Tuesday, March 23, 2010

From Ashes to Africa

 From Ashes to Africa by Josh and Amy Bottomly

So my brother Erik had told me about this book a couple of months ago (by the way, he and his wife are also adopting from Ethiopia! Check out their blog too!).  I finally ordered a copy on Amazon last week, and got it in the mail a few days later.

On Thursday we travelled down to South Carolina for a photo shoot and also to visit my parents.  I thought the 7 hours on the road would be a perfect time to read this book.  I decided to read it aloud so Wes could experience it with me.  First of all, let me emphasize how much I dislike reading out loud.  I DO NOT LIKE IT.  Your mouth gets all dry, you have to cough because of the dryness, and it's simply exhausting.  But I REALLY wanted Wes to enjoy it with me, so I manned up and read aloud anyways.

As I read through the pages, I felt like I was reading our own story.  It is about a couple who experience a dreadful first year of marriage.  That was Wes and I. (Really, it was more like two years of dreadfulness, but for the first year, I didn't really realize it.)  After their first difficult year, they decided that they would work on strengthening their marriage before they had children.  Once things were healthy in their marriage they got on the "trying" track for children.  After a year of trying they were still not pregnant, and then they went on to fertility testing.  After a lot of emotional trauma, they eventually decided to adopt from Ethiopia.  

Their story of adoption is beautiful, and I read the entire book in just a few hours.  As I read through the pages, there were times when I couldn't even get words out, because I was crying.  From reading about Amy's heartache of not being able to have children, to meeting their little boy for the first time, to meeting his birth mother....it was all so overwhelming.  But as I read, my excitement grew.  I am letting myself feel more and more as each day passes.  I feel excited and I'm actually saying, "I can't wait!" when it comes to our adoption of a baby from Ethiopia.  Everything is seeming more and more real.

I highly recommend you read this book.  For many of us, it reminds us that we are not alone in our struggles.  It reminds us that no matter what we go through, God has got us.

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