Elrods Go Adoption: My Heart. Our Story.

A long, long time ago {a little over twenty years, actually} in a galaxy far, far away {like, Henry County, Georgia}, there lived a little girl:

Little Malorie Ann, brown-haired, blue-eyed, and imaginative, plays peacefully by herself. “Oh hello, Ken!”

“Hi, Barbie.” Ken bounces across the carpeted floor of the Malorie’s Room Mall, meeting Barbie and Skipper with a pasted-on smile. “Who’s this?”

“Oh, this is my new sister! She’s adopted.”

Fast forward a year:

“What do you want to play?”

Malorie pretends to look pensive, though she already knows the answer she will give her best friend. “Let’s play orphans again. My name’s is going to be Pepper, what’s yours?”

Fast forward two years:

Freshly ten-years-old and proud of this privilege, Malorie turns the bulky home camera perched precariously on her shoulder towards her bedroom mirror. She waves slightly at her reflection, careful not to tip the heavy piece of video machinery as she moves.

“Here are my Birthday Angels,” she smoothly says, zooming in on each one, counting as she goes. “…and ten. Because I just turned ten!”

The camera slides all too quickly a quarter of the way around the room, landing on a dark-complectioned doll dressed in a red jumper. This is my new Bitty Baby. She’s adopted.

Fast forward nine years:

Malorie sits in the passenger seat of a black pick-up truck, holding hands with a be-speckled boy sporting a foe-hawk. They’ve only been dating a few months, but he is quickly becoming one of her very best friends. “Yeah, since my sister and I are so far apart in age, I think I want my kids to be close together. I know I want more than one, and I really want to adopt.”

“Oh, that’s cool.”

“Yeah, so the guy I marry will definitely have to be okay with that.”

“Hey, did you notice my Georgia Bulldog floor mats?”

Fast forward two years:

“I can’t believe we’re married! Like, you’re my husband!”

“I know! Crazy!”

“So. When do you want to have kids?”

2010:

She lifts the lid of the baby-paper-wrapped cake stand, “It’s a BOY! Jack Hatcher Elrod!”

2011:

As Tim and Malorie stand by excitedly, the grandparents rip back the cloth on the jars filled with blue and green gummy bears. “It’s another boooooy! Cole Timothy Elrod!”

2013:

Bam! That was the hit that did it. Pink confetti trickled from the corner of the busted piñata. Zack’s hands raised in victory as the grandmothers squealed. “It’s a GIRL!! Lorelai Noel Elrod!”

2014: 

Malorie slides on to the bed next to Tim as he lounges there, scrolling through his Twitter feed. “So, when do you think you’re going to be ready to start the adoption process? I hate to bring it up again because I don’t want to be a nag, but I just need to know. I need to know where you stand. Do you really want to do this?”

“Let’s do it.”

“What do you mean, ‘Let’s do it’?”

“Let’s do it. Let’s start it.”

“But are you ready?”

“I don’t know if I’ll ever really feel ready. The money part stresses me out, but I know we can figure it out. I’m sure we’ll be able to raise the money, so let’s just start the process.”

Tears. Happy tears.

And now… 

To be honest, the first set of paperwork was so easy to fill out. It felt really weird sending it off. The beginning. We had begun. Prayerfully, this was really going to happen.

The second set came. Those were easy, too. One focused hour and everything was done, ready to be sent off, both cyber and postal.

And now here we sit, waiting to start our home study, and finally sharing with everyone our decision to grow our family through adoption. I cannot begin to tell you how happy this makes me feel. How humbled. Adding to my family in this way is something I have desired and dreamed about for as long as I can remember. The idea of adoption is something God has hidden in my heart from a very young age, and it’s so amazing to see it coming to fruition in my non-Barbie family.

On top of that, it feels so wonderful to think about the opportunity to provide a stable and nurturing home for a baby that might not have one otherwise. We are currently pursuing a domestic infant adoption through Bethany Christian Services. There is such a need for adoptive families to step forward, not just in the world, but in the United States, as well, and right here in our home state of Georgia! One of our friends from small group works as a nurse at our local hospital and she revealed last Wednesday that the night before, there were three babies on her floor that were in need of a home. The birth moms had come in with no plan other than to leave the hospital without their child. Three. In one night, three babies were born less than five miles from me that were in need of a home, and that are at this moment, most likely in custody of the state and being introduced into the foster care system.

Y’all. That is heartbreaking to me. I can’t care for every baby and child that is currently in or will be in the foster care system, but I can start with one. Yes, we need to educate young people on the importance of abstinence and safe-sex, but we also need to offer support for those that have made mistakes that they can’t turn back from. We need to love on those birth moms that are making the brave and selfless choice of allowing their child a life, even if they aren’t able to be the ones to provide that for them outside of the womb. And we need to care for the children that don’t have a place to call home or a face to call Mommy. “Do for one what you wish you could do for all,” is something our teaching pastor, Andy Stanley, teaches. That is that platform on which Tim and I are taking our first step. We are walking down the path of becoming a forever family for a child that is not of our blood, not of my womb. To love unconditionally. To provide for and protect. To raise in the way of the Lord. And of course, because they will be an Elrod, to take to Disney World!

I know this is predominately a Disney blog, but a couple of years ago I merged my lifestyle blog with my Disney, and I write from the many angles of our Elrod lives. I’m so grateful that so many of you are open to hearing about our heart on adoption and look forward to following along with this side of us. I hope it continues. Nothing would make me happier than to have you walk beside us the whole way, because I know that there are going to be days when I would love to hear an enthusiastic cheer echoing back my joy, and there are going to be times when I need a, “Cheer up, Charlie. Show me that smile!” on the days when I’m discouraged or frustrated.

Thank you, in advance, for that. Thank you for all of the prayers and support of all kinds. It means so much more than you know.

With love, Malorie

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5 thoughts on “Elrods Go Adoption: My Heart. Our Story.

  1. Elrod Family, your MeMama is so proud of you. My heart just swells with love and joy. I hope you feel my love wrapping around right now, because it is flowing out of me.

  2. Malorie my heart swells with joy as I read your beautiful words. I didn’t know your passion for adoption goes back to your childhood. I am so blessed to have you as a daughter. So excited to be GiGi to our new addition.

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