Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Six Day Miracle

I read the words of a friend last night, and as is typical of posts written by mamas rescuing their babies from orphanages across the world, it cut me to the heart. I read it with my girl tucked safely in the crook of my arm, her golden head laying softly against my neck, and I gulped back hot tears trying to read the words out loud to Sam.

"You read it," I said, because I knew it was pointless to go on.

There is something beautiful and powerful about mamas and daddies sacrificing finances, time, and energy to rescue a child who is going to require extraordinary amounts of care and effort once they are home. There is something amazing and rare about families who will put everything on the line, including and especially their hearts, for a child who by the world's standards is broken. There is something pure and noble and absolutely right about that kind of love- the love that says it doesn't matter what it takes, I am going to rescue this child, and nothing is going to stand in my way. The love that faces seemingly insurmountable costs and mountains of paperwork and risks what family and friends will think about traveling across the ocean to save a child you've never met before, one that many people might say wasn't really "fit for life" in the first place.

So when I read this mama's account of the very first time she met her little girl- it didn't matter that I've read several dozen similar stories- they get me every time. I want you to read this account, that of a mama rescuing her daughter. I want you to listen to the words spoken by a five year old little girl...

...and if you're a parent, imagine your child saying them...

About 5 minutes in, the door opened and someone pushed our girl in the door and shut it.

She was stunned. It seemed she had not been made aware of what was happening or why, and she regarded us quizzically at first. We were stunned.  The picture had turned in to a person! My mind was literally swimming, I could not remember a.single.word. of Russian. I couldn’t remember how to greet her, or how to tell her she was absolutely gorgeous, or how to say I am your Mama.  Nothing. Just complete shock.

Then I remembered I had a Disney princess doll in my bag to give her. I pulled it out, and she smiled.  I asked if she wanted to sit on my lap, and she did.  The director and doctor began talking again, but all I could do was stare at the sweet, brown pigtails swishing in front of me. Her little hands turning the doll over, as she began to speak a little bit.  She began to realize what was happening.

We were there FOR. HER.

Our sweet little Vi.

She looked up and asked me “What is your name?” in Russian.  I told her “Lora. Mama.”  She looked straight to Dean, “What is your name?”  He told her “Dean. Papa.” She looked to the director and smiled “Mama! Papa!”

Everyone was absolutely beaming, and perhaps had just a glint of tears in their eyes.

“I kept asking for you!! Mama? Mama? Mama? When will you come??” she said, according to our translator. 

Five years is a long time to wait for this.

Or this...

Or this...

I can't imagine Lily never knowing the security of having a mama to tuck her in every night, to hold her when she's hurting or comfort her when she's sad, never knowing how it feels to be desired and loved.

I can't imagine what goes through a little girl's mind for five years, wondering when her mama will come take her home, waiting for the day she will walk through the doors of her orphanage, dreaming about that elusive, imaginary angel....

Mama? Mama? Mama? When will you come??

Yesterday I received an email from a friend...another amazing mama who traveled last year to rescue not one, but two children.

I wanted to see if you could help me out by posting on your blog about the Dirkes family. You see she contacted me today just heart broken and at her wits end. Her faith is shaken and my heart has gathered her burden. She leaves in one week. Yes, 7 days and she still needs at least 7k for this trip. Grand total is still about 17k. I am asking for your help because I was in her shoes not long ago and it is heart wrenching. It takes all you got to get through a day. The tears seem to never end. You pray there will just be one person who hears your cry. You pray until you have no words left just hoping someone will help. Patti, financially I cannot help her, I have made donations but not nearly enough to help. I have heard her cries and I cannot just sit back and hope she gets her funds. Her daughter Charlotte holds a special place in my heart; she was the one I would of chosen if we didn't choose Varvara. So, this leaves me to contact people who I know can help. Please go to her blog and see if you can help. Post a story, anything you can think of....
Ann Plummer

I went to Ann's friend's blog, and recognized a sweet little face I donated to a few months ago...and again a few days ago, in honor of another friend's birthday wish. Little Charlotte met her mama and daddy last November. They are traveling in six days to see her again, and go to court to make her theirs.

Six Days.

 Six days to make a miracle happen.

Do you think we can do it?

With God's help, I believe we can.

Charlotte's mama, Kelly, emailed me yesterday, after I said I would do everything I could to help.

