Tuesday, 18 October 2011
Have you seen what I decided to name this blog?
I had a sudden thought recently: I’m not sure I’ve been all that honest.
I mean, I have. About life 10 months after gotcha day. About what attachment and connection look like now, after we’ve been together for nearly a year.
But one of my observations about adoptive families is we tend to be prolific bloggers leading up to travel, or gotcha day, or airport day, and then after we’re home… nothing. Radio silence. Or if there are posts, they’re either few and far between, or they highlight the positive and gloss over the challenges. (There are a few notable exceptions for which I’m exceedingly grateful. Kara’s is one.)
I know it’s partly because we’re trying to find our footing as we graft in another member. We’re engaged in the exhausting and never-ending work of family adjustment, cocooning and attachment, as well as going through reverse culture shock as we try to reconcile our life at home with what we saw in our child’s birth country.
But I did the same thing. I did have more time in Africa to write (oh, the luxury of African time!), but there’s another reason I stopped writing when I got home: fear. Fear of my own thoughts and feelings, fear of saying out loud what was swirling around deep in my heart. I didn’t want to write it down, not only because I was scared of what readers would think of me, but also because I was scared to explore it. When I did post, I might have alluded to my struggles, but I also talked myself out of them. And it was more than just seeing the beauty in the struggle.
For the each positive thing I highlighted (that Benjamin was surrounded by love, or saying yes to the moment, or how God taught me to trust), there were a hundred internal conflicts. The four to six week break between blog posts was how long it took me to find something I wanted to share. Because the other stuff was too hard, too raw. Sharing that would have felt too vulnerable.
But that’s exactly what I say I’m all about.
So I’m committing, today, to going back and exploring what happened over the last year. I’m diving back into the dark waters I sometimes felt I would drown in. We’re coming up on the first anniversary of our gotcha day, which was one of the most terrifying experiences of my life. I’ll go back there. I’m going to go back to the first weeks in Africa, when it was hard to look at my son without crying for what I didn’t feel. I want to look at the panicked thoughts that bubbled up, uninvited. I promise not to gloss over them. I will be able to reflect and share what I’ve learned since then, but I’ll try not to tie it up too neatly.
Because we haven’t arrived at some perfect point, even nearly a year later. We’ll always be on this journey of love, sacrifice, brokenness and wholeness. But if we don’t explore what the brokenness meant, then how can we see the healing clearly?
I’d also like to invite those adoptive parents who are reading to consider sharing your story. If you’d like to submit a guest post, I’d love to read your words. If they’re right for my blog, I’ll publish them here. Please share this blog with your adopting friends, wherever they are in the process. I’d love to learn from as many of you as possible.
I just want to be honest.
Kim Van Brunt
Sifting through the broken pieces and holding them up to the Light.
Monday, 7 March 2011
Sunday, 31 January 2010
Monday, 23 July 2012
Friday, 11 August 2017
Monday, 31 July 2017
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