Sunday, November 25, 2012

In Which I Blog Again...And Ask You A Favor.

I'm feelin it.
I'm feelin like jumping back on the blogging train.

But for now
and foremost
I must tell you
my heart is broken. 

I have a sweet friend that has recently returned from China with her two newest additions.
First adoption(s).
And she is struggling.

We were just discussing how we appreciate honesty and transparency in this process.
And I think most of us strive to give an accurate picture of what this journey is like but
(tell me if I'm wrong...)
I think we tend to hold back a bit for fear of scaring other people away from adoption.
I think we tend to hold back for fear of looking like a failure.
I think we tend to hold back because of pride
or jealousy
or so many reasons.

After all, no one really wants to sit down and say, "Let me fill my blog up with a post all about just how crappy my day was today."

And though we know that we all do need to have a bit of perspective when it comes to such things we also all know that perspective tends to leave you in the dust when you are in the trenches.

Can I get a witness?

Perspective means nothing at 2am when you are holding a screaming toddler.
It means nothing when your 6 year old is biting, kicking and spitting in your face for the 16th time today.
Perspective means nothing when you are faced with the reality of parenting the child that you stared at for months in a photograph only to find out what you envisioned in your head is so soooo far from reality.

When you are in it
you can't see it. 

And the result of that more often than not are exhausted, overwhelmed newly adoptive parents scattered across this nation who manage to drag themselves to the computer looking for comfort, turn it on, and are faced with glowing stories and heavily edited photos totally erasing any remnant of a sink full of dirty dishes,  the 3 day unshowered hair and the still- adjusting older siblings.

Don't get me wrong, I love me some cute photos(hello girl mom''re killin me)  but it's almost like we all need to take one day and really let it out.


I know we have talked about this before but I have an idea and I wondered if you could help me out. 

Could we all just bare our ugly truth for a moment?
Could we just take a moment and encourage my friend and the hundreds like her that are in the thick of it right now?
Could we tell them the ugly-messy-overwhelming-beautiful truth of this?
Could we stand alongside her and proclaim:


Do you have a blog post that you wrote last week? Last month? Last year when you were in her shoes? Could you share it with her? Could you share it with all of us?
If I had some technical wherewithal I'd do a little linky thingamajig but I don't,
so I won't.

So if you would like to share your story just leave your post link in the comments,
or even if you've never been there and want to leave her some encouragement go ahead do that too.

Like water to a weary soul.
It's sisterhood.
It's solidarity.
It's standing beside the hurting and saying,
"I've been there and ya know what? It's gonna be ok."

Let's bring it.

I'll start:

1 Peter 5:6-7 (KJV) Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that he may exalt you in due time: Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you.

Read more:
1 Peter 5:6-7 (KJV) Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that he may exalt you in due time: Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you.

Read more:


  1. I don't have a blog post, but am ready to spill.

    Didn't go to the bathroom for 6 MONTHS by myself. I mean seriously, when I would wig out (about 3 times a wk the first few months)and SHUT the door for privacy. The screaming and crying that went on...horrible. Then after 6 months I could close the door, but her fingers had to slide under the door and make contact with my toes. Good thing our toilet was close to the door, or I am sure I would have had her in there with me then.

    Bit her sister the first nite home, enough to draw blood. Thought that was really a great defense mechanism for about 6 wks. This really played havoc on the whole bonding thing with the sister. Both girls wanted me all the time, but didn't want me to have the other one near. Dad would come home in the evenings and you would think it would be man to man coverage, but nope they still had to torture each other by fighting over mom and ignoring my helpful husband.

    I was mostly on survival mode the first 6 months. I rarely went out of the house and sometimes hid in my room when my husband came home. I would just sit and pray for the time to take a shower and maybe shave a leg or two. A lot of times that didn't get done, but at least I would take a minute for me. It truly will get better....then bad again.....then better. ALL WORTH IT...hang in sister, there isn't an adoptive family out here that hasn't btdt and we are all alive, YOU CAN DO IT

    1. Thank you Shelley! I can't even imagine that kind of bathroom issues but I gotta tell ya...the fingers under the door to touch your toes...PRECIOUS! Thank you for your honesty!

  2. Guilty, Guilty, Guilty on all accounts.

    Because we are always "in process", I do not feel like I can be blatantly honest. When we are ALL DONE- then I will spill it all...

    I pray my way through every single day. Some days are easy and some days... are not, but God always gets me through AND by he time I think that maybe I will post on our challenges- things have changed for the better...

