Sunday, November 21, 2010

A few days ago we filed a motion to reconsider with the courts.  This is basically us asking the court to think about the decision they made and change their minds.  The odds of us winning this are terrible.  I would like to think though, that we have tried every possible thing we could try to keep our little girl with us.  

There are two other reasons we decided to file this motion.  The first reason is that it buys us a little time to work on the transition plan.  When I say transition plan I mean the plan where custody of Waverley is transferred to the other party and we are no longer her parents.  Having a good plan approved by the court is the last good thing we can do for her as her parents.  So we want to put the best possible plan into place and execute it with as much grace as we are able to.  This is the most important thing for us right now.

The last reason that we filed it was the hope that the court would change the language used in the ruling.  While it was never a main concern of ours we had always been hopeful that our situation would make adoption law more pro-child and less pro-biological connection.  Best interest of the child is not considered in these cases.  In this latest ruling the language actually hurts adoption more than it helps adoption.  Honestly, if it were for this factor alone we would probably not be doing it.  We are passionate about adoption and think it is a beautiful thing, but we are not in a place where we feel like "taking one for the team." Combined with these other factors though this feels like a good next step.  Or as good as we can come up with anyway.  

The court will rule on this anytime.  It could be as few as two days (which have already passed) or as long as three months.  It will most likely not exceed that time frame.  If we lose the motion to reconsider we have 30 days from that time for the custody to transfer to the other party.  So we are looking at sometime between December and March.  We would love for you to pray for this miracle with us.  

I am hesitating as I type this post because I am not sure what to include.  We have sat with two different child therapists for different reasons over the past couple of weeks.  It is an awful, awful thing to be discussing how to tell your daughter that you can't be her mommy and daddy anymore.  That looms ahead of us.  We will wait until this final ruling before we start that process.  So for now our girls don't know anything other than Mommy and Daddy are sad sometimes.  

I don't think I need to go into the details of how impossible this feels or how broken our hearts are.  It seems like parading our tragedy.  I will just say I don't think we would all be in one piece without the love and help and prayers and support and food and good words we have gotten from people that care about us.  Thank you for falling into that camp.  Thank you for checking on us and providing for us and saying the things we need to hear.  We'll let you know more as we hear it.

With love and thanks,

Thursday, November 18, 2010

coming soon: an update

In the meantime:

Some of this pretty face...

Sunday, November 14, 2010

an update

Last week we emailed out an urgent request for prayer for one last attempt to keep Waverley in our home.  We presented the birthfather with a request for mediation.  They declined.

Although we knew that so many were praying I just couldn't bring myself to say much about it.  I think I left one voicemail telling my mom, one voicemail telling a good friend and cancelling our plans for that day, and one text to a friend who had been waiting to hear.  I could hardly make myself communicate with anyone.  I had held out some hope that there was still a chance for this to all get turned around.  Last week I knew that specific hope would not be realized.  

How can so many people have prayed so hard and for so long and then we still lose our daughter? How can I read comforting words in the Bible about when two or more pray in His name their prayers will be answered... or God taking care of the needs of His people and justice being upheld, and THEN WE STILL LOSE OUR DAUGHTER? These are the questions that I am asking myself and the Lord all day long.  I don't know the answer.  And platitudes never comfort anyone.  So I am mad, hurt, devastated.  Completely crushed and defeated.  I feel scared and hollow.  Brittle and empty.  

This will forever change our lives and the shape of our happiness.  Families should grow in size, not shrink.    

We do know this though, and I promised we would say it no matter the outcome.  GOD IS GOOD.

And even though I didn't know my heart could ever feel so heavy in my body I am completely sincere when I say that.



Tuesday, November 9, 2010

I Still Have My Bracelet

This is Danielle posting.

I had the privilege of speaking to Molly for a brief time last night.  As we closed our conversation, I shared with her a story about my son and his blue Wavy bracelet.  With the thought of that story fresh in my mind, when I failed to be able to put my mind to rest for the night, I did what I often do... I wrote about the many thoughts running through my head and posted it to my personal blog late last night.

I am honored that Molly has asked me to share that blog post with you as well.  Please know that the subject matter and urgency for prayer remains the same.

Thank you for reading, following, and most importantly, praying!

I Still Have My Bracelet

My family has prayed for "Wavy" and her family for well over a year now.  