There are no words to thank you and the others who have stepped up and spoken out for us and for my girl. I knew this journey would give me the opportunity to learn a great deal about being a momma and about Down Syndrome...but I didn't know just how strong this community is.

Well, Kelly- you're about to find out. I say that not because I have confidence in Lily's blog, or in my own words, but because I serve a BIG God. And I'm part of a faithful and generous community, one who rallies around its own.

Charlotte is our own, friends.

 She's been waiting for her mama all of her life, waiting and hoping for someone to come and take her home.

“I kept asking for you!! Mama? Mama? Mama? When will you come??”

 Lily's readers have responded so many times to the needs of orphans. You've given so much to help these families find and rescue their children. Will you help me again?

Will you help us make a six day miracle happen?

Will you help save a little girl?

Because Charlotte is our own.

I know Lily's readers, and I know it doesn't even take a giveaway to move you beyond compassion, and into action. I know the face of one beautiful little girl who desperately needs her mama is enough to move you to give.
But a giveaway full of amazing prizes is always nice too:)   (and thank you, Kelly, for letting me hijack your giveaway!)

Here's how it works....

1 chance=$10 donation

5 chances=$25 donation

20 chances=$50 donation

blog or post on FB for an extra entry !( leave a comment saying you did so)

All donations are tax-deductible and go directly to the Dirkes's grant fund through Reece’s Rainbow.  They can be made using the Chip-In at the top of my sidebar on the right.

Canon Rebel DSLR camera (with lens)

Petal Knot Dress from Willow Bean Creations

Custom made t-shirt from If You Say Sew

Starfish necklace from The Vintage Pearl

Pearl, bracelet, and earring set from Kay Jewelers

Insulated Tote from 31

Autographed copy of Alton Brown’s book “I’m Just Here for the Food”

Autographed “Hopkins” from Rachel Coleman of Signing Time

$150 gift card for Kimberly Wilson's TranquiliT (an amazing line of clothing for anyone who loves yoga...or comfort)

$50 gift card for Planet Jill

$50 gift card for Scentsy

$50 gift card for Hanna Andersson

$50 gift card for Target
$25 gift card for The Adopt Shoppe

$25 gift card for Wal-Mart

$25 gift card for Starbucks

$25 gift card for Olive Garden

A jar of Renee Tam’s famous toffee

A batch of oReshki, traditional cookies from Charlotte’s country

Kelly sees who donated on her chip-in, so you do not need to leave a comment to be entered to win. She will announce winners on her blog on February 6th, the day they leave to see Charlotte....

We need that chip-in to be at $13,300 for the Dirkes family to travel on February 6th.

*UPDATE- this goal has been MET- we are aiming at getting the Dirkes FULLY FUNDED by February 6th. In other words- we want that chip-in at 100% so they can bring Charlotte home in March.

I believe in miracles.

Do you????


Karly said...

Oh Patti I was looking at their blog yesterday. My heart truly feels for them being so close yet feeling so far away from the financial goal! I wish I could do more. I shared the blog post yesterday and a friend of mine did also. Praying my heart out that many will be touched by their story and give something.. if everyone gives a little...it will amount to a lot. Thankyou for sharing these stories. I know I would want to have people I could count on in time of need, and it blesses my heart to see you do so much for these families, and children. Heading over to their blog right now, and will see why else I can do to bring awareness to their family! <3 Bless you Friend!

Jennifer said...

Thanks for posting this Patti - I donated a few weeks ago to help bring home sweet Charlotte, but I know how much this means to Kelly. I've gotten to know her - and she's just going to be an awesome mama to this sweet little girl!! :) I have a special spot in my heart for other families who are "first time" parents like us, adopting their sweet babies!! :)

Bethany said...

Thanks for sharing once again patti!! The Dirkes are local to me ... I can't wait to meet this princess!!!

April Vernon said...

I am praying that God blesses these efforts. You are using your blog to do amazing things, and I will do my part to spread the word and bring people here!

Leah said...

Thanks Patti for posting this, I too donated a few weeks ago but I will try to donate some more again for sweet Charlotte.

Education: Exploring Online Learning said...

Thank you for sharing this!!

Unknown said...

I am crying and crying and crying. I stay up at night trying to figure ways to get them money. They need it. She is one of ours! I get to see Kelly tomorrow and I want to tell her good news. I want to hear good news. Thank you for posting this. I'm going to repost it on my blog and on Facebook. You're the best!

Mandy said...