    Saying prayers for your friend! Hang in there! You can do this!

    1. Girl I have often wondered how you do it. You do an incredible job of advocating and getting it all done. Can't wait to hear the other side when you spill it. :) You will have the first China post of a tri-adoption!

  3. OK, we brought home a 10 y.o. 2 years ago and just last month brought home a 2 y.o. bringing my household to 8 bodies. The oldest child is 17. Even with all the help I have (10 y.o. girl) I still feel as if I'm just sort of wandering through the day. I'm a SAHM that has a side business. I should know how to get my life together afterall I've been a mother for over 21 years! Somehow the night time wakings (2-3 a night) coupled with inconsolable crying (her record is 1 hr and 20 min) just makes you feel drained. Then the crying that happens during the are told to stay home and bond and cocoon with your new child, but she does SO MUCH better when we go out. So I force myself to stay home as many days as I can then we go SHOPPING! But I really don't have much money to spend after all we just completed an adoption!
    Oh and the other kids, are all extra needy, they all need just a little bit extra and I feel a little bit guilty b/c I just spent 2 weeks in a foreign country.
    And I think our transition is going VERY GOOD!
    If you just brought home two kids! My hat's off to you. You will make it, but give yourself A LOT of grace!
    Now I practically have a blog post, but I don't want to post it b/c other people read it.


    1. Oh the sleep deprivation. OH. THE. SLEEP. DEPRIVATION!! I always thought I could do anything on a good nights sleep. True....but so is the opposite. I couldn't do much on a not good nights sleep. Thank you for your thoughts Chris!


    Our story involves a God who changes hearts and lives... big issues are institutional delays and oral aversion (cleft lip and palate). I homeschool, have 4 kids, and a deployed husband. Encouragement from other adoptive moms has been an absolute lifeline to me for the last few years, and the internet is a big part of that.


    1. Hi Maria! I'm excited to hop over and check out your blog! I am with you that it is incredible to have a front row seat to the ONE who changes and redeems these precious lives.

  5. We are 5 years post-adoption and I still struggle daily to love like I should. I went through severe post-adoption depression, and only God saved my marriage and my family. Every day is a process, and God is bringing me through it. I've said for so long that everyone only shows the rainbows and roses of adoption, but that's not reality. Reality is that it is work to love a child that comes with their own past and issues. But God loved us first. So I press on.

    1. You go girl! It is indeed W.O.R.K. I know I was sadly unprepared for that. I thought that since I had parented thus far four successful children that I could do this adoption thing in a snap....yeah....ummmmm.....notsomuch. Reality is definitely different than the rainbows.

    2. Anonymous...thank you for being brave enough to share this...I too struggle to "love like I should" with my second marriage is also currently a big mess and we are hanging on by a's all so hard to remain faithful to the path I KNOW I was called so confused by the YEARS of pain...however, the reality is OUr problems were there b4 heightened and magnified by these trials of a n attachment disorder...all this being said, my children are worth every second..NO regrets..just 2y of crisis blocking my attachment..

  6. Oh, sweet cyber friend, email me directly -
    We brought home two at the same time last spring - 2011. I'm 18 months in and I am no longer afraid to get out of bed in the morning. I did stop blogging because I was scared if the public knew the truth, not only would they never adopt but I was scared to be judged. And the hardest part was that my heart was hardening to one of them. I was so tired of the lies and being stolen from. And a few months in we realized that school was not a option for this child so now I have to homeschool. And my background is not teaching!! Life was hard but God is good and oh so very faithful! We have hard days, but they are farther and fewer in between. All that to say, is that the hardest moments we had, I can now look back on and honestly see that I was (and am still) being refined. The LORD was showing me my love was indeed conditional and my grace does run out and my forgiveness really isn't forgiveness. It has been a very hard lesson to learn.
    It's still hard. I still don't know what I'm doing most days. But I shower now. I don't hide in my closet...most days. I gave up my nightly glass of wine. :) I can answer and speak to ALL my children without anger or resentment in my tone.
    Joy and laughter are returning. Hold fast to His Cross and His promises, both for you and for children. And I'm praying for you!
    Seriously though, I've been there (still am there) with adopting 2 at the same time. Email me. :)

    1. Hey Jen! I need to catch up on your story. I missed your posts! I know EXACTLY what you mean about wanting to get out of bed in the morning. Even talking/typing through all of this is bringing back those memories of some rather dark days. Being on the other side now I hurt for those that are still in it. Thank you for your thoughts!