Like many others, we wore blue bracelets with the words "For the Love of Wavy" to remind ourselves to pray for her situation during the time that her case was in the Appeals process.

{November 2009}

After the Appellate Court ruled in favor of M&M, we got a bit lackadaisical and  took our prayer bracelets off.  

Truthfully, I haven't seen those bracelets in our household for quite some time.  I'm not sure why.  I think I was overconfident that our prayers had, indeed, been answered and our bracelets were pushed to corners of our household that are only seen on rare occasions.

Last week, when I learned the news that the Supreme Court of Kansas had ruled against M&M and that Wavy would soon be removed from their home, I was unable to hide my raw emotion in front of my children.  I was forced to try to explain to Noah the cause for my tears.  I tried to be vague so as not to scare him, but he was familiar enough with Wavy that I felt I had to tell him the truth about the situation.

The way he responded to my explanation broke my heart at the time.  

He simply looked at me through puppy dog eyes and said... 

"But Mommy, we prayed for her.  We even wore those bracelets."

He was right.  

And I was forced to try to explain an even more difficult concept to him... that sometimes God doesn't answer our prayers in the way that we want Him to.  

After mangling an explanation about prayer and God's goodness in spite of bad things, Noah's eyes lit up as if he had just come up with the most brilliant of ideas, and he excitedly said the following words to me...

"Mom!  I still have my bracelet.  I can still pray for her!"

With that, I hugged him tighter than normal and told him how much I loved him.  And that was the end of it.

Until last night.

As I was doing my nightly clean-up-the-mess-from-the-day routine, I picked up Noah's little bucket that houses his "Silly Bandz".  As I picked it up to take it to his room, I was immediately struck by something....

Somehow, somewhere, his blue bracelet had resurfaced and was sitting at the top of his beloved collection of Silly Bandz!  I honestly don't know where he found it or when he found it, but there it was, perched on the top as if it were the most important "band" amidst the hundreds of other bands within that small bucket.

What struck me was that something I consider to be so mind boggling and hard to comprehend, let alone explain, is very clear to a small child.  

That even when it seems God has not answered our prayers, we can, and SHOULD, still pray! 

We still have our bracelets!

Noah didn't have to think through the million different nuances I've tried to rationalize in my mind over the past week.  He just did what he knew to do.  He found his bracelet.  He prayed.  With the same level of trust that he prayed the last times he wore the bracelet.  He does not question whether or not God can answer his prayer.  He just trusts.

I have prayed for many miracles in my lifetime.  I've witnessed many small miracles and some big ones too.  And there have been miracles that I prayed for that didn't happen... at least not in the way I wanted them to happen.

I do believe in miracles.  

I do believe that God can make possible the impossible.

Yet, I know that He doesn't always perform the miracles I ask for.

Trying to balance the hope that He will answer my continued pleas for His intercession in this case with the reality of knowing that His ways are not always my ways is difficult.  I often feel like I'm risking my own faith by asking Him to do something so big - to perform a miracle - to make possible the impossible.  I don't want to be in a position of wanting to question His plan if it happens to be different than what I've prayed.  I feel vulnerable in asking.

But I will do it anyway.

I still have my bracelet!

I spoke with Molly this evening. 

She, too, is wrestling with the delicate balance between being realistic about their current situation, yet knowing that God is still able to intervene in this case.  Knowing he can perform a miracle.  Knowing he can make possible the impossible.

She and Matt are exhausting every single option they possibly have to be able to keep Wave in their home.

But the reality of the matter is that it will, indeed, take a miracle to make that happen.

What will the miracle look like?

An open mind.  Eyes that see things in a new light.  A transformed heart.

The miracle must be in the mind, the eyes, and the heart of the birthfather and of his counsel.

I do not have liberty to share any more than this.  But if you happen to be reading this blog post, I beg you to stop right this very minute, and pray that minds be opened, eyes see things anew, and hearts be transformed.  Right now, I ask you to pray for a miracle.  Right now, I ask you to pray that God make possible the impossible.  

Be vulnerable.  Risk it.  Ask.

I still have my bracelet!  

Do you?

