KARA: "Do you have long and short term goals? Tell us about them and how you plan on achieving those goals."
PAIGE: "Short term goals: I would love to go back to college and earn my degree. This has been on my mind for a long time, but I have wanted to give my new girls time to adjust to our family before embarking on such an adventure. Eat a more healthy diet.
Long term goals: I want to raise happy, successful children. I really want to be debt-free! We have been careful through the years with our finances, but I will say international adoption has left its toll on us financially. We knew we had the money to raise more children, but the fees to adopt a child can be quite substantial. There were A LOT of extra fees that we had not planned for and our adoptions took so long that the foster care fees piled up monthly. We had no idea what we were truly getting ourselves in to when we began the adoption process. Another long term goal on my list is that I would love to become involved in missionary work and serve a mission with my husband when the children are grown. At some point in time, I would also love to work with adoptive families and attachment therapy."
KARA: "I’m sure you, like everyone else, have gone through trials during your life. Tell us about those trials, and how you were able to overcome them."
PAIGE: "Yes, we have had many trials. There is only one common denominator that has gotten us through these and that is faith in Jesus Christ. He has sustained us through our many trials. I believe that these trials have strengthened us individually and as a family unit. Of course I could make a list of our trials and tell how we got through each one, but that would bore everyone and take forever. I will not do that, but I would like to tell about the way the Lord assured us He was there even when bad things happened.
When we were young and I had a very young baby (our 3rd child), we were going through a very hard time financially. I attended a class on self defense and crime prevention. I brought the baby with me. (Now as a side note, let me add that my babies were all “spoiled” babies and loved to be held and would cry during meetings. They were never the kind that liked to sit in their car seats, so I usually did not bring the infant car seat in with me because then I had to carry a purse, diaper bag, infant AND a car seat.) But, this particular night, as we got out of the car to go in I had a feeling I should bring the seat in with me. I waivered back and forth trying to decide if I really wanted to deal with that car seat. I decided to go ahead and bring it with me. After learning all about safety, crime prevention, and self defense we returned to our car. I had just had a baby recently so I admit I was absent-minded, so I didn’t think too much when I returned to where I had parked my car only to find there was no car there. I looked thinking I must have parked somewhere else. Then I noticed in that exact spot there was a lot of broken glass. Realizing the car had been stolen, I called the police to make a report. Later that night, after I had returned home, our panicked conversation was similar to this, “What are we going to do? That was our only car! We have no money to buy a new car!” I suddenly felt the strangest calm. I told Rob that I had no idea what was happening, but it was all going to be okay and explained the calm, almost happy feeling I was having.
Sure enough, our car was located in the middle of the night. It had been beaten and stripped of everything that had been inside of it. Even our umbrella! As strange as it may sound, I then realized the Holy Ghost had told me to take that car seat in because if I hadn’t, that would have been taken too. I realize that sounds like such a small thing, but it reassured me that if the Lord was concerned enough about us that He knew we could not have even afforded to buy a new car seat then surely He will sustain us through even bigger trials. As it turned out, our full repair bill was paid because the man called and told us they were assuming that responsibility because he felt the parking lot had not had sufficient lighting to discourage such acts in the parking lot and we had not even asked for such a blessing. The Lord took care of us in what was a very scary time for a young, struggling couple.
An even bigger trial happened in the summer of 2008. We came home from our daughters’ dance recital to discover that an upstairs toilet had been overflowing for over 5 hours and as a result our whole downstairs was ruined. We did not have flood insurance, so we thought our house was going to be a total loss. There are no words to describe the despair we felt as we watched water pouring from every imaginable place. I never dreamed water damage could be so devastating. My sister happened to called as water was pouring from every nook and cranny and suggested we call our insurance company to find out if it would be covered. We doubted it because of the lack of flood insurance, but we decided to give it a try. They sent someone over to start the process of drying out our house. That seemed promising so we started to think things would work out, but little did we know we still had the battle of our lives ahead of us. Sometimes we wanted to just give up because our insurance adjuster did not seem to have a humane bone in his body. I have to say that before we knew for certain the insurance was going to cover the damage, once again I had that sweet, comforting feeling return and I knew that somehow we would be all right. Three months after the event had occurred we finally received the check to cover everything. Because the damage had not been caused by a natural flood, everything was covered!
Trials are no fun, but they do make us stronger. I would not be the person I am now if it were not for the trials I have endured. The Lord carries us through these trials. It is His way of shaping and molding our character. I realize that I am still a work in progress, but I just hope that as I continue to have trials that I will handle them with dignity and always with a prayer in my heart. We have been told in the scriptures that after our trials, we receive blessings. I can testify that this has been true in my life."
Paige sent me a bunch of great pictures, so I made a slideshow for her - take a minute to peak at that. Come back and visit as we continue our interview tomorrow. I'm really enjoying this week on Incredible Women - I hope you are too.