A Story: But What About My Other Children?

We were only two weeks post-adoption. Barely settling into the wonderful permanency that was now ours to claim. We had adopted three girls. They were 2, 3, and 5. Life was blissful, but I was very aware of the struggles that were brewing, especially for our oldest. However delightful permanency is, there is a loss. Like a death. My daughters no longer belonged to their birth parents. And that loss is very great.

We hadn’t specifically talked to our DCS social worker since our adoption. We had told them that we wanted to finish the case with our girls before beginning another, but we hadn’t called them. And so, I was surprised to find myself receiving a call. Just two weeks post-adoption.

I was in the grocery store with my littlest. The cart was full. We were nearly done shopping. And then I got the call. It nearly knocked the wind out of me. These precious children. Your heart is captured after just the 30 second bio that you receive over the phone.

“Baby boy…
…very small…
…two months old…
…he’s been in our office since 6:30 this morning…
…would you be willing to come get him?”

I called my hubby. Were we ready for this? We now had other children in our home to think of first. It was no longer just the two of us. Was this right? Should we say yes?

Here’s the thing: We had already decided to say ‘yes.’ I don’t mean there are no restrictions. I don’t mean that we don’t carefully weigh each decision. I don’t mean that the ‘yes’ is automatic. But we HAD already decided we would be as open as we possibly could for these children. You just really don’t have much time to make these decisions. There was a little baby boy who was hungry and tired and who had been in an office all morning.

Yes. The answer was yes.

All the way to the DCS office my mind was racing. Was this too soon? Were we ready? How would our darling girls respond?

I was excited too. So excited. But the concern was great. We had just stepped out in faith again.

I picked my daughters up from school with an extra carseat in the van. A full carseat. I didn’t have a chance to prepare them beforehand. Another baby just appeared in our vehicle.

They were super excited. Talking and giggling all the way home. A new brother!!!!

But still my heart worried and wondered.

Later that evening, my oldest daughter asked to hold the new baby. I settled him in her arms and watched her stroke his tiny brow. How would this look? How would this go? Her heart. How was her heart?

Another daughter claimed my attention and I moved a little ways away to answer her call. After addressing her need, I turned back around and my heart stopped in my chest.

My daughter had her head bent over this precious new baby and she was whispering to him.

“I know you’re scared…
…I know you don’t know us…
…we are your family now…
…I don’t know how long you will stay…
…you are safe here and we will love you as long as you need us…
…I love you.”

Tears spilled down my cheeks as I witnessed my daughter passing on the same words and love that we had poured into her little life for nearly two years. She understood his situation. Because it had been hers. And she also understood the love and security he needed. Because she had needed it as well. And she chose, in that moment, to pass it on.

This is just a story. Our story. I can’t say it will be the same for everyone. But in our case, this precious overheard conversation was just the start to the opening of hearts for healing conversations. Even when we said good-bye to this precious little one just six days later, the healing continued. All of our hearts were expanded. And we all learned how to love just a little bit better.

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