Monday, November 8, 2010

The Last 10 Days

We have spent the past ten days in alternate states of numbness, shock, and grief.  We have been moved by the support we have received as we have started the countdown for the days we have left with our little girl.  From the outside we look to be in good shape.  Our family, friends, and church have prayed for us and loved us, sent us amazing notes and letters, fed us, done laundry, cleaned, done yard work, and ministered to us through their care.  Matt and I constantly wonder out loud how people go through loss without a support system like the one that we are so blessed to have.  My pantry has never looked so clean, we have never had so many clean clothes at once, and right now there is stromboli baking in my oven.  Again, on the outside my life looks prettier than it usually does.  And for that we are so thankful.  Thank you to all of you who contribute to our well being.  You do it so very well.

On the inside, we are a bit of a mess.  We know we have only this borrowed time left with sweet Wave.  I feel like I am choking every time I realize that I will not know her when she is three.  I won't try to explain my grief any more here because it seems senseless to.  Losing a child is impossible.  There aren't words.

Last week we met with our lawyer and an adoption lawyer we have received counsel from before named Martin Bauer.  This man is amazing and our meeting went better than we expected.  We will not be posting any legal information on the blog.  We just do not feel that it would be wise to do so at this point.  So while we will continue to update the blog for a time we will not include anything that is happening on the legal scene.  We did find out one bit of good news during our meeting.  The 30 day clock that we thought we were on does not start until a 20 day period where the supreme court hands a mandate back down to the district court.  So we have up to 50 days with Wavy from the ruling.  We might not have as many as that, but the 50th day is December 18th.  Custody will transfer before then.  

We don't know how to do this.  I don't know what else to say.  We are desperate for your continued prayers for a miracle.  Thank your for caring about our family and our story.

Molly {Wavybel's mom}

Thursday, November 4, 2010

How to Help

This is Danielle posting.

461 days ago this blog was born and I introduced myself to you.

I clearly remember how I felt as I published this first post.

Nervous.  Anxious.  Hopeful.  Very hopeful.

Today, 461 days later, I’m back again.

And as I write, I have the same feelings I had over a year ago, but there are new ones as well.

Devastation.  Fear.  Extreme sorrow.  Confusion.

And yet I still feel the same as I did 461 days ago.

Nervous.  Anxious.  Hopeful.  Very hopeful.

The truth is I never thought I would write this post.  In fact, I didn’t expect to write another post on this blog ever again. 

While I was the original author of this blog, it has become Matt & Molly’s place.  Their place to tell their story.  Their place to share their precious daughters with us.  Their place to receive encouragement, prayer, and support.  Their place to bear witness to their faith in a God who is bigger than the Supreme Court and its justices and who loves Waverley even more than they do.

And I thought it would be their place to share their family of four with us… forever.

But the story that started on this blog 461 days ago, and in the lives of Matt & Molly 864 days ago, has come to what seems like an abrupt halt.

And so I am back.

As I shared on my own personal blog several days ago, I am in shock.  How justice can be so blind is something I cannot begin to wrap my mind around. 

And like so many of you, my heart cries out for justice!

Over the weekend, I confessed to my mom that I was having a very hard time seeing God in this situation.  A very hard time.

I still am.


He is there.  I know in my head that He is.  Even when my heart doesn’t feel it.  He is there.

And on Monday, I started to see Him appear.

He appeared in the many, many emails, phone calls and Facebook messages I received from you… those of you who have learned to love Waverley and her family from both near and far.  So many of you have been deeply and emotionally influenced by their story and would do anything to spare them this horror.

Like me, your hearts are crying out for justice!

In the midst of this terrible situation, people are banding together and want to do something.  Anything to help.

While there is very little that we can do to effect any kind of change in the outcome of this devastating decision, there are some things that we can do to help.

And that is why I am back.

To ask for your help.  Again.

Please trust me when I tell you how humbled and grateful Matt & Molly are for your desire to continue to help them, to be a part of their lives.

There are currently several ways that you can help:

First and foremost, you can pray!  Sadly, Matt, Molly and their girls need your prayers now more than they have ever needed them before.  It is the prayers of many and the grace of a loving God that will sustain them in the days, weeks, and months to come.

There are a multitude of specific needs that you can pray for.  Matt mentioned several of them in his previous post.   Please be sure to pray for all of these things daily.

There is something else that I have personally chosen to pray for as well.  While I am a tad bit nervous to share it, I will do so in case any of you feel inclined to join me in this specific prayer.

