The past couple of weeks were a blur.
I mentioned here that Ben became ill and ended up in the hospital. We did the dance of logistics with friends and family picking up the other kiddos at school and juggling being at Ben’s side while caring for his siblings for four exhausting days. Thankfully, it was just a nasty virus. Fluids, rest and medicine did the trick to get it out of his system.
Gratitude is not a strong enough word for the flood of relief I feel now that he is back to his silly, sweet self. It was as though we stood on the precipice of a cliff, knowing all of the ways the storyline could play out. Facing fear in the face and choosing to trust a God who is unpredictable is HARD.
“Faith is deliberate confidence in the character of God whose ways you may not understand at the time.” – Oswald Chambers
After Ben was feeling better, we went ahead with our vacation plans to the beach. There, God reminded me of our need for seasons to unplug and be present with our people, about the importance of being still and allowing our souls to breathe.
We came home and faced the aftermath of two unpredictable weeks for our Sylvie. She still struggles with unfamiliar and changes to routine. Maybe she always will. I don’t know. All I know is that this past week was HARD.
I never want to paint an overly rosy picture of adoption. I also never want to glaze over the beauty even in the hardest of hard. Adoption is a broken and messy kind of beautiful.
I know there are families who transition easily into their new normal, who just walk forward without skipping a beat. Love and bonding and attachment happen seamlessly.
We are not that family.
I want to be honest in that. I so strongly believe that other families who are struggling silently need to know that they are not alone. I have an amazing network of support. I have other mommas to lean on who get it. I can be honest and real and share the ugly. I am so grateful for the ones who listen to me vent and cry and yell and love me anyway. Who gently remind me to take it one day at a time. Who pray for me and my girl. Who model selfless love for me.
It’s an ongoing, always evolving journey toward wholeness. Even though we have days that feel as though we have taken ten steps backward and will never climb out of the pit, we also have the most incredible glimpses of joy and such sweetness that I am left speechless.
In all of this, I’ve been continually learning the wonderful lesson of intentionally seeking joy, particularly in the hard moments. Because, after all, joy is a choice. I can choose to sit in the bitterness, the unanswered questions, the anger, or I can choose to shift my focus to the progress, the laughter, the good.
That photo at the top of this post? It’s a reminder of how I have spent the past several days sitting on the front porch swing watching the leaves turn on those TWO trees out front. We only have two bright trees reflecting the glory of autumn although there are so many others in our yard. I choose to keep my eyes on them. I love that they are right out front and I can watch through the windows as the colors shift and the leaves start to fall.
It’s all about perspective.
Yes, indeed. Joy is a choice.