Monday, November 21, 2011


At the Together for Adoption Conference, they showed several adoption story videos. They were all . . . . sweet. They were the calls on couples hearts, the first honeymoon days/months. It was all warm, fuzzy, rainbow kind of videos.

That is wonderful. It is real. It is true. I have a couple of them myself. First meeting the girls, our trips to Haiti, welcoming them home. Amazing.

As I watched each one that weekend, though, I thought, oh, boy, this is not the whole story. It's kind of like turning off Old Yeller before Travis kills the dog. (I am NOT comparing anyone to old yeller, but I do think the shock some parents feel when the reality of attachment issues comes is like this). Or if your mom said giving birth was all sweetness and fun and didn't hurt at all.

Not quite the whole story.

These kids, even the babies, are coming from rough starts. It is not always easy to parent them. They are brave, resilient, amazing fighters. But not always easy to parent. We need some large scale forum to talk about those realities and the hard work it takes to agape-love them. That the phileo love isn't always instant.

I was talking to another trauma-momma at the conference. She is in the thick of it. Hurting. Clinging to Jesus to be filled up, every hour, let alone every day. We started talking about the videos. We were crying with tears of laughter at what it should look like to really prepare communities and families. But how do you share the reality in a god-honoring, child-honoring way? I haven't figured that part out yet.

I think people need a video that shows a child foaming at the mouth because she has "forgotten" how to spell her name or a child raging because you asked her which shirt she wanted to wear today or had a mom saying "if you have an accident, mommy will help clean you up, but if you pee on purpose, you will clean it up." or "you are not the idol in our home and we worship the Lord and we ARE going to church. if you are not dressed, you will be in your pajamas. i suggest you stop screaming and get to it."

I want a video of a mom dealing with behaviors all day long and her face falling as she tries not to cry when the child bounds into Daddy's arms with a big smile and hug when he comes home. I want to see a mom glazed over from the day in and day out stress. The constant dripping of behaviors that no one could have prepared you for. The truth that more kids will struggle than not.

I want a video with all this and the couple saying AND yet, God does not leave me when I don't trust Him or obey Him. God is faithful and so we will be faithful. We believe God can heal her heart. That He can work a miracle where sin has left wounds. We believe He is a God of reconciliation and redemption. We believe our child is not beyond His reach. And so we press on, knowing He will give us the strength and grace and wisdom for tomorrows worries and that every day is a day closer to healing.

I don't WANT a video like this, but I do want a video like this. Ya know? If I could get kids to play my kids so as to protect my kids and their journeys, I would make this video.


waldenbunch said...

I don't know how to make the video either but reality is this is the hardest job in the world. Most days are without any recognition, thanks or satisfaction. They can be empty, lonely days without a friend in sight. But......those of us moms who blog and encourage are shining a light not only for each other but for those who come behind us. I pray my God one day says well done. Until then, I will go forward one step at a time. Knowing I'm never alone with God by my side.

Anonymous said...

Amen and amen. We adopted our children as infants, and the struggles are still deep. God's strength is needed daily.

Simply Moms said...

Yes, waldenbunch! so grateful for technology and the transparency of blogging mommas!!

Simply Moms said...

Exactly, anon. Saying this is sooo hard, and God's strength is imperative. I don't even hear that from the recruiters.

bean said...

I LOVE your absolute honesty about the struggles AND your absolute honesty about how good God is. Your theology shows through. You don't portray a dream or a nightmare.

I agree about the videos, btw. We don't have attachment issues but our baby's birthmom does and...yeah, there is no way one of those videos could prepare you in the least. :)