Tuesday, September 1, 2015

on being storytellers & losing our baby girl.

when we brought zion home, david and i looked at each other
and the process behind us and laughed, 
and said now that we've adopted from uganda twice, that will be it,
and thank you very much,

we are required to bring zion back to uganda every five years,
so that timeline sounded nice and fluffy and safe.
"weird!" i told family, "that after going to uganda every year for so long - this is it until 2019!"
and then God did what he does,
and we softened a little and said, "IF."
funny, right? we gave God a big, fat IF.
we will consider adopting from uganda again, 
but only IF there is a little girl who truly needs us and
only IF there are no other families available.
and IF i get a job that is salaried.
 and IF we get a bigger house,
and a bigger car,
and a billion dollars.

So. Take THAT.

and then, just like that, there WAS a little girl. 
and there WEREN'T any other families. 
and i said, "let me ask david,"
which i secretly thought meant NO.
but then david said yes.
and God winked right at me then, i think.

then i got salaried at my job,
which allowed us to buy a house.
and a friend gave us a van,
and in literally 48 hours thousands of dollars fell directly into our adoption account.

so we saw God show up for this little girl.
he showed up big and loud.
and so we said yes, and we moved forward.

we announced that we would be adopting a daughter months ago,
with hearts wide open and praise on our lips.
we quieted as cobwebs thickened,
trails grew cold, then hot, then stopped.

it made me sick. makes me sick still, if i let it.
if i lay in my bed and really stop and think -
that's when the tears come, hot and unstoppable,
soaking pillows and hair like they did all those years ago.

all those years ago - back when lucas died.

i can't and won't explain all that's happened in our lives,
and our sweet girl's life,
since then.
but as surely as we started on our journey with confidence in God's plan,
it all came crashing down one afternoon, and i never swear but i did then,
under my breath while my babies slept
and i begged and offered up every ultimatum i could think of.

we chose not to make our story public during this time,
and it isn't because we don't love our village
or the support we've gotten year after year.
it was because when it came down to it - really far down in the hell hole of losing a child you love,
i wanted to lean harder on everyone else than on God.

i wanted my people to pray for me so that i wouldn't have to think about praying for myself.
i wanted my village to cry with me, to trust FOR me, to have faith because i didn't.
i wanted my village because i didn't want God right then -
the all powerful creator who i know can do all things,
but gives us free will,
and when the shit hits the fan, it just does, and that's that.

i never stopped believing in God.
i never really got mad at him even, 
but the magnitude of who he is - good in our darkest moments - is just too much sometimes.

seek me - he said.
seek and find me.
so when all was shot through, i finally got the nerve to try to learn more about my savior.
the one who gives good gifts - i say this out loud to people,
but in my darkest corner, i question what that means.
we stopped sharing information publicly - because we needed to find Christ's goodness in the mess of things for ourselves.

it was hard. david and i grieved separately at first -
him desperate to complete odd tasks around the house and just survive
and me as cold as ice.
it couldn't hold up long,
and one night we yelled until we could cry together,
and then huddled down as a team for the long haul.

and these words.
they sat here inside me for months really,
words clumped up like dirt,
rolled in a ball like some scared animal,
smoking and stinking like the remains of ashes days old.

and as they burned like this,
and we looked at life and saw clearly that NOT EVERYTHING HAPPENS ACCORDING TO GOD'S PERFECT PLAN,
we started to become better friends with him - this savior who offers grace.
not everything happens according to his plan

BUT - he can use ALL things for his glory.

and so our story wasn't truly done -
though we saw it lying there, smoldering and crumpled like old pages.

where once our hearts were closed, now they were opened again,
wooed by a love who knows the intricate depths of our souls. 
where once we would have said no,
we whispered yes.

we are the storytellers.
but i've no doubt who's writing the story - and friends - it isn't me.

So now, come along and listen -
Listen to the ways he's mended -
The ways he's kept his promises when I thought all was left for dead.
I have a lot to tell.

Part 2 coming soon.


  1. I've loved reading your beautiful blog since I read your story about Lucas. Watching you bring your babes home & everything in between. The way you speak words is so raw & real and inspiring. I love how you bring it all right back to God. Praying for you during this time...I can't imagine your pain so I won't pretend to understand. Just know you have a village AND a God who are right beside you.

    Thank you for sharing your heart!

  2. So SO touching. You are a poet, and God knows that!! Remember that our pain is never wasted.....looking forward to part 2 :) We are praying for you in moms group!!


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