I'm so grateful for your heart and your passion to help bring these little ones home, Patti. We have been waiting for payday to help with this family's need and today is it! Happy to be a part of another family's journey and I can't wait to watch as God shoves this mountain out of the way!

Jonana said...

Thanks for posting about this! Donated and commented over on her blog. Praying for them!

Anonymous said...

Patti again your heart is so big. You are doing great things here!!! I donated today.


Lora said...

Thank you for using our story to help and bless this truly deserving and wonderful family!!! I went over and donated a little, we can't spare much obviously while we are trying to complete our own adoption. I will be praying for them and for sweet Charlotte!!!!

Jo's Corner said...

Dear Patti ~ I just made another donation for Sweet Charlotte to come Home. My heart has been heavy for the family. I DO Believe in Miracles! Hugs ~ jo

Anna Theurer said...

Patti, thank you do much. I have blogged off and on for Charlotte and Kelly and it has been so hard to watch them struggle so to raise the necessary funds. I know that all us, united, together can make a difference. Thank you for blogging about them.

Katrina said...

Thank you so much for helping out Charlotte's mommy. She is going through so much right now that she keeps private and Charlotte is their first little one too. Praying for this miracle for them and doing whatever I can to share and donate.

Carlene's soon to be momma :)

Julia said...

Patti, Thank you for posting. We have donated and are praying and believing that a miracle is going to take place! We serve a Mighty God!!

Mrs. K said...

I cannot believe how much little Vi looks like Lora and Dean. I contributed to the Dirks and Charlotte and will add them to my prayer list. I will also pray I win a jar of Renee Tams famous toffee...JUST KIDDING. But it looks so yummy I am sure I gained 3pounds just looking at the picture. ;>)

Becca said...

Reposting this on my blog in the morning - I'm looking forward to meeting this sweet girl, and want to help Kelly bring her home soon!!!

Kellan's momma said...

I read this and just had to go donate to Kelly and Charlotte again. ((hugs))

cara said...

I am SO thrilled you are doing this for Charlotte Patti!!! It just melts my heart. She was the very first sweet face that I saw on Reece's Rainbow, and I was in love. I kept up with her, and then I saw that she had a forever family. I was SO excited. Now, to see her beautiful mama going to rescue her just blesses my heart. I tried to donate last night, but my computer was not letting me for some reason. I will go try to donate now again. If I can't, I will make sure I figure it out and DO. I will post on FB too and spread the word!!

cara said...

I was able to donate! I will keep spreading the word and donating. I cannot wait to watch this little one on her journey home. And yes, I believe in miracles!!!! We serve an AMAZING God.

Lizzy said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Gretchen said...

Thank you for working so hard for all of these families...for these precious kids. We can do this for the Dirkes! God is good all the time and HE is BIG and MIGHTY.

(the above removed entry was me accidentally logged in on my daughters---oops.)

Blessings. And thanks.

Kellan's momma said...

I'm so happy to see the chip in go from 35% last night to 41% today!! We have a ways to go, but we are getting there!! And seriously Casey, $20-30 grand to have a bio baby? Really? What kind of budget do you live on?? That's ridiculous, even without insurance. Casey, wake up, grow up, and MIND YOUR OWN FREAKING BUSINESS!!!
(Patti, you don't have to post this if you don't want to, but I had to say it!!)

Melissa said...

I'm loving this blog. Just LOVE IT! Will be back soon to donate. It's naptime, got 2754 things to do before they wake hehe...will be back.

Melanie McNitt said...

Just donated to help bring sweet Charlotte HOME!

Speechless said...

Hi Patti,
Thank you so much for helping bring Charlotte home. Can you answer a question for me though. My Chip In doesn't seem to be changing at all. How much do they still need in order to be fully funded. I wanted to share on my Facebook.

Amy Rankin said...

I chipped-in $10...wish it could be more. Tight times...
Amy Rankin

cathy said...

donated $50.00

Bless them


Patti said...

somehow I missed your question, Shannon- so sorry ! They need to be at $23,500 on their chip-in to be fully funded...so a little less than $6,000 now. thank you for asking !

Maria said...

Just gave $10! I know they'll do it!
- Maria

Gloria said...

Donated today and I'm excited to see how God's gonna meet the rest of their needs. He will coz they're rescuing His child! He will come thru. ALWAYS! Hang in there Dirkes! God is more than able. The same Father that connected your hearts will bring her to you in His time!