We began our adoption journey to Joey back in 2004 when we decided we wanted to adopt one or two, up to three children, from Ukraine. Through prayer, we decided we wanted an older girl (age range 10-14) with a younger brother (age range 5-9), preferably for the younger brother to have Down syndrome. We have 5 bio children, the youngest of whom has Down syndrome and autism. We felt we could handle another child with Down syndrome, since we knew what we were in for, and figured that probably not many other people were standing in line waiting for them.
We found, through another family who had adopted just a few months previously, a wonderful brother and sister pair who fit our “wish list” perfectly, except the little boy did not have Down syndrome. He had some other correctable medical problems, and in April 2004, James and Catie joined our family. Their adjustment was smooth, and we were enjoying them so much, but still felt that God could possibly be calling us to adopt another child with Down syndrome.
We heard about Daniil, saw a couple of pictures, and I was smitten. Jim was not quite as anxious as I was, since Daniil was much younger than we had originally planned, so we waited and prayed for guidance. Life goes on, but every few months I was drawn back to those pictures, then every few weeks, and soon, I was studying them daily, and felt sure God was calling us to Daniil. Through the fall and early winter of 2006 we prayed for guidance, and that if it were not God’s will for us to have Daniil, that He provide another family for him. Through a series of events in February 2006, we came to be sure it was us, and we began our paperwork in earnest, finishing it just in time for the NAC to close down, as it was being turned into the SDA!
Updating paperwork as needed, and anxiously awaiting for the SDA to reopen, we finally got paperwork submitted in February, and got a May 2007 appointment. On June 11, 2007, Daniil became Alexander Joseph Stolz, (“Joey”) and came home with us at the end of June. He was 6 years 10 months old, and such a joy. He now has 3 brothers and 4 sisters, and a mom and dad, and lots of extended family who love him.