page background

Monday, July 31, 2017

Raw and Real

Raw and real:

Many people assume that adoption is all rainbows and flowers. That once your baby is in your arms everything is perfect. I have to admit to you all - I believed all this once upon a time, naivety at it's finest.

As adoptive children grow up, so does their understanding of their story. They grow into their story - the story of the beginning of them. And as they grow into more information about themselves, the processing of such information can be easy, hard, no big deal or it can rear it's ugly head years later when you least expect it.

Trauma from adoption is real. The trauma of loss first is with a child for life.

Over the last 8 months, we as a family have experienced things that have made our kids feel loss, feel a pain that we were not prepared for. The expectation of two baby girls and then the loss of each of them has lasting impact on my kids. The suddenness of Josiah into our lives and us leaving our kids for 15 days has not come without suffering.

Yes, kids are resilient. I know that. Everyone tells me. What people don't know is that the trauma my kids have felt is now showing itself outwardly and I was not at all prepared for it.

The last 8 months have probably been the most challenging, the most difficult, the most heart wrenching for me. Yes, they have been sweet as well - I assure you. But more often than not, my mama heart is breaking for my kids. It breaks when I see pain and hurt that can't be expressed into words so it's shown in other ways.

I write this to simply say - please pray for us. If we don't come to functions right now, or church, or gatherings, or seem distant - please understand. We have two sweet kiddos right now hurting in their own ways . One is questioning everything we have told him for years. He's questioning why? He's questioning his belonging - he is questioning his life and the woman who gave birth to him.  And we have another sweet child who is watching all this from afar. She is getting pushed to the side more often than not and is observing her brother suffer -

We love our kids and sometimes Mama Bear will come out. I don't apologize for that. It's my calling to be the advocate for my kiddo's, even when people don't understand. If you see my kids "gettign away with things" and I don't correct them, please don't judge me. We are learning to connect with our kids and it looks different for us. I've had to give up ALOT that normally I would never think about, but sometimes, connecting vs. correcting is the best solutions for my kids. If my kids seem to push your kids away, or seem extra clingy to me, please understand and give us and them grace. We are walking a road that is long and some days, frankly, I don't have much more to give.



Tuesday, April 11, 2017

2 months

The last two months have been a whirlwind. Some days I still feel like I am drowning though.

The arrival of Josiah was one filled with so much joy, hardship, surprise, laughter, deep nights of tears and alot of other emotions I can't put into words.

Going from deep sadness and sorrow to joy over night was actually quite hard. One minute I was grieving the loss of two baby girls in failed matches, every wondering if I'd ever hold my baby, to a call saying a birthmom was pushing. Talk about a roller coaster of emotions!!!

I've learned day after day after day that God is in every step of Josiah's life. Living in a nicu for 15 days brought me a quiet that I needed, a time to reflect and prepare to bring a little guy home who needs alot of love and care. Those first few days at home were scary. I had relied on monitors and nurses to assure me all was fine. When you come home all that is gone.

Despite all the and the time away from our other kids. adjusting to three has been ok.

I think through all this, one thing I know for certain. God knew. I don't but HE knows why Josiah was the one for our family. I often shake my head, questions God why we had to go through an agency closing, finding a new agency, being matched twice and in the end, get placed with a little guy 2 hrs from our house, through a call from our old agency's case worker who is now an adoption facilitator. One can only say that God truly did have a plan :)

We wait for finalization why should happen late May!

Thursday, February 2, 2017

Life after pain and uncertainty in Adoption

In the course of our 10.5 years of marriage, 7 of those years have involved our adoption journey. That's alot. This journey that we are on is not at all what I expected. When we started this journey for baby #3 even after walking a difficult adoption road with Lucas, I still, in my butterfly and rainbow mentality thought it would be a piece of cake.

Was I ever wrong.

I remember the day we got the call about Lucas and I turned to Rick and said "I can never doubt again that God does not answer prayer." That was after a 25 month wait.

I find myself still not doubting that truth. But in the same breath, Satan sneaks into my mind and makes me thing twice. 

One failed match. You think it will never happen. You think you will NEVER be that 3% of families that experience such a sudden loss.

Two failed matches - you literally think that's IMPOSSIBLE.

The potential of a third - it just can't.

