A Heart For Down Syndrome
Swell Adoption Fund: August 2016
The M Family's Heart for a Child with Down Syndrome
We are the Meredith family. Andrew and I (Diana) have been married for 6 years and we have two biological children. Audrey is our oldest at 4 years old, and Jonah is the youngest at 2 years.
Adoption has been a topic of conversation for Andrew and I since we were dating, but we were not sure when we would begin the process. As we discussed adoption on various occasions, I asked Andrew what he thought about adopting a child with Down syndrome. I was a special education teacher before we had children, and I was especially drawn to children with Down syndrome. At first, Andrew wasn't sure what to think about adopting a child with DS, but over time he became more open to it. As we learned about the harsh reality and grim future for children with Down syndrome in orphanages in foreign countries, we became more convinced that we wanted to adopt a child with DS.
In November of 2015, we saw the photo of a little girl with Down syndrome in China, and we decided to contact the adoption agency about her. Soon after, we learned we were not quite old enough to adopt from China, so we landed on Eastern Europe instead. Although that sweet girl was not meant to be our daughter, she stirred our hearts to take action and pursue adoption right then, rather than waiting any longer. In late November, we submitted our official application to our agency.
From January through May, we completed our home study visits, attended several weekends of excellent parent training classes specific to adoption, compiled our dossier, obtained multiple sets of fingerprints for various background checks, had medical evaluations done, and worked on saving as much money as we could. We also completed several fundraisers to help raise the money we needed to pay agency fees.
Our dossier is now complete and in Eastern Europe awaiting a match to our future son or daughter, who will happen to have Down Syndrome. As we wait, we are continuing to save as much as we can since it is possible that things may move very rapidly from here. Our remaining expenses are a large legal fee to the country we are adopting from, travel costs, and some additional paperwork expenses. Our child's country will require two trips, one to meet our child and one to bring him or her home.
We are so grateful for all of the support we have received from our family and friends, both in prayer and financially. Adoption has already been a joyful, yet difficult journey, and we look forward to seeing how God will use this in our lives to bring glory to His name.