A year ago today, we received “the call” that we had waited and waited for. It was Monday, March 19, 2012. I was working from home and catching up after being out of town for our annual fundraising banquet. Brett had just been home for lunch and had returned to work. When I saw our agency’s number pop up, I didn’t automatically think this was “the call.” I had just taken papers for apostilling the week before and I assumed the call was about that or more papers needed. At that point, we had been registered in Russia and Kaliningrad for over a year, so we were constantly updating papers. Anna (our agency rep) asked if I had a minute and then told me she had good news. My heart started to race and that is when she said the words “you have a referral” (aka you have been matched with two children). They are two little girls that are 2 and 4. She proceeded to give us their birth dates and just a few tidbits of information. She explained that we had a couple days to decide if we would accept the referral and she would email over small pictures and a short page of information on each child. It was the moment we had dreamed of (literally) and it was happening. I called Brett and asked him to come home immediately. Thankfully, he works less than a mile from our home. By the time he made it, I had received the email and we were able to “see” our girls for the first time.
We looked over everything a million times, we prayed together and then we felt the weight of the world…or more like the weight of two little girls lives on our shoulders. We know many couples who had to turn down referrals because they didn’t match their preferences (medical concerns that were outside of what they included in their applications). We both had an immediate peace that these were our girls, but many fears still lingered. After work, we took a long walk and by the end of the walk, we knew both girls names – Lydia Grace Lessley and Eleanor Rose Lessley and decided that we would accept the referral. Later that night we began sharing the GREAT news with family and friends! When we saw how happy so many people were for us, we realized how much love and support there was already for our family of four. Two weeks later we would be in Russia meeting our girls.
One year later…today was an average day (with a special visit from some friends) for our family and now the girls are tucked in their beds and sound asleep (hopefully). They know home, they readily talk about “my daddy” and “my mommy”, they are best friends and sisters, BUT they also talk about “my Russia” and events prior to their homecoming. It is a a little reminder of how different our lives were a year ago and yet a testimony to how amazing and beautiful adoption can be. What a year it has been for our family! We praise God for our little miracles and for His grace and mercy!