Flowers Bloom in Spring

It’s been a while since I wrote anything.  But Easter is coming.  And I really want to share this.

I was compelled the last couple of years to bring flowers to church.  I brought 2 Easter Lilies and in each pot, I placed a small stuffed bunny.  I plan on doing the same thing again this year.  It’s my way of thanking God for the grace and forgiveness He has showered on me.  And the blessings that He has given me in the way of a little girl, and for the time being, a little boy.

My story started a long time ago when I made a decision to have an abortion.  That decision left me scared in many ways.  Then,  after dealing with a ruptured ectopic pregnancy,  I found my house and my heart empty…there were no children, there was no laughter, no scolding, no tickling, no bedtime prayers, no staying up late to finish homework.  I tried to fill that void in so many ways.  I cared for my dogs as if they were my children (they still are!) but that didn’t ease the longing for what I didn’t have.

I was broken.  I didn’t have a clue.

But God did.  And He waited for me.  When I finally gave myself over to Him, what I felt was love.  Forgiveness.  Grace.  Mercy.  No one, NO ONE, had ever shown me that…e.v.e.r.  All I ever knew was conditional.

I believe that the baby I aborted was a girl, and the baby I lost as a result of the ectopic pregnancy was a boy. I hold on to that belief because it allows me to recognize them as people, human beings that God created for a purpose.  Although they did not have the chance to live that purpose, I am allowing Him to use them through me for another purpose, a divine purpose designed by Him after I stepped off the path He had created for me.

And now, I am Mom to one child whom we adopted, and one child whom we are fostering.  One has a birthday right before Easter, and the other is right after Easter.  Just God’s way of punctuating life for me.   And when I put those Easter Lilies in the church this year, it will be for them too, one girl, and one boy.

E, C, I love you.  M, T, I love you.  Jesus, thank you.

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Praise God From Whom All Blessings Flow…

Of the many blessings I’ve been given in the past few years, none can compare to the magnificence of His love.  I see it all around me.  I feel it.  I breathe it, I taste it.  His great love and mercy has molded me into something that I never thought possible.  The change is not complete, and I dare to say that it never will be, not in this lifetime anyway.

The fruit of that blessing of love is in the form of a little girl.  How can I not, each and every day, know the love He has for me when I look into this face:

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Tears

My heart is cracked.  I don’t want it to be broken again but there is a chance that could happen it has happened again.  On the outside, to everyone else, I know the right words, I appear strong and able.  In the quiet moments with myself I cry, I weep.  No one but God knows the agony in my heart.

Knowing that He knows the plan is not always enough.  I trust that He will protect me and be with me in my moments of need but still I am empty inside, longing for what I don’t have, sorrowful for what has been lost.  I rejoice in what I have.  I love what He has done for me, and who He has put in my life and yet….the tears fall into pools of self doubt and self pity; neither of which are from Him.

Somewhere there is a cry left unheard, a need left unmet.  I pray God will lead me to the cry, to the need.  That through Him and in His timing my cry too will be heard, and my need met.

Deep Cold

This is a difficult time of year for me.  I can finally admit that.  This year, I wait for the arrival of a son.  I think of him all the time.  I pray for him, but not as much as I should.  I’m scared to.

He was born to another mother and father.  I know that right now, the plan is for him to come here as soon as he is strong enough to leave the hospital.  But I can’t help but think that he could one day be my son.  A son to love and care for.  A son to be a brother to my daughter.  A son to be a grandson to my parents and to my husband’s parents.  A son who’s presence in my life would change it forever…

Long ago, a young girl got the news that she would be a mother.  She wrestled with it.  She worried about it.  How could she, a young unmarried girl become a mother?  His birth had been foretold for years.  Prophets upon prophets had told of his coming.  He would be a savior, one to change life forever, for the world, for generations to come.  He would be born to her, and she would have the responsibility of raising him, loving him, nurturing him, tending to him when he was sick and rejoicing with him when he was successful.  And she said yes.  She didn’t even have to think about it.

For months she waited in anticipation.  And here I sit, thinking about what she must have felt.  A baby.  Not her’s.  She could have said no.  Strangely familiar to me.  Like her, I don’t know what the future holds.  But I know that in spite of my job loss, in spite of the unfamiliarity of having a baby, in spite my age and the age of my husband, this is what we are supposed to do.  We are supposed to love and care for this baby for as long as we need to.  I want to say that he is mine.  I want to say that we have a son coming.  But I don’t know.  I don’t know if all that we think is planned out is what is actually going to happen and because of that, I feel like I’m living in the midst of a frozen place in time.  My heart resides on the verge of tears almost all the time.  So much happening…so much we don’t know…so much I want.  So much fear that none of this will happen, and that I will be left jobless and babyless.  Mary is my one seed of hope.  She brings me more joy than I could have ever imagined.  Her smile, the twinkle in her eye when she is being playful….  God has blessed me more than I could ever imagine with a husband who loves me, cares for me and a daughter.  God knows the desires of our hearts…is this situation His response to the desire in my heart?