But the reality of adoption is this - birth mom and birth dads have every right to change their minds. We think it's not fair, but really, it is. The sad part though is when you know that the circumstances allow for a very difficult life for that baby. That is when you question how can this be - that is when you heart goes out to that birth mom and baby and all you can do it pray.

Adoption is born out of a loss that many will never understand. Loss started the journey of an adopted child's life, but hope is what follows them forever. 

I've been told that we are brave to move forward - that we are so strong. The honest truth is we are none of those things. We simply want our baby home. Simple truth. And while our journey is riddled with so very un-normal ways, it's the way we have chosen.

I'm not brave. I question what we are doing EVERY single day. I think of my two kids EVERY single day and my hearts breaks for them as they have to walk this road of pain as well. 

This is the only truth I can rest in when I feel like I can't take another day of this:

Christ has got this and my good is His desire. Christ has got this and I don't. Jesus knows every single detail that frankly, if I actually knew all of them, I would not be able to handle it. Only Jesus can carry those details for me.

I read this today and it's literally my hearts cry: Psalms 40

I waited patiently for the Lord; And He inclined to me,

And heard my cry. He also brought me up out of a horrible pit, Out of the miry clay, And set my feet upon a rock, And established my steps.

He has put a new song in my mouth— Praise to our God; Many will see it and fear, And will trust in the Lord. Blessed is that man who makes the Lord his trust, And does not respect the proud, nor such as turn aside to lies.
Many, O Lord my God, are Your wonderful works Which You have done; And Your thoughts toward us Cannot be recounted to You in order; If I would declare and speak of them, They are more than can be numbered.


It's scary to move forward. It's scary to face the potential of anther failed match. But fear can't rule my thoughts because of this simple truth:

Moving forward WILL bring my baby home. Period. And so we walk in uncertainty every single day, staring at my phone, waiting for the next phone call. But all with a heart resting in Jesus. Because HE knows!

Wednesday, September 14, 2016

4 years - wow!

4 years old.

I don't know how we got here so fast but we did!

Life with a boy has been interesting! He's the one that's gotten into paint, Vaseline, climbed his dresser using the drawers as a ladder, put "stuff" on his walls (you know what I'm talking about!), runs around the house in his underwear only unless we are in public, tests the boundaries everyday of bashing his toys into walls, and the list could go on.

Despite all that, he's honestly the cutest thing around. He's a mama's boy and I'm proud to admit it! I kinda am attached to him as well - we've had this bond since he came home. He understand me, he gets me and he loves me.

Adoption is a path that not all folks understand. Adoption is a road that people have opinions about and adoption is a road that, unless you've walked it, you can't explain. It's beauty and sorrow mixed together that makes parenting and loving a child unique. It's a story of the Lord's grace and love and compassion.

I love my son as if I birthed him. Sometimes I have to remember that I didn't :) The love I have for him is incredible and really blows my mind most days.

Today, I just want my son to know that he is loved and cherished by me. He is loved by "P", even though he doesn't know her. I think about his birthmom every birthday, wondering what she is doing and thinking today. I can only rest in the fact that she loves him in her own way, and while I might not understand, it's not my place to judge. She's beautiful and special in a way that only she can be.

So, to my handsome, beautiful boy, mama loves you and I am SO grateful that you are my son.




Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Why I Climb


#WhyIClimb - it's two- fold and it's simple. To raise awareness for Postparum Depression and Anxiety. To let other mama's know that I survived PPD and they can to. And I walk to remind myself of how far I've come. 
9 years ago when my daughter was born, I had never heard of PPD. So when my daughter was 5 months old and I started feeling not right, I didn't even know that perhaps I had PPD. I suffered with this difficult disorder, not even realizing that there was something I could do about it for so many months. 10 months to be exact before I got help.
As the days of depression and anxiety and intrusive thoughts turned into months and years, I remember telling my husband over and over, "I need to find someone who has survived this. I need to find someone who has lived through this and is OK. I need to know that I will be better some day."
The honest truth - I never found anyone. And so my road of healing with the help of medication, therapy and counseling was a very lonely road - filled with so many thoughts of uncertainty, confusion, fear and doubt. I needed that woman in my life who had lived through a perinatal mood disorder to tell me that I was going to be ok. 
I am driven each day to be that person that I could never find to help and support another mama in pain. #WhyIClimb -  I want to be so outspoken about PPD that mama's know to call me, to find me on Facebook, to ask to talk to me. I want to be that voice in a new mama's mind, as she is wondering if she will make it through one more day of living in what I called "hell" or living a life where every moment is filled with dread.
That was my reality for 5 years. It was during this time that I found Postpartum Progress's blog and my world opened up. I found women like me and it was the most incredible feeling. 
If you need help, please feel free to reach out to me. If you want to know more about Climb out of the Darkness, click here: http://postpartumprogress.org/climb-out-of-the-darkness/ and to join a climb and raise awareness click here: http://postpartumprogress.org/climb-out-of.../find-a-climb/.
All it takes is one person to stand up and say, "I'm here. I can help" I do that each year as I plan and lead our walk locally. #ClimbOut is just amazing! 


