Seemed I had abandoned the blog. Not so! In fact I have thought of blogging many times but so many things are grappling for my attention that I am putting out fires instead (not literally thank God!)
I am learning that I can do so much more than I thought I could. I can endure much more than I believed myself capable of and I really can do all things through Christ who gives me strength.
This confuddled process we are in is interesting, many times joyful and some times frustrating. In every situation despite best efforts we come with expectations and must learn to deal with those expectations when they are not met. As many of you know we intended on doing older child/special needs adoption, which means basically: children over the age of 2 and sibling groups (although special needs is not a label limited to sibling groups it can also mean mental or physical needs). In the state of Michigan they require that you also receive your license for Foster Care so that children can be placed in your home more quickly. We are surprised to find ourselves doing foster care, with (at least at this point) no end in sight. Please don’t get me wrong I love our new little ones and I am glad to care for them, it’s just that I EXPECTED we would have children that we were in the process of adopting and the playing field is a little different. (I should also clarify that the agency did warn us that things might now go exactly as hoped)
But I am learning and growing and I know that God has a plan. And…He truly does not give you more than you can handle.
Just in case you are interested here are few of the things we are learning…
- Things rarely go as planned. Expectations are devilish things and they cause a lot of trouble. Focus on the moment and let God take care of the rest.
- It can get quite difficult after the honeymoon period is over but I must remember if I can maintain a joyful heart and a peaceful countenance the children are more easily able to calm down themselves. This benefits both the foster children and my biological children.
- Smile a lot. Even if I don’t feel like it, if I keep smiling eventually the joy will surface!
- God gives grace. Accept it and press into it. I am amazed by how many times I am at my wits end yet a quick “Help me Jesus! I need more grace” really helps me calm down and do the next thing.
- The seesaw of trying to prepare for the possibility that the children my leave and throwing your all into caring for them is more difficult than I thought. I need to be patient with myself.
- This is perhaps the most important thing I have learned. I must make a conscious effort to focus on my biological children. The needs and demands of the little ones are constant and when I am off step can be overwhelming but I can not let my older children forget how wonderful and important they are. I am not always getting this done as well as I would like but it is a conscious effort. Often times a moments conversation “How are you doing?” is all it takes.
Well off I go, someone is pitching a fit Better go check on the troops!
PS. Anyone heading to Castle Farms next weekend? Hubby is holding down the fort so I can man the booth with some dear friends! (Oh another lesson learned…your husband is not inept if he is willing to help, let him!)