Waiting for Adalyn Ann: Opp family preparing to bring new sister home from China

Published 8:19 am Tuesday, November 21, 2017

From the beginning of their marriage, Ashton Harrington Sansom told her husband, Ronnie, she wanted to adopt a child one day.

“I kind of specifically wanted to adopt a child from China,” she said.

Through the births of their three daughters – Sara Catherine, 11, Caroline, 7, and Amelia, 5 – it’s always been out there.

When their youngest child was about a year old, the Sansoms heard a performance by the University of Mobile’s Voices of Mobile.

“They sang a song called ‘Kings and Queens,’ ” Sansom recalled. “After they sang that song, Ronnie said, ‘Ashton, I think we’re going to adopt one day.’ ”

The couple kept praying about it.

“This past year, the doors kind of opened, and it felt like it was the right time,” Sansom said. “We applied in April, and had not expected to get matched with a child until January or February. But the first week of school, our agent called to tell us we had been matched. We had doctors review her files, and prayed about it. We decided that this was our fourth child.”

Some time between March and May, the family will travel to China to bring 2-year-old Adalyn Ann home.

There are lots of hurdles to clear in an international adoption, and many of them are expensive. There are agency fees, fees to the Chinese government, and travel expenses.

“The Lord has provided,” Sansom said.

The Opp couple received a grant to assist them in their endeavor, and friends and family members have held fundraisers, including a yard sale in September that “just blew our socks off,” and a T-shirt sale.

Then, the Sansoms’ neighbor, Amanda Henderson, came up with the idea to have a tour of homes, which is set this weekend.

(See related story)

“This is the last fundraiser we have planned,” Sansom said. “We think it’s a great idea because it is different and unique, and you get something out of it yourself.”

When the paperwork is lined up, the family will travel to Chine and stay for two weeks.

“We want to take our other three girls because when in their lifetime will they get an opportunity like this? We want them to see the world, what is outside of our comfort, and to see a real orphanage. We hope that it is life changing for them.”

Because the Sansoms have photographs and videos, the Sansom girls already have a face with their new sister’s name.

“They know she’s here, not just expected,” Sansom said. “There is a 13-hour time difference. When we wake up, they’ll say, ‘It’s 7 o’clock in China, so she’s probably getting ready for bed.’ ”

Sansom said when she and her husband chose a name for the child they would adopt, they began praying over her name.

“We thought we would adopt, maybe in five years,” she said. “We started praying over this name because we knew even if she were not alive, her mother was.”

Sansom said many have been generous toward their fundraising efforts.

“We have been saving our own money, and we have been blessed by some generous people who have a heart for adoption,” she said.

It is not lost on her that the final fundraiser, this weekend’s tour of homes, will fall in Adoption Month. The homes on the tour are “Pinterest worthy,” she said.

Mrs. Sansom is the daughter of Rebecca (nee McKathan) and Thad Perkins of Andalusia, and her husband is the son of Ronnie and Diann Sansom of Kinston.