  7. Sonia Thank you so much for posting this. I too struggled a lot in China and at home with my son in July and the months following.........he's just now REALLY starting to bond better with me. I can't imagine coming home with 2 doing everything that he did to me...... I may not have had it as bad as some others, but it's been hard. Even now it still gets really hard as he refuses to eat (unless it's what HE wants) or drink at times. His whining continues and drives BOTH of us nuts now, not just me. But we love him the same, though at times it's hard. He is NOT like our other 3 (also adopted) but we are taking things by the day now.

    Our blog of our trip is below. We don't blog now, too busy with the kids.........but I did share personal stuff in the blog about the time we were gone and the first days after.

    Terri C.

    1. Thank you Terri! I will be anxious to check it out! I too was shocked at how long it takes sometimes for the bonding/feeling of normalcy to settle in. It took a LONG time for our first two and was instantaneous with our third. Such a difference but you learn that each one is different and each one comes from different places. It makes my head spin some days but the redemption is beautiful!

  8. I just shared this with a friend who just came home with two children. No one tells you that you may not have that fairytale moment when you first meet. No one tells you how exhausted you will be. No one tells you how hard it is. You read tons of books, you go to parent training and learn how to help these hurting children attach. You have waited forever to hold and hug and love on these precious kiddos. BUT then you realize you find yourself not "loving" these new kiddos. You feel like they are strangers in your home. You read tons of blogs where people share how in love they are with their newly adopted children and feel GUILT. And you wonder what is wrong with me? And you feel more GUILT and you feel like the most horrible person in the world. Love is an action, not a feeling. Go through the motions...yes, fake it! Fake it when your beyond exhausted....fake it when you can't remember what day it is...fake it when you have not changed your clothes in 2 days. At some point (and you will reach that point) you realize I am not faking it anymore!! Do not let yourself feel guilt...try to take it one day at a time. It is so hard and so exhausting! You will have bad days, but you will have many beautiful days ahead that will blow those bad days out of the water!! My friend was really struggling and said it must get better because you are adopting again! It does get better! I still am known to forget what day it is and I still go to sleep without changing into my p.j.'s and I still do head counts make sure all seven are with! I love all seven of my kiddos with a crazy, big love and would not change a thing.

    1. Amen and amen and amen and amen. Melissa you hit it right on the head. I used to tell myself that same thing. Fake it till you make it. It works! These feelings and such are not always immediate. It is a daily choice to love and smile when you wanna scream. Each.And.Every.Day. It is exhausting and yes, I agree, I think for the most part we are sadly unprepared for how hard it really is.

  9. We've done the two at once thing twice now and it is HARD. Some days it is ugly and terrible and it's almost always hard!

    I distinctly remember one day when my girls had been home for about three months where I put them both in bed in the middle of the day so I could sit in the living room alone and cry. I thought "I've ruined my life. I've ruined everything." About six months ago one of my daughters was just pushing my last nerve and I had an EPIC meltdown in front of my husband, saying that I give up and can't parent her. I didn't mean it (and thankfully she wasn't there and didn't hear it) but it felt good to say out loud that I was struggling.

    With my boys, I felt like a babysitter...okay, I still feel like a babysitter some days. I look at these four kids and sometimes have to remind myself that there is no other mom coming, I'm it. I'm mom. And it's my job to not only keep them alive but make sure they aren't horrible people.

    It does get better. It get easier. I found that every day had a spot of sunshine, even if all I could find was "I didn't spill my coffee today AND I got to drink almost a full cup while it was still warm!" A year in to having four kids home (all under the age of six, all from hard places, all with different levels of trauma) we're figuring it out. We falter and fail and some days I still cry myself to sleep. But it's mostly good and there is always at least one good moment in each day.

    Sending you virtual hugs!

    1. Gracious Kait, I know exactly what you mean. Your words could have been my words back then. It is indeed the little victories that push us through. And hey, not spilling your coffee is a great way to start the day. :) Thank you for your thoughts!

  10. Oh boy...going through the fire here this week something RADiant One, Sunshine, is acting out the trauma of his past on his siblings...very specifically because he was triggered by several recent events. My daughter whose been home from China for 2.5 months cried every time she had to brush her teeth or had anything to do with my oldest son....we made quite a few mistakes before we figured out the best way to help her...I think that we forget its okay to make mistakes....they are great opportunities to learn something new so embrace them!

