Wednesday, 2 May 2012


I'm not exactly sure what I thought was going to happen as I waited in the airport for Amy's flight to arrive.  I mean, after all, this is a stranger, joined by a few dna strands, but otherwise

no connection

The last time I had seen this child was 3 days after she was born.  Although I had received a couple of pictures and a sweet letter from her new family just shortly after her arrival into their home, there had been no updates on

how she was
where she was
who she was

it was left to my imagination to come up with those details.  It was easy to pick her out of the crowd exiting the gate.  She was the one with the look of sheer terror on her face - the face that had some very common characteristics of our genetic make up.  We hugged, cried and then hugged some more.  I can't really remember what it was that we said.  I am pretty sure it was nothing - because I don't think anyone really knew what to say.

Her 3 days in Three Hills were full of meeting our large family, many friends and other on-lookers that had heard the long kept secret story.  I can't imagine what was going through her mind.

We began to tell our stories - hers and mine - and in the process began to connect so many of the fragments of our separate lives into one that tied us together.


like - her grandparents knowing my Dad from the church that I grew up in at New Westminster

like - her family attending the Johnston Heights Free Church, pastored by Dan Nicholson - my youth pastor from Calgary

like - her parents going to a Bible Study led by my dear friends, Ed & Dianna Wallan

The stories helped us start to fully realize that God had a plan in it all.  Keeping us tied through common bonds, even though they were so unknown to us at the time.

A few weeks later it was my turn to travel west to meet her family - her parents, brother, cousins, aunts, uncles, grandparents and friends.  All of the people that I had handed her over to love.  It kind of felt like I was watching this non-stop movie of someone else's life.  So surreal.  Amy drove me past all of her places - homes, school, churches.

As we drove past one of the houses I recognized the neighborhood and tried to figure out why it looked so familiar.  As we rounded the corner, I realized why.

"Did your house have a tall fence around it that met in the corner with 2 other yards?"


"Did you have a trampoline in the back yard?"


"When you played on the trampoline - did you sometimes throw a ball into one of those other yards?"


"Where there 3 little blonde girls that lived in one of those yards?"


That was Dan's sister's house.
Where we were for Easter vacation one year.
Where a ball kept flying over the fence.
Where I threw it back to a girl on the other side.
That girl was Amy.

so very connected...but not yet


I met Amy's best friend, Tiffany.  They had been bff's since they were in grade school - with some special bonds.  Born less than one week apart.  Both adopted.

Tiffany's mom started to tell me the story of how amazing their connections went even further.  The 2 families lived in separate areas of the lower mainland, but both moved to the Surrey area around the same time.  The girls became good friends and discovered the close birthdays, so decided that they would have a combined birthday party together.

As the Moms watched the party carry on, they began to tell their stories of how Tiffany and Amy had joined each of their families.  Imagine their astonishment as they discovered that both had been adopted, just days apart, with the assistance of a common adoption agency...Burden Bearers... with the same adoption worker...Lorna.

I am pretty sure the room started to turn at that point.
Burden Bearers?
This was my adoption agency - that was my case worker.

I started to look around the room where we were sitting.  For the first time I noticed the antiques decorating the room.

a rolling pin
a pie press
a verse or something about "Bread of life"

"Was your husband a baker?"


"Did he have red hair?"


"I didn't choose you"

.excuse me?

It was a final decision between a tall BC Hydro worker and a red-head baker.  I chose the first one.  But here I was, standing in the home that I didn't choose - talking to a mother that I didn't pick - who ended up being given Amy's best friend forever.


It was in that moment that I realized how incredibly significant my life is in the grand scheme of God's plan.

Not an accident.
Not a coincidence.
It was a master plan - The Master's Plan

For I know the plans I have for you  
(declares the Lord) ..plans to prosper you and not to harm you...plans to give you a 
HOPE and a FUTURE...


Debbie said...


Susan said...

Wow, Sheila that is amazing ++. God is sooo good and has a plan! I often wonder what will become of our boys stories, all 4 are adopted and our oldest is now 18, wondering and waiting for the phone to ring with his birth parent on the phone. Your story is such an encouragement an example of God's grace! Thank you!

Kmarie said...

Wow, Goosebumps definitely! Beautiful:)

ROSALIE said...

WOW Sheila, that is an amazing story. How good to know the Master Planner had you in His mind all along and still does right now. How encouraging this story must be to you in the midst of all you are going through today. What a blessing to me it has been to read this story. And "they" say there is no God. None of this could have happened by coincidence, of that I am very confident.

"My beloved, I have something important for you to understand. Our relationship is based on My faithfulness. Your faithfulness may wax and wane but My faithfulness lasts forever. I will never let you go, so put your trust in Me. In every situation remember these words: “Don’t be afraid. Just believe.”

I know the plans I have for you, plans to prosper you not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. But this will only happen if you put your hope in Me and live according to My word. “Don’t be afraid. Just believe.” That is your responsibility in our relationship."

These words were taken from the NIV Worship Bible.


just sayin' said...

Amazing and beautiful in so many ways!!!! truly! tears AND goosebumps. No coincidences, only God's plan. we may not always understand it, but it's there!

Deborah E said...


That is amazing! It is a beautiful story of connection and connections. Thank you for sharing it with us ;)


Rebecca Del Pozo said...

Adoption is such an incredible thing. Thank you for sharing. I'm so grateful you didn't choose the baker, cause Tiff became my baby sister ( the baker was my Dad) and though I love Amy like a sister, I know Tiff was meant for me :) Someday in eternity I imagine the "Creator of goosebumps himself" will laugh with us as we all tell our stories and come to realize the amazing tapestry of our lives here on earth.

The Tea Bag said...

Connecting the dots ... forging the connections ... the song "I'm so glad I'm a part of the family of God" rings in my mind when I read this. How clever our Father is, and what attention to detail! Goosebumps indeed!

Alicia said...

The verse at the end ties all these amazing connections together so well. I could almost hear the conversation about the baker and that's why I love your life stories. Your voice is so clear. Great is His canvas, creating the tapestry of our lives.