Saturday, January 6, 2018

Daughter of God????

What does it mean to be a daughter of God?
And how does one who has forever struggled with a father relationship supposed to walk this out?

Here's what I know.
Earthly fathers are sinners.
Like me. And like you.

I have to constantly bring it back to that.
God is not a sinner.
My dad is a sinner.
And Mike. And Bill. And Dave.
All these men that have been in my life.
One that helped give me life.
One that was abusive and turned our lives upside down.
One who I know actually loves my mama.
And one I got as a bonus father (in law)

And here's what I know.
Everyone has scared me.
Men scare me.
All. Every. It doesn't matter who they are. Their past & current will never change how I feel.

I walk life scared if I'm alone in an elevator with just a man or in an aisle at Kroger.
I'm scared if anyone walks up behind me, but men raise that terror to a whole other level.

And then there's God.
This being who is to love me wholly.
Who I should want to go to as a daddy, but I don't even know what that looks like.

I believe God loves me. I think.
And I believe He wants big God things for me. I think.
And I absolutely know that I know that I know that He wept over the things I went through. The hurt that was placed on my body, my soul and my spirit.

I am not broken.
I am not in chains.
I am not a slave to fear.

I believe, help my unbelief.






Wednesday, December 20, 2017

Motherhood in the pre teen years

No one is talking about it.
What motherhood looks like once your kids get past kindergarten.
Because it definitely doesn't get easier.
I wouldn't say harder either.
Actually yes, in some ways it does.
But hello full nights sleep....mostly.
What people aren't talking about are things like
big feelings for other people and kids throwing your own junk in your face and eye rolling and angsty-ness and hurt feelings and friend conflicts you must avoid getting involved in at all costs and the parents of the friends and teachers who you don't feel are the best fit for your child.......

And I feel like that's just the very tip of it.
Because my two oldest are eleven, we haven't even hit puberty yet.

And I feel like most parents aren't talking about it because
they are being good, loyal parents and protecting their kids stories from the world.
Kudos to you.
But for those of you, who like me, feel like you're floundering in this world of wanting your children to grow confident yet not to argue with you. For them to develop their own ideas yet not go against what you have taught them.
Welcome in.
Because I'm about to start talking about all this shiiizzzzzz

I don't know how the rest of you do it.
Like are there mothers of teens mentoring all the pre teen mamas except me?
HELLO
I don't want to go first in this.
I know I'm not literally going first.
But in our families and friends it seems like we are.
And if we're not first we're neck and neck with other parents wading these unknown waters.
We're trying to go against those things our parents did knowing we're going to screw up our kids one way or another too.
No matter how hard we fight against it,
No matter how hard we try to stay involved, and never miss a game or moment.
We do.
We fail.
We screw it up.
We cry out to God asking why He thought it would ever be a good idea to make us parents.

Today a boy brought over a gift for Olivia.
I feel so out of my body.
Like, I cannot stop time.
She's growing and the older she grows the faster she's slipping into adulthood.
I know, I still have seven years.
S E V E N.
Flip, that's nothing.
Seven will go by so fast.
Eleven has gone by in the blink of an eye.

Stop buying my baby gifts and let her forever be only my sunshine.

Power on mamas and papas of pre teens, I know we'll survive this all one way or another.

Wednesday, December 6, 2017

Part 11

This is the part where I tell you, honestly, I went through loss again. The same loss in a way and different yet at the same time. I knew in my head how unlikely Z would come back to us. I really understood in my head, because I know how the system works, but in my heart she's my daughter, in my heart she belongs with us. But that's not how things played out. Instead she is with a couple from my home town. I imagined squeezing an extra bed in Addison's room. I imagined re-figuring my life to adjust to a three year old again. But instead I walk around pretty fragile. This time is different though. A year ago I tried so damn hard to speed up the grieving process. I felt so guilty when I couldn't hold it together for my family. And I felt so guilty when seeing toddlers was just too much for me. I just felt so much guilt for the hurt I was enduring. This time, I'm processing healthier. I have a husband + community of women who are speaking life into me, who are giving me space to grieve. 

A few weeks ago we were at small group and we were talking about a failed expectation. I talked about this. How I thought the second time, surely God would make a way for her to stay with us forever, but He didn't. One of our leaders asked if I could see God's hand in it. No, how could I see any good in that. How in the world. Going through the loss of the same child twice. No. 

But now I can.
Now I can see that if I hadn't gone through it again and allowed myself to grieve again I wouldn't have been available for what's next. What's next wouldn't have even been a thought to me.

But now I can say yes.
Yes to this for me and for you and for your sister and daughter and your mother.

