Our life is nothing short of an adventure...

Wind in our hair and screams of delight but also unpredictable turns and unknown outcomes. We are a family of six; Dave, Susie, Nate, Jake, Sam, and Bella.

God has been faithful in our marriage and through the birth and blessings of our boys.

God has been faithful during our adoption journey and united Bella with us in May of 2008. We were privileged to visit with Bella's birth mother; therefore, Bella's family in Guatemala will always be dear to our hearts.

On October 16, 2008, Bella was diagnosed with ALL Leukemia. We are now battling the disease with 2 years and 3 months of treatment. We believe God will continue to be faithful!

Our family is committed to living life to the fullest...even on the hard days. Thank you for checking in and journeying with us!

Monday, September 24, 2007

First Trip to Guatemala!

Dear Friends and Family, We just returned home from our initial visit to meet our daughter and sign POA papers for our legal team. Words cant describe our emotions or the incredible awe we feel in God's perfect plan and provision in our adoption journey. Below is a small snap shot video we put together of our 2 days spent with our daughter. Please be sure to have your volume turned up as we have put the video to a song by Stephen Curtis Chapman called "Speechless", this song sums up our adoption experience up to this point. We truly stand in awe of what God has done in our lives. We hear all the time that our daughter is blessed, but the truth is, WE are the one's experiencing the blessing from this journey.

We have chosen to name her Esabella xxxxx, xxxx is the name her birth Mother gave her. It had special meaning to her, so we chose to honor the birth Mother and make it her middle name. We plan to call her Bella...pronounced "Beya". Bella means "beautiful" in Spanish.

Our trip was all to quick, amazing, joyful, emotional and exciting. It was heart breaking to leave her...but we have no doubt that she is in amazing care as we experienced that first hand. We met the birth Mother and her almost 2 year old son....that moment was emotional for all of us, she is a treasure and very beautiful.

As for Guatemala, its a beautiful country surrounded by mountains full of greenery. However, Guatemala City itself was lacking in that same beauty. Every building is surrounded by 15-20 ft gates or walls with barb wire on top of them. Armed Guardsman stand at every entrance to every building adding a sense of security but sadness in the corruption of this country. Never in my life have I appreciated my FREEDOM and our country more than this return trip home. We are all the more anxious to get her home.

Our Family Court appointment and DNA testing was today, we are confident that Birth Mom arrived....although we can imagine it was a painful experience for her as she was required to testify before a Guatemalan court with Esabella stating that she desires to put her up for adoption as she cant care for her. These two appointments are the first major hurdles in getting her home. US Embassy Pre-Approval will be next.

We have so much love and admiration for our Birth Mom as she has made the greatest sacrifice for the good of her daughter and has given us one of 4 of our greatest gifts (the boys being the other 3). Please continue to pray that God will give her a spirit of peace and joy in her decision for our family. That the mind of Christ will be bound to all AGCI employees, US and Government Officials that are handling all of Bella's paperwork and strength for our family as we embark on the last part of the journey in bringing our daughter home for good. Lastly, that God will "complete that which he has started".

Thank you for all your love and prayers, the support has been overwhelming and we are so grateful.

"The Lord did this, and it is marvelous in our eyes. This is the Day the Lord has made, we will rejoice and be glad"! Psalm 118:2324

Love to all,

Dave, Susie and The Boys


Jen Kroll said...

my heart rejoices with you. i'm sitting here with tears streaming down my face. God is truly good. speechless indeed.

4.0 said...
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amypotts said...

thanks for sharing that- what amazing things God has in store for you all! I can't wait for Alexa to meet Esabella! :-) We pray blessings on you as you bring her home.

marthac said...

Oh my gosh, your daughter is so beautiful! Congratulations. The Castillo family can't wait to give her a hug and kiss! Yes, GOD is so GREAT!! See you soon Bella!!

ConnieRae said...

Dave and Susie

God is indeed good and His love endures forever! Blessings to your family from the great Northwest! Esabella is beautiful and she is blessed to be part of an outstanding family.

Love each other well!

Carol B. said...

what a beautiful baby girl. Your adoption ministery is wonderful. May God Bless your family on the rest of your Journey to bring baby Bella home.