I just read a blog post recently from my friend Jules that talked about joy. It got me to thinking a lot. It is hard to be joyful when things are hard. Lately here, things have been hard. Sometimes I feel like it has been about 17 years of nonstop hard, but I try not to look at it that way. After a lot of prayer, and after circumstances beyond our control, Jeff and I have decided not to continue with the adoption process. I hate the decision, but didn't see any other door. It is a long story, with lots of different things involved. We found out a lot since starting the adoption process. One thing we found out was that birthmoms are wanting only open adoptions. It is a rare thing for them to decide semi-open. Jeff and I aren't comfortable at all with open adoption. We also are finding out that birthmoms placing their babies is becoming a rare event. One adoption agency I contacted said that they stopped doing domestic adoptions because they were only doing 1 every year and a half. Our agency never would tell us how many adoptions they had done last year. They also would not answer my questions each month when I asked if birthmoms were coming in. They also kept changing our wait times. When we started out, they said the wait was about a year. It is now over 2 years. With almost 10 families on the list, and I'm assuming no birthmoms coming in, I would imagine that the wait time is way over 2 years. Add that to the fact that we won't do open adoption, and we are looking at years and years. Many adoption agencies have decided not to do domestic adoptions anymore, and are only doing international adoption. We would love to do international adoption, but we had a hard enough time trying to come up with even half of the $17,000 needed this time. How could we come up with $40,000?? Adoption has become a money making, sell the baby to the highest bidder market. Sad, but true. Birthmoms are keeping their babies or aborting them, not placing them for adoption. I wish it weren't the case, but it is. I wish I had other options, but I don't. I have to be okay with things. I have to be okay with Evie being an only, even though it tears me up inside. I have to know that God has a plan, even though I may not understand any of what is happening.
So how do you have joy, in the midst of all of this? I am realizing that we can find joy in many things if we look at things with different eyes. I can find joy in the fact that I have a beautiful daughter, and a wonderful husband. I can find joy in the fact that I know Christ as my Savior. I can find joy in the beauty that God created. As I have sat here typing this, I had a hummingbird almost land on top of my head. He sat about a foot away and stared at me, completely still (he even had landed with his wings stopped). He sat like that for a good 2 minutes. I was in awe. Also, as I sat here, 2 Orioles came and stood about 3 feet away from me on the deck. We have had 3 of them come at a time. Here is a picture of them (it is a bit hard to see 2 of them...they are on the top of the shepherd's hook). They are the babies that had been in the nest.
I can find joy in our newest little furry family member, Zeke, who is so much fun. He does a lot of sleeping...
And is so happy with his furry mommy, Daisy....
Here are broccoli plants, my celery, my cucumbers (in the same row as my celery), and the green bean hedge.
Then there is my crazy Zucchini Rampicante that is over 7 feet tall! It is just starting to get small ones on it, and the plant is loaded!
My other squash varieties growing vertically, and my zucchini plant that is producing nicely.