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, December 5, 2010

My daughter.

I can't sing anymore. I have an OK voice...actually I think I'm pretty good. I just get choked up every time I open my mouth. All my emotions are still so raw. Even singing The First Noel made me weep this morning in church. Not your typical tear-jerker of a song, is it? I guess that is how undone I really am.

My open wounds are for the children I left behind in Eastern Europe. They start to scab over from time to time. Then I can function normally and fit in with the other suburban families suffering from dreamy affluenza in my quiet little town. Then something happens, the scab is ripped off and I'm yanked back into reality again.

A couple of days ago my daughter Rose yanked me back to reality. After looking at some children on the Reece's Rainbow website and praying for them she asked me a question. A question that just about broke my heart. "Mommy, if I was in an orphanage in __ (a certain EE country), would you adopt me?"

What could I say? I had to say yes, didn't I? I said yes.

But what is the real truth?

What if we didn't know about her? What if we didn't feel we could handle another child? What if we couldn't raise the money? What if our income didn't qualify for immigration purposes? What if we made excuses? I went to bed that night completely wrecked and wondering.

Then a few days later I watched this video and the questions in my mind changed. Now the questions were more like...what would I do to be able to get to my daughter??

You see, I do have a daughter in an Eastern European orphanage. Masha. In my heart she is mine. She is one of the least of these. She is royalty. Fearfully and wonderfully made by God. I can't get to her. You call yourself my friend? I need you to get on a plane and get to her! Who will go get her and be a mommy to her for me?

But you don't know her. You have not seen her giggle and dance. Her life isn't affecting you. I know you care and it probably makes you sad that she will be sent to live in a mental institution when she turns four years old next month. But, you'll sleep just fine tonight.

And so will I. And I hate that.

She's so far away. It feels like a dream. Was I even really there? And anyway, I've done my part, right? It's not my problem.

Except that, I'm still a part of the body of Christ. And He has shown me and given me a piece of His heart. And my heart is always going to hurt for the ones left behind. I will always be reaching out, encouraging, preaching, yelling, screaming...until the rest of the body wakes up. And then we will rescue the children like Theo, and Zhen, and Masha, and God will get the glory.


  1. Oh my goodness, Stephanie, what a post. Honestly there is a part of me that is so passionate for the orphans and another part of me that just wants to walk away because the passion hurts, as does the apathy of fellow-Christians.
    Joy McClain,RR

  2. I hear you. I was on the RR website today and ... my heart broke... I sobbed out loud as if the babies there were mine.

    We all have to do what we can do to help them. Even if it's just something small we can do, every bit counts.

    It's also hard for me to watch all of my friends raving over the Coach, Ralph Lauren and Tiffany items they are being bought for Christmas, when I think.... if you just didn't ask your husband to buy you that ridiculous purse, and sent the money instead into a kid's adoption fund.....if 100 people each gave up only $20 each in Christmas presents, that would help one forever family get a tiny little bit closer towards their goal of a homecoming **SIGH**....

    Kerin (mom of 1 son with DS)

  3. Hello, Stephanie!

    I have been "visiting" for quite a while now, and enjoyed following your journey with your precious boys. I don't think I've commented before, but this time I just had to. This post hurt to read- and please take that as a compliment! Very well written, it's so easy to share your pain. Please know that even if you can't work magic (or, who knows??), your writing inspire many.

    I will pray for sweet Masha. She's such a little beauty, and there must be a family for her somewhere!

    Best regards, Helle

  4. I am right there with you ((hugs))




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