Our Story

Friday, May 1, 2009

Me and my love

Let me take a moment to introduce us and tell you how we began our adoption journey. We are Patrick and Eva. We live in Florida and have been married for 9 years. Although we began our formal paper chase in August 2006 for our first child, God had been preparing our hearts for adoption for some time. Even before we were married in October 2002, we both thought at some point in our lives we would adopt a child. For me this desire first came about in the summer of 1998 when I attended a Steven Curtis Chapman concert at King’s Dominion just outside of Richmond, VA. He shared how he and his wife, Mary Beth, had grown their family by adopting a daughter, Shaohannah, from China. God had used this story to lay a foundation for adoption in my life. But at the time I was still single, so the thoughts and desire for adoption lay silent until I met Patrick in 2001.

We talked about adoption as something we knew we wanted to do but didn’t know “how or when”. Like many others, we believed we would adopt after we had biological children of our own. Over the last few years, the topic of adoption came up more and more, as my identical twin sister, Deb, and her husband, Andy, have struggled with infertility. Triggered in part by their trials, we thought harder and longer about adoption. To better understand what my sister and Andy were going through, my dear friend Adele, recommended a book, “When The Cradle Is Empty.” It turned out to be an incredibly insightful book! It opened my eyes to the pain couples experience as they struggle to begin their families. What this book did even more for me was deepen my desire to adopt. Instead of reading the book from the beginning, I skipped straight to the chapter on adoption. It was evident how God was slowly working on our hearts during this time.

In July 2006, Patrick attended a Promise Keepers conference in Jacksonville, FL. One of the speakers, Pastor Bob Reccord, shared his personal story of adoption. Patrick’s heart was deeply moved by Pastor Bob. What I hadn’t told Patrick was that I had just heard Pastor Reccord on Focus On The Family earlier that week! I knew something was up when he called on his way home from the conference and told me we needed to talk. He shared with me that God had placed on his heart the need to start our family “now” and that we would begin by adopting a child from China. I was so ecstatic! That week I began researching adoption agencies and located one within a couple hours from our home. Patrick called and arranged our first meeting. That is the story of how we began our “paper pregnancy” for our son, Caleb.

We spent the Fall of 2006 paperchasing and finally completed our dossier in December. We submitted our dossier to China and were officially logged in January 31, 2007. Fast forward a few months, we received our referral for Caleb on July 10, 2007 and traveled in October/November 2007 to bring him home. He has been the light of our lives. He has such a sense of humor, it's pretty amazing. He's so easy going. He loves to play soccer, swim, and play with his trains. It has been such a joy to watch him blossom after finally having a home of his own and a mommy and daddy to love him. We truly can't imagine our lives without him.

In the fall of 2008, we felt the Lord calling us again to adopt another child. This time we felt led to bring home a little girl. It took us several months to paperchase because of new immigration requirements. However, we finally sent our dossier to China in March 2009. It was such a great feeling to do that, even the second time around; it was still a bit surreal.

Well, now that our paperchase is finished, it's time to sit back and enjoy life as we wait for our referral for Madeline. We hope to use this blog to keep you all updated. Thank you so much for taking the time to stop by. It means so much to us. Blessings to you all!


The Raudenbush Family 4/06/2011  

Hi Eva -- can you send me your email? I can't find our old correspondences and I have a request for you. :) It's a family photo request to use online for a new nonprofit launching in the next few days. Email me if you are at all interested and I'll fill you in on the details!

tasha 5/10/2012  

how beautiful. love your blog (found it through embrace the camera). thank you for sharing your journey!

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About This Blog

This blog is the place where shared our lives while waiting to bring our daughters Madeline and Havi home from China. (Our son Caleb was already home before this blog began.) It is now the place where we continue to share our life experiences, both big and little, as we try to glorify God and raise our 3 dumplings from China.

Feel free to join us as we journey through life, while I try to capture our days...

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