This past summer a writer friend facebooked me and told me that Focus on the Family, Thriving Family, was looking for adoptive families who would be interested in writing an article for their November issue.  I’m not a writer.  I love to blog but there is a big difference in actually attempting to write articles etc.  But I submitted a piece for our family and guess what?  They decided to use it.  We are part of a handful of families that were able to share their stories of adoption.  You can see all the stories at Thriving Family On line if you don’t get their magazine.

Beauty From the Brokenadoption-rhodes

I have a pink plastic bag from Frankie’s birth mother. As she was dying, she packed a few items for her son. Clothes, baby powder, a brush and comb. There is also a bottle of used perfume, given so that Frankie would always know how his mother smelled. That perfume reminds me of the journey that brought Frankie into our lives. 

After our first daughter, Emma, was born, Dave and I battled infertility for three years. Finally, the doctors said they couldn’t help us. The news, though devastating, gave me a strange peace because I knew that adopting a child was in our future. But in a shock to everyone, I found out I was pregnant with our second daughter, Izzie.

But our desire to adopt never disappeared. In 2008, I returned to Haiti, a country that had captured my heart years earlier on a missions trip. This time I fell in love with the orphan children. When I returned home, we started the adoption paperwork, and were soon matched with Frankie, a little boy I had met while touring the orphanage.

Adoptions from Haiti can take up to four years to finalize. Knowing that it would be a long time before our son could physically be with us, we began creating space for Frankie in our lives through conversations and stories, pictures and prayer. We committed to visiting him twice a year. We also connected with others who would be taking trips near Frankie so they could bring him gifts and relay our love.

We were two years into the adoption process when the massive earthquake rocked Haiti. The U.S. government quickly granted Haitian orphans humanitarian parole. We were overjoyed to learn that we could now fly to Orlando to pick up Frankie.

I often wonder what Frankie’s birth mother would think of the journey her son has been on. The earthquake focused the world’s attention on the poverty, death and destruction, but it also brought to light the many missionaries and organizations that had been heroes long before the earthquake. Frankie’s arrival under such tragic circumstances is a testimony to the reality of redemption — that beauty can be made out of what’s broken.

—Kim Rhodes