    1. Hey Jolene! Seriously you are so right! When did we decide that we should hold firmly on to the guilt through our mistakes as we navigate these waters. I, for one, am very good about keeping my guilt in my pocket where I can be reminded of it constantly. We all need to R.E.L.A.X. Lean on Him, do our best and love like crazy!

  11. We are soon to be two years post adoption with our son who was 10 1/2 years old at adoption, he is profoundly Deaf and had no language and no education. Our first 4 months at home were something out of a fairy tale.. Then one day someone turned the page in our book and our fairy tale become a different story all together. My husband and I had days were we took turns blaming each other for ruining our family. We have 3 bio children at home and we were convinced for awhile we ruined our family and that our lives were over and we said this one sentence often "Oh my God... what did we do?" Our dark trenches were about 4 months long and then the light started to shine again. Our son now home almost 2 years is an amazing amazing young man. With a huge hear and a thoughtful mind who enjoys spending time with his siblings (this wasnt always the case we had 4 months of a WWE tables and chairs cage wrestling match fights between him and our one son.. it was ugly.. ugly) they are now great pals who sometimes annoy each other and sometimes argue (what brothers dont) but they are truly good brothers to each other.

    At almost two years home my son still is "my shadow". He still would follow me allllll day and night long if I allow him too. BUT he has stopped laying outside the bathroom door while I go to the bathroom (yes that room was my refuge too.. but he would stick his fingers under the door and cry while I would be in there... So I tried hiding out in the closet too sometimes....) Now he will follow me all day if I allow it. Which I dont.. so he is really really doing well. He is winning awards for character at school and all the teachers wish the other kids were more like him. He is rigidly structured but for school that is a great thing!

    Please hang in there and know that it does and will get better! The trenches are dark and ugly.. dont hang out there alone.. reach out to others that have been there and done that.. IT HELPS A TON!!!

    We are currently in the process of bringing home 2 children at once.. a boy 9 and a girl 5 both are deaf.. I will be looking you up after I get home and I probably will be crying from within my trenches.. ;)


    I have a post about some struggles with our son we adopted. I even posted about losing Compassion for him. It has been a struggle wanting and desiring to want to help my son. I have told every counselor we go to....Everybody helps the kids which is a GOOD thing, but no one helps the Mother. Who is going to help the Mother???

  13. Still in the midst of the bonding...we've been home 7 mths now. DS is 6....going on 2. Sigh...
    It's rough and hard and sometimes I lock myself in my bathroom and cry and then I come back out and start all over again...I blog but lately I have struggled with how transparent to be. Most peopel only want the fluffy feel good stuff...I will be posting this week about our struggle...and almost giving up....

  14. I adopted Tarzan. No joke. If I didn't know better I would say he was raised by animals. When we got him at age 4 he was like a caged animal turned loose....on me. He was 4 years old, extremely high functioning for an institutionalized child, I think thats what masked the problems at first. He was and still is drop dead gorgeous. I'm talking model good looks something that has saved his butt more than once. In the early days he would chew, yes chew my arms and his own bloody, smash his head on the floor repeatedly as we dove to get pillows under his head, was obesssed with knives, fire and ALL things sharp and shiny, NEVER slept, lied, stole and made holes in our walls to hide food. He had no fear of anything so he had to be watched 24/7 literally. we had to put alarms on his bedroom door so we would wake if he left the room. It was hardest thing I've ever been through EVER! I cried everyday driving home from work knowing what I was going home to. Hated myself for ruining our lives and at times hated him what he was doing though I of course knew that he couldn't help it. I still 11 years later DON'T close the bathroom door out of habit. Back then I had no idea how RAD, ADHD, and brain underdevelopment from neglect were what was going on with him. I so many times had to take one second at a time let alone on minute or one day. They were dark and ugly days. The greatest thing I ever did was find friends in the adoption world that were living my reality or their version of it. You have to find someone you can talk to really talk to honestly. Someone who offers no judgements, doesn't look at you horrified just of what you say. You have to get it out and not carry it alone thats what kills you. 11 years later my kid and hour life are not perfect but I have learned to love him and I'm still learning to accept him for the person he is with all the "issues" I can't nor could meds or therapy fix. He today he a warm hearted, hard working young man that still struggles and as hard as it was/is would I go back and not adopt him...NEVER. He is a piece of me. Check out either the June 5 or May 13th entries on my blog to show where it can go from those dark days.

