Sunday, April 14, 2013

Hello God, what do you have planned for me? ~ Part 1

As I reflect on my journey and begin sharing the news that I am indeed adopting a little girl from Uganda, I feel I must share the back story. It didn't happen overnight. It began as an idea I thought for sure was way to big for me. All the while, God was preparing me to embrace the idea and pursue it like I do everything else in my life!

In early April 2012 I was newly unemployed and unsure of what to do with myself. I had money saved for my long awaited and much anticipated December 2012 trip to Africa, but I had free time NOW. So like any crazy motivated person I changed the trip. I got the yellow fever shot (required a minimum of two weeks before entering the country of Uganda) in the nick of time and filled out all the paperwork. On April 24 I traveled for hours and hours across the pond until I arrived in the beautiful lush countryside of Jinja, Uganda. I fell in love with many little brown faces and thought of ways to bring at least one home with me. (I kid. But not really!)

Hello God, what do you have planned for me?

May 2012 brought the second half of the Africa trip and we traveled to Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. I fell in love with more little brown faces, but still couldn't figure out a way to bring one home with me. I traveled home feeling all out of sorts, for many reasons, but knew I would travel back to Africa again someday. Then the J-O-B search began. To nanny or not to nanny; that was the question. I love kids, the pay and schedule really worked for me. For 3 1/2 years I got paid to be with children. I played, camped, went to museums, amusement parks, restaurants, little people clothes shopping, sports practice, Dr. appointments, and did school pick up and drop off. I had playdates, napped, ate breakfast, a morning snack, lunch, an afternoon snack, dinner and an evening dessert! I loved this job, but something was changing in me. I started thinking about dressing up, working with adults, and utilizing my organizational skills. On May 29, my newest nephew Quinn Clinton came into the world! Oh how I love little babies!

Hello God, what do you have planned for me?

June/July 2012 continued the J-O-B search. I sent A LOT of resumes. I worked temp nanny jobs and kept telling myself a job would find me after I visited Joy and Randall in Bulgaria. Which is where I traveled from June 27 to July 11. I crossed the pond for the second time in 2012, this time landing in Sophia, Bulgaria. For the next 13 days, Joy, Randall and I traveled, lounged, conversed, pondered the meaning of life, took in some great sites and ate DELICIOUS food! We took a cruise from Athens, Greece to several islands, including Santorini, Rhodes, Crete, Patmos, and Mykonos! Joy and I would be sunning ourselves on the deck of the ship and just blurt out "we're on a cruise ship island hopping in Greece!" We had such a wonderful trip. We traveled back through Melnik, Bulgaria, where the food, wine, and scenery were AMAZING! The quality time spent with two of my very best friends will be treasured forever!

In the quiet moments on this trip I would say "Self, what are you going to do next? You have been given amazing opportunities, what is in your bigger picture, something that is bigger than you?" To which Self tried listening for that still, small voice and replied,

Hello God, what do you have planned for me?

August 2012 passed with a flurry of activity. I watched two of my great friends, Aaron and Bekah, vow to spend the rest of their lives together. I went water skiing for the first time since I was 12. I was still searching for a J-O-B. I was getting restless and pondering my bigger picture, something bigger than myself.

Hello God, what do you have planned for me?

September 2012. It started like any other September. Kids go back to school, schedules shift to accommodate and the days get shorter. Except I wasn't a student, or working with kids, or really working much at all. Restless. Pondering my bigger picture. Something bigger than myself. On Tuesday Sept. 10 I was contacted by my friend's husband and offered a job. A job that required dressing up, working with adults, and utilizing my organizational skills. The job was in Maine and the only catch was that it didn't technically start until January when they opened the firm. I accepted the job and asked out loud,

Hello God, what do you have planned for me?

To which He answered on the very next day. A friend had some temp work at his medical device company doing testing on products for the FDA. It was decent pay, decent hours, 5 minutes from my house and projected to last about 3 months. I accepted the job and said out loud,

"Thank You God for your plans for me!" I'm sure He giggled because He was not done with me yet. This was only a small part of that 'something bigger than myself'. That something bigger had been in my heart and on my mind since April.



A little girl.

Somehow, as I was unemployed and seeking a job working with adults, not children, God created a great big desire to pursue becoming a mother through international adoption. I researched, got paperwork, and made the decision to start the home study process as soon as I moved to Maine.

October/November/December flew by with start up law firm tasks and my silly (but they tell me very important none the less) product testing job. I washed the same 6 pieces of a caddy/case over 200 times. It was a 100+ minute process that included me washing it and then placing it in a dishwasher type device. I enjoyed my time with the company and appreciate the opportunity it gave me while I transitioned. I was in constant contact with the three partners and several vendors. I took adoption classes, renewed my passport, got my people to write me recommendation letters, wrote my autobiography and saved money for the first step.

January-April 2013 coming soon!

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