Saturday, November 2, 2013
Once a Warrior Always A Warrior. Advocating For Orphans, Reeces Rainbow Angel Tree, and Why I Can't Give Up!
As I sit here, my stomach is literally in knots and a lump in forming in my throat, tears are distorting the letters as I try to type. Why?
Grab a coffee and I'll fill you in.
My heart belongs to the orphan. I advocate for orphans with special needs in Eastern European countries. The most lost little souls on the planet. The ones hidden away in secluded out of the way orphanages and who spend their days in"laying down rooms". Those are rooms where just as the title suggests, is what happens. The children lay in their cribs. All day, all night..
Eventually they age out, usually at about four years old and are transferred to adult mental institutions where the atrocities that take place are too much for me to write. For most this is their road to the grave, and a place where hope is dead.
My Carina, who was listed on Reece's Rainbow, and who has a piece of my heart, is most likely in a place like this. She is five and half years old. She is in Russia and I have no way of helping her anymore. Russia is now closed to international adoption. For the past two years, while I was advocating for her, I promised to find her a home. I swore I would find her forever family. I raised over 6.000 for her adoption grant. I had auctions, and giveaways, I involved our school and they rallied and raised almost 1000.00 in two years for her. I went to craft fairs and did a lot of begging, pleading and praying. But still with all that effort, I failed. I couldn't get her out in time.
I was so sure that she would go home. I am tortured by the fact that she is stuck in hell. And am torn on how to pray for her. If she is suffering as I have seen some children from her country suffer, and ultimately die, than I pray that God is merciful and carries her to heaven. My heart has already grieved for her as if she were dead. But worse would be to know that this could be happening to her too.
This is Kyle. He is in heaven now. He was a Russian orphan , just like Carina. I could not live with myself if this happens to her too.
Right about now you may be wondering how on earth I can feel this strongly about an orphan a world away. An orphan that I've only seen in a photograph. Well, I don't know either exactly, except that when God lays something or in this case someone on your heart it has that affect. I love her with a mothers heart. And odd as this may sound, I feel a spiritual connection to her. No one wanted her. So without all the paper work and legal fees and dossiers and documents and red tape, I am her mother, by a spiritual adoption. Whose going to tell me , no??
Every year Reece's Rainbow has their biggest and best and most exciting fund raiser! It's called Angel Tree. Each orphan has his or her own Warrior. The goal for the warrior is to raise $1000.00 between November 1st and Dec 31st. Also to advocate and get that orphan seen as much as possible , because the ultimate goal is a forever family. MANY children are adopted during Angel Tree!!! For the past two years I was Carina's Warrior. Due to the adoption ban there are no orphans from Russia listed anymore. I am without my Carina this year.
Now, I'm getting to the stomach and lump in my throat part. If your still with me, thank you!
I'm afraid to advocate. I'm afraid to fail another child.
I refused for a long time after the ban (last December 26th) to go to Reece's Rainbow and look at the children. I felt like I was abandoning Carina if I thought about advocating for a child from another country. And honestly my heart was just not in it. I was paralyzed by the "what ifs". What if I lost this child like Carina, "What if" I fail again. "What if " I don't raise any money. "What ifs" are evil. They fill you with doubt and fear, they enable you to believe only the worst and lose sight of all the good.
Putting aside all the "what ifs " I have been carrying around has been overwhelmingly difficult.
We are a tight community of warriors and we were all knocked over by the ban. Some, God bless them were able to move on and claim another Sweet child to advocate for, more quickly than others. I wish I was like them. Eventually though, I did go "looking" and my heart was captured by this Pixie.
This is Gracelynn. And she just makes me smile.
Girl, born December 2002
Well, doesn’t this little pixie look like a spit fire? Those deep brown eyes are gorgeous!
Large families welcome, travel required. Married couples only. Gracelynn could be adopted with Rania, Kinley, and/or Emmalyn.
I'm still a little shaky, and scared but I'm holding the "what ifs " at bay. Part of Carina's adoption grant money has been given to Gracelynn, so she already has 5000.00 toward her adoption cost. My goal is to raise another $1000.00 by Dec 31st. And find her a family. NOT NECESSARILY IN THAT ORDER!
A family for Christmas would be a miracle for Gracelynn and the best birthday present EVER! She is a December baby!
Donations are now being accepted here. Just scroll down until you see Gracelynn . And with any $35 or more donation Reece's Rainbow will send you an ornament with Gracelynn's beautiful photo on it.
With all my fears and doubts, I still cannot stop advocating. Lord knows I want to. The pain is debilitating at times. But once a Warrior always a Warrior. These children need a voice. Mine was once loud and bold. I yelled for these children who are silent and forgotten. I was knocked down , but not taken out of the game completely. I'm getting up for Gracelynn. She needs me. And Sweet Carina will always have me as her mama so far away but always so in love with her.
Please join me this year. Please support Gracelynn and maybe even some of the other orphans and warriors raising funds and trying to find families. The immense joy of celebrating when a child gets a family mends the pain. This Christmas take a leap of faith. Listen to your heart, God may be whispering to you. To advocate, pray or possibly even to adopt.
God Bless and please keep me in your prayers, that I make my goal of $1000.00 for Gracelynn.