  15. We are leaving in about 2-3 weeks to bring home a 13 yr old and 4 yr old from china. I'd be lying if I said I'm not scared. Scared for what I'm giving up and for what I'm getting in exchange. But I am confident that it is good. And God who called us will equip us and never leave us. I also try to remind myself that redemption is messy... Such a beautiful mess.

  16. I don't have a blog,but if my second adoption had been my first, she would have been an only child. The first couple of months were kind of rough and the next 12-18 mo were VERY rough. Then things got better slowly and now, after 7 years most days are good. We still have melt downs occassionally, but for a while it was 2-3 times daily and they'd last for about an hour. She'd only sleep in my bed, having to touch me constantly. No adoption isn't always easy and is frequently very hard. Would I change anything about her? No, I love this little girl who can frustate me to no end, but also make me laugh until I cry.


  17. In the 4 years since we have been home, the thing I am most thankful for are the adoptive mom friends God has placed in my life! In true transparency (which I hope is not discouraging) every day is like walking on eggshells, but it's so much better than it was - she doesn't pee on the floor and furniture any more, hasn't snuck out of the house in months, and the night roaming is much better. She's quit stealing/cheating/lying at school, and she has quit screaming for 3 hours every day. We have diagnoses of RAD, PTSD, ADD, anxiety disorder....She still hoards, still rages, still has screaming "I hate you" spells, and has bitten me 3 times today alone, but we are slowly moving in the right direction and one night last week she even slept all night! Hang in there!!!!

  18. i never blogged about my feelings about our first adoption-- amy-- b/c i was and still do feel, a little ashamed-- i had placed her on a pedestal before ever meeting her-- thought she would be a chinese version of my first born, perfect child... and when she got home,man she was so angry and the looks she gave me and everyone could kill. i totally withdrew my heart from her-- biggest mistake ever-- because i didn't know how to love an angry, hurt child.. 5 years later-- she is an amazing 7 year old -- i love her-- and God is mending what I broke.. but He used her to prepare me for our 3rd adoption (YES!!!we went back 3 more times!!!!) noah ... i fell for him right off the bat, which was our saving grace-- b/c he HATED us for those 2 weeks-- didn't eat or drink for TWO WEEKS IN CHINA!!! the dude has definite mama issues-- and he's a difficult one-- he's either on or totally off.. but i had learned thru amy how to love a hurt, angry child-- and we have come a long way. Then, our number 4 was just a gift from God-- after 3 HARD adoptions, God gave us Matthew--
    my advice-- SHARE-- seek those who won't judge-- i was sooo ashamed of how I felt-- i didn't like or even love my daughter for a long time-- and i hated myself for it-- i cried many a night to God for him to help me love her-- you are not alone--- this was not a mistake, and God knows the path He has you on--

  19. I posted during my trip. I received a few "hang in there" emails in return. I feel like a failure especially as we have been down the adoption path five times before. I feel that we should be able to handle what has been handed to us. I feel like I jinxed our adoption and I am getting what I deserve. I feel guilty, I feel deflated, I feel sad, I feel like running away from my family. I feel I have ruined the lives of my daughters. I may have saddled them with a lifetime of caring for a child that they have already ask "What are we going to do with her?" They do not want to play with her as she is so hyper and has no attention span. She is a toddler trapped in a 6 year old's body. I hope the school district does not laugh at us when we ask for her to be evaluated.

  20. This is a post that I wrote some time ago and have since removed it from my blog because I did not want my daughter to see it once she was able to read English. I did post it to an anonymous blog where I had hoped to portray a more realistic view of adoption, without fear of my children stumbling upon it, but I have just not had the time to focus on it. Maybe one day. There is a definite need for real, honest sharing.

  21. Great post! I think that one reason some people don't post a lot of the hard things is because their kiddos read their blog (at least mine do!).

    There are so many incredible things about adoption, but there's no doubt that it's hard sometimes, especially if you're adopting an older child or multiple children.

    Here's a short post from three years ago:

    I am happy to say that the child I wrote about in that post is doing incredibly now! That's not to say that everything is perfect (she is still the child who I have to work at having a relationship with the most), but so, so much better! There is great hope in Jesus and His love.

