Join Angela, Axel, Abel and Asher as they welcome their new sibling home.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011


Yep, I just had a blog post up, and I removed it. I can do that. But this post is about another type of removal.

 I have been part of a certain adoption community for the past couple of years. In the process of our adoption, and since bringing Axel home I have gleaned much information from the group. Since bringing him home, the support I've received by reading within that group has been immeasurable.  A couple days ago I was removed from a community. No explanation was given for my removal, nor emails returned.  I have not done or said anything to anyone within the group that would warrant such action.

What I DID do, was I DID bring to light, without pointing fingers or naming names, some things that were happening during our adoption process, and after I did, other families came forward to say the same thing had happened to them, I was just the first one to speak up about it. If people don't speak up when they run into a problem, it perpetuates it, and causes the families coming behind them to deal with the same issues or sometimes even worse.

Speaking your opinion in some communities is bad. Being a whistleblower is even worse.  Emails were sent out to all the families who previously adopted from the same country we did, which were forwarded to me by several of those people. People were warned to stay away from me. That I am a liar and only telling 1/2 truths. The only truth left for me to post would be actual names and dates and dollar amounts that we were asked for above and beyond what was agreed upon in our adoption. I would be more than happy to post those things, but they would only jeopardize the adoptions that other families are hoping to complete in the next couple of months. And really, posting those details would only add to the "he said/she said" junk that is going on. I won't be pulled into that game any further.

I was even blamed, and told that if something happened to the adoption program in that country, it would be on my shoulders. Wow...if one single person holds that much power, it's a pretty weak program to begin with. But person DID hold that much power, and put fear into the hearts of parents, including myself, who were doing nothing more than trying to get their children home. Because I and others did speak up, there were changes made so the families who are coming behind me won't be running into the same problems I and other families faced. Because a light has been shined on them, some people are now watching their steps a bit closer and being held slightly more accountable.

It is my personal opinion that if a person or organization only has one or two contacts within a country, the information they receive is going to be severely slanted. It's never good to have only one option. I was lucky. Just days before I left to get Axel,  God put me in contact with an entire pool of other people, and I have since met several more. When one person doesn't know the answer to a question, I have others I can go to. Best of all, there is no longer a gatekeeper to deal with. I can get my information directly from the source and not have to worry weather or not what I'm being told is the truth.

I am so over it. I'm tired of sitting behind the scenes, watching the stuff that is talked about behind the backs of families. Personal information that is shared by "professionals" to others who have no business having the information, totally disrespecting any form of privacy to those families. Weather those families were/are in the wrong or not, privacy still needs to be respected. And when other families were discussed in the way they were, it leaves no doubt in my mind how my family has been discussed with others.

Although we have lost much of our support system, we have something better. We have truth.

Monday, February 21, 2011


Yes, we are updating...our homestudy.

We do not know the who/where/what (as in boy or girl) yet. Our hearts and minds are open and that's all we can do for now. We continue to pray for the specific children who've had our hearts for months, that God will keep them safe.  We are moving forward in blind faith; belief that does not rest on logical proof or material evidence.  

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Answers to Questions

Well, it is no surprise I have had many questions today. Some privately and some in blog comments. The questions asked in blog comments that included names have not been published for obvious reasons.

I cannot give you any more information on my blog that what I have already included. There are other families working on adoptions in that country, some traveling now or at least very shortly, and they deserve to have a positive adoption experience, which I'm sure they will. I'm very excited to see their children coming home!

If you have a question, please ask privately via email at deanleah at comcast dot net

Crossroads with broken hearts

Some of you were around back in December, when I was in country adopting Axel and checked up on Ianna. I wrote an update about her in this post.

We found out a several weeks ago that she is not in a foster home, but in another institution. We found out two weeks ago that her health is very bad. "Life threatening". We found out yesterday that the Ministry will no longer do anything about her legal status because her health is too bad, and that "at this time, adoption either domestically or internationally is not in her best interest." They said it could change if her health improves, but this is highly unlikely. Because she is NOT able to be adopted, they could not give me any more information than that.

Our hearts ache for this child. I know that she is in pain. Her vision is most likely gone. She is suffering.

So, Dean and I are at a crossroads. We have the ability to adopt one more time, but the time to complete a second adoption is very limited. Eastern European governments shut down for much of the summer, and I go back to school in September. This particular country has the fastest process, and I'm now able to work directly through the ministry and not have to deal with unscrupulous people.

We are praying that if there is another child who is to be filling our last empty bedroom, that God make him or her known to us. Angela really wants a sister. We want whatever God wants.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Update on Axel

Axel is doing fantastic! I can't even begin to describe how amazing this child is.

That said, if you're not following my other blog then you may not know that Axel was diagnosed with AAI. He has already suffered damage to the space that contains the Cerebral Spinal Fluid, as well as to his spinal cord from too much movement between the vertabrae. He also has damage to the disk between c2 and c3.

Next week he and I are headed to Shriner's Children's Hospital in Philadelphia to meet with the surgeon who will be doing Axel's spinal fusion. Once the surgery is done Axel will then be in a halo for 6 months following surgery.

Axel can use all the prayers he can get! Because he already has damage to his spinal cord, he is at significant risk of catastrophic spinal cord injury. There is a button below that you're welcome to share by copying the code beneath it. All further updates about the surgery will be on my regular blog. Also, I am *trying* to get Angela contributing to her blog more (mostly via video) which is kinda fun to read.

Garden of Eagan