{Honestly} Adoption is Amazing

Adoption is amazing

"hhhhat! hhhhat!" is one of Benjamin's many new words.

The theme of this blog and my writing in general is being honest about the struggle of adoption, of mothering, of depression; it’s being real about faith and the struggles we all share.

My blog readers might never know: I’m kinda funny. Sometimes.

It’s occurred to me that while being honest and vulnerable and real is what I need to be, what God is calling me to be, that sometimes the starstruck wonder I feel sometimes might get lost. The humor of our everyday family life gets muffled, because this is often where I work out the tougher stuff. That’s OK — but I want to be honest about ALL of it, not just the hard parts.

So, let me say: Adoption is one of the best things we have ever done. It’s so amazing, we’re probably going to dive into a brand new journey to adopt again, even after a loooooong process in Rwanda that ended with no child in our arms, even though we know how hard it can be and the way it absolutely puts you flat on your face before Jesus. We’re getting ready to research again, we’ve called for advice. We’re daring to hope.

Because like many things that are hard and stretching and full of challenge, adoption is so, so rich.

I love Benjamin now like I love all of my children. Most of our days involve just the rhythms of daily life, normal parenting, but sometimes I catch my breath and just have to stand and marvel on the spot. Not for very long, since invariably someone starts screaming every 2.3 seconds. But I try to catch the moment, see time in slow motion for an instant, see the reality for what it is.

Because it is a freaking MIRACLE that this Ugandan baby is just running around our yard and kicking soccer balls (the next Pele for sure) and loving on his siblings and learning to form his lips around a new language. It’s incredible that I get to be his mama, that his eyes search for me in a room, that I know his rhythms and what that cry means and my heart absolutely melts with pride when he tries sentences, or bounces on his feet down a steep hill with confidence, or starts singing the 30th song of the day.

So although I cringe when people breeze over some difficult experience and tie it up with a bow saying, “it was all worth it though!” because I wonder if they’ve given voice to their pain, really, and I believe you must, somehow: I hope I’ve been honest enough about the pain to say it out loud in all of its bleeding ugliness. But I also know this to be absolutely true:

Adoption is worth the price. Emotionally, spiritually, the price your family will pay to adjust, even financially.

In my life, there has been barely anything so challenging and so exposing, and nothing so amazing and blessing and changing.

It’s radical: You’re taking huge risks, opening your heart all the way up, exposing your fears and failures and learning what trust really means. But because of those things, the entire experience moved me into a different way of living. It’s richer and full of meaning.  It’s moved me into a different way of thinking about my family, my community and the world.

I’m sure there are other ways to get there, to live an intentional life, to have your purpose distilled and clarified. But choosing adoption was one of the best decisions we’ve ever made, and I wish more people would consider it. And even if it’s not adoption for your family, because it really isn’t for everyone, I wonder what it would look like if everyone embraced one of their biggest fears and dared to wonder if the fact that they’re afraid means they should lean into it, that they should do exactly that thing they’re so afraid of.

My prayer, for myself included, is that we all start to dream bigger, look fear in the face, and tackle it — even if we fail — daring greatly.

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2 comments on “{Honestly} Adoption is Amazing

  1. Annie Wadsworth Grove says:

    Louise Gluck – Snowdrops

    Do you know what I was, how I lived? You know
    what despair is; then
    winter should have meaning for you.

    I did not expect to survive,
    earth suppressing me. I didn’t expect
    to waken again, to feel
    in damp earth my body
    able to respond again, remembering
    after so long how to open again
    in the cold light
    of earliest spring–

    afraid, yes, but among you again
    crying yes risk joy

    in the raw wind of the new world.

  2. Rob says:

    Hope it goes well in your search. Cute kid!