Jeremy Statton

Living Better Stories

Tomorrow We Leave

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I want you to meet Sean. His Chinese name is Xin Min (pronounced “Shen Men”). We will name him Sean XinMin Statton. And tomorrow we leave to meet him and make him our son.

The story has been a short, but stressful one. It almost didn’t happen.

We first learned about Sean in August. My wife received an email highlighting his case. I don’t know why my wife subscribes to such an email list. The only thing that can happen is that you will see. You will see kids who need families and parents. You will see kids who need medical help. You will see kids who need love.

And she saw Sean’s picture. And then after clicking on a few links, she saw a video of him. And she read his story. And then she started seeing him even when her eyes were closed. She started seeing him in her heart.

This is why so many of us live life with our eyes closed. We choose ignorance on purpose. Because once you see, once you open your eyes to the light, you can never close them again. Once you see light, the darkness will never satisfy.

As soon as you allow yourself to see what is true, you heart will begin to love.

January 13

The big issue with Sean is that he must be adopted before January 13. He turns 14 that day, and by Chinese law, would no longer be eligible to be adopted.

We’ve been asked what happens to kids who age out of the system. We don’t know. Our best guess is that at age of 18, the orphanage opens the door and waves good-bye.

We asked ourselves if we could do this. Can we do more? And even though there were a million reasons to say no, there was one reason to say yes. The reason was Sean.

When we expressed interest in him, the agency paused. They hoped that a family further along in the process would come along. The timing was already short. All of us wondered if everything could get done in time.

In the end, we were it. And even though we were already behind, we were the only ones who stepped forward.


3 Days Ago

In mid to late October we felt very good about the progress. I stopped doubting whether or not we would have enough time. But then in late November I realized it was going to be close.

We had hoped to know for certain at least 2 weeks before we traveled. Two weeks is short enough when making travel plans. We only found out for certain 3 days ago.

We don’t even know if he knows we are coming. Nobody at the agency or orphanage wanted to tell him we were pursuing him, just in case it didn’t happen.

We’ve already been nervous about whether or not it would happen. And now that it is we are still nervous. We are scared. We are excited. And we are exhausted.

But no matter what happens next, he is worth it.

And so we are off to meet him. And to bring him home.

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About Jeremy Statton

Jeremy is a writer and an orthopedic surgeon. When not ridding the world of pain, he helps you live a better story. Follow him on Twitter or Facebook or Google +.

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51 Replies

  1. Tears in my eyes, Jeremy. Praying for safe travels for you and your wife. Sean is great name, by the way. That’s my son’s name. 🙂

  2. Maria Grogan

    The Grogans are praying for the Stattons this Christmas season. I can’t think of a more tangible way for a family to spend Christmas than to adopt a child into their home. What beautiful timing.

  3. Dick Savidge

    I am praying that this adventure goes well and that all comes together with His grace. Thank you for sharing your heart!

  4. Greg Faulls

    I applaud you and pray for you. God’s speed!

  5. Linda Scholtens

    Praying for a safe trip. How wonderful for him. A last minute reprieve from life as an orphan. Such a beautiful picture of Gods grace! Blessings!

  6. Julie Redwine

    I’m crying over here… Your hearts are so big and lovely! Thank you for saying yes! I’m praying for you guys… Just know you’re awesome! :0)

  7. Rodriguez Family

    God bless Sean and his new family. Please keep posting. From The Rodriguez Family. Merry Christmas

  8. Rachel Perozzi

    Very happy for you. Look forward to hearing more.

  9. Ursina Williams

    We are excited to take another prayer off our prayer wall and put it into the “Answered” jar. It will no doubt be a difficult road. But no more difficult then the road He took. And no more difficult then the road God intended for you from the time before time. Great is His name and great is the heart He gave your family.

  10. Thanks, Rachel. I’ll keep people updated on this blog.

  11. Merry Christmas and thank you.

  12. Thanks, Linda. We will benefit from Sean as much as he benefits from us.

  13. Thanks, Ursina. You are right. The road will be hard, but being on it is a good thing.

  14. May God’s speed be with you…

    …and how can I add my name to that e-mail list? Everything in me wants to do this!

  15. Karen Steele

    God bless you, your wife and your ever growing family:-) My prayers are with you!!! I wish so much I could do this but the other members of my family don’t have the same desire:-( So I will bless and encourage you!

  16. DanKnight

    Jeremy, Your heart must be bursting given the angst of last week.

    This is wonderful news.

  17. Thanks, Karen. Adoption isn’t for everyone, but we can all find a way to do good.

  18. So, so, soooo excited (and YES, this is who I have suspected it was all along! So happy!) Go, go, go!

  19. Great. How did you find out about him?

  20. Max Andrew Dubinsky

    you guys are awesome. godspeed.

  21. Thanks, Max. We need to meet sometime.

  22. YEAH!!!! Praying over you guys.

  23. Thanks, Katie. When do you take off?

  24. The first week of January.

  25. Thanks. Me too–both for you and for me. 😉

  26. Hmmmmmm. I believe it was an advocate’s blog.

  27. Cool. That’s teally fun that you knew about him.

  28. The Mooney Family

    You can only imagine the joy I have in reading this. We also heard about Jordan, and actually made a decision to move forward with adding him to our family, though we had just adopted a 12 year old boy. However, as we prayed and pondered we did not feel it was the right step for our family. It felt terrible to say ‘no’ to such a terrific young man. So glad God had it all worked out!! Many blessings on your new family!!

  29. The Mooney Family

    I should clarify – Jordan was the name being used by the advocacy group.

  30. I’m so glad you heard that he is being adopted. We knew there were others who noticed him and I am certain it was hard to say no. We’ve said no to others ourselves. It’s amazing to see the number of people who know about him. We can’t wait to meet him.

  31. Karen

    All the best! I have only just got this email being in Australia it’s only 7.30am here (and I don’t read every one – but I did read this one!) so you are probably already pretty close to leaving. Praying that all goes well. Thanks for sharing. You guys are amazing.

  32. Vickie

    My heart is so happy! I was on the team that met Sean this summer and he is an amazing kid! Thank you for listening to your hearts and saying “yes”. We brought our daughter, Grace, home in 2007 from Urumqi. Praying for your trip and a wonderful bond to form quickly with Sean

  33. Thanks, Vickie. It’s amazing to see how many who did meet him were touched by him.

  34. “And even though there were a million reasons to say no, there was one reason to say yes. The reason was Sean.” <–Wow! Praying for you guys!

  35. Jeremy and family, you will all be in my prayers.

  36. Crystal Cockerel

    Reading this post brought to mind a favorite verse of mine . . .”Once our eyes are opened, we can’t pretend we don’t know what to do. God who weighs our hearts and keeps our souls, knows that we know and holds us responsible to act.” Proverbs 24:12 . . . . . .So thankful you both have eyes and hearts wide open. Praying for every step of your journey.

  37. Joe & Nancy Mooney

    Jeremy, I was talking with my husband about this last night. We realized it took as much faith to say ‘no’ to this boy as it did to say ‘yes’ to the one we adopted in 2012. We said ‘no’ knowing that God had a great plan for him whether he was adopted or not. We trusted him to our Father, because we know He’s trustworthy. So glad we could join you on this journey.

  38. The Mooneys Family

    I heard about him on a yahoo group – aokchina, I think. Someone posted a link to the blog.

  39. Cool. I am finding out that he was posted everywhere.

  40. We have said no to other kids as well. It can be hard. But God made it possible for us to adopt him. I’m not kidding when I say that it almost didn’t happen. Thankfully we had a few things go faster than normal, otherwise we would have run out of time.

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