Thursday, June 23, 2011

What I Want You To Know About Older Child Adoption

I have so much to say on this topic, but being in the midst of the battle, I don't feel ready or able to process all my thoughts, feelings, and emotions. I found this post on another blog and she says so much of what I want to say so I decided to link it here.

This is exactly what we've been going through for the last 11 months, but have usually been unable to verbalize it. Isolation is so true for us and finding a good therapist has been terrible. And again, the author is so right...a bad therapist is worse than no therapy at all (been there, done that). Luckily we found a good one recently. Though we've only had 1 session with the whole family, she's already given us some practical tools to help build attachment and diffuse tensions. I highly recommend Joan Miller at Focus on Relationships in Lexington. If you are struggling (even if your child was a baby when you adopted them), call Joan. Don't put it off like I did. Time does not make the hurts go away. Older kids come to us with years of life experiences already. They have their own personalities and have gone through horrendous life experiences that no child their age should go through. Some of the stories my kids have told me has made the hair on the back of my neck stand on end. But living every day as a family with children who don't know how to act as true family members is so frustrating and so draining. I try to remind myself that each of my kids has come so far, but most days the future looks so very bleak for us. But they are worth it. They are children of God that He has redeemed from the hand of the Devil. Just as He has redeemed me and called me to walk this very hard road with very broken children. The irony is we pursued them. We asked for this. We called them to be members of our family and now call them our sons and daughters. Just as the Father pursued me and called me to be His daughter. He paid the ultimate price just so I could be called a daughter of the most high God. Adoption is such a beautiful portrayal of God's salvation plan for us. And yet most of the church misses it. I grieve for my brothers and sisters in Christ who just don't get it. So many people say to us how great we are for adopting these kids and making them our own and I want to scream at them, "Don't you get it! It's not about us. We are so NOT adequate enough to do this on our own. I am a terrible person who is daily frustrated by my children. Who loses her temper way too much and sometimes I just hide- in the bathroom for a few minutes so I can get away from my kids. Many times I hear the voice of the enemy telling me I'm not good enough. And many times, I listen to him. But that is the joy of this journey of adoption. He calls us to take on something we can't do on our own. We have to rely on His strength or we fail. And the best part is, even when we fail, He is there to mend the hurts and sew back the cords that bind us together as a family."

So pray for us. Pray that we will see past the anger, the harsh words and the sullenness. Pray that He will indeed heal the hurts that we see and those that we will never realize. Our kids are in such desperate need of a Savior to salvage the years when no one treated them as the princes and princesses that they have been called to be. And pray for us as parents. We are emotionally drained. We are physically exhausted. But we want to be the parents that God calls us to be. We want to show the love of Christ in everything we do with our kids. We want so much, but the journey is so long and we need you all to stand in the gaps for us when we as humans fail. Thank you for following our journey. Your support, prayers and encouraging words mean more than you will ever know.


Anonymous said...

We also are working with Joan Miller for our oldest child and really appreciate and respect her. Since we have an "older child" on the way, I am anticipating that we will be working with Joan for quite some time. :-)

We will continue to pray for you and your family! I very often do when you post on Facebook.


The Ritzmanns said...

Oh Amy, I can't tell you how much we feel for you and Matt and your kids. We have experienced many of the same feelings and continue to battle them (to a lesser extent than we have, but it is still very difficult). I wish we had some solution for you or a way to make everything easier, but sadly we know there is no simple solution. Please know that we are thinking of you guys often and have you all in our thoughts and prayers (which are becoming more prevelant as I didn't used to be a religious person much at all). If there is ANYTHING we could do to help, whatever that may be, please let us know. We have felt the same level of despair, anger, hopelessness, fear, sadness, you name it, we have felt it.

The Ritzmanns

June said...

Your story is deeply inspiring. I admire your heart for children and how hard you work to provide your children with the experiences childhood should be full of - the glory of nature, birthday and holiday celebrations, time with family and friends. I pray for strength that allows you to journey through the tough times.


Jolene Shrock said...

Hey Amy~

Just a word of encouragement, God called you to this, you did "ask for it"..and then YOU OBEYED!! God bless you all!! LOVE YA

Anonymous said...

We haven't adopted older kids, just babies. I think you are very brave. I have been reading your blog for a long time- and this is the first time I have left a comment. I will pray for you and your family. I will pray that God gives you a break through - I am glad that you have found someone to help and support you all. I will pray God gives you peace and love for each other. I know this is hard - Love to you all. I am going to hang your picture on our frig- so we(we have 6 kids) will remember to pray for you daily.
Love, The Bailey Family

Leveta said...

I wish I could get together with you and talk. We have our share of the same issues you are dealing with and if our son didn't have so many developmental issues I think we would have more.I will be praying for you all.

Anonymous said...

Amy and Matt - I love that you are part of the Redeemed class and you open your heart and home and Redeem something the Devil wanted to claim. Stay strong!! You are amazing! Your children will understand the love of Christ and salvation at an entirely deeper level because of your obedience, your faith, and your love. I pray for you and with you!