We were blessed with four biological children and then felt the Lord leading us to adoption. We first were interested in one or possibly two children, if they were twins or siblings. After spending several years trying to adopt from another country, we were informed by our friends at Lifeline about new adoption opportunities coming available in Poland. In fact, only a few weeks after starting to pray about changing to Poland, we received an email from Lifeline with the biography of three beautiful children that needed a forever home. We actually received the email while we were in Mexico on a mission trip.
A missionary had been discussing the story in Genesis 22 of how the Lord took Abraham on a long journey to prepare his heart and blessed him for being faithful. We, too, had been on a long journey with adoption, and we knew the Lord would provide for us in his timing. So with lots of thoughts and prayers, we happily started the paperwork to adopt three children from Poland. Having four biological children already, we were blessed that they too were very excited about sharing their home with three new siblings. We had three boys who were 17, 16, and 12 years old, plus a daughter who was 10. The new children were 10, 8, and 3 years old, with the middle child being a boy.
Because we home school, our biological children, were able to go with us to Poland for the five and a half week trip. Our time in Poland was not easy. The food was not very good, and we all lost a good amount of weight. We went in November and the days were very short (8 a.m. to 3 p.m.), and most days were very gloomy and cold. The Internet was expensive and slow. Lifeline did find us a house and van to rent. The house was a huge blessing for the nine of us, and the van gave us freedom to do some traveling and easier access to stores. Nevertheless, the bonding period in Poland did give us much needed time to spend time as a family.
The new children were so excited to have parents. They called us daddy and mommy from the very beginning. The orphanage had done a great job preparing their hearts that their new parents would be coming to get them. The language barrier was not as tough as we expected. Lots of signage and our landlord speaking a little English helped with communication. However, we did have our share of issues. Our two 10-year-old daughters were very different. Our biological daughter was very girly and loved dolls. Our new daughter was very tomboyish. Our new son loved having three big brothers, and they wanted to spend time with him. However, they did not want the 24/7 attention that he craved from them. Our youngest addition loved, loved having a mommy. She was a little shadow and is still even now one and a half years later.
Once we arrived back home, the new kids learned English very quickly. Our two 10 year olds quickly became best friends. Our new son still cannot get enough time with his brothers, but they all love each other…well, most of the time. Our youngest has been so much fun. We, as parents, do get funny looks (People wonder, “Are they her parents or grandparents?”) from time to time since she is 40 years younger than we are. All three of the additions are very happy and well adjusted.
They do have times when they miss their friends and mother in Poland, but those times are seldom and they quickly move on. All three are very, very loud. They like to talk loud. They play loud. They sing loud. Our house is now very loud.
Nevertheless, we are a very happy, busy, and now loud family.