Neil and Mandy were originally foster parents and have the biggest heart for children! After having three biological kids, they knew their heart for adoption was still very alive. Although the journey to their son wasn’t easy, watching their faith in action was beautiful. I know you will be encouraged by their words this evening! Read their story below!
Neil and I have always wanted to have several kids, but shortly after getting married we felt like God was leading us to do that in a different way than we had expected. Someone at our church spoke to the congregation about foster care and adoption. It was during their talk that God stirred something in both our hearts, unbeknownst to the other. I don’t remember which one of us brought it up first, but we ended the day deciding to start the process of becoming foster parents. We didn’t know exactly what that path would look like of course, but we definitely felt strongly that God was calling us in that direction.
After getting our foster care license and providing short term care, we felt God moving us in the direction. I believe it was April or May of 2020 when we first connected with CAC. A family friend had recommended them and after one phone call with Fallon we knew this was the route for us. Our chat with Fallon was so encouraging and made us very excited for what the future held. We worked throughout the summer to get everything completed and approved and by September we had become active, and we entered the waiting game.
Overall, everything went smoothly for us and seemed to just move right along. However, that didn’t mean it was easy. We definitely hit paperwork fatigue and wondered if our checklists would ever end. We wrestled with whether or not to ask family and friends for financial support. I even remember occasionally questioning whether we actually heard God correctly or not. But through it all God was faithful and was with us every step of the way. I remember preparing my mind for the long haul knowing that it could take a while before we were matched. We started getting situations to review right away. I remember feeling overwhelmed at first. How do you know if you should pursue one or not? I remember reading a blog post about someone’s adoption story and they said they knew instantly when the right one popped up. I never felt that certainty and began to worry. I remember calling Fallon up early on after receiving a few situations asking her “Help, what am I supposed to be feeling? How do we know which one is the right one?” Once again, I hung up feeling very encouraged and at peace about this part of the process. And I will say, we never did feel that absolute certainty but we did trust that God knew the right one for us. So unless we felt uncomfortable presenting to a certain expecting mom then we would just go ahead and present our profile book believing the right mom would choose us. Giving it to God took the pressure off us and the notion that our adoption somehow hinged on whether or not we made the right choice.
Although we were matched quickly, our journey was quite the emotional roller coaster. Receiving a situation, praying about whether to present, deciding to present, waiting for an answer, receiving word that she chose someone else, then repeating that whole process over and over, brought out so many different emotions. It was rather exhausting for me. Thankfully my husband was a rock and remained so patient and peaceful through it all. He kept reminding me that God knows what He is doing and we can trust Him no matter what. At one point I remember becoming very discouraged. After receiving a few “no’s,” I started to doubt this path for us. I began to think we hadn’t heard God correctly once again and that maybe we were only supposed to have 3 kids. I also started to wonder why no one was choosing us. What could we have said differently in our letter?
One morning we received a situation that we felt peace about presenting to and later found out that she chose us! 5 months later our sweet Mateo Elias was born. We got to talk on the phone with his mom a few different times and even meet her in person the day before Mateo was born. Spending time with her was such a gift! The admiration and love we have for her is endless. Her love for Mateo was so obvious and I am in awe of her bravery, selflessness, and fierce love for her son. We are so grateful for Mateo and the open adoption that we have with his amazing Birth Mom! As you can see in the pictures, Mateo is deeply loved by his siblings! He gets covered in kisses all day every day and probably will for the rest of his life!
***If you are interested in learning more about adoption and services we provide at Christian Adoption Consultants, I would love to chat! Feel free to email me, Fallon Palacios, at Fallon@christianadoptionconsultant.com and check out www.christianadoptionconsultants.com for more information!! ***