Six little humans call us Meeka and Papa; at times it comes out M-e-e-k-a-p-a-p-a, one word, when they sing in chorus upon our arrival for a visit. What a beautiful melody to our aged ears. Each child is a unique, beautiful, little ornery, joy-filled, and energetic blessing; written as true Grandparents boasting on the gifts God has blessed us with as a family.
“Before I formed you in the womb, I knew you.” Jeremiah 1:5a
Five of these Grands were anticipated for nine months; life growing within their moms as our children shared the exciting journey of morning sickness, growing bellies, first kicks, gender reveals, due dates, and birth days.
But for one of our children, infertility was a cloud of sadness that enveloped them every month for more than five years. Their heartache, the painful emptiness in their arms, the dreams unfulfilled, and the jealousy of what came so easy for others was not what they anticipated in their marriage. The Green-eyed Monster was not welcomed, but it was a real part of their journey. Their happiness for others was clouded so their prayers for God’s forgiveness and prayers of pleading for a child continued.
“Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine.” Ephesians 3:20a.
Our children came to accept that God’s answer was no, not yet. Somewhere in another state, a woman found herself pregnant with no father to help love and care for the new life growing within her. The adoption process brings families together but not without uncertainties; will she love them (us)? will she bond with them (us)? will she know how much I love her (how much we love her)? Regardless of the difficulties, the common thread that birth parents and adoptive parents share is the deep love for this child. This incredible mom changed our lives; our joy became her pain, our excitement became her longing, our fulfilled dreams became her years of wondering, and her love became our love.
“For this child I have prayed and the Lord has granted the desires of my heart.” I Samuel 1:27
In August 2015 the court date arrived and this Meeka and Papa stood before a Judge with our family. We listened as he declared, “Ellie is a part of this family in every way, from this day forward.” The years of waiting and longing were instantly lost and the sorrow and heartache were defeated with the pounding of his gavel. The floodgates opened and tears of joy washed over us all.
The hero in adoption is not the family who raises the child; the hero will always be the woman that fills the lonely hearts and empty arms of a childless couple.
Adoption is the most selfless act and the greatest gift a stranger can give to a hurting family. Families that did not know each other will be forever whispering into God’s ear on behalf of this precious miracle.
Written by Pastor Terry and Dawn Simm Terry is the pastor of First Presbyterian Church Sibley, IA and a member of the PPL Board.