Sunday, February 16, 2014

Love Redefined

For those of you that know me well... I don't sugar coat my "amazing life" as an adoptive mom of 6. Perhaps if you have been following my blog, you might have figured that out.
My blog has been silent for the past few months because of an exceptionally challenging season. My heart has been stretched to extremely uncomfortable places, my faith has been tested and stripped to points where it seemed only fear and doubt where left to taunt me. Voices of condemnation and judgment have shattered my heart into pieces and diminished every reality I've known to be true.
I have never had to love a child that uses every possible means to reject it...until now.
Love is a scary thing for adoptive children. But loving a resistant, defiant and revengeful child is also a scary thing for an adoptive parent.   
Before my children came home, I thought I knew what LOVE was. 
Now, I don't. 
God is redefining my definition of love. It's not only the "compassionate, empathetic and sympathetic" love that my narrow mind thought would be enough for my children.  
It's so much more. I  still have yet to find out. 

Recently our family experienced yet another horrific and traumatic incident. 
Yes... another one.  
My 5 year old biological son asked me "Why? Why mommy would she do that?" 
"I don't know son...." My voice trembling with anger, frustration and extreme sadness.  
I don't know and yet I did. The more I love them, the more they want to resist. It's too scary. Perhaps unknowingly...they would rather destroy the ones that love them the most and run to strangers. 
So what can I do?
What should I do?

I have buried myself in tears and prayer, indulged myself with chocolate, spent hours at the gym attempting to work off my frustration and spent hours venting with close friends.... but at the end of the day, my circumstances haven't changed.

Adopting 4 older children at once is "not amazing or heroic."  It breaks you everyday and turns your world upside down. Every.Single.Day. 

Last week, I nearly broke down in front of my son's 6th grade teacher, RTI instructor, school principal and school psychologist as we attempted to form a game plan to help my son who is barely at a 1st/2nd grade level complete the 6th grade.  
" Do you have any prior history of your son?" Asked the school psychologist. 
" I have nothing.... But I do know that my son has experienced more trauma than any child his age should have had to. 
I replied.
"He seems extra sensitive." Commented one of the instructors. 
" Emotionally, he is barely 5 years old. We suspect that this was before or after a very traumatic incident for our son." I explained, holding my tears back.

Here I was....with a group of educators  fighting for my son's education. 
He would have never received this kind of care and love from his birth country. 
Perhaps one day he will look back and realize.... how much he is loved and even if he doesn't.... It's okay. We didn't help him because we felt sorry for him, we helped him because truthfully... all we want for our kids is to give them every opportunity in life to succeed. 

I often wonder how God will redefine love for each of my children. 

Maybe the only answer I need right now is that "I am loved, unconditionally loved by an amazing God who sees and accepts me in all my brokenness."  

It took Derick an entire year to even begin to take the risk of accepting our love and care
for him. Not only did we make Christmas a special celebration for him,
he also chose to make it special for himself and us. 



  1. I am praying for you today and as a mom who also adopted 4 older children (ours from Nicaragua) I thank you for writing!

  2. Thoughts and prayers. It is difficult.

  3. A new picture of Jesus and how He loves us despite our brokenness might be what each of us need a better picture of. Your every day, real life message speaks to the hearts of so many of us. You may be redefining love, but they are getting the chance to define it for the first time because of your efforts. Blessings to you and your crew of 6.

  4. Thank you for being so transparent. I know first hand how the Enemy tries to rob us of our joy and turn our focus away from The Almighty. I pray you feel the Lord's presence and you will remember His mercies are new every morning. I am praying for your family!

  5. if you love music go to you tube and search "Hear my Heart" by Sheri Easter! it will lift you up and touch your heart! her songs are truly amazing. praying for you.

  6. Check here often to see how you all are. Continuing to pray. God's got a plan. Hang on and keep praying!

  7. I also am a mom who adopted 3 older children(from Ethiopia). I can relate with the frustrations and struggles. Please know we are praying for you are your family! We appreciate the updates, so we know how to pray. May God continue to strengthen you and fill you with His Love and Wisdom!

  8. I just want you to know that you and your family are not forgotten...I still check in often, and when a new post is up, I head straight to the Father in prayer for all of you. Run toward the prize, my IS there...just hidden in all the muck and mire...but it is there. Much love sent your way!!!

  9. You are not forgotten. You are being prayed for. You are not alone. We adopted two teens internationally, it became horrifically difficult for a good while until they moved out on their own. Now we are grieving. Grieving what could have been, grieving for them. My other kids hurt from the rejection. It's not easy but I have to remind myself love is never wasted. Loving them will never be a mistake.