Tuesday, January 17, 2017

On not being chosen (again)

Roller coaster time again - buckle up. We were contacted by Open Door (our agency in Georgia) a few days ago about a babe who had already been born and was in need of a home. We said YES to showing our profile book (more like YESSSSSSSS) but this was not "the one" - the birthmother chose another family.

We've been down this road before (or, sticking with the metaphor of choice, been on this crazy ride before) but it still is rough and disappointing to hear "no" - and the wait in-between is pretty brutal. When you know your life MIGHT change forever by one phone call....and that the little one you've been given basic info about MIGHT become your child forever....suffice to say it is nearly impossible to focus on anything at all. Put another way, it is nearly impossible not to check email every few minutes, to jump at every phone call, to wonder every waking second what the outcome might be....it's pretty exhausting.

We were so glad to have another opportunity to say YES, to take a step forward in faith and open our arms wide for a child who needs a home through the generous love of his/her first parents. That's why we're doing this, to say yes, even if the answer in response is "no" for now. And we learned some things that will be worthwhile as we continue on this journey (and note that some of these are more serious than others, which should be obvious; humor is good medicine):

1) Cancel subscriptions to junk emails!! It was beyond annoying to see a new email pop up and think maybe this is it only to receive the latest coupon from Michael's or Mixbook or Groupon or whatever - the worst is Buy Buy Baby (thanks for the reminder). Same goes for junk telemarketer phone calls. UGH.

2) Healthy distractions are good! We finished watching all six early Star Wars movies over Christmas and then in the midst of waiting on this situation watched The Force Awakens. Nothing like intergalactic warfare to take your mind off stresses. Music is good, visiting friends is good, playing with godchildren is very good, basically things that pass the time and lift the spirits.

3) We did a serious evaluation of the baby stuff we own and made a list of things we need to buy in case we get the call and have to go pick up our baby STAT (which would have been the case with this situation). It was good to face the reality of travelling to meet a baby to realize that we could use some wipes and washcloths, for example. Shopping spree in the near future.

4) We are in this TOGETHER. It was hard - but good - to be asking each other "heard anything?" and checking in about how we were feeling. This is the kind of journey you don't ever wish your spouse had to be on (we wish we were on the journey of getting our children ready for bed and for preschool, but that's not our call) but how wonderful it is to have each other to walk with. And that includes all the dear friends & family who pray for us - even if you didn't know about this recent roller coaster, your prayers helped!

image from Catholic Box

5.) The need to COMPLETELY trust in God. As our prayer this week, we decided to delve more deeply into the reality of divine mercy according to St. Faustina and her writings. So we watched a DVD called "Divine Mercy 101" with Fr. Chris Alar, MIC 15 minutes a night followed by discussion and praying a Divine Mercy Chaplet. Among other things, the video challenged us to trust completely in God. It is so hard to trust, especially when you are told "no" to one of your great and good desires. And it is a "no" who so many get to experience as a "yes" so frequently, so easily. Yet we are trying to trust completely because in the depth of our hearts we know this is the path to peace and happiness; and all of this suffering is but a means to a greater trust. We are certain that this is the gift God wants to give us through all of this, but please pray for us because it is so tempting to do the opposite. Our culture of self-seeking feel-good entitlement whispers to us, "You have a right to be angry and to doubt God. Think only of your wounds. How awful your wounds!" No! We will not dwell on our wounds except to drive us into the love of God. Our wounds are points of intimacy with God. We give them to you Lord.

So yeah, we are trusting yet disappointed and such is the paradox of our life. Some TLC is needed - maybe a glass of red wine (Bethany) and a milkshake from Chick-fil-a (Dan). We were ready to hightail it to Georgia and embark on the next leg of our adoption pilgrimage. But we'll have to wait some more.

Thanks everybody for your ongoing prayers and support, and hopefully next update we'll have happier news. Jesus, we trust in you!


  1. I'm so sorry to hear things haven't yet turned out the way you'd like. But I'm also so happy to read about the way you've been dealing with it! I need that Divine Mercy DVD (as a re-read St. Faustina's diary again...) praying for you and wishing you guys the best!

    1. Thanks so much, Connie. You can borrow the DVD if you want - it was really well done and pretty educational!

  2. Sending hugs your way! Not being chosen by a birthmom is like being picked last in gym class, only a million times worse. Ugh. Heart breaking for sure. Take time to mourn the loss. I'm so sorry it didn't work out. Praying for you guys!

    1. Thanks, Stephanie. It's funny you said that - we had an exact conversation about how it feels like we're on the sidelines saying "Put me in, coach! I'm ready!!" I know you've been there before so your words and prayers mean a lot.

  3. We walked this path for many years. Your day will come, I promise. Just take it one day at a time. When your sweet baby arrives, you'll know he/she was the one meant for you. Prayers.

  4. So hard to wait and have so much of it out of your hands, but I love that you are doing the things you can do, giving your "yes", even when it means potentially hurting, and then learning and living and growing in the midst of the wait and then the "no." Praying that it all comes together soon!