Sunday, March 20, 2016

::love & family::

It was a long road, but it ended well.

I'm blogging at my personal blog more these days, so give me a follow there. :)

Monday, June 01, 2015

::we're still here::

Can it be almost 6 months since I last updated about our adoption?

And yet, there is still nothing to update. 

I would never have thought we'd spend 18 months on the domestic waiting list after being booted out of a closing international program where we fruitlessly waited for over 2 years.

Sometimes we wonder if the need for us to adopt is really there. 

How many doors need to close in your face before you accept the closed door and move on?

I read lots of people's blogs and facebook updates about how blessed their full "quivers" are, how they can't wait to add more to their quiver --as if one can just add children to their family at any time. 
Oddly enough, it seems that most people actually can do that. 
But for whatever reason, not us.  Not biologically.  Not through adoption. 

I always wanted a full quiver, but as the months turned into a year which turned into two, three, and four years, I've begun to realize that we're not getting any younger.  And our years for filling up a quiver are becoming numbered.  I'm getting beyond the "newborn" stage of mothering, and I wonder if we should consider something different.
I get tired of living my life in a holding pattern, and many days I wonder if we should just accept that our quiver has one arrow, and that our precious little arrow is all we could ever need.  
But...I'm so conflicted.  I'm done with waiting, but I'm not done with the desire to mother another child.  And then some days, I think I'm done with both.

On Mother's Day, I received a text from my dad that spoke to the yearning I have trouble putting into words sometimes.  He said my son was blessed to have me as a mother, that one day he would grasp that blessing. (Chronic mommy guilt makes that hard for me to believe!) 
And then he said this: "He could end up being the only child you get.  I pray otherwise.  But he may, in the long run, end up being the only child you need."
{insert sobbing here}

I remember praying when I was about 15 years old--I promised the Lord that I would obey Him no matter what my future held, no matter what difficulties, no matter what sorrows.
Here I am almost 20 years later still grappling with the depth and implications of a promise like that.  (Um, God....did You have to take me seriously at such an impertinent age?) 

I am living proof that you have to wake up every day and decide again that God is trustworthy, that He is faithful in His "no".  Some days, I grab a hold of those newly birthed mercies in the early morning hours with all that I am.  Sometimes I lie awake at night as I struggle with chronic pain and wonder if I have any faith left at all. 

But, I know that God never wastes a drop of suffering...not physical pain (which is something I'm learning to live with), not emotional pain (which I've lived with for years and suspect is just part of the Christian life).  There is purpose in it all.  There has to be.

In all this is a battle for contentment. 
I'm learning to pray this: "God, give me everything I need to be happy in You." 
It has become a mantra, a litany I say to Him over and over.  Eleven words that encapsulate what I really desperately need.
God, give me everything I need to be happy in You.  

That may or may not include more children.  It may or may not include pain-free nighttime hours. It may mean that I never sleep through the night again without excruciating pain.  It might mean that I become so content in Christ that I can happily (or at least joyfully, which is not exactly the same thing) sacrifice my desires if it brings glory to Him.

But, it absolutely will include everything I actually need to be happy in God
And thankfully, He never changes. 


Wednesday, January 14, 2015

::When the Day Seems Long::

Can you even believe this?

I sort of can't.

I think this is home study update number 3, and our 4th home study evaluation since starting the adoption process four years ago. 

I don't pretend to understand why we can't seem to adopt--not internationally, not domestically.  Nothing is working for us no matter how long we wait. 

I'm feeling burned by this entire adoption process.  We've tried to adopt where we believed there was need,  but every door has closed.  Our file for Ethiopia was permanently closed two months ago (so, even though we were on hold and had hoped we might get back to it when the climate changed, the door to Ethiopian adoption has now been firmly shut for us).  We've also just hit one year on a domestic waiting list. 

We have been advised by our social worker to regroup, re-evaluate our plans, and consider starting over again.
I thought we could maybe keep our current home study updated, but we are running into problems with that as I call agency after agency after agency.  
(Did I mention that I'm tired of calling agencies?)

Because all of our current paperwork is about to expire, we have about two weeks to decide if we want to stay where we are (on a list that is not moving at all, with a home study that no one else will take), or start completely over with a new agency.  That means:  new applications, new mountain of paperwork, new home study, new waiting list, new fees.  It is choking me to get all of those words out here.  New everything.

I keep wondering, What was it all for?  Why four years wasted with nothing to show for it?
Why, when adoption is our only method for growing our family, is it so impossible for us?
The last three months have been ones of intense growth for me, spiritually.  I've been fighting hard for joy
This, however, is really challenging the belief that my joy is not rooted in my circumstances, but rather, in Jesus.   This is where what I've struggled so hard to grasp and hold on to lately is coming to life through refinement.  And as I tearfully listen to one more social worker give me another long list of requirements, as I scroll through yet another another agency website telling me how much it will cost to start over,  I find myself having to make the decision again to believe that God is still being good to me.  This long, fruitless journey will not be wasted.   I know the Lord finishes what He started, and if the last four years were only to teach me that my joy should be firmly anchored to Christ rather than to what I wish He would do for me, then in the end it was worth it.  
Today, it all seems long and draining.  
And the words to this song are all I feel like I can sing.