I’m honored to end National Adoption Month with the words of a dear friend of mine. Beth became a mother for the first time through the adoption of her beautiful daughter eleven years ago. Please welcome her in this space as she shares part of her touching story…
How much did she cost? I stared blankly at the unknown cashier behind the counter. Then turned my gaze to the dark brown almond eyes staring up at me from my stroller. Eyes that knew me, trusted me but were so different from my own.
My eyes returned to the smiling face of the stranger taking my money. I knew what she was asking. I was even prepared for it on an intellectual level, but still I struggled not to be offended by a question she might have asked in regard to my puppy or my new couch.
The adoption process is extensive and there are costs involved. But, how do I answer this person I do not know? I needed an answer. For her and all the people who would ask in the future… and there would be more. Of that I was certain.
Do I list for her the facts? There are fees—myriads of fees—home study, placing agency, documents that have to be stamped at all levels of government (each with their own fee), plane flights, passports, doctors, country fees, travel fees.
Do I give her the bottom line?
There are other costs as well. The pain of two miscarriages, tears caused by empty arms, hours of paperwork, meetings with a social worker who you are sure is looking for the one reason that you wouldn’t make a good parent, the sympathetic stares of friends and family who have no words of empathy, months and months of waiting. No. As I formulate the answer, I know I will not share these things.
I have been a mom for only a few months, but from the moment I first laid eyes on the sweet girl with the almond eyes none of those costs mattered. Here is what I know: my heart sang the first time she called me mama, the joy of an angel asleep in my arms, the miraculous way that God used a communist government thousands of miles away to match this daughter, born to another woman, but created to be mine, first steps, giggles, daddy/daughter snuggles, long walks in the park, playdates with other moms, endless hours of watching her sleep.
I knew the answer. How much did she cost? She is PRICELESS!!!
Eleven years later, after many late nights, temper tantrums, broken hearts, rolling eyes, messy moments, and invasive questions from people I barely know, my answer is still the same. I wouldn’t change a thing about the way I became a mom. God gave me a gift.
He showed me, in a very tangible and real way what He did for me. I was orphaned. I was alone. I needed a Father. And through Jesus, no matter the cost, He made a way for me to find home. And that, my friends, is priceless!
~Beth Barker lives in Northern Kentucky with her husband, Don and three daughters, Jaelyn, Reagan, and Rebekah. A follower of Jesus and a teacher by trade, she has relished the opportunity to stay at home with her girls. Her passion for adoption began with her desire to be a mom, but once her eyes were opened to God’s heart for the orphan, she has longed to see the millions of orphans and vulnerable children of our world find forever families.
What a tear-inducing tribute to a precious and truly priceless daughter! Thank you for sharing your story here with us, Beth. I’m blessed to know and love you and your entire family.
Just a reminder, I will be starting my break at the end of this week. Please make sure we are connected on my newest social media accounts, Instagram and Facebook, so we can stay in touch over the holidays. I will be hanging out in both of those spaces during my time away from the blog.
If you are not already an email subscriber, you can join below and be notified when I return in early January. Thanks so much for being here!