Thursday, June 28, 2012

Prayer request... but you're all on your own.

So another blog about prayer. I'm obsessed, what can I say. If I were God I'd strip me of all this control all the time just so I prayed constantly.

Today I've been praying every hour at the top of the hour. It has changed my perspective tramendously. I have of course been praying for Roland (who we've been calling Rolly, like trolley) and my sweet Laelia and my handsome Charles, but I've also been praying for a lot of my friends. And I realized after talking to a few of these friends that there are things we just can't pray for ourselves.

As many of you know there is a wait between our two trips to Rolly's birth country. During that wait Rolly will be all alone with no visitors. He won't get the Mama loves and cuddles he will have gotten used to while we're there for our first trip. What will he think? What trauma will that do to him?

Then I'll fly back solo a few weeks later and get him. The second trip will cost more money in flights and living expenses (which is why I'm going alone to save money). It will also cost time and energy.

You see there's this thing called a manditory ten day wait. That means that even after a judge in a courtroom has told us that Rolly is ours, we still have to fly home without him and wait the "ten days" which can take several weeks depending on lots of things.

It's like saying, "He's yours! Now say goodbye and go home without him."

It will be hard. Harder than hard.

But we are fully expecting this.

But in really really rare cases (like rarely if ever) they *have* in specific cases we don't necessarily absolutely qualify for (but never in Rolly's region so I've been told) waived this ten day wait.

Now imagine with me for a moment what would happen if the judge waived that ten day wait for us. It would mean we were never separated, we got to all come home as a family. No worry of causing PTSD to my son. No worry of breaking his heart or frustrating him or abandoning him. No worry of traveling alone for a new trip by myself. No worry of last minute fundraising for these expensive flights. No second trip. No more time off of work. No more delaying medical treatment. No working out babysitters while I'm gone. It would be wonderful.

But it won't happen. It just won't. We're expecting to make two trips and follow every rule.

But it doesn't hurt to pray for it, right?

Except it totally hurts to pray for it. I can't in fact. Praying for this would get my hopes up. Praying for this would change my attitude from one of, "I will do any hard thing you want, Lord, to get my son" to "Why couldn't you give me this one request?!" So I can't pray for it. And I don't. I keep my prayers to that of asking for God's will and strength to do what he wants.

But that's when my friends step in. Lauren was the first I told this secret desire to. She promised to pray. It lifted my burden almost immediately! That gave me the courage to share this request with some ladies at my church, " see there's this ten day wait thing..." and they all were praying!

But also friends have come to me who have their own things they can't pray for. It would make them angry/sad/depressed/crushed if God said no. So that's where I can come in for them!

I've been praying that JH gets the home she's hoping for. The specific one. The one that she wants. Because she doesn't want to be let down, but she also doesn't want to pray for more than God's will in where to plant her family. But her heart yearns for it. So I can pray so she can remain content.

I'm praying for JD's cancer surgery. That they get it all without needing to do radiation. Because that is something she's willing to go through, but of course doesn't want to. (Talk about a 'take this cup from me' prayer!) And it hurts to pray for escape from the harsh treatment because what if God says, "No"? What would that do to someone's morale who is recovering from surgery? But I can pray for it so she can focus on getting better whatever comes.

I'm praying for PK. She has an addiction that is terrible and life-ruining. It's scary. So darn scary. She cries and prays for the desire for this substance to just go away, and gets crushed when it just won't go away (it may never go away). It's heart-breaking. But praying for strength to handle it and strength to get treatment for it is good for the soul. That's her focus while we step in and pray it just all goes away.

So every hour at the top of the hour I pray for these things, and others. Will I be disappointed if they don't work out? Of course. A little. But they would be crushed.

So I don't want to pray for the ten day waiver because I would be devestated if something I prayed hard for didn't work out. When I pray for something I imagine what it would be like. I just can't go there. It's not realistic or healthy, like the person who instead of working hard just thinks and prays for a million dollars to fall in their lap. My spirit groans for it, but my thoughts can't go there. Instead I pray for my attitude and for being open to every possibility, no matter how hard. So I need y'all to pray for this impossible thing. I need you to shoulder the disappointment since there's no chance it will work out. But I need you to pray so that I know the request is out there. It would just make me feel better. And I'd appreciate it.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

We know the when.

We got a phone call this morning (5:30am this morning) that we've been waiting almost seven months to get. We now know when we will be accross the ocean meeting our son! We're not allowed to publicly announce it, but let's just say it's soon.


Friday, June 8, 2012

Chip In

So I'm sticking ye old Chip In back up. See it in the upper right corner? Turns out flying during the summer is a lot more costly than flying during the winter. (We first started calculating how much this would cost in December.) Living expenses go up a bit as well. Tourists. Well, I guess that's what we are too. :) Ugh, it just feels like a bait and switch every time we calculate for this adoption. I wish things didn't change so much! It does not help that I have control issues. ;)

We're about to wipe out our savings and checking accounts to adopt this precious boy. That's scary. We're about to fly thousands of miles across the sea into another culture, language and world. That's scary too.