Loss. It's so difficult to sort out.
Instead of being encouraged to grieve it out however our little souls need to we're made to feel the need to hide it or cover or just freaking get over it already.

But God. 
But God wants different. 
The rush is not His game.
The redemption is.

Wednesday, October 25, 2017

Let's break some rules

As he went along, he saw a man blind from birth. His disciples asked him, "Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he was born blind?"
"Neither this man nor his parents sinned," said Jesus, "but this happened so that the work of God might be displayed in his life."
As long as it is day, we must do the work of him who sent me. Night is coming, when no one can work. While I am in the world, I ma the light of the world."
Having said this, he spit on the ground, made some mud with saliva and put it on the man's eyes.
"Go," he told him, "wash in the the Pool of Siloam."
So the man went and washed and came home seeing.


Sometimes we look at Jesus as just this sweet man who took the task of going to the cross for us, but it's so much more. Here Jesus is not acting as a peace-keeper, but a peace-maker. He was making peace in this man's life and showing His disciples that we don't walk around carrying our sins or our parents sins in our humanly difficulties. Peace makers are not everyone's best friends. They piss others off. They don't follow "the rules" that are made by "them" or "they", instead peace makers shake it all up. He did two things that were not just frowned upon but forbidden. Jesus worked and healed on the sabbath. Because "this happened so that the work of God might be displayed in his life." --- what if Jesus had followed the rules? What if Jesus instead bowed down to what the religious believed the way He should treat this man?

What if instead of following Jesus' lead we followed the "rules"? How many lives would be affected. How much death would be growing in our own hearts.


How about instead of worrying about the voices of others, let's break some rules and follow hearts instead of people's ridiculous demands


Monday, October 23, 2017

That's What Hurts

Write hard and clear about what hurts
-Ernest Hemingway


Lack of control.
That’s what hurts.
When we choose to make hard decisions.
Those decisions that no matter the decision, it somehow still feels all sorts of wrong.
And then people will react to your hard decision like you grew ten heads that was going to attack them.
That’s what hurts.

Lack of control.
That’s what hurts.
When a child gets removed from your home.
Placed in kinship.
And then heads back into foster care and you are not the first option.
That’s what hurts.

Lack of control.
That’s what hurts.
When life just keeps happening.
People don’t talk about “life happening” in a joyous way
But in an I’m tired and feel just over it kind of way
The kind where every day feels heavy.
That’s what hurts

Lack of control
That’s what hurts
When I can’t form my children into what I want
Because fear gets to me
And being able to see farther is not a human concept
That’s what hurts

Lack of control
That’s what hurts
When the days are long and the years are short
When I know I’m screwing them up
And I’m terrified for my littles to say
“My family is so screwed up”
Yet we say it

T H A T S W H A T H U R T S

Friday, October 20, 2017

Today is your birthday

Today is your third birthday.
My heart feels heavy.
In your short three years of life you have been in three different homes and will be headed to a fourth. Four different ways of life. Four different sets of people.
I had so much hope that by today we would be celebrating you in our new home. 
That they would have placed you with us.
Because why wouldn't they?
We bonded with you and you bonded with us.
We stayed in contact with you after you were removed from our home.
You still call us mommy and daddy.
But what makes sense to us isn't how children services feels is what is best.
Because we had to make the incredibly hard decision to not say yes to your brother, we are not chosen for your forever.
Instead you will move (that's how it's looking right now) to another new family in the hometown I grew up in.
Literally of all the cities and towns in Ohio, it has to be this one.
I will never stop looking for you when I go
And my heart will break every time knowing you are there and not with us.
My heart will always be an ocean for you Zee baby. 
But I will pray. I will pray for your transition that again is being forced upon you.
I will pray for bonding and love and hard work from the women you will go live with.
I will continue to be praying forever for you.


Saturday, October 14, 2017

Part 10

Eventually the adoption worker saw she would not be able to place all four siblings together.
So the plan became the two older would go back to their previous foster home and we were given an ultimatum.
We could adopt Z if we would also adopt her brother.
I will not go into details
but we had to make a really hard decision.
We knew before even talking about it that we could not say yes to him just to get her back.
That is not fair to us, to him, to our children and to our family.
We would not be ultimatum-ed into doing something if we could not give a full yes.
We read his referral. And spoke to his therapist. And had a visit.
We went into this knowing this could very likely be the last time we see our precious baby.
     (people get real up in words -- when I say our baby, yes I know she's not technically in any
      form "ours" but in our hearts she has always been ours)

The weekend was a weekend full of allllll the things, feelings wise.
I felt in turmoil all weekend.


I will not lay out all the details of the decision, because that's ours and his story is his.
But we had to make the hard choice to say no.