  22. I think all adoptions are done out of love and I support all families who choose this wonder. Ray path..but since we are sharing our ups and downs here , I want to ask how you all feel about multiple adoptions..I notice many of you have done it...Ipersonally feel it very risky because if one of the two comes home with even moderate issues the family will be spiraled into huge. Crisis just from mom and ad being stretched so this trying to meet the needs...after what we've been through, I'm not even sure 1.5y was enough time between adoptions...just wondering what the btdt that crowd thinks...I WHEN it works , it's lovely..but I how those of us who have lived the "worst cases" feel Sorry about all the auto correct onIpad is nuts and i


    There is a June post when I was really struggling...won't let me copy/paste the link tonite...sorry!


    Hang in there!!

  25. I agree Myra..I think that adopting 2 or more at a time works in special occasions only. There is just not enough time for the one-on-one that each child deserves when there are already children in the home and then to bring in a child who might need extra time or have extra needs. It has become more of a competition to see how many each family can bring home in a year. Sure some families are making it look easy, but in 10 years lets see where those kids are academically.

    I am sure that this comment will anger some. Sorry, I have just seen too many who are jumping in to do this and I don't think it is the best for the majority of the kids. Plus I really have seen an increase of disruptions since you can get two at a time.

  26. Oh, Sister, you know I love transparency. My struggle is how little or how much. Here's a post I contributed to Adeye's blog:
    And I've written a series on trauma, because we deal with it on a daily basis:
    And I know my blog is filled with the rosy and not-so-much, but I'm not going to take up all the space :)

    To address the issue of two-at-once adoptions, we've done it twice. It does add a new dynamic to the process, especially the transition. It can be very difficult, and it can leave us with mama guilt on the bad days, but I would do it all over again the same way. I've been convicted when I've not spent enough time with one child, and so I change that and do what must be done. it's definitely not for everyone. But it worked for us, praise the Lord. Our most traumatized Treasure was one of our duo adoptions, and in the really really hard days our other Treasure was like icing on the cake...and that's just how I had to look at it.
    Blessings in each new day!!

  27. We brought home two last August and it was been rough rough rough! But the thing about it is this was God's plan all along. It was amazing the doors that opened for us along the way, the people that were put into our lives, and how He has provided every single stinkin' thing that we have needed right exactly when we needed it. (Even your blog, Sonia, has been such a gift. I think I found your blog a short time before you traveled to bring your first two home. We were waiting to bring our two home at the time. Thank you for being such a blessing to me by sharing your life and your faith and your humor :)

    We had one bio son before adopting, so we went from an only for 6-1/2 years to three boys. One of the boys grieved so hard and so completely when we first met him, and now he is all ours. He still has fears around us being away from him, and he has a hard time when visitors leave. He is only 3 years old now. Our other boy seemed to instantly fall totally and completely in love with us, and now he has the bigger issues. He seems to operate from a place of anxiety and fear, always wanting to please and so afraid to fail. He is 4 years old now ("almost 5" if you ask him :) They are both beautiful and funny and super smart and now I can say that I love them completely.

    Our boys have had a total of 6 surgeries since we have had them. Four cleft surgeries, and two dental surgeries. Those one-hour dental surgeries seem like a walk in the park I tell ya :)

    My last blog post from 11/8 shares my lowest of low points about a year ago, and how different things are today. Only by the grace of God did we get through the hardest days. Seriously. Now we are on the other side of the "dark days" and life is still hard but God is bigger. Look for those little rays of sunshine in the muck, hang on, and reach out to other adoptive parents because they "get it".

    mom to 3 wild boys

  28. I totally just followed your blog because you told it like it IS!! I wish there was more out there about "older children adjusting". My teens are made to feel like they are horrible people when they are struggling. And the people that are judging them have never had an adoption in their house, much less adopting a sib group of 4 kids and spending up to 6 months in their country to do it. My teens have no friends here, we have no church, we don't speak the's HARD!

