Archive for the ‘Adoption’ Category

I am just heartsick over this news. Please pray for Steven Curtis Chapman and his family. His Cinderella went to be with Jesus today.

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I have a friend named Erin whose family looks a lot like mine: a mix of adopted African and Asian kids along with several kids born to her. One difference, however, is that two of her precious Ethiopian children, Belane and Solomon, are HIV+. She asked readers of her blog to share these facts about HIV with two other people. Maybe some of you will consider passing on this information as well.

Today I have heard from several different parents of HIV+ children who are facing negative reactions to their adoptions based on the stigma and ignorance surrounding HIV. It is extremely frustrating to me that in 2008 there is still so much unfounded fear caused by a lack of education, that results in nasty, ugly and mean treatment of people who are HIV+ and their families. The reason people in the U.S. are not educated about HIV is that most people don’t care, because most people in this country are not affected by it. People still see it as the problem of homosexuals, drug users and people in Africa.

The reality is, HIV/AIDS is everyone’s problem. It is a devastating problem in Africa and many countries, but there are many, many Americans living with this disease as well. In fact, new cases of HIV in the U.S. are now being seen in the largest numbers in heterosexual women. HIV/AIDS is a HUMAN problem.

Living with this nasty disease is hard enough, but compounding that with the misguided fear and judgment of society is beyond tragic, and as the mom of two HIV+ children, it is sad and frustrating.

So, if you are one of the many who check in to this blog every day, I am asking you to do me a favor. I want you to tell at least two people about HIV.

Spread the word that…

– HIV can NOT be spread through causal/household contact.

HIV is not spread through hugging, kissing, shaking hands, sharing toys, sneezing, coughing, sharing food, sharing drinks, bathing, swimming or any other causal way.

It has been proven that HIV and AIDS can only be spread through sexual contact, birth, breastfeeding and blood to blood contact (such as sharing needles).

– HIV is now considered a chronic but manageable disease. With treatment, people who are HIV+ can live indefinitely without developing AIDS and can live long and full lives.

– People who are HIV+ deserve to be treated with love, respect, support and acceptance as all people do.

If anyone wants more info on transmission, there is great info on the Center for Disease Control website at http://www.cdc.gov/hiv/resources/factsheets/transmission.htm

Help me spread the truth about HIV, and take a tiny stab at the stigma against HIV. Tell your friend when you talk on the phone. Tell your spouse. Tell your parents. Post it on your blog and ask other people to tell their readers. Ask them to pass it on as well. I would love to see this spread beyond the adoption blogs.

Even if you have no real interest in HIV/AIDS, even if you are not involved in adoption, even if you don’t think you know anyone who is HIV+… education and knowledge are always a good thing. It is so easy to say to someone, “hey, guess what I learned today?” and it is even easier to put it on a blog or in an email.Do it for me. Do it for the other adoptive families and the HIV+ orphans that are waiting for homes. Do it for Belane and Solomon. Do it for all of the other people on this planet living with HIV. If everyone that reads this blog tells at least two people, that is a whole bunch of people we can reach and a little bit of difference we can make.

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Running out the door

… to go yard-saling again this AM, but I do have a real post up over at my adoption blog if you’re interested.

Back later.

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Children who wait

Our daughters have a good friend in Ethiopia. Her name is Tsion and she has been waiting at the AAI child care center for over a year now. She is starting to feel discouraged, wondering if she will ever get a family. She is 13 years old and she has three siblings, you see– a 10 year old sister, and brothers who are 5 and 6 years old.

When people think about adoption, most don’t think of older kids, and even fewer think of adopting four kids at once. However, I know that God has a plan for this girl’s life, and I am praying that His plan includes a family for these precious kids. Would you join me in praying that these children will get a family of their own very soon? No child should have to grow up without a family.

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… as much as I want to write something warm or witty or encouraging or insightful, the empty text box just seems to want to stay empty. This business of helping new kids settle in is hard work. The moods. The emotions. The ups and downs. I know it’s tough to BE the new kid too, and I have been doling out sympathy like a pez dispenser doles out sugar. But somehow it always comes down to mom — to set the tone, to clarify the boundaries, to dispense hugs, and to jolly the cranky. In recognition of the challenge of my task, my wonderful husband has decreed that I have a holiday. Tomorrow I am taking a rare day off. I’m going out to breakfast. I’m going to sit– just sit– in Barnes and Noble. I’m going to visit at least one of my sisters– maybe even several of them. I might even get over to spend a bit of time with Eldest. I am looking forward to it.

But for now: bed.

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I am still blogging ‘light’ over here, peeps– sorry. This business of bringing in TWO kids at once has just kept me running! For the latest from the Owlhaven today, try my Ethiopia Adoption Blog. And don’t give up on me!

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Adoption and the bottom line

Please don’t miss this post — True confessions about the bottom line.

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Sorry things are so quiet here right now. I am up to my ears in children these days, but wanted to remind you that I am sharing the story of our journey to our new girls over at my Ethiopia Adoption Blog! God is gracious….

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“A father to the fatherless, a defender of widows, is God in his holy dwelling. God sets the lonely in families.” Psalm 68: 5-6

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I woke up at 6:30 this morning thinking, “The day after tomorrow. We leave for Ethiopia to get our girls the day after tomorrow.”

I tried to doze back off to sleep, hoping to add another hour to my sleep ‘bank’ before we head off on the 24 hour trip to a time zone 9 hours ahead of our own. The next two weeks will be filled with jetlag– both in Ethiopia and after we arrive back home. But my mind was immediately racing to my to-do list.

Most of the packing for the trip is done, but we have a birthday party to squeeze in between now and Sunday morning. There is cake to make and a house to clean. There’s breakfast in bed to deliver to my sweet 13 year old son. He requested our favorite Christmas morning breakfast– french toast strata, which my 17 year old put together last night. Along with that we’ll do sausage and fruit and orange juice and the usual custom of the whole family trooping in singing with a loaded breakfast tray at the head of the parade.

My 5 year old has a cold, which I’m hoping the rest of us travelers won’t get. We’re loading up on Airborne and vitamin C, and I’ve packed cough drops and Nyquil and Kleenex and anything else a person might need to be as comfortable as possible with a cold. I’m sure it’ll be fine, however it works out. But it would be more fun if we were not fighting colds in Ethiopia,especially during rainy season. Hmm….maybe I should toss in a few tea bags.

Well, I’m off to scurry around doing last minute things. I can hardly believe we are soooo close!!

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