Testing, testing; one, two, three…

There is a great test going on here right now; my husband and I are going to need a lot of support.

My job is officially ending on Dec. 29th.  I got word yesterday.  Now, I’ve known about it for a while but I really didn’t address it because I hoped that somehow the company would come to their senses and realize that letting go 40% of the workforce at the end of the year was not a good idea.  So much for that idea.

I’ve been looking…but not seriously…for another job.  Now I need to really look.  But there is another story here as well.  We are hopefully going to be fostering a new born…an early born.  Through our extended church family, we learned of a pregnant birth mother who’s older children are in foster care already.  The state would like the siblings to have contact but the other foster family just can’t take on a newborn.  Enter us into the picture.  We are ready and willing.  Enter the challange:  the baby was born 13 weeks early.  He weighed under 2 lbs at birth.  We don’t know if there will be any other issues.  We do know that if he survives, he will be placed with us.

How, then, do I look for a job knowing that this little tiny guy will be coming here and needing more than just a few hours a day of my time?

I’m trusting that God has his hand on all of this and that he will work it out for us.  I’m trusting that the money we need will be found.  I’m trusting that…..well…I’m trusting.

Life since High School

Recently through facebook I have  been re-connecting with some old classmates, so I’ve been thinking a lot about the twists and turns that got me where I am.

Summer between sophomore and junior year of high school, my parents divorced and we moved to the east coast from the mid west. Life wasn’t easy. Here’s the rundown in fast forward:

Struggled with the new social rules and language, joined the swim team, made varsity, went out for softball and blew out my knee triggering all the surgeries, worked at Wendy’s, finished high school, worked at an electronics manufacturing plant, got pregnant, had an abortion, married the guy, had a ruptured ectopic pregnancy, divorced, worked, worked, worked, moved to California to be a ‘nanny’/Auntie to my beautiful nephew and niece, started a long distance relationship with Mr. Right, moved to Michigan, moved to New Hampshire, married Mr. Right, built a house, got a puppy, started taking classes to change careers, got another puppy, moved to Connecticut (hated it), adopted another young dog (bringing the total to 3 dogs at 1yr, 1 1/2 yrs, and 2 yrs old.)  Moved to Rhode Island, met my father-in-faith via the internet and was led to Jesus, found my church family, started a new career as a tech writer, fostered a child, adopted that child, waiting to hear about fostering another; this time a newborn.

There…that about covers it.  Looking back, there were defining moments: parents divorce, moving away, abortion, ectopic pregnancy, divorce, that really changed me, and one defining moment that really confirmed Me.  I’m not proud of what I did.  But I’ve been granted the forgiveness and mercy that helps me to learn and move forward and beyond those moments.

As difficult as it has been at times, God knew all along the path I would have to walk.  He wanted different things for me however I made choices that changed the path.  But never the goal.  God made sure of that.

UPDATE:

As of December 2009, we are foster parents to a first grade boy!  The newborn we were waiting for was placed elsewhere due to his medical issues.  But once again, God showed us that His plan is perfect and sent this wonderful, challenging, articulate, fun, loving little boy into our family for how ever long he needs to be here!

Adoption Ceremony Update

Well, what a beautifu day this was all the way around!

We arrived at church a litte later than I would have liked, but we only missed a few verses of the first song.  We found seats and settled in for worship.

All of a sudden, we were called up front as a family.  There were two kneeling benches in front of the alter, and I had assumed they were for our ceremony, but I didn’t have any clue what exactly we would be doing.  Fr. Dave explained to the congregation that a month ago we had legally finalized our adoption of Mary, and and today we were aknowledging that legal commitment before God.

It started off with the presentation of the medallion.  Rich knelt down to look her in the eye.  He said this:

“Mary, when Mommy and I got married, we gave each other rings to symbolize our love for one another and our promise to always love and care for each other.  Today, we are giving you this pendant, to symbolize our love for you and our promise before God to always love and care for you.”

As he read, I put the necklace on Mary.  When we were done, we were invited to the kneeling benches, where Rich and Mary kneeled and I stood (not ready to kneel yet).  Fr. Dave blessed us as a family, asked for blessings and direction for the birth parents, for strength to be the kind of parents Mary needs and continued protection for us as a family.  Then, we turned and faced the congregation and were introduced as a family.

Mary was beaming.  Daddy was beaming.  Mommy was beaming.