“Please Adopt” read the sign about 100 yards from the turn into our new neighborhood those months ago. Car weighted-down by the caterpillar car-top carrier we inherited from Nate’s parents, and our hearts heavy with expectation, we saw it just before we pulled into our new home for the first time as a family. Of course, it was intended to remind me of the need to keep our nation’s roadways clean — but to me, instead, it was a prophetic banner.
Adoption is woven into my DNA, yet if you caught me on a day when I wasn’t thinking about it, I would forget my children are former orphans.
2010 marks our first full year as a family. On January 1st of last year, my children padded down the stairs of my sister’s house in their footy pajamas, ready to welcome in the new year with their new cousins. And twelve months later, on December 31st, I tucked them into those same guest beds, except this time they drifted to sleep satisfied that they had fulfilled their duty as Maddie’s cousins on her birthday. Last year, birthday celebrations were a new experience. Cakes, candles and presents unfamiliar to them. This year they belted out the lyrics of “Happy Birthday” with ownership. ‘Cause Hagerty’s celebrate.
So my 2010 album doesn’t include as many “firsts” as did my album from the year before, but it’s just as significant.
Caleb is looking more and more like Nate (as much as a boy with brown skin could resemble his white-skinned father). And Eden’s flair for the dramatic continues to give my mom a sense of restitution; finally I understand the road she walked with me. Nature versus nurture? It’s both. They are ours. My miracle delivery, whose birth canal bridged two separate continents, reveals the creativity of our God.
Below is our year in review. His year in review.
Well, more like our creative “outtakes” since this blog already has so many of our best photos.
For those of you who are called, but who haven’t yet taken the plunge, maybe these will be a tangible testimony that despite challenges there is rich fruit waiting on the other end of that decision. Like the sign outside of our neighborhood, another nudge that says “please adopt.”
For the rest of you, I invite you to celebrate with us the God who gave us these two (whose adoption day is now a very past tense occurrence). ‘Cause Hagerty’s celebrate.