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Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Chapter 4 - "Don't you have enough kids already?"

That's a direct quote from one of the very first people I told we were adopting again.  
It stung.  
I've been mulling this post around in my head for a long while.

Children are a blessing.  
All children are a blessing.  
Children are blessings from the Lord.
The Lord has blessed us. 
The Lord really abundantly blessed us once then again and again and again and again and again and again!

When I was a young girl, I wanted 12 children.  I remember naming each one, starting with Sarah, my oldest, right on down to the twins, Jessica and Evan. (Funny I don't have any children now with those 12 names.)  I remember wanting to adopt many of them even way back then.  I remember making a little cardboard house that represented my dream home with its many many bedrooms.  I remember showing my mom my the embodiment of my dream home made from dismantled cereal boxes and lots of Elmer's glue.  And she said that perhaps when I got older, and perhaps when I had a couple children of my own, {and experienced the many trials and hard work of being a mom} and had a husband with opinions of his own, perhaps then I wouldn't want 12 children any more, and it was ok to change my dreams as I experienced life.


Land's sake, she was so smart even back then.
Such a sage valuable lesson, and of course she was right!
As I girl I remember clearly altering my dreams that very moment.  Dreams can mature and change just as people do.  She is such a wise woman.  Perhaps having 12 children was just too much work and too many children for one family.  That very day I changed my dream.
That day I decided that I only wanted 10 children.
My dream to have a large family hasn't changed since.


And some folks who I told my dream to had advice to give, lessons to teach me, and that she'll-feel-differently-when-she's-older look on their face.  

Fast forward 20+ years.
Something happens when you tell folks you have (or want to have) a lot of children.  What I can only feel should be joy for such blessings falls to a hush or wonderment.  It can change to judgement.  Now I'm not talking about the folks that are curious or genuinely want to know the why's.  Sheeesh... that's kinda the point of this post!  I'm talking about righteous judgement.  


I guess this is where my mental wrestling match begins.  My blessings, my precious wonderful blessings, can turn into other's judgement.  Yes, I'm overly sensitive.   

I hope you're not thinking that I'm advocating that everyone should have a large family.  And I don't think that everyone should adopt.  Far from it.  This is simply the path we've chosen to our dreams.  Having no children is perfect for many families and is what they are called to do.   Many families have 1 or 2 or 3, and I'm sure that's perfect for them.  And some families have more than the average 2.3 kiddos.  And I think that's alright too.  As a couple we've made financial sacrifices to have a large families.  We've decided not to travel often and to postpone having newer cars longer than usual.  Hand-me-downs are par.  And I've become a whiz at feeding a large family on a budget.  And even though the Lord has called all of us to care for the orphans, I don't think everyone should adopt children either.  There are many ways to help orphan without adopting.  I'm sorry if this next part sounds harsh, but I believe only some people have what it takes to parent and unconditionally love a child that another woman grew within her and gave birth to.   And only some families are equipped to deal with the inherent challenges of raising a child that has been abandoned, orphaned, and institutionalized.  Adoption is a blessing and life-transforming, but it's not for everyone.  

We really wanted each and every one of our children.  From the earliest age, I wanted a huge house full of them.  If we couldn't adopt, we would've had more biological children.  So why did we adopt, I was asked a couple days ago at lunch.  
Because God called us to do it?  Ya.  
Because there's real inherent personal and spiritual growth to be had in sacrificing for one of God's children?  Yes, there is.
Maybe it's because there's 147 million orphans out there with no mama or papa to call their own?  Ya, that too.  
But our answer is really is so much simpler than that.  


So why did we adopt?  And why are we doing it again?
It boils down to this... 
Very simply this...


We really wanted another child.  

Just that.  


Simply.


And if you know our family, you know that how that child comes into the arms of this mama and papa is completely irrelevant to us.


Simply.

22 comments:

  1. I love it! You have said it so perfectly! Mother Teresa once said, "How can there be too many children? That is like saying there are too many flowers." This is EXACTLY how my heart feels as well! I want a house full too! Though, I'm not sure I've quite got the husband on board. We shall see... ;) xoxo, Brooke

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  2. Absolutely beautiful. And I couldn't agree with you more!! Amen, sister!

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  3. Beautifully put, and in many ways expresses my feelings exactly (except I really think 4 is going to be our number)! Thanks for posting this.

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  4. I knew I shouldn't open this just by reading the title. Amen! It's completely and utterly selfish for me "because I want more kids"! End of story....I love love love what your heart says. We don't care how they come into our families. For those who ask don't you have enough? Now that I think of it NO we dont. When we feel that our quiver is full ill be sure and call you, thanks.

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  5. Beautiful. We journey to adoption when I couldn't have any more kids after my son was born. And it has been about the best, and most wonderful, thing in the world. Even though Its Hard. And the Wait Is Killer. Every single second with that chosen child is a miracle and a blessing.

