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rear-ended, but we're on the list!

yesterday at a playdate i got a text from a new friend i met at one of the adoption classes we attended through bethany christian services. it read "I LOVE YOUR PROFILE" to which i responded "what? it's up?!" then quickly pulled up the bethany christian services mighigan waiting families list on my phone and found our family profile. after 10 long months of waiting, we were finally live. i couldn't believe it!

on saturday we were rear-ended at a stoplight not far from our house. after feeling the impact, i turned around to ask "WHAT THE F***?!" and exclaim "THERE ISN'T EVEN ANY SNOW ON THE ROAD!" and utter some other choice phrases and words. david was driving and bina was buckled in her carseat in the back seat. none of us were injured but the expedition took a hit to the back left corner. david told me to call my brother to come get us and then jumped out of the car to check on the other driver and call the police. it was a good thing it was him and not me! i had nothing nice to say in that moment. later he said he didn't even hear me curse. i can only hope the same is true for bina. SIGH. #momoftheyear also clearly i need some more grace in my life to respond better to these types of situations. like, get out and ask if the other human is okay rather than cursing at them from inside the car when none of us is injured. step one.

i decided against calling my brother since he lives a half hour away. i went down the list of friends nearby since my dad wasn't home. my third attempt at finding someone was a success. i am so thankful for friends near us! when david returned to move the car out of the way and wait for the police to arrive, it wouldn't start. at that moment a nice man jumped out of his car and asked for our vehicle manual and explained the fuel pump shuts off sometimes when there's an impact so if we could just find the switch we could turn it back on and get the car started. he found the switch and the car started up just fine. i don't know how many people are aware of that sort of thing, but i was so thankful he was in the right place at the right time to offer assistance when we weren't thinking straight. look at jesus. providing help when we need it in the form of both friends and complete strangers.

when the car started up, i drove and parked on a side street next to the car of the woman who rear-ended us. when the accident happened initially i was hoping maybe the expedition would be unscathed since it had been rear-ended before by a car and the front of that car ended up crunched, but no damage to the expedition. no such luck this time. the woman must have tried to turn to the left to avoid hitting us straight on and in doing so she nailed the back corner, crunching the bumper, the side panel, the edge of the trunk, and popping out the back left light. when i saw how many different pieces were affected, my first thought was dang this is going to cost a lot to repair. also you know how after an accident happens, there are pieces of car strewn all over the road? it was weird that this time it was pieces of MY car. when we drove past the same intersection later in our other car, the broken pieces of our car still littered the road. reminding us what had happened.

eventually our friend came to pick up me and bina and david stayed at the scene to talk with the police and file an accident report. i felt rather dazed on the way home. we were just a few minutes from our house. ever have those moments when you're having a conversation but it's like you're operating outside your body looking down on the conversation happening? it was kind of like that. i was kicking myself because i was the one who wanted us all to go to the store together. if i hadn't wanted to go to the store right then, we would have avoided that driver. we wouldn't have a banged up car needing repairs that we weren't planning on, right before christmas. but of course it's not my fault it happened. we were just in the wrong place at the wrong time. and life happens to all of us.

when we were all sitting in the expedition at the scene of the accident waiting for our friend to come pick up me and bina, i found myself thinking of this event as a spiritual attack. just something stupid that happened and was meant to rattle me at a fragile time. i had been feeling down that morning. i was supposed to go work out, but i was so tired and sore (and slightly traumatized) from a leg workout with my personal trainer a few days before that i was like -- "no. i don't like working out anymore." (since then i've been back to the gym so i got over it). i started thinking "this is what i get for not working out." because that's healthy. i went from initial shock to trying to explain why it happened and what the purpose was. from blaming myself to realizing that's ridiculous. and finally we got to praying about the incident (what we should have done first, of course) and asking god to make it clear what we should do about the car -- whether to get it fixed or cut our losses and invest in a used van (which was our ultimate plan, once the expedition died, we just didn't expect to have to make that decision so soon).

