Tuesday, August 28, 2012

The art of losing myself...

Good...Hard...Sweet...Messy... and without a doubt- exactly as it should be.

   I've spent a good bit of time reflecting on the last couple months since we have had our baby girls home with us. I've waited until now to write this because: A) My brain was what my good friend Ashley refers to as "Mommy Mush". B) I know it's hard to believe, but with a twelve year old boy (who is just nearly a man), a seven year old little dumpling, and the terrific two-some I haven't had too much spare time on my hands. C) I wanted to write this with as much authenticity as possible instead of just cranking out an updated post. 

   A few short weeks into this thing the gravity of something hit me. I started thinking about all the ways I have been challenged- pulled -s-t-r-e-t-c-h-e-d- as we've been on this crazy journey of adoption. From the beginning it seemed every where we turned there was another obstacle to overcome, another chance to trust Him, another opportunity to live my life in a way that says I actually believe in my heart what I say I believe with my mouth. 
   As much as I read, as much as I heard it said, I couldn't imagine that "the real work would begin when we got home". I could not believe that the hardest part would really be after we had them in our arms. After all, having them in our arms was the focus, the goal for all this time, and I'm great with kids, and practically a pro considering I already have two awesome homegrown kiddos. I can tell you with full certainty that for me, the waiting, the worrying, the helplessness that is pre adoption did not touch what has been required of me on this side of the adoption. Many people describe a "honeymoon period" after they pick their children up, and for a period of time once they return home. We did not have that {and that's okay}. Our "real work" began the moment we picked them up at the Thomas Center.
  If you can imagine taking two, two year old baby girls who for the past year had been raised in a nursery type setting ~super loving nannies, toys to play with, nothing that could really hurt them, or that they could break, or that they could climb on, jump on, hang from, etc..~ ,and introducing them to a world full of opportunities to explore. Add to that the whole "we're strangers thing", and the language barrier and ... Wait... Don't even try to imagine it.. it would not do the experience justice.  
This has been, and continues to be, without a doubt the most sanctifying experience of my life. I've actually considered filing a petition to rename the process of adoption to sanctification. 

   You should apply to be placed on a waiting list for your 

sanctification. Then you should fill out all your sanctification 

papers. File your request to be sanctified. Drive your Dossier 

to the state capital to have your sanctification papers 

authenticated. Then FedEx the said sanctification papers off 

to Ethiopia.... ~ Adoption is Sanctification. 

Sanctification: "It is the process whereby we are renewed according to the image of God, conformed to the image of Christ, and enabled to die to ourselves and live to God." 

So, this calling on our lives is continually rocking my world, and blessing my socks off all at the same time. The amount of training, and nurturing involved in taking care of these precious babes is staggering. I cannot tell you how many times I have thought, "Oh man, I am not cut out for this, I do not have what it takes to give these babies what they need." 

It is in those moments that He so graciously, so gently reminds me:

" His divine power has granted to us everything pertaining to 

life and godliness, through the true knowledge of Him who  

called us by His own glory and excellence." 2 Peter 1:3

  Christ in me means I've been given EVERYTHING I need to live out this life, and carry out the calling He has placed on us. Thank you Jesus! Through Him, I CAN do this, and what an honor it is to be entrusted with such priceless treasure. 

Speaking of priceless treasure:

Enough about me, Let's talk about my Gimbie girls. Don't be fooled by those beautiful faces, and ever so sweet mischievous smiles. These girls are warriors. They have the hearts of  champions, the resolve of the elite. They have somehow had the strength, the sheer will, to open up their hearts and let down their defenses and let us in. Do you know how much determination that must take? After leaving everything they knew, and living in not 1, not 2, but 3 different orphans homes in the past year, they came to us {place #4} and over time have been brave enough to let themselves go with us.  I will never forget the moment when Meryn (the older, more protective, more guarded of the two) dropped her defenses and let me into her world (completely) for the first time. I remember exactly where we were, where I was sitting, what we were doing when it happened. I will cherish that memory always. I will forever more live my life in gratitude for their courage... for the gift of their love and trust in their silly, love struck, momma and poppa. ~Millie


  1. Great post, Millie. We didn't have a honeymoon either. I was crying in our room at the guest house while my hubs was on the phone with Kathy (in country at the same time as us) saying "ohmygosh, help!". Lots and lots more sanctification since then! ;)

  2. Great post! Love your parallel to the process of sanctification. In some ways, I think it's "easier" to adopt without having home-grown children... it's been challenging, but I don't think I really know it to the same degree as other adoptive mamas describe because I have no comparison. Plus, I had mommy mush brain for about a year, I think - I still don't know if I could put into words anything coherent about that first year. Bless you! LOVE your family. Thank you for sharing your heart.