Sunday, July 13, 2008


John and I on July 12, 2008, have electronically sent in the initial application to adopt a child from South Korea. Our journey has begun. We are excited about our decision and feel like a weight has been lifted as far fears pulling us from beginning the journey.
The next step will to be to sign the agreement they send us int he mail and to get our pictures printed off and ready to send. They want one picture of your family and one of your house.
Kind of feels like a positive pregnancy test because you feel there is no turning back now, yet two years is kind of a long time to be pregnant. Maybe it is more like waiting and trying to get pregnant then when you are matched it is the positive test then when you have your baby it is like well... having a baby.
Don't know for sure. Just excited to be on our way. Ok one day is not far into the journey. But seriously we are doing this with the two years plus timeline in mind. If they told me they had a baby for me tomorrow, which obviously won't happen, I would have to say, No Thanks. Two years plus is fine with us. We have decided to think of our adoption journey as being not on our time on Gods time. Who are we to say when the best time is. He will know when it is the right time. He is just telling me that the right time is not tomorrow.
We will see what I think about waiting once we are waiting to be matched or waiting to travel. That I know will be much more difficult. Just think of how long Sarah and Abraham had to wait after God matched (promised) them a son. They had almost given up, yet God knew when the time was right. Sarah even laughed when God told her that she would have a baby after being far beyond the usual age.

"Now the LORD was gracious to Sarah as he had said, and the LORD did for Sarah what he had promised." Genesis 21:1

Do we know what we are getting ourselves into?

John is the type of guy who researches everything. Even if he has to go buy a light bulb he just may look up to see what one is supposed to last the longest and most cost efficient and whatever else you can think of. This is no exception. Why would it be, we are adding a person to our family.
We have heard specific stories of issues that have come up with families who have adopted children. Children who have had unseen medical problems that may have been overlooked, some possibly on purpose yet who is to say for sure. Other families that have broken up because of stressful situations that arose from adopting a child. Stories of children who have issues with bonding, and others that have ended up in counseling for various reasons. Too many to list. All of which are very scary and on our mind.
Yet, I did not spend my pregnancies worried about all the different disorders my children could be born with nor do I worry about ones that they may develop in the future. At some point you have to give all those fears to God. There is nothing you can do to control most of those situations even if you are familiar with the families personally and know all the details. I will get all the information I can from those people who have gone though this process before me but I know that God already knows who he has chosen for us and us for them. We are already praying for them and we are carrying them in our hearts.
At some point you have to just have faith in Gods Plan.
Do we know what we are getting ourselves into?
"No. but does anyone with any choice they make?"

Why South Korea?

In the year leading up to our second child Ethan's birth I took a workshop to get credits to keep my teaching certificate current. The lady who taught the class, The class was titled "How to use world music and jazz in your classroom." which was right up my alley since my degree is in K-12 music education. The lady leading the class brought along her 9 year old daughter who just happened to be adopted from South Korea. I honestly had not heard of children being adopted from South Korea before this, although I know now that is one of the oldest international programs. I didn't think much of it at the time. I had just found the stories that her mother told about how searching for things to connect her daughter to her specific South Korean culture was difficult. It was much easier to find workbooks and things for young children about China which she had done a bit, trying to let her child learn some about at least an Asian culture. She said most of the books about South Korean culture she had found were too advanced or just were not appropriate for a child.
A few weeks later at a local community center playgroup a mother walked in with three Asian children. A boy and two girls. She hurried in our direction and seemed very excited. I happened to be sitting by a friend from MOPS who had just recently moved to the US from Japan. The lady with the Asian children was excited to see someone from an Asian culture since people of Asian decent do not make up a very big part of the population in our town. She began to tell us her story about how she and her husband could not conceive and adopted a boy from South Korea. "Wow meeting two adoptive parents with children from Korea in one month. Weird!" Still didn't think much of it. She kept telling her story. Once they had their boy home they were surprised to find out that they were pregnant. They had another boy. Then... Yep there is more. They got a phone call a few years later from HOLT adoption agency who they had worked with for their sons adoption. The voice on the line said that the mother of their boy was expecting twin girls and wanted to know if they could be placed with the same family as her first son. That was her family. They were not actively looking to adopt, so the call took them by surprise. I was impressed that an adoption agency at the birth mother's request would even do something like that. Now they have twin girls who are biological siblings to their oldest boy, and of course they were the cutest little things you have ever seen. Wow what a story! Yet at the time I was still pregnant and not even thinking about adoption. I was more worried about how I was going to share my love with more than one child and other worries that the thought of adding a second child to your family gives you.
A month or so later I was chatting on a mom website and the topic of adoption came up. People were discussing international vs. domestic. One lady online, who I had previously befriended, was posting about her niece's and nephews. It turns out her sister and her husband had adopted four children from South Korea.
"AGAIN with the South Korea thing." Chills! It was beginning to seem like a common thread with me lately. I chatted with her briefly about the experience her sister's family had had with adoption and again put it to the back of my mind.
We had prayed for guidance about our decision to adopt and at that point it still kept weighing on our hearts as something we are meant to do.
So when the time came to look into adoption we started to look at the requirements listed on various international agency's websites. Of course the first country we clicked on was... China. That was the plan from back in high school, remember. We were both saddened to see that the requirements for China did not fit our family. We are young and would have to wait to long to both turn 30, the minimum age requirement, and then three years plus from that point for placement. That didn't fit the timeline we had planed for our family. Bummed we sat at the computer saying things like, "Well that is dumb." lol So we went back to the list of countries.
"Hey look at that South Korea. Let's check that one out." I remember saying to John.
"South Korea?" he said. Obviously hearing about as much about adopting from that country as I had less than a year earlier. I said "Yes, I know three different families that have children from South Korea. All the stories began to flood back into my memory. Some of them I had even in shared with with John previously but of course he didn't remember the details about it being South Korea. I soon refreshed his memory. At that point, we didn't know if the program requirements would fit our family. Turns out they did. Almost to a tee. We were within the age limits, we were excited to see the two year plus timeline instead of the three year plus we had seen on the China timeline. Travel requirements seemed to work out better in our minds. The only thing that we did not plan on honestly was the possibility of a boy since we had always talked about China where girls are often the ones waiting to be adopted.
Upon praying about it further we decided to let go of the idea that we were only open to a girl and let God make the decision for us. After all we did not get a choice for our first two children, and God knew who was meant for us and who we were meant for. If we do plan on a fourth family member we would be right on schedule (30 years old) to begin the process for China after we (like we said when we added our second child to the family) "See how this one goes!"
So after all that there was no denying that all signs pointed to South Korea. We discovered that South Korea only works with one agency per state. The agency that works with S.D. is Holt International. We went to their site and found ourselves staring at a list of requirements that would determine our families future, where God was trying to lead us this whole time.
"Ok we get it now. Our child will be waiting in South Korea."
Another great thing about the South Korea program are is that they have the most complete medical history information. They also have children placed with loving foster families while they wait instead of some countries who are only able to provide group facilities.
We did look at the other countries program requirements but our hearts already had made the decision.

