Thursday, February 21, 2013
Some time ago, friends of ours spoke to our Sunday School at Church about adoption. They felt they had been called to adopt and they were showing the Christian perspective on adoption. There is quite a lot out there, in fact, the same couple posted about adoption this Christmas and how, theoretically, Jesus was adopted here on earth. I remember sitting and listening to this specific couple speak about their journey into the adoption world. As they delved deeper into their journey, they spoke about the discussions they had with one another and they had to think about a lot. They had to reconcile how adoption would impact their young son, how it would impact their lives, how many children they were willing to have. I distinctly remember them talking about their forms and how they paused at the question concerning children with special needs and what they would be willing to take. The wife was so bold and spoke of her hesitations and the end decision being that if God was leading them to a certain child, they felt wrong in denying certain children with certain situations. She spoke of how imperfect we all are and that she could not accept only a "perfect" child. I have no idea what they actually checked on their form, but I remember walking away from that Sunday thinking to myself how brave she was, for choosing to be that vulnerable, for choosing to accept a child that may have special needs. I didn't think I could do it and I really admired them for 1) being willing to talk so openly about it and 2) for being willing to knowingly take in these children. In speaking with other couples in line to adopt, I have learned about what other friends have discussed with their spouses as well. In fact, a close friend who may be considering adoption talked about how those questions floored her when looking through forms. When you have a child in your womb, you don't really get a choice, you take what you get. I hadn't thought about all of the logistics that goes into adopting. It is a really trying time and probably teaches you a lot about yourself. Regardless of the boxes they check, all of couples we know who are in the process of adopting, are really, really brave. We have a couple of friends who have adopted or are trying to adopt because they can't have children of their own. We also have a couple of friends who are adopting to expand their existing family. It is such a huge process. We hear so often, from the media, about how many kids need to be adopted. Rarely is it discussed about how many parents are sitting and waiting for kids to be made available to them. We have friends who had a great experience through private adoption, but had to save a lot of money to make their family possible. We have friends who are going through state adoption and have been in limbo with a little boy in their care for almost a year now and who miss others who have passed through their home. We have friends who have had seven children pass through their home, who they have loved and developed a bond with, and have had to say goodbye to each of them for various reasons. Over and over again, these families put themselves out there and make themselves vulnerable in hopes that they can one day have a permanent family. It must be so hard to deal with, to pour your heart into a child, knowing that they could be taken away and hoping and praying that they get to stay, but also hoping and praying that your time with them has been fruitful and you have shown them love and adoration. The families we know that have had children move on are the best families who are so deserving of these little ones. I hope they know that they provide such an example to rest of us about loving without the promise of anything in return. I hope that they continue to draw on strength that they do not know they have to keep on fighting a good fight. I of course hope that their families will expand and they will have the opportunity to show love endlessly throughout a child or two or threes lives. As mothers we have to be willing to be hurt, we have to be willing to be disappointed, and through that hurt and disappointment we also have to be brave and to smile and to keep on each day. I have nothing but complete respect for mommies of all types out there, but especially lately, the mommies who are willing to check "yes" boxes for special needs, the mommies who are waiting for phone calls from agencies, the mommies who are cuddling babies that look like someone else, the mommies who are preparing for babies they may never get to meet, and the mommies willing to have their hearts go somewhere else. You mommies do good. '