We have had lots of questions about the direction God is sending our adoption. Feel free to ask more questions because I assure you we have explored all the questions and concerns that anyone could conceive.
"Fear is a bad motivator and a worse master"
If you are referred and HIV+ child are you concerned about the rest of your family contracting the virus? It would be ridiculous and dangerous to say we aren't concerned. We are. Which is why we plan on using universal precautions, teaching and talking to our children about how the virus is contracted (the Bug already knows never to touch anyone's blood), and providing our children with treatment...
All the being said, I could throw out facts an statistics for you all day long, but the fact is no one has ever contracted the virus in a normal house hold setting and we choose not to live in fear of something incredibly unlikely happening.
Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. Philippians 4:6
What do you mean by normal household?
Around here normal includes baths, sharing foods and drinks, runny noses, all sorts of poop, pee, and occasional throw up and even blood. I am assuming that's normal around your casa too. What I mean by normal in this context is a home in which no one is sharing needles, or having inappropriate sexual relations.
What about the girls? What if they hate how this will affect their lives?
I'll be honest with you, this is the one question I struggled with the most. After countless hours praying this is what I know: Each person is responsible for his or her own heart.
Let me explain further. My parents made a few decisions in my childhood that I disagreed with, decisions that by most accounts people would tell me I have every right to resent; I bet yours did too. At times in my life I have chosen bitterness and blame. It doesn't take a PHD in psychology to tell you that was self destructive and damaging to those around me. As I grow and mature and try this parenting thing myself I see that my parents did a million things right, they loved deeply and always tried to work in my best interest. I AM responsible for my own heart. Another example? Jesus. He did what he did for you. YOU are responsible for your own heart towards Him.
Ideally? This will help ALL our children learn compassion, the importance of reaching out, and that blood (especially the blood of Jesus) is thicker than water. However we can no more assure that than we can promise the girls won't harbor bitterness for always having them in matching clothes. (Let's not pretend there aren't adults in therapy for less)
Train a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not turn from it. Proverbs 22:6
Are you really prepared to parent a special needs child?
No. We are doing the best we can to be prepared. I have a folder that has the phone numbers for a child therapist, early childhood intervention, pediatric infectious disease specialist, parents of adopted special needs children, and our social worker. We have talked at length with people in the day to day challenge of parenting these sweet babies. Can one ever really be prepared to parent any kind of child before they are actually parenting that child? I think not.
But he said to me, "My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness." Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ's power may rest on me. 2 Corinthians 12:9
Please feel free to ask us questions and come to us with concerns, but always know this: Russ and I choose not to be driven by fear but by trust in the Lord. That will almost always be our answer.