Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Brining Yan Rui Home, Part 1

I have been wanting to write a blog post about our newest member of the family....and every time I try, I feel like I have too much to write. I decided, in the end, that our letter to family and friends is as good a summary as any...And the response from our family and friends is pretty amazing. I'll share that in the next post. 

  Dear Family and Friends, As many of you know, Keith and I are in the process of adopting a five-year-old girl named Yan Rui. (If you are trying to figure out how to pronounce her name, we have no clue either! We’ll find out when we meet her.) She is living in an orphanage in Anhui, China, and we are hoping and praying to bring her home soon. Many of you have been interested in our adoption, and while I know I have shared parts of our story with some of you, we wanted to take this time to share more fully with all of you. I, Karla, can hardly remember not sharing our house with someone while I was growing up. My dad’s younger sister came to live with my parents when she was a teen (I was a baby), we had exchange students throughout the years, my cousin stayed for a while, and my parents began taking in foster kids when I was ten years old. We adopted my twin brothers, Ken and Bill, when I was twelve. My brothers have developmental disabilities, and we learned, through them, the importance of patience (when they were starting fires and peeing on the cat--haha!), of understanding (when their limitations made things difficult for them), of advocacy for those who can’t advocate for themselves, of perseverance in frustrating times. Last year, our family was involved in building a group home for one of my brothers, because we couldn’t find one that offered the excellent care that we thought he deserved. I have worked in group homes for over ten years, because I knew (from my brothers) how much of a joy my life would be if those with special needs were a part of it. Keith was adopted by his father when he was about six years old. Adoption, for him, was also a normal part of life. His dad was the only dad he knew. His dad was the male influence in an otherwise all-female household. His dad is the funny accent our kids giggle at on the other end of the phone. And his dad is the one who goes “all out” with welcome when we visit him in summer time. Naturally, when Keith and I discussed growing a family, adoption was part of that dream. We didn’t spend a lot of time discussing specifics early-on. Then, in 2004, we had quadruplets. They were born at 28 weeks, and all of our babies were in critical condition for 3-4 months. One of our daughters lived for one week before Jesus took her home, and at two points in the neonatal process, the doctors informed us that there was "nothing else that could be done". Our son had a severe brain hemorrhage and our daughter lost “too much” oxygen, and one doctor warned us to "be prepared to take home a child with special needs”. If, of course, we brought home a child at all. Our kids, the three that survived, did not come home with special needs. In fact, they are all thriving and meeting expected developmental milestones. Yet we believe that God prepared us to parent a child with special needs, and we want to be able to do that through the process of adoption. While some of you have called Keith and I “saints” for considering a child with special needs, we happen to know, through our relationships with those with disabilities, that we will be way more blessed being Yan Rui’s parents than she will be in being our kid. :) Some of you have wondered why we decided to adopt from China when there are so many children in America who need our help. Our intent was not to adopt from a certain country as much as it was to adopt a child who was considered “hard to place”. China has a specific list for children who are “waiting” because of their age or disability, and Yan Rui’s file was the first file we were shown. Yan Rui’s disability happens to be cerebral palsy, and we are not certain where she is, developmentally, because we have read reports ranging anywhere from 18 months to 3 years. We aren’t confident that any of these reports are accurate. We will not know for sure how much support she needs until we bring her home.  We are including an expenses sheet, because we want to share exactly how much funds are required and where those funds are actually going. (I am not including that here, but know that adoption costs are anywhere from $22,000-31,000.) We know that the adoption is expensive and some of the line items seem excessive. We believe, though, that Yan Rui shouldn’t be kept from a home because of that excessive cost. Honestly, that expense sheet was a struggle for Keith and I. We know we are called to “care for the orphans”, and while we don’t believe that means everyone should adopt, we believe we have the experience and support necessary to parent a child with special needs, and we feel God prepared us to do so through a long list of experiences and people in our lives. And yet…. we began our adoption journey in November of last year, and realized quickly that we do not have the funds to do this on our own. In discussing our struggle with some wise people in our lives, we decided that we had to trust that “anything is possible with God” and that money is not an issue for Him. (We’re never sure if believing and acting on these things is called faith or stupidity, but we’re hoping we are walking in faith). :) While we have the resources to provide care for our daughter long-term, initial adoption costs are making it difficult for us to finance getting her here. We are humbly asking that others in the Body of Christ partner with us by praying for Yan Rui as she waits for her forever family and by helping to provide the funds necessary for us to welcome her home. Thanks so much for your support, The Foisy family

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