Tuesday, October 29, 2013

My Refuge

Even though I have about 12 different posts half-written...I gotta just share what's on my heart tonight.

1) I am so thankful to have been raised in my family. Adoption is this crazy beautiful mess. And I am so privileged to be hand-picked for my family. My parents lived for God's Word. And they took every opportunity (even discipline) to have us memorize those precious truths in our hearts. And watching my sweet Grammy...every. single. night. Soaking in God's words...reading and finding new things and making sure I knew that once I finish, read it again and again and again. And that God will continue to mold me through life. And that at 68, 74, and even 80, God is not done molding her.

All this to say - as I had some pretty hard "life" things slammed in my face today, my response was not of anxiety, even though these things tend to cause that. Instead, it was to take immediate refuge. Refuge in the One who holds my tomorrow....and the tomorrows of those I love.

This scripture came to mind immediately. Immediately. Which is why I've just been so thankful for the Word planted in early on in my life. {And also why I cherish my job - I have this awesome opportunity to plant those same words and truths into almost 100 hearts each week between the daycare and church kidlets...what a blessing!}

2) Refuge. Defined by Webster as a "condition of being safe or sheltered from pursuit, danger, or trouble;" "a place that provides safety or shelter." And more. But that's good. Because I have it. In the arms of my Creator...the One who gave His life for me. He's got this...so I don't have to. I must take refuge...knowing that He's my strength. And move on from day to day and even moment to moment as needed..

3) Randomly, extra thankful for the Piano Guys and their amazing Pandora station. Need your heart to find calm? Listen. Read the Word...and listen this music...Best.Stuff.Ever. Seriously. It also helps me focus, which may or may not be completely unrelated.

Though I don't do this often, I do request your prayer during this time. Without giving too many details, our family is just going through some dark days, but my hope is in Christ alone and the beautiful gift of eternal life.

Monday, October 7, 2013

Adoption: What NOT to say

This post was inspired by this post. So you'll have to read there first. {Soooo good, BTW.}

And please...don't mind me, but I'll be sharing some of my favorite shots of my kidlets while I ramble about adoption a bit.

A fire has been ignited in my soul over the past few weeks over this "thing" called adoption. And between a conversation I had just today and the post above, I am ready to say a few things.

What NOT to say to an adoptive momma:

{My favorite} Can't you have kids of your own?

Numero Uno - that's nonya. Nonya business. And to answer your question, we'd love to have biological children and are still young. Who knows what our family will look like when God's done with it.

Numero Dos - DON'T say this in front of MY OWN children. I don't care that they didn't grow in my belly, they are MINE. They have been from the moment I heard of them...and really have been before that, but that's another blog post. I do not, for one moment want them to think they aren't mine. And when you say that, they think it. I've already had one very confusing conversation with my sweet, curious 7 year old about what that means and why was that said and does that mean I'm not yours and will I have a different mom and daddy one day...Seriously, people. He doesn't need that. He is mine. Until the day I die, he's mine. Don't negate that with an ignorant statement. (Sorry if that stings...that conversation with D stung me, and I'm pretty sure it stung him.)

I don't understand why people adopt. It costs so much money.

And a related one - I don't go around asking for donations when I birth a child. Why do people who adopt think they can do that?

Um...all I can really do is shake my head. -_- Adoption costs are far greater than having a birth child, barring any significant health issues or hospital stays. I'm not saying I agree or disagree with this; it is what it is. Not to mention that we are giving an orphan a home. An orphan. A home. {Don't even get me started on what it would take if all of us Jesus-lovers would just get involved in adoption...again - another post for another day.}

Side note: Our adoption(s) have been cost free because they've been through the foster system, but we're not done yet. We will eventually pursue private adoption and will also be in the "fundraising" state so many of my friends have gone through. And with foster care, you have sudden family changes out of nowhere and our friends and family have been amazingly supportive through all of that with providing basic needs and whatnot. I have never bought Miss R any clothes at a store. My sister literally hands down entire wardrobes for her (which I give back for her 5th future-adopted child).

Usually people adopt after they have birth children. You're doing it backwards.

Eh...depends on how you look at it. You don't know my story. And who would ever pass up the cutest kid in your classroom...to take home and literally be yours forever? Not me! One day, you could know my whole story, but for now, just take it at this: God has written our family (and will continue to do so). Mister & I always knew we would adopt. I'm adopted. I believe in adoption. But it's funny - when you open your heart to God's changing of your "plans," life always turns out way better in the end. True story.

And last, but not least - I just couldn't do what you're doing. I just couldn't.

Welp...if you're a parent and you say that to me, then you are. I'm raising 2 kids. Who cares if they share blood and DNA? They're kidlets. They're crazy and draining. They're loving and snuggley. They're totally hilarious, and to be honest...some days, they're the reason I get out of bed. But they're no different from your kids. And they don't deserve love, family, and a home any less than your biological children do.

Sure, adoption can get hard & be messy. It's not the easiest road to take (for sure!). And everyone's not called to adopt - I truly believe that. But everyone (that loves Jesus) is called to care for orphans. And there are a million ways to do that. Again...a post for another day.

Part 2 is coming: Foster Care Edition. I know you're all anxious to hear my honest thoughts on what not to say to foster parents.

Blessings, y'all. We're all in this together. We need each other.