for us to see her and help her find a family too.  "Please, please advocate for her. Find her a family. It's not a good place and she is such a sweet girl.  Please!"

We were sent pictures and later a video. Cadence. She took our breath away. We stared at her pictures and watched the video over and over and over again.

She stole our hearts. We began to talk and pray and pray some more. We shared with just a few friends about her. We considered and prayed and talked some more. We decided to request her file at our appointment. According to procedure, we could see her file along with Mary's but could not officially meet her even though they were in the same place. We would have to meet Mary and then go back to the city to get Cadence's file.

She was our secret. And we loved her. We wanted to adopt her.

The day we had our appointment was beyond stressful. Both files were opened to us. We ran into issues with Mary's file that we wrote about HERE. We had the choice of taking Cadence's referral first, but we knew that the Lord had called us over for Mary and she was absolutely our first priority. When all was clear with Mary, we went to region to meet her.

We were also going to get to see Cadence even though we couldn't get an official referral until we traveled back to the city.

It was a day of great grief and deep shock. In the first hour that we met Mary she had around 10 seizures. It shook us to the core. We knew she had epilepsy but nothing had prepared us to watch her dropping and smacking her head over and over again. In the middle of that shock they told us about Cadence. Their words stung and burned into our hearts. It was obvious that she was not regarded with favor. It was obvious that they had written her off as unteachable and with little value. It was beyond obvious.

She was beautiful. She was sitting at the table eating a snack when we walked in. The other children at the table chattering away while she quietly reached out her hand to me. I sat beside her and she just took me in. Rob came beside me, his eyes filled with tears of sorrow. We knew. We couldn't take her. As beautiful and sweet and gentle as she was, we couldn't take her. Her needs and Mary's needs were more than we could handle. It broke our hearts. Our little secret could not be shared. We had to kiss her head and walk away.

It was a night of shock and grief. We want back to our hotel wondering how we would care for the one and leaking tears over the other. We knew we couldn't handle two children who both needed arms to carry them. We knew we couldn't handle two children who needed help with all their daily living needs. We knew that both of them would improve and gain in strength and ability but we understood our limitations. We couldn't do it. We already had two physically challenged children at home. Four was more than we could handle.

Our grief was mixed with anger at the words spoken over Cadence. She was a child neglected. A child who had been set aside.

Oh she is worthy of a family. She is precious and little and gentle. She wears diapers and is weak in her legs, so they tend to carry her. She is quiet and does not talk. They were not kind in their words about her. They wrote her off but I know that she is more than those words. I know that a family who loved her would draw her out and breathe life into her. She would blossom and grow. She absolutely would thrive in a family!

We left her behind, but we have not forgotten her.

We also have not forgotten another little bit of a girl whom we met. Jenni

She was in Mary's group the first few days we were there. We were given the option of adopting her after Cadence but we were only approved for two and she had an older brother.

She came charging into the room several times - full of life. At one point she came barreling up to me and threw herself into my arms and cried out "Mama" with utter sorrow knowing that she was not the one chosen. She too is not one they regard with favor. She has cleft palate so her speech is not clear but trust me - she can talk.

We heard her little voice, and we know she can verbalize. She was much more verbal than Mary. She is little and adorable. Her pictures do not do her justice, and she too would absolutely thrive in a family. Her profile indicates that she has an older brother, but he's 17 and will soon be out of the system.

We left them both behind. We had little chance to spend time with either girl but they both left their marks on our hearts.

There was another one left behind. A sweet little boy name Ronald. He was our Angel Tree babe from last year and is our boy again this year.

He was left behind by a family in process right before us. They wanted him with all their hearts. Like Cadence, he was their secret. They were in pursuit of a pair of sisters, and  he was in the same institute. It would have been so easy for them to snatch him up too. They were raising the money and had a room prepared and were totally in love with him. We knew about their secret, and were rejoicing that he finally had a family who wanted him. But because of complications with the sisters they were unable to request his referral. They spent time with him, played with him, held him but in the end had to leave him behind.

Three children.

The ones we left.

All three are on the MACC Tree this year.

We officially are Warriors for Ronald and Jenni but we are also committed to advocating for Cadence too.

I've been a lousy Warrior.

All three of them are at the bottom of the tree.

I have no idea how I'm going to raise money for them this year. Ronald has $4.50 and Jenni and Cadence both have less than a hundred. Oh My!! I'm LOUSY this year!

But most important - I have to get them SEEN!!

They are no longer secret children!

They have been seen in real life by our family and another. They are all children who would thrive in families!  They are precious and worthy no matter what their caretakers say about them.

Please go click on their profiles. CADENCE. JENNI. RONALD. SEE them. Pray. Consider. Ask God. Please. I need two or three families who can find room at their table.  I need two or three families willing to do some serious trench work. Families willing to battle for these kids.

These three littles ones are the ones we left behind.

We grieve over them. With all our hearts we pray they find families!

If you absolutely cannot take them home then please help me raise funds in their grant accounts. There are families who CAN adopt these three and every single donation will bless them so much.  So please help me get their accounts moving! 

Please share about them. Tell your friends, neighbors, people in your church. Help me get them seen!


Make them your secret this Christmas!!


  1. Thank you for your loving heart and advocacy. I hope all of these children find families.

    There is yet another little girl and former companion of Mary's who has my heart: Regina. She's not on the Angel Tree, but very much needs a loving family who can help her with her Apert's syndrome special needs.

    There are videos and additional pictures of Regina on both Bible Orphan Ministry's Facebook page (the watermelon video from last summer) and the Hand of Help in Adoption's site. In addition, BOM has photos of Regina with her baby house friends from several years ago, and they can provide additional information about this little girl. Regina was at the same caring baby house orphanage as Mary, and was transferred about the same time. She has become quite thin since her transfer. But she is an active, responsive, playful, imaginative and delightful little curly-headed girl, as the videos make abundantly apparent. She is about eight or nine years old now.

    Regina can be adopted with the help of Reece's Rainbow and the Hand of Help in Adoption. Her special needs are treatable and she would do very well in a family.

    I hope others reading here will consider all of these sweet children - could one of them be your son or daughter??

    1. Hello Susan,
      I am very interested in this information about Regina- she seems like a sweet and capable child, and I have looked into some information on her on Reece's Rainbow. I am wondering if you would be able to share your email address or facebook here so that I could privately message you more details about myself and questions for you?
      Thank you,

  2. Oops! I forgot to sign my message about Regina! This is Susan in Kentucky, a longtime advocate for and supporter of RR and Bible Orphan Ministry and adoption from Ukraine, a beautiful country which is the birthplace of two of my very dear young family members!

    Susan in Kentucky

  3. Would you have not wanted Mary if she also had younger siblings who needed you as much as she did?

    1. It's a room issue. We have no more rooms for a boy. Our bedrooms are small so we can't cram another brother in... we could add a sister (bunk beds in Mary's room) but not brother.

  4. Oh please share this sweet video of Cadence too! From reading that she must be carried I thought she couldn't walk, but she can!! She looks pretty stable on her feet and can stack toys! I want her to come HOME! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RjHKaY6ZVfQ&amp=&feature=youtu.be


Loving words from kind people make our hearts glad!