Although the life of a person is in a land full of thorns and weeds, there is always a space in which the good seed can grow. You have to trust God. ~ Pope Francis
“Land full of thorns and weeds” – whatever could he mean?? HA! I know this is a concept that we have all experienced in different ways. However, this week… a good seed was planted – and that seed was the idea of adoption.
Now truthfully, I didn’t really think about this until we made the decision to move forward with Michael. You see, with the Ukraine adoption… the kids are in an orphanage. They know what adoption is… they know what a U.S. adoption might mean for them. And they want it!
However, with a foster situation, particularly with an 8-year-old kiddo who started with family foster at 6-months and has been in state foster care since they were just 5 – the idea that the family you are living with today can be your forever family, if you play your cards right, would be a logical one. Foster parents and social workers know that this isn’t the case… but that’s not really the message that you want to send to a little boy who has been through things that most of us would shudder to imagine. You want him to feel loved and secure – the same things that an adoptive, forever-family would give him. And there you have the big… giant… gray area.
Just this past Monday, Michael’s therapist – Ginny – met with him to talk about adoption.
And after speaking with Ginny for quite some time Monday night, I would say, the conversation went well… the seed has been planted. When asked if he knew what adoption was… he did not. When he got a general description of adoption, that being a family that you would live with forever… he responded “like the family I live with right now?” And this… is a good thing. It shows attachment and it shows that he is being loved.
But Ginny moved onward… she next mentioned that there might be families interested in adopting him. And then she said… “and perhaps you will get to do some visiting” – to which he replied – “oh yes, my dad said that if I am good, I might get to go visit those people who were here after Christmas.” Now that was music to my ears! And so… “those people” entered the conversation. And just by chance, “those people” had sent some pictures to his therapist… just in case “those people” got brought up. Here’s what we sent…
And the reaction to these photos… was exciting to hear and, I think, telling in some ways. We made the decision (with the advice of the folks in North Carolina) to talk about the boys from the beginning. And, most all of you who are sucking up their valuable time reading this know one thing about me… I always want to lead with this story. Because… if you don’t, there is inevitably “a question” which, if you are honest, leads to “an answer” which makes the asker feel really bad… and then…well, sometimes they cry and then… I always cry. So deciding to do this… was good for me. And young Michael got teary-eyed when Ginny told him the story of the boys and that tells me that he has empathy which is a good thing.
He also got very excited about the picture of the lake… how pretty it was. But then, he got worried that there might be snakes. And Ginny took a good 15 minutes to discuss this with him and to assure him that parents protect kids from snakes… well, actually “dads” protect kids from snakes… which I totally agree with. The good news here… this child will not want the “snake” pet. YAY!
And, of course, he loved the last picture of Rachel. Good news here is that I have so very many photos to choose from… so I can always end our photo shows with something like this. Rachel, loves taking pictures of herself… YAY!
So, that’s about it. I am so interested to know what questions he has asked at home this week… and I will be sure to call his foster family this weekend and report back. They are such wonderful people who have totally opened themselves up to Michael and to us. It takes really special people to do what they are doing and I am honored to get to know them better. I feel pretty confident that they will be part of Michael’s life forever.
I have had many beliefs shaken over the past 6 years but I do believe that God brings people into your life at different times… for different reasons. I am glad to have all these people AND all of you in our lives right now.
more to come…