Adoption Awareness: Walden Family

Down syndrome Awareness Month : Payton

Join us in November for National Adoption Awareness Month as families share their adoption story.
If you would like to share your adoption story please contact us.

In November of 2018, I felt a nudge from God to start asking about adopting a child with Down syndrome. Friends of ours, whom we had met through foster care, had internationally adopted their daughter who also has Down syndrome. I had asked her multiple times about the process, cost, etc.

For some reason, this time her response was different. This time she said, “If money is the only thing holding you back, don’t let it. God will provide.” Easy for her to say! Little did I know, she was absolutely right!!!

She added me to a Facebook group that advocated for children with Down syndrome, who were ready to be adopted. I scrolled through all of their little faces and wanted to adopt them all. But a few days later a little girl popped up, and I knew. I knew I could not live without her. I knew she was our daughter and we needed to go get her.

So, for around 4 months I prayed and prayed and tried to convince my husband this was our daughter. Finally, in February of 2019, we received some updated pictures and he agreed, she was our daughter.

We immediately started the process to adopt her. We fundraised and filled out grant paperwork, until we thought we couldn’t anymore. In October of 2019, we travelled to get Jayla.

Nothing prepares you for when you first meet your little one. You forget about all of the paperwork, that you’re tired, that you’re miles away from home. All you care about is that moment. That moment when a small, skinny little 3 year old walks towards you. That moment when you take her in your arms melts everything else away. She was ours…FINALLY!!!

But, God was not finished. When we did our orphanage tour, God began getting our hearts ready for our next adoption. In our minds, it would be years down the road, when the kids were a little older. We thought we could maybe adopt an older child. Little did we know, God had other plans.

His plans were for us to start the adoption process right smack dab in the middle of COVID, and we did. Our son’s face came up on that same advocacy page and it tugged at my heart again. He was ours and we had to go get him. This time, my husband didn’t question it. He saw the look in my eyes at the orphanage and he knew when I showed him Javan. So currently, we are in the process of adopting our son, who also has an extra chromosome.

We are the Waldens… Jeffrey, Jena, Jaret, JaLynn, Jackson, Jayla, and soon to come, Javan

Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world. – James 1:27 NIV