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!


Friday, September 5, 2008

Happy Birthday Bella!


Referral Picture


Bella on her 1 yr. Birthday

One year ago today, at around 8 pm, Dave, the boys and I gathered around my computer to capture the first glimpse of our daughter....Elisabella. We waited 9 months to receive our referral...funny....pregnancy is 9 months. I remember sitting down at the computer after receiving the call from our case worker and being nervous to open the email. Dave and the boys were anxious and saying "hurry up, open it"....and I said "this is it". The second I opened it, I burst in to tears. Not only did we wait 9 months for the referral, but we waited 7 months to come up with the initial payment to start the process. And in all that waiting, I would pray daily "may she beautiful to our eye's". In that very moment, I seen my daughter for the very first time, and like the boys, she took my breath away. I couldn't stop the tears, the boys were squeeling "she's so cute" and my husband said "yup, she looks like one of our's".

As I look back at the last 2 years and 4 months....I am amazed at our God. I am always amazed by Him. I stand in awe of everything, even the little things. I miss the quiet physical dependence and closeness I had with him through the process waiting for Bella and bringing her home. But I rest in my spirit knowing that we have never been closer.

Bella's birthday was August 28th, and of course, we will always celebrate that as her birthday. But quietly or with a loud bang or even in my quiet time with God, I will always celebrate this day as her birthday. This is "our gotcha day" as they say in the adoption world. Most would say that's the Embassy Apt day, but not for me. This was when I gave birth, this is when the Lord revealed His promise to us. This "was the day the Lord had made". And we absolutely "rejoice and are glad".

We love you sweet girl, you are a joy, delight, and gift to all of us and we celebrate in the gift of you.

P.S. Slide show of her birthday to come...I'm working on it.

12 comments:

Chris & Lindsey Wheeler said...

Sweet Bella....thank you Lord for this precious child!! She is just so BEAUTIFUL!!! Happy "Gotcha" Day!

Mary Ann said...

Happy birthday sweet Bella! You sure are a beauty! I love her outfit!

Susie said...

Beautiful then and beautiful now--what a wonderful day for your family!

Cheri (prounounced like the tree, like the fruit, as in Cherry Pie) said...

What an awesome day you must be having! Our referral day is October 4th and I can hardly believe one year is nearing. Think of the days from January through April that we chatted and emailed long hours. That seemed like a LLLOOOONNNGGGG period of time, yet looking back, this truly may have been the fastest year of my life. I miss you and can't believe it's been 4 months since we got to be together! Love ya, Sus!

Candy said...

HAPPY BDay SWEET BELLA!

lovingourtwoguys said...

She is as sweet as they come...a little sack of sugar!! Happy Birthday, sweet Bella! May your year be blessed!

The Jeltemas said...

Happy Birthday Beautiful girl!

The Jeltemas said...

Hi Susie, I had a feeling you guys used Hope for Hannah, Heather is truly an amazing woman with an even more amazing testimony as to how God uses young people....it would be something to go to their orphanage in Guatamala. We love you and so happy that you got Bella home before the doors shut....how marvelous, how wonderful is our Saviour's love for us?!

The gFamily said...

God is so awesome!! He picked beautiful Bella for your family and she fits so perfectly!!

Happy Birthday Bella!!!

Joe and Erin said...

Sus, your daughter is soooo incredibly beautiful. Keep the headbands going no matter what Mom says, I think they are adorable. All the time God is good. I am so proud to have Bella in our family. We love her so much! ~ Joe and Erin

Kay Bratt said...

Wow-- what a beauty.

Kay

David and Marianne said...

What a beautiful post! With tears in my eyes, I deeply identified with your eloquent words. We waited 9 mos. too for our referral. I love how you will always celebrate your own special "gotcha day" from the Lord! What special insight on referral day!