Here’s the thing.  From a legal perspective, this case is over.  There is nothing else that can be done.  Waverley will be raised by her birthfather and her birth grandmother.

Unless for some reason, by some miracle, their hearts are converted.

That, my friends, is something I have chosen to pray for.  I am praying that the Lord would stir within their hearts during this transition allowing them to see with new eyes how well adjusted and happy Waverley is.  I am praying that, miraculously, their hearts would change.

Our loving Father is the only one who knows how this transition will occur.  And we must trust that He is in control.  But we can still pray for miracles.  And I believe that a miracle is worth praying for!


Second, you can offer words of encouragement!  Matt & Molly find great comfort in your words of encouragement and support.  They have repeatedly told us how much the emails, Facebook messages, and comments on this blog have touched them and sustained them.  Losing Waverley is only going to get more difficult as time passes and they will need the support of their friends, family, and community to help them survive each day.  So, please come here often and leave your words of encouragement to them.


Next, you can prepare a meal or send a meal gift card!  As you can imagine, Matt & Molly have much to process, plan for, and endure in the immediate future.  Amidst all of this, their parental responsibilities to both girls remain.  Cooking meals is one of those obligations and   fortunately, this is an area in which we can help them.  If you would like to help in this area, but live outside of the Kansas City area, a gift card to a restaurant would be equally appreciated.  Some restaurants near their home include Granite City, Olive Garden, Panera, Noodles & Co, and Pei Wei.

And finally, you can help alleviate their financial worry!  I so vividly remember speaking with Molly 460 some days ago about their financial worry.  This blog has fostered an amazing amount of financial support during these past 461 days.  Bills have been paid.  Burdens have been eased.  Needs have been met.  All because of the pure generosity of both friends and strangers.  It has been nothing short of inspiring.  And Matt & Molly are eternally grateful for it.

Sadly, the financial burden has continued to accumulate as this process has continued.  Matt & Molly have put every resource they have into fighting for their daughter, and it has left them with a very large amount of legal debt.  Every month, they will be reminded of this pain when they open a legal bill and have to make another payment towards what seems like an insurmountable sum.

While money may not change the outcome of the situation or take away the pain, it can alleviate a secondary source of worry.  Together, we can help to take away this financial burden, or at least lessen it substantially.

Tentative plans are being discussed for several fundraisers and other avenues of support, so please continue to come to this blog for opportunities to be involved in upcoming events.

In the meantime, if you feel inclined to help in this area, you may make a donation directly through this blog into the PayPal account.  If you would prefer to send a check directly to the Nagels, please see the information at the bottom of this post.

While I don't have a specific amount that needs to be raised, I'd love to see this community of supporters band together to do something really big.

If 500 people gave $20, $10,000 would be raised.  Now that would be big!

Of course, any amount you feel able to give will be enormously helpful and sincerely appreciated.

I have no idea what the future holds for Matt & Molly in terms of their family size.  But if they ever have a desire to adopt again, I would hate for them not to be able to do so because of the financial burden this journey has left.  Together, I believe we can pave the way for a brighter future for our friends.  For that, I am very hopeful.


461 days ago we all began sharing this family's journey of faith, hope, and unending love.  The next 30 days will be the most difficult and most transformational.  Thank you for being a part of the journey.  While it might seem that it is over, I believe that it is not.  The journey continues to unfold.

I believe that there will be hearts converted, faiths renewed, and maybe even laws changed because of this journey.  God is working in this journey, even when I cannot see it.

So while the journey is not over, it is at its most difficult phase.  Thank you for walking beside them, behind them, and in front of them... now more than ever!

With gratitude,
Danielle (with the tremendous help and contributions of Bri and Kelly)

If you want to directly support the Nagel's through the mail (for cards, gift cards, financial donations, etc.), please contact Bri McClernon at or Kelly Warren at  These amazing friends of the Nagel's are the ladies working behind the scenes to do everything they can to help their friend.  They will assist you in getting your donation directly to the Nagel's.

Please continue to share this story with your networks of prayer supporters.  While security is not as much of a concern as it was in the past, we ask you to use caution in linking this site to public blogs. However, we encourage you to continue to share the blog address with your personal networks of friends.  

Lastly, please know that I "hijacked" the blog to post this.  It was a direct response to the many inquiries for ways to help that myself, Kelly, and Bri have received this week.