Dearest friends and family,
I cannot believe that we are finally at the place where this letter is necessary. We are so close to bringing Bradley home, and we have been and continue to be so humbled by God’s grace in our lives through each of you and the critical role you have played in getting to this place. You have prayed for us, loved us, sacrificed your time and resources for us, and we could never find enough words to tell you how deeply grateful we are for each of you.
The Lord has blessed us with an unusually adoption-savvy family and circle of friends, and that is such a gift for us and for our boy. As we approach bringing him home (HOME!), we want to explain a little bit about how we are hoping to handle his transition from an orphanage in Ethiopia to a family in Birmingham. This will be an enormous change for him, and while we are so excited, we are also starting to feel the weight of responsibility that comes with being parents, particularly being parents to an adopted child.
While we are not sharing our son’s story up until the time he was matched with us, we can tell you that the orphanage he will leave this week has been his home for a long time. For that reason, we are going to have to be extremely intentional in our first weeks and months at home. Bradley will not just be learning that we are his mom and dad; he will be learning what a mom and a dad actually are. We will be his first consistent caregivers. Because of that, our parenting will have to look different for a while. For the first few months home, Adam and I will need to be the only ones who hold, feed, bathe and change Bradley. We need to teach him that we are his people and that we will always be there. As he becomes ready, we are going to start widening our net, allowing others to hold him, etc.
We are making this decision after countless hours of education and research. It pains me to write this because I want each of you to hold him and kiss him and love him right away, but we have to do what is best for him. We still want you to come visit. Please come visit! We want to see you and be in the know about what is going on with you and your families. We cherish each of you and the role you have played in our adoption story. You have helped us grow our family, and there is just no way to thank you enough for that.
Adam and Baylor