Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Sadness is Real

He could only identify sad.  
Many options for differing emotions presented themselves in the game.
Yet, he only identified sad.
I felt the pause deep in my heart.  A six year old, my six year old was sad.
Yes, his life with me began before he turned two, but through the arduous process of emotional highs and deep lows a halo of sadness has surrounded his little heart. 
He laughs and giggles.  He smiles and hugs me.  He whines and yells.  He cries.
All these emotions are there.  I need to teach my little guy how to know each of them.  
Sadness is real.  It can be good, but it can hurt.  I don't necessarily want sadness to go away, but I want Sawyer to understand the difference between that and frustration, disappointment, and anger.  I want him to know how to put a name both to surprise and joy as well as fear and shame.  

I am so thankful that God created us with such complexity.  Our emotions, the emotions of my little guy are real and reminders of how special we are and how much God loves us.  

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

Brought to You by the Letter "W"



Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Because Sometimes it is Hard

I will grant any mom with any number of kids moments of doubt, insecurity, and outright insanity. Please, though, offer me the same courtesy.  Just when I think I have a pinky's grasp on today, it slips quickly out of my hands.  
Adoption is a beautifully messy, best most difficult choice.  Memories return and "what-if's" arise.  Love never ends, but my littles will wonder.  Today was one of those days.  "Will I ever see mommy again?  Why can't I see _________?"  No matter how you think you have planned for those questions, you are not.  
I am Mom.  I will be Mom forever.  Life's crooked road leaves my kids wondering if that will always be true.  A fovever family is a blessing to be lived moment by moment.  It means I will feel less than sometimes.  
"Real moms" are hard to identify and define for a 4, 5, and 6 year old.  Real moms live in the real life of school days, dinner time, play time, and bedtime.  They giggle and smile.  They listen.  They discipline.  They hug.  They provide.  They love.  
Kids define their own reality sometimes.  They struggle with who they are too.  
Who am I kidding?  I deal with these same issues.  I did not have to carry the hurts of removal and not seeing my birth mother.  I do wonder how I am even close to adequate to deal with these hurts.  I struggle with loving unlovable children more times than not.  
Then I stop.  

God, help me to be the mom you want me to be today, at this moment.  Show me how to love in new ways.  Please use me to heal the hearts of my children.  You brought them to me so young, yet I feel that the past has a hold on them.  Please, Lord, I know you have a plan for each of my children.  I want to be one who leads them in following you, not the patterns of their past.  

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

How Would You Describe your Lately?

Aly threw out a challenge to the blogosphere - What has your lately looked like?
I know, a strange question.  Yet, if you follow her writing, it makes sense.  Life is complex.  Sometimes the urgent swallows up the wish I could's.  Taking the time to write down what is going on in my lately (as Aly coined it) helps me jump from the outline of the moment to see a clearer picture of the color scheme of my life.
So, what is my lately?
I have been reading -
Over the summer, Bryan and I enjoyed reading a mystery together.  Agatha Christie is waiting for me to venture into the next book.  
On queiter evenings I peruse some online articles that give help on raising my kids with many needs.
The Old Testament, Isaiah in particular.  In choosing to read chronologically through the Bible, I need  perseverence to work through these prophets.  
I have been writing
Not enough.  Because I don't want to sound REALLY grumpy or repetitive, I haven't written much.  Day to day can get monontonous.  
I have, though, sought to text my girls encouraging words while they are away at college.  My kids at home need my enouragement as well, so I am trying to write small notes to them.  
What has made me smile
My circle of friends who have fostered/adopted children is not huge, but it is significant.  I smiled today as two are awaiting a judge's decision to terminate parental rights so that my friends can adopt.  
Another friend celebrated today the adoption of their daughter.
Sawyer and Anna are learning to read better each day.  
Reagan gives me the sweetest hugs and kisses at the perfect times.
Bryan chooses to sit with me at soccer games (and he is quiet while I am not).  He also brings me coffee.  True love, friends.
I smile when I watch Matthew play soccer.  His footwork blows my mind.
At church, Matthew sat with 15 little boys so that the adults could be in church.  The fact that one of those little boys was my son, Sawyer, made it extra special.  
What I have learned
Anger is contagious, but so is grace.
Togetherness is a choice.
Prayer works.
Keeping my mouth closed is usually a good choice.

So what is going on in your lately?


Sunday, October 25, 2015

An Unrelenting Cough Did Not Keep Him Quiet

His cold had been clutching his head and throat for weeks.  Sleep should have brought relief, if he could actually sleep.  Presenting The Word to teens on a Sunday morning could have been a nail in the coffin of his voice, yet Bryan stood boldly before the class, hot tea in one hand and a marker in the other, and poured out truth to them.
Bryan's teaching has blessed me for years. He studies hard.  He presents clearly.  We laugh much.  I was a tad concerned for him today, though, that his cold would frustrate him, distracting from the powerful message of Mark 2.  My fears were not realized.
If you have not read Mark 2, stop.  Right now.  Get your Bible and read it.  Mark pens via the Holy Spirit such detail showing more than a glimpse of God.  The passage is loaded with truth, not to mention it is a downright awesome story of creativity and determination to see God. 
Bryan brought us through each verse, adding commentary when needed.  I watched as the teens searched the Scripture themselves, shared their observations, and drew conclusions.  We walked away reminded that God's main purpose is to forgive our sins.  Healing comes second.  We need to ask ourselves who we are bringing to Christ, and what are we doing to get to Christ.  This story of grit and determination exemplifies a choice to see God even if it means thinking outside the box (or in through the roof.)  Worship should be our automatic response to who God is, says, and does as was the case of those who watched this story take place.  
Really, people, I am not going to retell the story.  (I am showing restraint.)  The story is not made up.  It is true.  There is no doubt. 
Through the entire morning, Bryan's cough which had been annoying him night and day, had been quieted.  His voice was strong.  His passion evident.  Simple yet amazing.  

I love serving alongside my husband.  Learning along with the class is an extra bonus.  

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

A Giggle for Your Day - From the Pen of a Tween

Waiting for your nuggets is hard.
You need something to pass the time.
You can write a card or rhyme
Watching the time tick by.
Right now time doesn't fly.
You can draw a picture of a 
Puppy who's cute
Or practice a song on your flute.
Maybe you can try to sing.
Then I hear a BING!
Hurray, Hurrah!
I was starting to think they 
Wouldn't come today.
They will taste good, I bet!
I check and .....

They aren't ready yet.

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

What You Get From an 11YO When You Teach Dialogue

Sandra was talking to Kendra by the school playground.
“What are you going to do your essay about, Kendra?”  Sandra said to Kendra.  Kendra did a dismount on the beam.
“Well, I thought that I would do a persuasive paragraph on the oppression of Australian children because of the overpricing of bananas.”  Sandra laughed.
“Isn’t that a bit diverse?  I mean I’m going to do mine on the structure of huts in Africa.”  Kendra walked over to the bench where Sandra was sitting.
“Linsy is doing her essay on the ingredients in primary colored crayons.”
“Speaking of crayons, don’t you like the new art teacher?  She is really nice!” said Sandra.
Kendra sat down.   “Yeah.  She painted a picture of a tiger with green stripes and hung it in my homeroom.”
“She did that to my homeroom too!” said Sandy.  “Only mine was a horse with pink hair.”
Both girls laughed.  To them this was an ordinary conversation.