I was visiting nsremom’s blog earlier today and was reading some recent posts. In one, she asked for a “shining moment” in homeschooling. I left a rather lengthy comment, while realizing I should blog on this. I hope I can do it in an interesting and concise way.
About 2 1/2 years ago, we felt God’s leading to adopt again. We updated homestudy and started mailing them everywhere. One made it’s way to New Jersey. Unknown to us, they staffed us for a then 2 year old boy and we were chosen. I was in the checkout at Walmart on October 6, 2003 when the adoption specialist called to tell us the news. Needless to say, we were very excited, but were in the middle of moving– I asked if that would be a problem. “Of course not, we’ll just wait until your settled.” came the reply. We began communication with the foster family, had sent packages to Ki and had even talked to him several times.
Then, several children in a homeschooling family were removed from their home later that month. I remember my Dad asking me if that case would affect our adoption. I told him I didn’t think so, I honestly hadn’t heard anything about the case at that point. We were busy getting our new home liveable, and I had kept up with the news even less than usual.
Finally, the house was ready– it was the end of November. We knew the SW from NJ had to come for a visit, but when would it be? We were told Ki might even be able to come for a visit over Christmas. But, Christmas came and went. We were getting nowhere. Finally, we were told that we’d have to put Ki in public school until the adoption was final. Called HSLDA. Were told that NJ could do that. Okay, it if was necessary we’d do it. A few days later, we were told… NJ state had changed their policy and no homeschooling family would be able to adopt. Including US. (At some point in this, Ki’s SW told us that because of his “special needs” he would need to be publically educated until he was 18).
Needless to say we were livid. Called back HSLDA. (BTW, we were even written about in their magazine’s New Jersey issue–not something anyone really wants to happen) There is something they can do this time. At the same time, my husband’s boss was calling Focus on the Family’s legal department. (DH works for a Christian radio network and the owner is great friends with Dr. Dobson.) Shane also put in a call to the local Alliance Defense Fund office. I’m telling you– we brought out the troops. Not just the attorneys, but also the prayer warriors. Ki was being prayed for from the East to West coast. We made phone calls. The last thing my husband told the adoption specialist was that they’d be hearing from our attorney. A few hours later she called back and the powers that be had changed their mind!!! Yippee!! (Anyone that has ever worked with the state, knows that this is a miracle in itself) We were told that the supervisor would be calling us soon to schedule their visit. This was in January. In the meantime Ki had turned 3. The SWer’s came and went (Hannah and Isaac were just precious during their visit–see my comment at nsremom’s post if your interested in how precious) and we were finally told we could travel and bring Ki home. This happened the last week of February 2004. They said Ki needed to be in public school, until the adoption was final, but, don’t you know they never asked and our social worker “conveniently” left it out of her monthly reports and he wasn’t even away from us for one day. (another miracle, if you ask me)
We had to meet with the supervisor and Ki’s nurse in Trenton. Not only to learn about Ki’s cleft-palate, but also to learn about all his other “labels” (none of which are evident today). Interestingly enough, this supervisor commented about how well behaved Hannah and Isaac were– wonder if it ever dawned on her that it is because they were home-educated? The second amazing thing… several months after we came home, we got a call from the adoption specialist. She wondered if we would be interested in Malachi’s oldest bio-brother?
Believe it or not, this is the short version. God worked amazingly throughout this entire process. Malachi is now a wonderful 5 year old blessing in our lives.