I was asked to write an article for my aunt’s church bulletin for Mother’s Day featuring Naiya and some of our story— this year I feel so blessed to have 3 precious children to love. Keep reading to read the article…
“For the Lord your God is with you. He is mighty to save. He takes great delight in you. He delights over you with singing and quiets you with His love.”
This is my daughter’s first Mother’s Day with a mom. The first 15 months of her life was spent in an orphanage in China. They project that she was a couple days old when she was abandoned by her birth mother (who I feel compelled to remember and mention, because I am grateful to her for giving our daughter life)- most likely because of her medical needs. Naiya was named for the verse Zephaniah 3:17. Before Naiya was even conceived, God had a plan for her- a family for her- and He was at work.
Our family felt God’s leading to adopt again in July of 2010 after sharing a dream that I had where I was frantically turning a city upside down looking for a crying little girl. After considering both domestic and international adoption, we believed that we were to adopt from China (a place and people near to my heart since I lived and worked there for three years).
Adopting from China was what we knew we were supposed to do, but what we didn’t know was how it would even be possible financially. In this area, God wanted to grow our faith and remind us that it is He that owns all things and we were to trust Him as we pursued funding by working extra jobs, cashing in 401K’s, and applying for grants. What we learned: What God calls you to, He will provide. We want to thank you, Church of Christ Athens, for giving sacrificially and lovingly to our family to help us to bring home our amazing gift! When I shared the story of the people of your church giving to our family for the purpose of adoption with my 13 year old son, he was amazed and I even saw his faith begin to grow. My aunt, Dana Chacon, told me about a little girl emptying her piggy bank to give- we were humbled. A family that had walked the road of adoption before- we were thankful. Your church, cheerful givers that made a true difference for a little girl that they had never met, had no picture of, and didn’t even know her name- This is the Body of Christ. Thank you! I look forward to being able to share God’s provision through your church with Naiya when she is older.
Our adoption process took about 15 months from beginning to end. I say process, because there was a ton of paperwork and lots of waiting. In January of this year, our family travelled to China to bring Naiya home. Once she was in my arms, all the paperwork and waiting was forgotten. I couldn’t believe that I get to be this precious one’s mom.
Naiya has been home for about 3 ½ months. She is the most beautiful, joyful, funny, and loving child (I’m sure I’m biased). When I watch her and interact with her, I learn from her. She is living life to the fullest at the age of 18 months! She waves and smiles to those passing by brightening their day. She runs to me when she sees me with her arms open wide with reckless abandon. She buries her head in my chest and squeals with delight when I tickle her. She has captured all of our hearts. She is curious and soaking up every new experience. She is not living in her past. She is thriving in her now. Her name, Naiya, in Chinese means “to endure with grace”. It fits her perfectly.
We don’t look alike. She wasn’t born of my flesh. She calls me “Mama”. I’m Naiya’s mom and this Mother’s Day my daughter has a mother to cradle her, kiss her, make her laugh, and hold her hand. There is amazing joy and honor in being Naiya’s mom.
This Mother’s Day we are celebrating…together!