He brought home these two little ones:
He brought this Little Man safely into our home:
He carried precious Grace through her hip surgery at the end of June
He provided what Serenity needed to thrive through the hands of doctors; air through a trach and the removal of pressure on her brain by a skull expansion....
And He brought her safely home again.
All the while He was doing this, He was providing for, nurturing, protecting, stretching, growing, blessing us. A million hallelujahs would never be enough. I simply cannot praise His Name enough for all He has done! He has redeemed me! To Him be all glory, honor, and praise.
And yet, I had lost sight of all of that.
I guess I didn't realize how much I was counting on posting the incredible changes in one little life a year after she was rescued from an earthly hell.
I wanted to be able to "show" the world amazing transformation pictures. I wanted her to be walking and maybe beginning to talk or sign. Some families have truly incredible transformation stories. I love seeing and reading about them. I love praising Christ for what He has done!
And yet, my precious Hope....
We struggle to get a good picture of her. In most of the pictures above, she has the same scared look as in her profile picture. She is still on "hyper alert" all the time - every noise, every movement, every bit of life has her vigilant for her own safety. Anything new is a threat. Any change throws her back into chaos. Where is our amazing story?
It is there...it is just in the tiny details. The details that would not seem important or huge to anyone else. She is not screaming every night anymore. She does not lay on the floor like a limp rag. She is drinking independently from a cup now. She scootches on her bottom to get places close by. She can tolerate short trips to the store or church without too much fallout when we get home. She does smile at her family and get excited when they play with her.
It doesn't sound like much to you, does it? I understand.
This was my struggle. I want so much for her! There is so much possibility - so much ability unused. There is so much awaiting for her! And yet, she is still trapped in her own little world.
I am pouring back through all my adoption materials and research. I am seeking out help from those that have "been there, done that" before me. Last night, God arranged for me to talk with the most amazing adoptive mom - one who has been in these trenches for a few years before us. She had so much to say that I needed to hear - so much direction and perspective. It was like God was pouring out healing balm on my soul! One of the many things that I pondered after we talked was that we are in a very small category when we adopt; an even smaller one when we adopt special needs as a large family; an even smaller one when we adopt special needs as a large family from a truly horrific institutional setting...and when we say that we have adopted special needs, as a large family, from a truly horrific institutional setting and her name is Hope - we are in a category by ourselves. There are no "experts" on Hope. There are people who can give direction and insight - but no one who knows what is a perfect solution for Hope. No one, except her Creator. And He gave her to us. He put her in our family by His beautiful, perfect plan. He knew what she needed, and it was us.
So what does that mean to me? It means that where she is right now is enough. It is enough that she is safe and loved. She will never be hurt again. She will never be ignored and neglected again. She will never again feel her tummy hungry, she will never again feel her body dirty. She will never again be stuck in a crib all day with nothing. She will never again be touched by hands that do not love her. She will never again be ignored. She will never again cry without her mama's heart breaking for her. She will never again be alone but for her Father in heaven. She will never again be an orphan.
This is enough. It is more than enough. This is the beauty of adoption: that a child born of someone else, even in a different country, is placed in a family and is loved with a fierceness that only God in heaven can understand. That regardless of what she is or is not able to do - regardless of the damage done to her - regardless of whether that damage will ever be repaired - she is a beloved daughter who carries her father's name.
This is enough.
This does not mean that I will not keep seeking direction and guidance for her well-being. It does not mean that I will stop crying out to my Savior for her. It does not mean that we will not continue to seek to help her grow and thrive. I am not giving up because she is my daughter! But it does mean that I will strive to never lose sight of the fact that she is safe. She is beloved. She is mine.
It is enough. Praise to God that it is enough.
To Him be all glory, honor, and praise.