We’ve been keeping a bit of a secret lately. It’s barely been a month, but feels like forever.
We’d like to introduce you to Miss Zoey Xiao Theresa Elliott:
She was born in April of 2016 and is now 14 months old. She’s waiting for us in the Jiangsu Province – similar area of China as the boys, but further east. Her Chinese name, Xiao, means tiny, small, little, bitty – she was 2.5 lbs when they found her. Sweet tiny little fighter. And Zoey is Greek for Life, which I love. Our journey to her this go around has been completely different from the boys. We are actually working with a different agency as I pursued her after seeing her face on an advocacy post. When I first inquired, she was already on hold with another family… a few weeks later I received an email that she was available – so we decided to submit our information. It took a while, but a couple of weeks later she was officially ours! China agreed and issued us our Pre Approval. Being a very type A person, I like to have my ducks in a row and know what to expect… while this new agency has been great thus far, it’s still different and they do things slightly different – its been something to get used to. We’re also starting from scratch — homestudy, compiling all the dossier paperwork to be notarized, verified and authenticated, immigration approval – and then it all goes to China where we wait for them to translate, review and approve us to adopt her. As previously mentioned, being type A and a paperwork, checklist person – I had my paperwork done and turned in within the first week we started. Unfortunately not everyone else works on my timeline! To say the least, it’s a bit frustrating. We are currently waiting for our fingerprint clearances for the FBI/CBI to complete our homestudy so we can apply for immigration. Hurry up and wait. Meanwhile, she only grows and changes without me!
We knew about her for quite a while, but waited until we were matched to tell the kids. Jesse got home from work and walked in with champagne and flowers. When the kids heard the news, they were beyond excited. Ana has been begging for a baby sister. Even Liam, being the oldest, could easily have been not so excited to have another little kid to share mama, his house, his stuff with – but he was grinning ear to ear. It was so beautiful to see each child so excited to welcome another sister. I pray that never changes, and they never begrudge growing up in a loud, full home.
Jesse and I have long talked about a baby girl – the boys are ganging up on us in this house!- and Asher has been home 16 months now (what?!). Timing is as good as it’s ever going to be – no, we don’t have 25k sitting in the bank, but we’ll figure it out – and she’s ours. Yes, we have our hands full. Yes, it’s loud in the house. Yes, it’s expensive to feed 6. Yes, we want more.
If this world was whole and perfect, there would be no babies abandoned on the side of the road. There would be no orphanages full of children who need forever families. In a world where there are thousands of children needing families, it seems such a little thing to bring just one home. But, it is one less. I can do more. There are days in which I am overwhelmed and tired of the fighting and messes, but most days I can do more. So why wait? Why wait till the kids are out of the house to go do something meaningful? I can do more now. I can fill my home with children and love them and feed them and fill their soul with God’s love. We are a part of God’s redemptive work on this earth, and bringing these babies home, from a place of trauma and pain and brokenness is so hard, but so beautiful and so worth it. Sometimes the best things in life are the hardest.
We hope to introduce you to Miss Zoey sometime around Christmas. Fingers and toes crossed, and praying for no hangups, snags or delays in our paperwork process!