The Incredible Story of Mr. Miles
When I was waiting all through 2010 to begin our adoption there was one friend in particular who always had time to mentor me.
Her name is Debbie. She is a Mama, too. She has 4 kids. 3 were born in China. And, Debbie always said the one thing that prospective adoptive parents all want to hear: my day would come.
Debbie would send me emails long before we knew Rissa existed that ended with: “Just think! You are one day closer to Rissa!”
Debbie is exceedingly special to me. Debbie made me believe in my own dream.
When Debbie and I would talk, I would be listening for hope and she would hand it over generously.
Once during a marathon-length-talk, Debbie said: “Esty, don’t despise the timing being ‘off.’ There’s a reason you are meant to go whenever you go.”
Now, I knew why Debbie had said this. When she brought home their #4 from China, they were denied travel and had to wait another 6 weeks to travel with an entirely different group of adoptive families to China. It had been over Christmas that year, and she had been sorely disappointed. But, during that trip to China in January, they met another adoptive family…and in time, Debbie was instrumental in a miracle for this family.
I knew Debbie was right. But, really, I believed that she was right about her situation. Maybe not so much about mine.
When things fell outside of my perfect timeline, I was frustrated and blinded by consuming desperation.
MY TIMELINE MUST WORK. Or so I behaved.
When all was said and done The. Timeline. worked beautifully, no thanks at all to my worrying. (eye roll at myself)
We got there across the oceans. We got her in our own arms. We were good.
While we were in Uganda, we wondered at Rissa’s good health, marveled that she could be ill at all, but set it aside and assumed we would find out more at home in the USA.
Meanwhile, another family was in-country while we were. I had met Sara at the Created for Care conference in February. She had been the kindest soul at our table. I couldn’t wait to see her. When we met up in Uganda, Sara told me that another gal from that conference and her sister too were each adopting a baby boy from an orphanage nearby. Sara had visited these 2 baby boys who were both hospitalized currently. They were each under 1 year old. She asked whether Andrew would go see them, give his opinion. He easily agreed.
The following day, Andrew, me, Rissa, and our brilliant driver headed for the state-run hospital for Andrew to visit these 2 baby boys.
Mr. Doctor Husband marched in – - -
20 minutes later, he emerged. Changed to his core. Head quietly hung. Shaking his head almost imperceptibly.
“There were 12 babies in there,” he murmured, processing medically as he talked out loud, “There is no medicine in this facility.
At least 10 of them should have been on a ventilator.”
And the youngest baby? Miles, the sister-of-a-friend-of-a-friend’s baby. He weighed albs. He struggled to empty his lungs of carbon dioxide, toiled to breathe in air.
“That kid’s not gonna make it through the night.”
Andrew looked defeated. This was it. Medicine or Miles was done. That night.
I have heard him talk about patients before, but they are always patients. Not my friend’s baby.
We sat and thought. Racked our brains. Asked our brilliant driver what on earth to do. Called Sara. Discussed some more. Called the U.S. director of the baby home. Called the adoptive Mommy in Georgia. Called an ambulance. Andrew, Sara, and another Mama got him transferred to a hospital with medicine.
4 hours later, Miles was receiving a breathing treatment while seated on Andrew’s lap, squawling and glaring healthily at Andrew who laughed in relief at the angry, tiny thing.
The next week, his Mommy came to care for him with her own hands and love and bottles and snuggles.
That was then.
This is now.
Miles came home with his Mommy to his Daddy, 2 big brothers, and a VERY relieved extended family.
The Saved Life.
I thought it would be Rissa.
it was Miles.
My friend Debbie was right all along.
The Lord was pacing us.
The metronome kept time.
The world spun correctly.
Miles sleeps in his crib tonight in Georgia,
and Rissa in hers here under my own roof.
And, when I lay down in my own soft bed, I will feel tears seep from under closed lids, run down my smiling cheeks while I repeat to my God Who Hears All Things:
Who is like you, LORD God Almighty?
You, LORD, are mighty, and your faithfulness surrounds you.
We are a Floridian family of 6, bio boys aged 8, 5, and 4 blessed with a 9 month-old Ugandan-born beauty named Rissa (Amaris, Hebrew for “Promised by God”) who came home in May 2011. Andrew is an ER physician, and Esty is a SAHM and former pediatric nurse in a previous life, it seems. We spend our time homeschooling, playing soccer, swimming, and hanging on for dear life. And we are all Ugandan now.