Tuesday, August 7, 2012

when the world shifts

it is funny how things can either stop one or move one.

for months after we brought our adopted children home we were stuck. we were stuck not being able to get social security numbers. we were stuck not having insurance because we had no ss#s. we were stuck not getting our children help with language and speech therapies because we did not enroll them in public school. we couldn't enroll them even if we had wanted to due to not having up-to-date vaccines and unable to get them without insurance.  

i truly felt like a failure as a parent. i had awful feelings of inadequacy. i could not provide for my children. the ugly little voice in my head told me they would be better off if we had not adopted them at all.

i know that is silly and untrue, but the voice started sounding more convincing with each obstacle we encountered. it didn't help having people telling me that we were not doing right by our children.  

it wasn't that we jumped into adoption thinking it would be a piece of cake. during the process, we had made calls to the insurance companies to check on eligibility. we were assured they would be covered the moment they touched down in chicago international airport and became US citizens. we touched base with our pediatrician and were told that they could get therapeutic services outside of the public school system. we watched several friends adopt and not have these issues.

BUT, we did! every step we took, we were being thwarted. i spent three months fighting with the insurance company and public school system. in june we were granted insurance, but nothing else.

then i decided to put it in God's Hands. He knows what He is doing. He placed these children with us. He doesn't make mistakes. patience and trust is what i now was depending on. i could do nothing by myself.

so we waited. and waited. and waited. by our four month anniversary of the children coming home, nothing had been done. we still had no services. plus i was dealing with an awful personal situation in my life. i was drowning. i told my husband that if i knew that a friend of mine was going through this, i would be worried. very worried.

it wasn't that i didn't reach out for help. i did. i felt like i was becoming a whiner. no one could or would help us. i was losing myself. i imagined i was like the photo in the movie Back to the Future, when the main character's siblings were disappearing from the picture. i was slowly disappearing in my own life. everything was getting fuzzy. truth is...i wanted to disappear.

then i had my life shift. after i cleared up the ugliness that i was battling with my friend and was gifted the ability to extend forgiveness and grace, my whole being shifted. i felt at peace. i felt loved by God. i felt that everything was going to be OK.

not that i knew how it was going to be OK, mind you. it was going to be a mystery and i am cool with mysteries.

for years my mother had been telling me that when something is stuck, often something else has to shift to make room for change and growth. things will open up if we deal with the one thing we don't want to have to deal with. i didn't want to have to deal with the haters and negative people. i didn't want to deal with the unpleasant business of making amends.

when i sought spiritual guidance, i was instructed to do as the Bible tells us to. easier said than done in my opinion. but i did. i followed the guidelines and it worked. how people make it through life without an instruction book (the Bible), i don't know. i would be so lost without the Word.

the same week i cleared my life up, i met with my adoption support group. one mom who has been instrumental in my adoption journey (thanks B), advised me to seek out the local Children's Hospital for help. others had also encouraged me to do so, but they had really involved kids who needed immediate medical intervention and they had private insurance. when it came from quiet B, i knew that i had to honor her by taking her advice.

so as afraid as i was, i called. the following day a nice lady returned my call and signed us up for a program to help people in our situation. less than a week later we had a developmental behavior pediatric appointment. the doctor was amazing. she told me that she could tell i was downplaying how hard this has been. she said that i was a really good mom and doing a great job. you know what? i had to be a great mom. i had to be twice the mom i needed to be to deal with doing everything on my own. my husband has been pulling 70+ hour workweeks for most of the summer. i am single parenting in addition to trying to advocate for my children. i have had no choice. it was deal or disappear. thank you God for being with me. it was touch and go there for a bit.

along with my new case worker, the doctor set up an entire list of services we would be getting.

ready for this??

physical therapy-scheduled
occupational therapy-scheduled
speech consult
feeding team consult

developmental assessment
physical therapy-scheduled
and a couple others too

whoa! talk about doors opening. now we are buried under paperwork, tests, and medical appointments. but there is no complaint from me. we will just live the next few months around doctor visits.

we currently have 10 appointments in august and counting. i am thankful that help has arrived. i Praise God for His perfect timing.

i wonder how the children would have adjusted to life as Americans if we had done all this testing and evaluations when they first got home. maybe this was a gift. being able to settle in as a family and establish trust before all the poking and prodding began.

and trust me. they didn't start to really trust us until recently. try getting older children, who don't have a grasp on the language, to allow you to take a stool specimen. that was great fun this week. i will spare you the details, but know that trust helped us accomplish that feat.

and this morning...basha let me finish pulling out her dangling tooth. she has very little response to pain, so she tends to yank teeth that are no where near ready for pulling. she pulled two of her teeth out just weeks after being home. neither was ready to come out. talk about a bloodbath. yikes. so today when it was too painful to complete the pull, E brought her to me. she looked skeptical that i could do it without hurting her. but i am super mom. i put oragel on the gum and then gently pulled the offending tooth. she looked amazed that i did it. she is so used to doing everything for herself that she had little need for a mama. well folks, she has one now. one that will love her, fight for her, provide for her(or die trying), comfort her, care for her, and instruct her.

i knew that going through the fire, handling adversity with grace and dignity(and just a bit of whining), would teach me things i would pass onto my children someday. 

what i learned (or relearned) these last two weeks is this:

trust God over everything else
look to the Bible for help in time of need
clean up messes even if you didn't make the mess to begin with 
the bigger the breakdown-the bigger the breakthrough
when you are stuck, move something else to allow room for shifting
never give up
reach out to friends and loved one-prayer covers all things
love others as God has loved us


  1. Good stuff V. Praying for you!

  2. Parenthood is harder then anyone can imagine!! It's easy to get discouraged. Christ is bigger then all that!! I am so glad your girls are getting what they need and deserve (espically a mamma who loves & listens).
    Ps I'm gonna use the oragel trick with my kiddos...thanks :o)

  3. God in you can do amazing things...even miracles! Were in this together!

  4. You are stronger than you think. Maybe, just maybe God is giving you access to your purpose in life. He definitely is not done with you. Amazing and inspiring miracles abound through your faith and God's love for his children.

  5. I love reading your blog, it's always an emotional roller coaster...full of laughter, tears and faith! The doctor was definitely right; you are an AMAZING mom and you are doing a fabulous job with all of your girls. Much love.