Thursday, May 5, 2016

The JOY of Motherhood

The JOY of Motherhood.

You are an incredible mom. Whether you are a birth mom, adopted mom, step mom, stay at home mom, working full-time mom, working part-time mom or a pregnant mom. You are amazing.

When I first was diagnosed with PPD/PPA nearly 8 years ago with my first child, my first thought was “Why can’t I be the mom that is all put together — like Sally? What is wrong with me?” And for months, that thought swirled in my head. I compared myself to every single mom I saw at church, in the grocery store, even the complete stranger walking down the street. I always assumed that they must have it all together and that I was just a good-for-nothing mom, who was so depressed and anxious that I must be a terrible mother to my daughter.

My favorite saying is “Comparison is the thief of all joy.” I vividly remember reading that quote one day and it was like a light went off in my brain. I was missing the most incredible days and years with my kids because I was comparing. I didn’t think that perhaps I was pretty cool and awesome. I didn’t give myself enough credit to realize and remember that most importantly I was the best and perfect mom for MY kids.

We add so many extra pressures to motherhood — clean house, have meals ready to go, have weekly play dates, toys always picked up, makeup and clothes on each day (absolutely no yoga pants allowed) — the list could go on and on.

All these extra pressures and the comparing of ourselves makes us lose focus on the most important blessing we have — our kids. That is what is most important. Loving them, caring for them, telling them they are incredible themselves, listening to them, and just “being” there for them.

As a mom who has suffered from Postpartum Depression with my first and Post Adoption Rage with my second, I will admit — it’s hard some days. I wish that perinatal mood disorders were not part of my past. I wish that I didn’t experience and live those years of pain and depression and feeling like a loser. For any mom experiencing those feelings, I understand. But remember — you are INCREDIBLE, AMAZING, PERFECT, and the BEST mom. Don’t compare yourself to the mom next door. Allow the JOY of your kids make you get up each day and do it again. Happy Mother’s Day to each of you — and may your Mother’s Day be filled with love and joy and happiness and the realization that you are simply the best.


Monday, September 14, 2015

3 year old son!

It's tradition. I write a blog post on the birthday's of my children. It's for me as a way to remember who they are and who they are becoming. Today, is no exception!

My son is 3. It still feels like yesterday that I held him in my arms, at 3 days old. It seems like yesterday that he became a part of our life.

Last night, as I held my son and sang him a song and said prayers with him before bed, I realized that he holds a special place in my heart.



For me, his love and snuggles and sweetness and how he shows his expressions of love to me still makes my heart stop. 3 years ago today, I did not know he was born, let alone existed on this earth. I did not know that the Lord would bless our family with a son in a short 72 hours.

No, 3 years ago today, I was not present for his birth, I was not there. And while I wasn't there, I still loved him, even before I knew him. There is no way to explain the amount of love I felt within a mere few seconds of him being placed into my arms. I didn't matter that I was not pregnant for the last 9 months. I had prayed and waited 2 years, 1 month and 1 day for him to be my child.

I never take my love for him for granted. It's a love that surpasses all blood, all likeness, all race, all everything. It's a love that includes every part of him. And he in turns shows me a love that is unconditional. I am mama.


To his wonderful birth mom "P", today, like most days, I think of you. I pray for you. Last night as I held my son, your child too, in my arms, I cried for you. I cried as Lucas and I prayed for you. We pray that today, may your heart be touched, may you experience the Peace of the Lord and may you know that we love you, and our Heavenly Father loves you infinitely.

I love you Lucas. We love you "P".