Tuesday, June 10, 2014

In Limbo: Waiting in Peace

Never in my wildest dreams did I think we would be three and a half years into the adoption process and counting, however, if I had to sum up this year with a word it would be "peace". The lessons that were hard-won in year one and year two have taken me deeper in my faith and have yielded a much calmer year three.

And then two days after Christmas we received word that Ethiopia may be closing it's doors to international adoption. At first I ignored the rumors, because that was all I could find, but soon we started reading more concrete information from people who would know, and my heart sank. I'm pretty sure I experienced all the stages of grief while simultaneously putting together a playroom and seeing friends and family over the holiday break who expressed their excitement about our adoption. I didn't have the heart (or maybe the strength) to share the latest news with them.

Our own dreams of starting a family are so closely intertwined with the dreams of another country to care for and support it's own children. 

We waited for what seemed like the longest two weeks ever to hear from our agency. Right now they believe that Ethiopia will not be closing it's doors in the immediate future, but that the process will get longer and more difficult. The reality is international adoption is always unpredictable, and we aren't guaranteed a certain outcome.

God did not promise us a child. He did, however, call us to this path, and He asked us to have faith and to trust Him. If I can get to a place of peace knowing that God is good whether or not we adopt a child from Ethiopia... whether or not we go through three, four, five years of paperwork, hopes and dreams with a little one in our arms, then perhaps I have received a far greater blessing than I ever signed up for.

I am a better person because of this process, I know that much.

I've grown compassion for women who are struggling with infertility.

I've faced fear of the unknown and learned how to surrender it.

I've learned how to be persistent when it really matters.

I've grown more patience with difficult people and situations.

I've learned to trust my instincts and not fold under pressure.

I've grown a deeper love for my husband.

I've experienced grace like I never have before.

These lessons are so valuable to me, and many of them I'm learning over and over on a daily basis. I wouldn't trade this experience for anything. As another adoptive mama quoted recently:

"No matter what vision God has given you, I can predict it will take longer and be harder than you ever imagined... Going all out for God is not just about getting where God wants you to go. It's about who you become in the process. And it's not about how quickly you get there. It's about how far you go." – Mark Batterson, All In

This is a journey of becoming. I don't know if I will become a mother in the way I imagine or not, but I do know I'm becoming a better version of me, and more like the One who created me. And I'm thankful for that.

"Yet this I call to mind and therefore I have hope: Because of the Lord's great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness." – Lamentations 3:21-23

Kristen is a graphic designer, a wife to her handsome tall redhead, and doggy mama to a rambunctious 5 year old chocolate lab. She loves spending time with her family, laughing and crying with good friends, and rearranging the rooms in her house over and over - usually on a whim and at the most inopportune times.

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