Soon little guy! You are worth it.

The lines have fallen for me in pleasant places; indeed, I have a beautiful inheritance. Psalm 16:6

Tuesday, June 5, 2012


I just want to blog about something I suck at: prayer. I suck at prayer. Bringing me face to face with the needs of my son makes me sick to my stomach. It just reminds me that he's without a mommy, he's without proper nutrition, anything could happen to him, etc. Instead my prayers turn into, "God... Roland." And that's always uttered with a very whiny inner voice. (I would have said "pleading" but "whiny" is closer to the truth of it.)

Prayer makes me feel out of control, and I like the illusion that I'm in control. I'm also afraid God's plans may be different than mine. That thought alone makes me want to hide under my covers instead of pray.

We had a scare that my son was no longer available for adoption a couple months ago. It was unfounded. One bad thing about being in the inner circle is that you learn things about where your child is that are not comforting, and you never get all the information. Did you know bombs went off in my son's birth country not too long ago? Yep, terrorists. More than once.

Our friend (a sweetheart) who has really encouraged me through this adoption drama just "lost" her daughter. They were about three weeks from getting their travel dates. That little girl is no longer available for international adoption. This is the second time this has happened to them.

It could be I'm thinking about my friend's daughter, and it could be I'm worried about the unknowns (and more likely it's what I warned y'all about--I'm going crazy during this time of waiting) but I feel this need to pray for Roland. And I suck at praying. And so I'm blogging instead. Can we say avoidance? :)

There's obviously many things to pray for. Roland is in a place where the likelihood of getting infectious disease is very high. He'll come home with at least one form of worm, flesh bacteria or "problem." He'll also have bonding issues. He'll have stress from moving his environment. He'll have eating issues. And all of these could be permanent or very temporary.

But I'm feeling the need to give my child up to God. I don't have control over this situation and I need God to do ALL the heavy lifting. Not just for sickness or health, for emotional or psychological healing, but for every aspect of my son's situation.

I'm unsettled. And the crazy part of me is worried you'll read this and pray for me and forget to pray for Roland. If you only have five minutes to pray, forget me and pray for my son!

Or, you know, pray for whatever. Don't let my crazy affect you. ;) I'm also projecting my own hardship with prayer onto you all. Five minutes. Pshhh.

I was reading Seven, the book that's not about adoption by Jen Hatmaker. And one part made me about choke on my own breath. She was going through the adoption process at the time she wrote the book (she finished the book before she had her adopted children in her arms) and she included a random story about that process. I'll quote it here:

"During the first week of October, I suffered inexplicable sadness for our Ethiopian kids, yet unknown to us. I couldn't quit crying. I couldn't stop worrying. I felt heavy and dark without knowing why. With tears burning at the slightest provocation, I threw my emotions into the Facebook ring for some backup. From adopting friends a common thread rose up: 'God is prompting you to pray for your children for some reason. You don't know them yet, but he knows they are yours. Intercede for them this week; then write these dates down. Once you receive your referral, check their paperwork, and you might discover divine timing.' A slew of similar stories were posted.

"So Brandon and I prayed desperately for our kids. Were they losing a parent? Were they suffering? Were they tender and lonely? Were they especially hopeless? Their need was unknown, but the ache was acute. So I cried the tears I just knew they were crying, and I begged Jesus to be so near, so gentle in their young, tragic lives while they waited for us, wishing a family wanted them but too afraid to hope."

"[...] We discovered our referral was one gorgeous, unbelievably perfect five-year-old girl. She was beautiful in every way. Brandon fell especially hard. With her little chicklet teeth and her shy smile, it seemed we might finally get a 'gentle child,' which required adoption since our gene pool squashed that characteristic. [...]

"I went three weeks back to those dark days full of prayer and sorrow. I confirmed the dates then searched this beautiful girl's file:

"It was the week she was brought to the orphanage.

"Shipped twelve hours north of her village, her people, everything she knew to a crowded orphanage with children and workers who spoke a different language, it must've been devastating. She must've felt so alone. At age five. Except Jesus never leaves His little ones, His most vulnerable. He was there in the scary van ride north. He was there in her confusion and fear. He was there as she was assigned a bed and communal clothes and had her beautiful head shaved. He was there that first heartbreaking night. And He made sure we were there in spirit, too.

"I'm telling you, we felt her grief. We carried her turmoil. We cried her tears. Jesus made sure we sat watch with Him over her. He invited us into the vigil He was keeping on her behalf." (pages 199-201)

I have felt this before (recently) and when I finally asked the person I was praying for if everything was okay it wasn't. I knew it wasn't. Even though I knew nothing at all. Sometimes it just works this way. It's not voodoo, although I'm making it sound like that, but it's obedience to pray. To keep watch. To be a little intuative and senstive to others. And I need to stop blogging and get to it. Prayer time. Ooh Facebook! Going now. Ugggggh. Hard.