"Do not be afraid, for I am with you; I will bring your children from the east and gather you from the west." Isaiah 43:5
I know it wasn't talking about adoption but it seemed fitting.

Where did you get that idea?

Hello everyone,
For those of you who do not know me I am Kara. My husbands name is John.
John and I have been together since we were both 15 in high school. Back then when we were dreaming of our possible future we had a discussion about adoption. We both agreed that we were the type of people who were ok with that idea. We even decided that a little girl from China would be cute. You know the way that a 17 year old may say it.
Again about 6 years later, after we were married, when we decided to have children the idea of adoption was there as a back up if for some reason we were not able to conceive. Yet we had no problems in that area and now have two children Allie who is currently 3 and Ethan who is currently 14 mo.
John and I have always said that we would like three or four children. Another plan from high school. Even if it may come to a shock to John's family the higher number came from him.
Before we had our second child we moved into a bigger house knowing that we would eventually need more room. We plan on being in this house for the long haul. At least until we can no longer use stairs. You are probably wondering why I even mention the house. Well.. it has five bedrooms and two bathrooms all on the second floor. It seems like we have plenty of room to add more players to "Team Weber".
However after having our second child, almost the day after we were both saying that we would not be saddened by the thought of not being in the delivery ward again. It was a totally positive experience don't get me wrong but we both had the feeling that this was going to be our last visit/stay. I wouldn't describe either of my pregnancies or deliveries as difficult or horrible. They were for the most part positive experiences aside from some unusual things such as a broken rib both times during the end of the pregnancy. (ah the life of a singer),that is another story, and some extra bleeding with my second delivery, nothing that would keep us from having more.
Two months after Ethan was born John and I had a discussion about our future family plans. We always say, we will have to wait and see how this goes. Both of our children I would describe as easy babies so it was around that two to three month mark when our lives started to feel normal again. We had the discussion about having another child and neither of us felt the need or want to go the pregnancy route again. Of course who ever feels like they want to be pregnant only two months post delivery. But it was at this time the idea of adoption came to us again this time we were more serious.
It felt like God was telling us that our future child was not waiting for us at the end of that road again, they would be waiting somewhere else, somewhere far away. That is when we were first excited about our new little one and we began to pray for them. We pray that they will be born healthy, that they will be in a safe place and well taken care of until they come home to us.
I even remember Tori, John's cousin asking us at the Fourth of July family bash back in 2007 if we were done having kids. I remember saying at that time that John and I were "thinking" of adopting a child from South Korea. It was the first time we had said anything to anyone, outside of our parents, and even when talking to them it was just to hear their opinion about the idea. The news traveled fast. I had a few people who were not around ask us questions about it later that night. We knew we better tell the rest of our close family members what we were thinking at that point so that no one would have to hear it second hand.

"For I know the plans I have for you...plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future." Jeremiah 29:11