    I don't understand why people make such a big deal out of adoption versus bio kids. Both ways of having children are wonderful. Both sets of children are blessed. And I know from experience I feel just as lucky to have my adopted kiddos as I do to have my bio son. I am the lucky one to have been chosen to be their mom, no matter who it came about.

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  6. Beautifully written--you have "got some love" that is for sure!! :)

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  7. Hi from South America! I read many adoption blogs, I adopted a 4 years old 3 years ago and I'm dying to adopt again (another girl around 4) but I'm single and it's NOT easy to live with a minimum wage so when I find blogs like yours I wonder... where did you find your husband??? ha! but I really do!!! here most men don't want to adopt so that's one of the reasons I'm still single ;p
    I hope some day I find someone that shares my biggest dream... have many adoptives kids!

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  8. Beautiful post. I am one of those constantly in awe of those who have more children than me, but still I want more...maybe just one, but maybe more. Our family is just not complete and much as I love my children. If we weren't as close as we are in NSN we would be pursuing any and all ways to add another child to our family...and I just pray that if 4 is not complete that God will be clear again in how He wants to add number 5 to our family. But then I remember how selfish I am and I worry that I just won't be a good mother to more. But I never doubt that your family will do just fine...there is just so much love. (Though sometimes I get confused and think Mazie is number 9 not 7--I wouldn't have had my husband if my MIL had stopped at 6.)

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  9. When we had just one child and were content we got lots of "advise" on how we were hurting our child. So, really there is always going to be someone to give their opinion, good or bad, I just wish that everyone could take into account that their dream family may not look like your dream family and that is OK.

    I am so happy and excited for your family and your new addition. If we could adopt another we would even though there are challenges and boundries that say we shouldn't.

    Bless you.

    Lori

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  10. When we had just one child and were content we got lots of "advise" on how we were hurting our child. So, really there is always going to be someone to give their opinion, good or bad, I just wish that everyone could take into account that their dream family may not look like your dream family and that is OK.

    I am so happy and excited for your family and your new addition. If we could adopt another we would even though there are challenges and boundries that say we shouldn't.

    Bless you.

    Lori

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  11. THANK YOU for your post.

    I was the opposite of you growing up. I didn't want ANY. That grew to one (because I "should"), then three, with 1-2 being adopted, now... well, a whole lot of them, and all adopted.

    And I'm still single. And 33.

    I've wrestled with my age and my singleness and the number of children that I can only believe God has put on my heart. I hear my step-mom repeating the voices that you've heard, that 3 is enough children for any family, that more children is a burden, a sacrifice...

    It is. So?

    You encourage me to hold on to what I know. Thanks.

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  12. *hugs* I am sorry you were hurt by another person's comment. I hope that person has learned to watch their tongue but I know it happens all too often. I was told I was having too many when I was pregnant with #3. This post was very well written and I am glas you shared.

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  13. Oh man, I put on makeup today and everything, I should have known not to read your blog right now, darn mascara running down my face! I am with you, I would fill this house with a ton of kids if I could... You may think you are ultra sensitive, but I see a very strong follower willing to stand up for what's right in her life and what God has called her to. You are here to please the Lord, not everyone else :o) I love the comment, "you have your hands full", it is never meant in a loving way, what they don't know is how full the HEART is also!

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  14. i am giggling about your dramatic change in dreams. 12 down to 10. kindred souls we are my blog soul sister.

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  15. Yes! Amen! I think it's all about Kingdom Building!!

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  16. I'm new to your blog...hopped over here from someone else and I honestly can't remember how or where I was to begin with! We are just beginning our second adoption to our fourth child. Our daughters are bio and our Thai Tornado came to us in 2009 at the age of 3. We are blessed. We're headed to China this time for a beautiful 14 month old boy with five heart defects and a malformed arm. I think of him constantly. He's already our son and I miss him though I don't know him yet.

    I was listening to a sermon last night from the pastor at the church where I was raised. They needed to have their "Orphan Sunday" early this year and so it was last week. He preached from Ephesians 1 {one of my all time favorite passages!} but ended with a question. He asked, "What are our usual excuses for not adopting?...'We already have enough kids' or It will cost so much'." He went on to ask, "What if our God, who has spoken so clearly in His Word of how He adopted us by grafting us into His family so that we could be called sons of God...finally said, 'I've got enough children or it will cost so much?' " The truth is, He didn't say that. And praise the Lord He didn't.

    I really enjoy your blog!
    Happy Friday~
    Kam

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  17. Beautifully put!!! :)

    I'm so glad I found your blog and I'm definitely going to try your latest VN recipe very soon--looks delicious!

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  18. I don't have wise words of wisdom or anything like that...but what I have is support for you, and seriously, when I come to your blog I don't ever really think about how many children you have. It is what it is, and this is your family, and your life, and I am happy that you allow me to follow along just a little bit!

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  19. As an adoptee and an adoptive mother I can tell you really get it, keep it real cousin. Also you might want to keep my phone number handy when they all start turning into teenagers :).....Much Love to you Always - Michele

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