Psalm 68:5-6

A father to the fatherless, a defender of widows, is God in his holy dwelling.

God sets the lonely in families, he leads forth the prisoners with singing; but the rebellious live in a sun-scorched land.

I am Stepanie Nance. My family adopted two little boys with Down Syndrome from Ukraine in 2010. I hope to educate and to inspire you. I hope to make you laugh and to make you cry.

Come along for the ride. It's a wild one!

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Theo is home!

I brought Theodore home on Friday night. Finally!

It got to the point that the hospital wasn't doing anything for him that I couldn't do at home. This is very frustrating. It's not the first time I have dealt with this. This time I had the presence of mind to talk to a patient advocate. The advocate helped the doctors and I to get on the same page. Communication is very difficult when you are 200 miles away.

The very last set of tests that were done Thursday on Theo indicate that he is growth hormone deficient. Aha! I doubt if the doctors in Ukraine would have ever had the means to test him for this. I doubt if he has grown at all over the past two years. He might never grow any more without treatment. Could you imagine? 13 pounds?

Growth hormone deficient on top of malnourishment on top of Down Syndrome. This kid had three stikes against him. I believe that I have told you what mothers of imperfect children in Eastern Europe are often told: their child’s disability is a punishment from God for their sin. Because they hear this so often, they struggle to see God as a loving Father.

Here is the truth as stated in the Word -- John 9: 1-4 As he went along, he saw a man blind from birth. His disciples asked him, “Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he was born blind?”

“Neither this man nor his parents sinned,” said Jesus, “but this happened so that the work of God might be displayed in his life. As long as it is day, we must do the work of him who sent me. Night is coming, when no one can work.

Theodore made lots of friends at the hospital. Since I was not able to be there he spent a lot of time hanging out with the nurses, therapists and volunteers. This is not the perfect scenario for a freshly adopted child. How would this impact his ability to bond with me as his mother, I asked myself many times.

However, I had the chance to see the impact that Theo made in the hearts of many of the people he met. I witnessed tears from seasoned medical professionals on several occasions! This was God's plan, not mine. I never would have chosen this particular plan.

But, the whole experience made sense to me at last on Friday. When the endocrinologist came in to speak with me about Theo's test results she started off by shaking my hand and expressing her thanks to me for saving two orphan children from Eastern Europe. Her imperfect English was thickly accented. My mouth was surely hanging open as I asked her where she was from.

Romania. No joke. She worked in Romanian orphanages while she was in training! What are the chances? She understood the psycho-social deprivation that he has endured. None of the other docs seems to take it into consideration, which frustrated me to no end. She explained the test results and we developed a plan of action. It's a new path for us, that is certainly true.

So now, dear friends, let me remind you..."As long as it is day, we must do the work of him who sent me. Night is coming, when no one can work." There is much work to be done. More orphan children who need homes. More adoptive families who need support. More people who need to know the truth about God and His unfailing love. Please consider what the Lord would have you do.


  1. Working on bringing my girlie home...while it is still day!!!

  2. Thank you Steph!! Great post!! I'm working too!! So happy that Theo is home!!!

  3. Absolutely beautiful post. We read taht passage the week we committed to Aaron and claimed it for him. We desire with all of our beings for God to be glorified through this adoption. As each child is brought out of the pit - God is receiving all the glory. There IS so much work to be done....

  4. so glad you are both home. I cried again reading your post. thanks for the update and message. I had a dream a few nights ago about a little girl on RR will have to go look for her photo. this might sound selfish but I was not planning on looking at RR again for a while now your boys are home, the other little boy I pray for is about to have his mum come get him and I was done. seems not.

  5. Theo is having a huge impact for God every day! So glad you're home as a complete family (well, except for those silly boys off at college) now. It was so fun to chat for a bit looked amazing!! Love that hair, and wow! that dress! =)

  6. tears as I read this post. What a difference each ONE of us. It just takes ONE family to change ONE childs life..... and the ripples that follow. Yes, The adoptive families need prayer and support.

  7. So happy to hear Theo is home!!! YAY! And what a blessing to find out about his hormone deficiency. Plus a doctor who really understood what he's been through. How wonderful! Our doctor we'll be using for Elijah has recently adopted 3 boys from our EE country, so I'm excited that she will understand as well.

    Working while it's still day too...Jill :-)

  8. I am Happy Theo is home!I love the endocrine doc..My Jaxson sees her for his thyroid.She is the sweetest woman with a big heart!I seen Theo at hospital..He is tiny yes but oh so adorable.

  9. Thank you so much for continuing to share about Theo and Zhen. I Praise God that he is home with you guys and he had such an impact at the hospital. I just love the scripture from John 9 that you quoted, it is one of my favorites. Keep the posts coming. I check your blog regularly. Your family has made a tremendous difference in the lives of these two sweet boys.



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