That's just how my brain works - I have to think and analyze and analyze again. There are times that all of that analyzing leads to anxiety and worry and there are times when it just leads to more concrete thoughts and assurance. I love when God uses my children for assurance during times that all of that analyzing is heading towards anxiety and fear.
When we arrived in Tennessee on Saturday night, after getting the best phone call ever, I was mentally, emotionally, and physically exhausted. I sent my kids to church with my parents the next morning and just decided to have some quiet, alone time with Jesus at my parents piano....bc that's where I do my best stress relieving and reenergizing.
It was about 12:15 and I was in parents kitchen getting lunch ready, waiting for everyone to get back from church. At this point, I hadn't had a chance to talk to my parents bc the kids were around and my brain was just all mushy from overload the day before, but after my quiet, piano music filled morning with Jesus, I had worked out a plan to let my parents in on our news and potential decision. As I stood there over the stove, I thought, "Can we really do this? Can we really expect our children to learn sign language so they can communicate and have a relationship with the brother they've prayed so hard for? What if they just don't want to???"
Within seconds of having those thoughts, which are legitimate concerns when you're adopting a deaf child, my mom walked through the door and said, "Mist, I can't wait for you to hear what the girls got to see at church this morning!"
Right behind her were Anna Beth and Lynnsie - excitedly telling me about the "girls that were singing with their hands and it's so cool and it's called sign language and Gram said you used to do sign language when you were younger so can you please teach us, mommy?!"
You guys....I can't even make this stuff up. I was frozen in place with tear filled eyes and I just smiled....a. big, knowing, and understanding smile....and I said, "I would love to teach you."
By the end of the week they knew most of their ABC's in sign language and soon after, we learned of our favorite ASL resource for children, Signing Time. This resource is amazing and was created by a mom who had a daughter who was born deaf. Over the last 8 months, we've checked out videos from the library and watched the episodes available on Netflix. It's been amazing to watch the kids pick it up so quickly!
The experience my girls had watching the youth girls "sing with their hands" was an answered prayer in so many ways...
1) It immediately answered the questions of my heart - yes, we could teach our children sign language so they can communicate and have a relationship with their brother
2) It introduced our family to one of the most beautiful songs with lyrics that are full of truth...the song is by Lauren Daigle and it's called How Can It Be?
3) It allowed us to introduce sign language to our children and begin to teach them, without risking their hearts to attaching to a little boy that we had no guarantees from the orphanage that they would allow us to adopt.
We are so thankful for all of the ways that God has assured us these past few years and especially these last 8 months, but this one - by far - is my very, very most favorite :)