  29. Sitting her in china with the "perfect situation" and walking through the steps I see how I almost have PTSD from our dual adoption last year. Yes that's 3 in a year. Most people key into the dual adoption, but the reality is our son Cav was beyond hard. He would have been hard as a single adoption. He had never been outside and screamed at everything, freaking out at the plants, bronze statues and yes we were the family with the kid who flung plates in the Marriott breakfast buffet. It was so bad we gave our selves 3 months and then we would contemplate finding him a new family. Then it was surgery then a new family. Somewhere around 8-9 months home we fell in love with him. bUT he is still. Very difficult. He, more than any other child I have ever met, makes me feel like a failure as a parent (and he is #5). The worst is he is the most incredible manipulator so those around us think I am the crazy one. They don't see him barfing on que, wiping feces and the thousand other disgusting things he has done over the last year. Although I have been far from quiet about how hard he has been, most people just glaze over when I feel the story, and don't believe me. Not quite home a year I can see the intensive changes this wild child has made. He just had no social skills, or capability of dealing with other human beings unless it was for his gain. Hang in their, put one foot in front of the other. My son has taught me that I can not receive my identity as a parent through how my children act. I try my best, and pray for forgiveness everyday, knowing my shortcomings, and that God is there to fill in the rest. That is the only way we were able to pursue our littlest angel.

  30. Thank God you said it. I would think you were speaking about me in this post, but you don't know me. I wrote a post several months ago and left it in my draft folder. Thank you for pushing me to post it. I feel lighter now that I am out of hiding. God bless you, Sonia.

  31. Hang in there. This Friday it will be one year since our sibling set of 3 (now 9, 6, 5) came home. We have two teenagers and also another 9 yr old that we adopted as a baby from Guatemala. His adoption was perfect easy; he bonded immediatly, etc. etc. He is the perfect child still to this day. We truly over estimated our ability when accepting our sibling group from the foster care system. I have been a teacher for almost 20 years and I worked as a case manager for an international adoption agency, I thought I had seen it all, but nothing could have prepared me for the hurt and issues our new children faced. It has been the hardest thing we have ever done. There were days I thought we would never make it and that we had made a terrible mistake; but GOD IS GOOD and through much prayer and crying and begging and pleading with Him to help us, he truly brought beauty from ashes. One year later things are miraculously better. Will be praying for your family.

  32. I would like to agree with two things. Yes, Sonia, we need to encourage others and let them know that this is hard. Not only is parenting hard, but parenting adopted children often takes it to a new level. However, in our weakness, He is strong. I believe our friends can be encouraged that not everyone's walk is the same, some may be harder than others, but for the Believers, the God is the same! It is He who is doing this work in us anyway! Praise Him for his faithfulness!

    The second thing I would like to agree with is something Sarah said. She mentioned she doesn't write it all out there bc her children read her blog. I think she is very wise. Recently, I have been very grieved when other moms have taken this "honesty" to a whole new level. It seems some forget that these children are people, too, and regardless of the situation, it is not Biblical to air all the child's flaws, most especially embarrassing flaws, for the world to read. Discretion, wisdom, and simple basic kindness has been thrown out the window.

    Surely there is a balance. We can't sugarcoat these journeys, but we shouldn't betray our children either. I wonder where the line is....Maybe it can simply be measured by the Golden Rule?

    Thanks for raising these points! It is something I have been pondering lately and even recently discussed with 2 adoptive moms in my church.

  33. Oh, I write about lots of brokenness because I have enough to go around! :)
    She's definitely not alone. Thanks for being such a caring, encouraging friend.

  34. Such a great post Sonia. So full of truth. Our adoption has revealed my own brokenness more than anything in my life. A very similar story to Emily. We brought home an extremely emotional and insecure little girl who would cry, fearful out-of control cries without warning over what seemed like nothing. I knew to expect that, but living with it day in and day out is so much different than "knowing to expect" that. She rejected me out of the gate and, to my shame, I shut down and built up a wall between us. I am still, two and a half years later, working to tear that wall down, BUT, we have made SO much progress. God is good and he heals. It takes time, but he heals.

    Hang in there and KNOW, YOU ARE NOT ALONE! Whatever you are feeling, you are NOT alone. God's grace is sufficient even when it doesn't feel like it. Love is an action, not a feeling so don't beat yourself up for not feeling it, just plead for grace to act it out and ask for forgiveness the times that you don't.


  35. Oh dear one, It makes me sad to hear when others are struggling! I am praying for you this minute and so believe that when others lift us up before the Lord, our burden becomes lighter! Our Princess M has been home for 13 months. We have much fewer sleepless nights now, less fits of rage, fewer episodes of hitting for no evident reason.

    There are days when I want to hide in my closet (if only it were big enough). I dream of the day when I can go to the bathroom ALONE again! There are many days I get nothing done, because our little love needs to be held. There are days when tears flow and anger comes out, and through it I must just hold her a little tighter and remind her that I love her. There are times when she has been so unsettled that I cry with her. I pull out my Bible and pray scripture over her. At times it calms her, but it always does a world of good for me!

