Thursday, January 20, 2022

Why India?

The morning that we were to take custody of our daughter was supernatural. I awoke to the Muslim Call to Prayer in Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh, India. I showered and dressed and went downstairs to meet our lovely host, Manju. Together we shared chai and breakfast. My heart beat normally. My breath was steady. I’m an anxious person to my core and this overwhelming peace that had settled in was the best gift from God that day. Finally the time had come for us to get in the car and head to the place that held a part of my heart for so long. When we arrived, I eagerly yet calmly walked into the rest of my life.

Upon arrival, we were met by a council of sorts. Women in kurtas and saris and a few men sat down with us in a circle offering up more chai and conversation and wanted to know, “Why India?”

How many times have I had that asked since? There are several ways I could answer that question, but honestly the only one that is the most true is because God himself placed this specific child in our hearts and by following Him, we found her. We believe in this Holy Father who says, “I will not leave you as orphans. I will come to you.”

On the day we were matched with her, I remember feeling so blue. I had flown to our home in Tennessee after only being in Colorado for a few days with my family. My dearest friend had just suffered the loss of her father, an unimaginable debt in our lives and many others throughout our small community. I had gone back to attend the funeral and try to offer my meager support in the hardest of times. I decided to stay with my mom that weekend, despite owning our house just ten minutes down the road. Isn’t there just something about your mom’s place? It doesn’t matter that you didn’t grow up in that exact house, her peace and security she offers will follow anywhere she goes. That’s all I’ve ever wanted to create in my own family and I truly hurt for each and every person who has never experienced that love from their mom.

I was headed out the door- ready to meet my friends for a quick run. Running is an outlet for me and has been since the birth of our second child. It helps me to alleviate stress and I use it as my therapy. My friends were meeting me at the local track and I was hurrying out the door, borrowing my step dad’s hat and hoping desperately that my Garmin watch was charged (otherwise obviously the run won't count). Just as I was walking out the door, my cell rang and I just knew. The name that popped up on the caller id was connected to my adoption agency in Virginia. My mom was nearby and saw the excited look on my face. I ran back through the front door of her recently built home and pointed at the phone as we settled into my room (the guest room I’ve never actually lived in). She sat down at the desk. I perched on the bed and I put the phone on speaker mode.


“Hi, Kacy. This is Lisa. How are you?”

“I’m good. It’s nice to hear from you!”

“Yes, I’m calling because I got a referral for your family today that I thought you might be interested in hearing about.”

I could hardly contain my excitement. I had been waiting for these words for so, so long.

Our coordinator had hardly told me her name and a little bit about her before I blurted out that she was definitely the one. I didn’t know her history. I hadn’t talked to my husband about her. I had learned her name thirty seconds ago, but I knew this was our girl and I was so incredibly happy. On the spot, I told our agency that we would be accepting, but out of respect for my husband and the process I would at least give him a call.

And that’s what I did. Just after I called a friend who had adopted from India a few years prior. She said, “You need to call Jordan!” as she laughed and cried with me. It was surreal. I had a name. I would soon have an email with a face.

I recall my mom writing down the letters “Aayushi” on a piece of scrap mail and us both practicing the word that was so foreign to our southern accents. Aayushi means long life and it became my prayer for her over the next year. My mother-in-law wrote it down on a piece of paper adorned with stickers and hung it on her refrigerator. We all awaited news of our girl on the other side of the world.

 I arrived at our local community track and checked my email on my phone. I saw the most beautiful full cheeked, tiny, chocolate- skinned baby flash up on my small screen and I was in love. I showed my friends as we ran a few miles and they rejoiced with me. I’ll never forget that day. I had a renewed purpose and it was getting to this baby girl as fast as I possibly could.

Why India? It was because that’s where Aayushi was.


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