Shared from Blogger Lindsey at Home: A Soft Place To Fall

Dear Church, do you want to know why those of us that have adopted the fatherless....


Aren't “there” Sunday morning?
Aren't as easy to ask to participate in service?
Aren't as open to people in our home, community activities and it seems our beliefs, our demeanor or just “we” have changed.
Yes. Yes, we have.
Those of us that have brought a hurting and healing child into our homes, are working on constantly healing things most people can't even begin to understand that have been broken, or teaching and adding things that were never even there in a neglected, or abused child...and then healing the new broken in our own homes, and then in ourselves.

You see. We can't be the same.
We may have been called, felt an inkling, had an ENORMOUS boulder placed in our path saying “ADOPT”....we may have taken in family members, experienced infertility, all these things, choices, good and right and in biblical terms “Godly choices”.

We also have had dreams and expectations, with no real idea of the sacrifices that would be made, the losses we would experience, the judgment we would face in the name of loving or helping a child.
We also had very little real understanding of the weight it would put on our marriages, other children, and friendships, as well as our relationship with God.

What you may not understand is simply by living the lives that we do, we feel like strangers to our community now, heck until we find ourselves again, or recreate ourselves,our old selves are strangers to our new stronger, wiser, more eyes wide opened selves. We are struggling to re define, everything.
And I mean EVERYTHING.

I remember the out pouring of prayers and support when we were waiting, to be chosen by a birth mother, parental rights to be terminated or for our children to come home. When my pain and hope was palpable as I walked down those church hallways, the way I threw myself into callings and service,hoping my efforts would somehow bring miracles faster....and when they came home, the balloons and dinners, and pats on the back of “Aren't you so grateful? God is SO Good!”

and I would nod. Because of course I am grateful, how could I not be? And yes, he is good...but could ya ask him...that maybe they would scream for only 23 hours a day instead of 24?

I couldn't tell all of these shiny eyed so happy for me members...that “OH MY HELL, THEY ARE PEEING ON EVERYTHING, 5 x a day a toilet is plugged on purpose, I am flipped off and called a whore by my four year old, The adorable 18 month old that makes you “want one too” has required me to get stitches 4 times.” Yes. I.am.so.grateful.

I remember sitting watching my 8 babes under 8, singing in their first church program.
Standing in the back, making sure every cherub could see their proud supportive mama's face, and looking down, and realizing, in the right light, my white linen dress had massive urine spots where one of the 8 cherub choir had obviously emptied their bladders, on my new dress, as a gift of their tangible hate, shame and anger towards me.
As hot tears dripped off of my chin, I remember a member kindly coming over , putting her arm around my shoulders and saying, “I can't imagine how many times you have dreamed about a moment like this.” and I JUST nodded...and instead of screaming “NO, not exactly, because one of those adorable little A-holes pissed all over my Easter dress, thank you very much.” I just continued to nod, and cry.

Why do you LOOK different? Have gotten a tattoo, eat different, moved, become a total hippie, home-school now, NOT home-school now, seem MORE alternative, seem to accept more things...ect.

Because, what this life has taught me is in the constant throughs of HARD, you have to hunt down joy like a man, thirsting for water in a desert. YOU.ARE.DESPERATE.FOR. JOY. Desperate for balance, peace, and HOPE.
You DO what is best for YOU, for THEM. and if that is MORE family time, you do that..if it is MORE structure in a school environment, you do that. If it was standing on our heads and painting ourselves purple would help we would do THAT.
If twinkies/gluten/dairy/red food dye are making them MORE crazy, you take that &*@% AWAY!
You don’t have time for judgment.
Time to worry that someone's daughter who wore an immodest dress to PROM, you are just hoping your teenager isn't sending topless pictures to the bishops son. Your focus becomes more on, NOT shaming people for their choices,but hoping that girl felt BEAUTIFUL in what she was wearing, and doesn’t hear any of the whispers. Life becomes TOO short, the church mouse drama, and gossip, SOO not a priority....and lets be honest...how much of it is now about us anyways?

Our ability to take our kids to activities on a regular basis changes. Too remember ALL of the THINGS, my scout didn't have his scarf? DUDE, he pants on...I am fist bumping myself right now.

HOW do I have someone understand? I AM so sorry, because I also have special needs kids at home, my one child that needs CONSTANT line of sight supervision (yes the charming one) can't be there, and my child that CAN attend, needs a ride home, because as unbelievable as it may sound, I can not drive in my car with one of my children to pick him up, without them trying to jump out of a moving car, or beating up everyone, including me, while I drive. It's O.K. If you sigh and roll your eyes every time I text or call and beg for a ride for him, every.single.week. but if you could JUST help me, I would be so grateful.
I need those prayers now.
I need those times you believed in what I was doing for my children before they came to me, to be JUST as strong now they are here.
I need you to understand, I am WAY more financially broke trying to help these kids heal, with constant therapies and tools, and simply fixing all of the things they break...than I ever was trying to raise money to adopt them.

I am more accepting of other people and lifestyles, because, everyday I have to accept and love someone that rejects me, seeks to hurt me, lies to me, steals from me...and creates barriers between me and others on purpose. I have to hug a child that on purpose threw my wedding ring away in the garbage, I say sweet dreams and tickle a kid who tried to light my house on fire, I pray for a child that broke my very bones...I NOW know how to LOVE PEOPLE and accept them AS IS, in all of their exactness and worthiness to be loved and accepted. That is a hard earned beautiful gift my children have given me.

I don't fit in anymore.
I DO want fellowship, badly, but please without that enormous pill of “We SURE have noticed you guys haven't been attending as regularly” THANKS, but no, I hand capsule my own guilt these days...and don't need any shame pills from you, or the “means well” congregation. 
I need friends, people that say, “so good to see you, how are you all hanging in there?”

We need people to BELIEVE US, not lessen our concern, or boundaries for our kids, the MORE support and understanding you can provide, the MORE you are going to see us sitting in those benches.

Know that in the name of sheltering and loving and bringing into our homes a hurting and healing child, as the Bible councils us all to do, we also have lost and sacrificed much to do so.
This for us is our “calling” our life long work, and no, most the time it doesn’t get easier , or better, it just changes, the needs becoming sometimes less complex, often MORE. If you don't want us to give up on the church...don't give up on us.

This is such a lonely, loving, long suffering journey...how we would love a community surrounding us, and if not...we still have to walk this path,with, or without you.

0