The past few months have been incredible. Our friends, family…and complete strangers…have come alongside us in our adventure to bring home Dylan and Dakota. You all have donated your prayers, your time, your money, your items, and mostly your love and support. We have seen bake sales, Double Dog Dares, yard sales, Mary Kay, antique windows…. I can’t even name all the ways you have all sacrificed for our two boys. And we are absolutely grateful!!! One day our two boys will be home and I want you all to know that you have given them a family.
This is not a faceless cause: we are Darren and Stacey. You know us from school, church, and the grocery store. We know you and your children. We have taught many of them or just cheered for them alongside our own children at basketball, soccer and school functions. It is not easy for us to ask for money, but we cannot think of a greater cause than the ransom for two boys from Bulgaria. So this post is just to say “thank you”. All told, we have raised over $20,000. I am often asked how much we need and there is no way I can know exactly. I hate not being able to throw out an exact number. For every family adopting from Bulgaria, it has been different. It depends on travel times and other variables. The closest average I can see is about $34,000.00, but our goal has been $28,000. And to think that I was concerned about how God would provide. We are so close to being fully funded; I am so weak in my faith at times.
We are now awaiting USCIS approval (United States paperwork that proves our ability to adopt and also proves the boys are adoptable). Once this is done, our apostilled documents will wing their way across the ocean to await the Ministry of Justice approval. They will then give us a travel date!!! It’s finally happening and I am so excited. I will spend two weeks in Bulgaria visiting with the boys and “deciding” if they are a match to our home. Yes, the first trip is for us to decide if we want the boys. I wrestled greatly with this. My mind has created many scenarios of things I could not do or didn’t want to do. It all comes down to the fact that this kind of thinking is my own weakness. I want to tell everyone this right now, we are bringing two boys home. We fully trust and believe that God has called us to be a family to Dylan and Dakota. We do not say this lightly; we are fully aware of the difficult road that lies ahead. However, when we began this pursuit we did so with the absolute trust and faith in God’s hand in this journey. So, our first trip will be exciting, but not a decision-making trip. We are welcoming the boys into our family, fully cognizant of the good and the bad.
In the meantime, life goes on in the Gagnon home. We are slowly gathering clothing, bedding, toys and other toddler-related items. We are saving money because we know medically there are going to be some expenses straight out and also we may not raise the whole amount. Darren will be doing some construction over the summer to accommodate a child with a wheelchair and also to make room for the boys. He will be widening the bathroom door and fixing a downstairs bedroom for two children who cannot walk yet. We do know that Dakota will never walk, so we will be looking for carriers and other adaptive equipment that he will need. We are hoping insurance will cover a wheelchair, but for now a stroller will work.
Sorry this post is so long, we appreciate all of you and continue to covet your prayers and support. You are all as much a part of the journey as we are.