Troy and I are in Houston with five of the kids. Britt and Chris are caring for Lydie in Waco.
We're so enjoying our time together. It has been very fun to see Phoebe in a new light. She seems pretty pumped about being with the "big kids" and having ditched Lydia. Even at three years old, she knows this is a special weekend and she was chosen to come along. Usually she is not very verbal at all. She never has been. She is talking more this weekend than we have ever heard. It is so fun, she sounds just like Elmo - it is marvelous. :)
We don't often write about it, but of our children Phoebe is the only one that has consistently shown some signs of attachment challenges. It is so interesting because she has been with us since she was just ten weeks old.
I've been reading more and more about the damage that can take place even in the womb during stressful pregnancies and the bond between a mother and a child is very real and something we cannot understand or fully grasp. Phoebe has residual hurts. Whether that stems from a stressful pregnancy, being left in an orphanage, or something else all together ... we cannot know. I love her and celebrate moments like this weekend when I see her blossoming and trusting and so so happy. I pray for healing in her little heart and that we can be for her what she needs us to be, both today and tomorrow.
I wish it was a perfect happy world where the need for adoption did not exist, but we all know we're a long way from that world. In the United States and all around the globe children are waiting on us to respond. Adoption is not easy. The process itself is incredibly difficult and painful. Helping children heal can be a horrific thing to witness. But - I don't think that changes anything, I still believe we are called to respond.
Adoption is both complicated and beautiful. Each of my children are wonderfully complicated and beautiful. I grieve that my children spent 14 months, 9 months and 10 weeks institutionalized and largely neglected. I know that hurt them and is a permanent part of their story. But I rejoice that love heals many wounds. I pray for children waiting in institutions. No one will ever convince me institutions are an okay place for children. Every child deserves an opportunity to be cared for, cherished, loved.
Aaron Ivey is a good friend. Paige loves this song of his about adoption and it has been playing (blaring) at our house a lot these past few weeks. Every time Isaac hears it he says, "Mama, this is that song about fighting to get us home - right??" He loves that image of being fought for ... I do too. I have a Father who fought for me, and continues to fight for me. I want to do the same for my children.
Enjoy it - (it's awesome) and please, pray for the millions of children going to sleep tonight with no mommy and no daddy and no one to make them feel special and loved.
(This won best video at Attic Film Festival earlier tonight!)