Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Happy, happy birthday Chubber Chubber

Today is the day that Chubbers turns 2. It really is amazing that he's already 2 years old and talking up a storm (I would guess is vocabulary of audible and understandable words pushing 100, inaudible only Mom and Dad can understand let's say...1,000,000.) The good Lord has delivered all of our children to us in the most unexpected of ways and in the most unique ways, each in their own right. Today, being my Chubber's day here's his story as told from the foggy, emotional memory of his Dad.

Before we knew that Chubbers was created and that God had planned to bring him to our home, Kendra, Titus and I were at a crossroads. My current work at Heritage in Texas was moving down a bumpy road with many twists and turns in it. It seems that the Lord was telling me it was time to move on and to wrap my brain around the idea of relocating. The first of these opportunities came in the form of a job offer from one of a man I have admired for nearly 20 years as a great minister. I had often said, "If [he] offers me a job I'm going, no question." Well it happened. The call came and the offer was made and we were on our way to interview in San Antonio. The idea of living in San Antonio wasn't really appealing to me, no family in close proximity, cost of living was high, city was huge and spread out with a lot of diversity of cultures that I had never experienced. Other than the fact that this man was there and that this church was there, nothing was appealing to me.

The interview went very, very well and the offer was made for me to go to work with this church. I asked for 48 hours to pray and contemplate the decision. What a struggle...then a dream came to me. It was my first "real" dream in which I felt that the Lord was talking to me and spoke through that dream. In my dream I saw a white figure floating from side to side at the foot of my bed. This was a very strong looking, angelic figure with a face I could not make out. As this figure floated, glided from side to side I was just staring at it, like it was watching us sleep. Then the figure turned it's head and quickly zipped up into the darkness just as a huge Chinese dragon face screamed toward me. I bolted up out of bed and the first thought in my head was, "it is better to stay than to go." That's what kept playing over and over in my mind. Short of a talking donkey I saw that as a sign that I needed to turn down the opportunity of a lifetime. Very, very hard to do.

Forward two months. "This is Will." "Hey Will this is Tim...say are you and Kendra wanting to adopt again?" "Well...yes and no. We want another child but the cost is too high and we just can't afford it right now." "Well [our little girl]'s teacher at her school is pregnant and doesn't to keep the baby because she just can't afford to." "Wow, I'll talk to Kendra." That was how the conversation went that ultimately led to us meeting Chubber's birth mom. We met her and her aunt at Starbucks and came packing with our album's and a truck load of information. She was pregnant, didn't know exactly who the Dad was but had a good idea and didn't have a way to take care of herself, her baby, and this baby growing inside of her. As we talked, probably two hours or more, we began to feel more and more comfortable with her and agreed to adopt her baby if she decided to do that.
We contacted an adoption attorney in Dallas who told us exactly what to do and how much to save for the fees, and we started saving. I began to cook pies, cakes, and cookies for people and selling them. I also wrote a cookbook, "Brother, Now we're cooking." to help raise funds. Kendra and I worked every spare minute to save and scrimp enough money to pay for the fees.
Chubber's birth mom was about a month, close to two months along when we met. We were able to see the first sonogram of him, have that on tape. Along the way we would get updates, not a lot just every now and then. We finally got the call. "Mrs. Spoon? This is Rose...I have the date for the baby's birth. It's going to be a c-section."
The day of the birth was so different from Titus' birth, more calm. We were at the hospital by 8:00 a.m. and sat in the waiting room with her family and Kendra's family and my Mom both sides of the spectrum- anxious. Kendra was in the room with Rose and just wanted to comfort her and hold her hand and thank her for the courage that she had to release the life she was giving into our hands. I can not get in touch with the courage of these ladies. As Rose went to the OR we were sent to a room across from the hall of Rose and her family.
I'll never forget the sight of that baby being wheeled into the room. He had jet black hair...ivory skin and every thing was in place. So beautiful. Titus was thrilled to see his "broder" and wanted to leave right then and there to go home. Hospital rules kept us from staying over night with him, but we certainly camped out at that hospital. The adoption rules specify that you wait 72 hours before releasing papers. This gives the birth mother an opportunity to change her mind. The nursery at the hospital allowed Kendra to stay in a supply/break room which had a table set up with Chubbers the entire time. Guests could come visit one at a time, but always had to be with Kendra.
The hospital was so very nice to us and helped us over our anxiousness. On go home day, we were there at 10 am and began the process of waiting. That's the most excruciating thing to do, wait. We waited until 7PM to get the papers signed and begin the release process. I thought it would never end. Every second seemed like an hour and time was just in slow motion. But the time finally came and Kendra was wheeled out of the hospital holding our boy.
It wouldn't be but two months before the Lord said, "now it's time to go" and we made the move to Tulsa.
It's really an amazing thing to have children. Each experience is completely different in so many ways, but also exactly the same. We love each of our children so much, but differently at the same time. I've often been asked about how it feels having adopted children and a biological one and for us it doesn't matter. There is no difference in our love for them and the feeling of attachment and dedication is not different. We are attached and dedicated to our two boy, profoundly thankful and blessed to have them, as we are our little girl. Sure it's cool to see a nose, eye, or lips (she has her Mom's lips dead on) and know that you "made" that, but when we look at our boys we also know that the process we went through to get them was tough and emotional in and of themselves.
Chubbers is happy and keeps our house full of joy. He has a tremendously tender heart and has been blessed with the gift of compassion and service. I know that the Lord has plans for him that are great, and I am so excited that I will get to see him live those out. We love you so much Chubber Chubber!


Tracy said...

omigosh - chubbers is absolutely gorgeous - what a face! he will be a heartbreaker for sure one day.
and i loved the story - i was like on pins and needles the whole time :-) reading about the dream and then chubbers birth. just wonderful story telling mister will! thanks

sherri (Tied Up In Ribbons) said...

I always love the poem/song that has the did not grow beneath my heart, but within it....describes adoption so perfectly.

Donna Layton said...

The stories of both Titus and Levi's births ALWAYS make me cry. When you give birth to a child, you don't have to worry that someone will, at the last minute, decide you can't have the baby after all. What a fear to live through. I remember Levi's birth so vividly (which is odd for me I live in such a fog), but it was so different from the way Titus was adopted. Easier in most ways, but still those scary hours before the papers are signed.
You were meant to be in Tulsa. For sure. I also remember one other, less lofty, but no less influential reason for not taking the San Antonio job. Remember???