Thursday, November 21, 2013

Life On Pause

The months are adding up to a year now. This Christmas marks the date of "surely they will be home by then." Then "they" were suddenly not for us, not meant to be. So they went from having names and faces, to being two soul crushing question marks. I saw one of their shirts. The ones we had printed with our family photo on them, outlined in a red heart. The ones that said" We love you" in their language. Worn by a different daughter. A daughter that has found her forever family. It was just another precious adoptive mama showing her friends the new photos of her four beautiful girls, and I scanned their sweet faces and smiled and said a prayer that they would come home to their waiting family very soon. Then I saw the shirt, and it took my breath away. I never knew that it had made it all the way across the ocean. Part of me hoped they had never seen the shirts, because how confusing must that be, to be four years old or two years old and see this smiling family and the words "We love you." And part of me hoped that they would get the shirts, because they should know that they ARE loved, and that someone sent them something. I will never know. If the shirts and the elephant, and the monkey and the rubber balls and vitamins and suckers, and the "I love yous" ever made it to them, our Junior and Marie. Unexpected bursts of emotion and tears well up even now as I type their precious names. When does that stop?

I pressed pause. Pause on life as usual. No trips were planned. I didn't sign up for my classes. Because what about travel dates? I600 filing and "Gotcha" days? They would need me at home for an undetermined amount of time to work on attachment, and English, and preschool basics. We would go to the art museum, because they have toddler days, and finger painting is a great sensory rich activity. We would go to story time at the library. We would go to big sister's school parties, because they need to become familiar with that environment before they start attending kindergarten. I feel most days like I'm still on pause, like I'm holding my breath waiting for something. Some good news. Some movement. And while there has been some good news, there's also been a lot of negative news in the form of setbacks and delays. At this point we literally have no idea when we will be traveling, filing, holding, and loving our newest member. Some days I fear never. Some days I am filled with hope. Today is a hard day. Today I found J and M's referral announcement photo stashed away with other secret treasures in one of my children's rooms.

I kind of hoped that they would forget, but I should know better. Those kids are unforgettable and are etched onto my children's hearts forever, as well as mine. I want more than anything to reassure my children that God has a special child, or children, waiting to come home to us, and that very soon we will be celebrating them home, but I just can't. I can't let them down one more time. Its funny, I always have said that there is no way that I could ever foster/adopt because I couldn't put my biological children through the pain of loving another like a brother or sister only to have to say goodbye. I missed the big picture, and that is that we get to love them, and pray for them, and do all we can to meet their needs! There is no adoption without brokenness and loss. This loving a child from afar, only to lose them to uncertainty is really just a fraction of a glimpse of the pain and loss and uncertainly that is required for a child to become an orphan. How did I miss this? Yes, its so painful. Yes, it leaves a void, but how much more so for the orphan? Talk about life on pause. Orphanage life is no life at all. Just days, weeks, months, years of waiting. Waiting to be someone's son or daughter. Waiting for love, validation, recognition. Waiting to be seen and heard and cherished. Waiting for an opportunity to show the world who you are and that you matter. Oh, I will never give up on these waiting children. I will pray that my hurt and grief, my tiny window into the pain of loss,  be fuel that propels me to do more, to love bigger, to care about this stuff that matters even more. So, we continue on this journey to stitching these broken pieces and stories and lives together to create the beautiful tapestry of FAMILY. I know, that even though I can't see the end result yet, it will be so worth it in the end, and I can't help but think of this verse.

2nd Corinthians 4:16 Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. 17 For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. 18 So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.

1 comment:

  1. So beautiful. Echoes of my heart, friend. love you and am praying that the joy in store is near!