Cover image for Okayest mom : when God's plan of adoption doubled my family / Natalie Gwyn.
Okayest mom : when God's plan of adoption doubled my family / Natalie Gwyn.
First edition.
Publication Information:
New York : FaithWords, 2018.
Physical Description:
viii, 244 pages ; 21 cm
The wife of a technology entrepreneur, already birth mother of two healthy young children-a boy and a girl-was living comfortably in the suburbs. Then she doubled the size of her family by adopting four Ethiopian children. Why? Her answer: "God."


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
248.8431 GWY Book Adult General Collection

On Order



NATALIE GWYN uses humor to brilliantly capture how God led and helped this mother of two to adopt four children from Ethiopia and successfully bond her blended family.
A happy, working wife, already birth mother of two healthy young children -- a boy and a girl -- doubled the size of her family by adopting four Ethiopian children. Why?
Her answer: "God."
Popular blogger NATALIE GWYN has been cited widely for her candid, insightful, often humorous writing on cross-cultural adoptive Christian families (which number more than 4 million). HuffPo has linked to her controversial posts and celebrities like Kathie Lee Gifford have quoted and pictured her on social media. Here Natalie tells her whole mom story, including the only-God-could-do-this backstory.
Her lighthearted narrative begins with the nudge of God toward the uncomfortable. She and her husband are almost certain they have misunderstood what the Almighty is asking of them, and with self-deprecating humor Natalie allows readers a glimpse into the process by which this already imperfect mom agreed to transnational, transracial adoption of more children than she already has.
Natalie then takes the reader on her family's adventure to Ethiopia to legally adopt the three siblings God has chosen to add to their family. With the skill of a detective novelist, she reveals their discovery of a fourth sibling, their critical decision not to leave this child behind, and their harrowing quest to find, woo and legally adopt her, too.
Similar to the laugh-out-loud humor of books on blended step-families, Natalie shares the bedroom, bathroom and kitchen scenes of this adoptive family's huge adjustments. She brilliantly captures each child's and each parent's perspective and, in doing so, reveals God in their midst.

Author Notes

Natalie Gwyn is a blogger, working wife, and mother of six. Her posts and articles are syndicated through and She has also written for Huffington Post, Guideposts, and the Today show.

Reviews 1

Publisher's Weekly Review

Gwyn, writer for For Every Mom, chronicles raising six children-four of whom were adopted from Ethiopia-in this enjoyable memoir. Although Gwyn had a tidy life plan that she was slowly moving through, her life course was thrown in a new direction after she and her husband decided to use their resources to bring more love into the world and adopt children. Gwyn's description of the chaos that comes with raising six children is funny and poignant. Consistent throughout is her belief that God is present in the midst of it all, directing and supporting her choices. She reports her exhaustion, uncertainty, anger, and frustration as she wrestles with societal expectations of mixed-race families and the nature of the relationship between adopted child and birth mother. Readers may question Gwyn's wisdom in writing some sections in the voices of her children, but her ability to weave her accounts of her adopted children's early experiences in with her descriptions of the challenges of making a new family drives the story. This fearless memoir will inspire readers. (July) © Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

Table of Contents

Ryan Hall
Forewordp. vii
1 Stickyp. 1
2 Shukriya Means "Peace"p. 10
3 Broken Plans, Broken Peoplep. 16
4 I Like Big Butsp. 25
5 Submitted Vesselsp. 36
6 Okayest Momp. 45
7 Permanentp. 54
8 Shukriya's Prayersp. 68
9 He Calls Us by Namep. 72
10 Into the Stormp. 82
11 Pricelessp. 94

p. 102

13 Labor Painsp. 110
14 "I Choose You"p. 117
15 "Togetherising"p. 125
16 "TIA"p. 135
17 Coloredp. 144
18 Shukriya's Painp. 154
19 Never Say Good-Byep. 158
20 The Battle of Letting Gop. 170
21 The Space between Usp. 180
22 Perspectivep. 192
23 Relearning How to Parentp. 200
24 Whispers of Lovep. 214
25 The Promised Landp. 226
26 Shukriya's Praisep. 232
27 Redeemedp. 236
Acknowledgmentsp. 243
About the Authorp. 245