    Through our adoption journey the passage of scripture that has become so precious to me. Ephesians 3:14-21 14 For this reason I kneel before the Father, 15 from whom every family[a] in heaven and on earth derives its name. 16 I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being, 17 so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, 18 may have power, together with all the Lord’s holy people, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, 19 and to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.

    20 Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, 21 to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen

    Our pastor often says: God does not call the equipped, he equips the called. He will sustain you and give you strength! Cry out to the Lord! I am praying for you!

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  37. oops.. deleted when I wanted to edit - still new at posting!

    We are home a month now - with our 9 year old son - and it has just settled my heart reading the posts and knowing that I'm not the only one who has wished as some point that they could wind back the clock - maybe even ship back this child they couldn't wait to bring home - airfare cost and all. But that is just the dark thoughts - sometimes exacerbated by my physical and mental fatigue, hormones, forgetting to eat, etc. - and they do pass - at least temporarily, late at night when he's finally in bed.

    It's nice to hear that in time it gets back to life - maybe not as comfortable - but it starts to feel at least a new normal - and doable. I also have to remind myself that as difficult as it is for us to adjust to him - with all his behaviors - we at least have each other in our family to talk to and have our history as a family to cling to. In his case, he just has a group of strange, new people he can't speak to or understand, who are constantly yelling "NO, DON'T TOUCH!" and trying to change him, change the way he eats, the way he speaks, the way he gets attention, the way he has been for 9 years. In our case, we found his orphanage had been medicating him for ADHD (found the pills in his backpack - or wouldn't have known), so my fears of the overactive child were realized. I have since come to believe that it was God's plan that I not know in advance due to my hyperactive child phobia - or I may not have gone through with it. However, at the same time, my fears of great medical issues weren't realized, when we discovered he really didn't have cleft palate - only the repaired lip and a cleft in his gum!

    So, as I write this, I pray God will continue to dole out grace to me, forgive my pity parties and lack of patience, provide a ray of sun here and there in the dark clouds, keep my marriage in tact, protect my children - if I keep my eyes on Him with trust and open my heart to give and receive support from others He puts in my path. Tonight I will remember to lift everyone up who is crying, feeling guilty, numb, regretful, defeated - but who is holding on to make it. Isn't it so good to know things will change - in time - even if it seems impossible! And also I will thank God and ask him to bless those who have shared their stories and given me a new perspective. Sorry this is long - but it feels good to get it out with kindred spirits!

  38. This post would have meant so much to me 14 years ago with my first adoption from China. Yes it was very hard the first 6 months but after that things got much better. Now she is a well adjusted Christian college student! HANG in there it will get better with prayer and time! Lifting you up in prayer.

  39. It is good to be there for one another and be open about the adoptions. The one thing very, very few talk about is when disruption/rehoming occurs. There is noone to guide those families, and very few who step up to offer support or their journey through that area. Adoption is hard, but sometimes you have to know when it is enough for you and your family. The feelings of guilt and failure are beyond belief. Most families go through the feelings of grief, failure and guilt all alone not daring to tell anyone for fear of judgement.

  40. Must be something in the air, we've had some pretty bad days here lately, too. I'm typing from the tub, my first really good soak in over 4 months!

  41. This - - is one of my first posts from when I returned home from China with our 5 year old son. It's hard to find a balance in posting, because some day my son will read this. So I try to be honest without actually writing, "You know, sometimes I really don't like this kid. At all!" So this is toned down. It's hard to deal with all of the boundary setting when you're not even sure how you feel about the kid. But it gets better. It's so nice to like my son now! (He's been home 2 years.) We are now waiting on LOA for a 9 year old boy, and I find myself dreading the whole thing because I know how hard it is. I'm trusting that God will walk us through it all again though. Here's the most recent post on anticipating the hard stuff:

  42. The freaking sleep issues.. I am a horrible sinner who thinks horrible things and am just thankful for Jesus who I ask regularly to help me and forgive me. That's all I can post now but thank you for sharing.. Will stop by again!!

  43. Here are a couple to choose from:
    Battle of Wills
    Some of the "Bad Stuff"

  44. We have been home for a little over a month with a 4.5 year old boy from China. We have been struggling quite a bit at times. It's a very lonely feeling, so I was glad when a friend directed me to this blog post.
    Or blog is