I just wanted to thank you all for your amazing love and support. Our GoFundMe - which we were urged to do by so many - raised $1500 MORE than the costs associated with the funeral. I am completely overwhelmed - amazed - humbled - broken again with gratitude. GoFundMe ends up with about 7.5% of that - so the extra money will help to cover those fees. Plus, I had chosen not to do flowers on the casket because of the cost - a decision that I regretted deeply, but knew I could not do it. But now, my beautiful Brooke will have beautiful flowers and I will also buy a rose bush (or two) for my front yard to have for her.
I know it is hard for some to understand how money could be so tight, so I feel like I should explain a bit. Adoptions are expensive - very expensive. Brooke and Jillian's cost around $44,000. It is not even a drop in the ocean compared to the value of a precious life - but it is a real cost. We had many, many people give a great deal of money. A rough estimate this morning (I will go add it up later), would be about $20,000 was given to us. That is an AMAZING amount given by people that love us and love the orphan. It is reason to stop and PRAISE the Lord! But it still left about $24,000 that we needed to provide. God brought that money in through Handsome's business (we are small business owners) and just living as simply as we could. We DON'T have $24K in our budget - just like you don't. We didn't know where it would come from - but we trusted Him and we had what we needed. But it took ALL we had. This happens with each adoption. It is just part of the process. In addition, Handsome was gone from his business for 2 weeks - as he is the "heart" of the business, income goes down. Again, this is all part of the process, we expect it. A final piece would be that we are entering what is typically a slower time for the business....so that is a factor as well. We don't regret a moment or a dollar spent. But we know that the choices we made would make it tighter. A family member had offered to loan us the money for the funeral - and for that we are so grateful - but you all know the burden of debt.....we hate that weight....we hate that burden. We are not debt-free as the adoptions over the years have taken a toll - but we are not choosing to put a child's redemption on hold so that we can be debt-free. We solely trust in our Savior to tell us when to go and when to stay. This is a matter of faith and obedience. We will not delay obedience for our own desire to be debt free.
Mornings are so far the hardest for me. I wake up and immediately remember I am not whole. As I think through my day, I want to be thinking of what I will dress my Brooke in and think of her sweet smile as I pull her out of bed into my arms.....the grief seems bottomless.
Thank you for sharing our burden through your prayers, your words of encouragement and sympathy and your gifts.
You have all glorified Him.