one of the first two people i called for help was our neighbor down the street. she called and texted back later and i explained what had happened. she told me her dad and brother have a body shop in the area and said if i wanted their contact info to let her know. yes please! my brother originally thought parts alone would be 3-5k. and if that were the case, plus labor, we weren't sure it would be worth it to fix the expedition given that it was only worth about 5k before the accident happened. i tried not to think about it too much before we had all the facts, but the prospect of having to pay 5k or more to fix the car or 15-20k on a used van was not enticing. unexpected expenses are never fun.

long story short, the estimate to fix the car came in under $2,500 and the insurance of the woman who hit us may be paying up to $1k towards our repairs. even though michigan is a no-fault state, when you're stopped at a stop light and someone plows into the back of your car -- it's not the fault of the stopped car. so if all that works out as we hope, we may be paying less than $1,500 to fix the expedition. which is a HUGE relief. though a minivan would be nice, the cost was just not something we wanted to absorb at the moment. the final installment for adoption is due after placement. and since we're now a waiting family, placement is possible at any time. it would be great if we could space out some of these major expenses just a bit!

all that to say. it looks like god has made it clear what we should do. he answered our prayer. no one was injured. and we have a lot to be grateful for.

yesterday morning bina and i went to the ward playscape and met up with a friend from my mother's of preschoolers (MOPS) group and her two daughters. bina and her oldest are about the same age and temperament. they're both very active! while bina doesn't seem to interact much with other littles at this point in her life, except to say "MINE!" and give a gentle love shove (that's a euphemism of course), she adores my friend's daughter! they giggle and get into trouble tearing up the interlocking floor tiles in the toddler area, and then run around in circles chasing each other to their hearts content. it's absolutely adorable. i love ward because in addition to the playscape, they have these great big halls that the kids can run up and down. when they were done with the playscape, bina and my friend's daughter chased each other up and down the halls. bina would call out her name and say "come back!" as my friend's daughter ran off with bina's snack trap, giggling all the way. it was such a sweet morning. and bina had slept all night the night before, for the first time in weeks! that made for two major wins in my book.

towards the beginning of our playdate was when i got the text from my friend who we met in the adoption classes. i had just told my friend at the playdate that we had no update and i was planning to check in after the new year. and i had shared with my bible study fellowship leader earlier that morning some good news from another friend who had just recently found resolution to a foster to adopt situation, and also told her that we had no new news on our adoption journey. so it was just kind of ironic that a few hours later, i realized we were actually on the list! and when i had the chance to check our portal at home, i found out that our profile had actually gone live the day before. you would think there would be some kind of notification email, but i guess not! at any rate, we are so happy and thankful. it feels so unreal to finally have a live family profile. kind of like the shock of getting rear-ended, it takes some time to get used to the idea that we have finally arrived at the possibility of being chosen by birthparents! the REAL adventure may be beginning soon!

in the meantime, i am enjoying this time with my crazy bina girl.

she is very two and a half, but oh goodness does my heart constantly feel like it's going to explode with love for her. all the cute phrases she comes up with. all the adorable things she thinks to do. this morning, for instance, when she woke (with me beside her in bed because, that's how we roll right now) she grabbed her bunny and bounced it on my chest and declared, "hoppin'!" then asked to "nuh nuh please" and when her blanket got in the way of her vision she said "no see it!" (my nipple). when she pooped this morning she let me know she had pooped and as i was changing her she kept repeating "big poopin'!" and then noticed the mouse on her diaper "mouse!" i told her this particular mouse was mickey mouse and she called him "bickie mouse!" i just love two year olds. they are so insane, and so adorable. i'm so thankful for this girl. and i'm excited for our family to grow from a family of three humans and two dogs to a family of four humans and two dogs.

let the adventure begin! and we will roll with the punches. and do our best to laugh. and pray. a lot. ;)

hello there.

brittain here. just sharing my journey day to day with lots of laughs along the way.

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