Sunday, August 25, 2013

Dear Adopted One

You may be seven or thirty-seven; adopted at birth, through foster care, by a relative, or from a country thousands of miles away. When you are woven into a family through adoption, whether it was decades ago or last month, your story is an intricate mosaic of love, loss, and redemption.

Chances are good that you're a part of a family that has celebrated your heritage and embraced every single piece of you.  You have heard over and over and over again from your parents how much you are loved.

But even with such encouragement and support, adoption can bring questions, doubts, and empty places that are hard to fill.

On the days when you have more questions than answers, when insecurities have crept in, and you can't find the words to articulate what you are feeling, may this letter remind you of a few important truths.

Your family's journey to you was not by chance.  You were never Plan B.  Nothing about you is a mistake.

1. Your parents cried (a lot), the very first time they met you. With hearts pounding out of their chests and shaky hands, they held you tightly, stroked your hair, and whispered their love. You may have been a newborn, a nine-year old or a teenager. Age didn't matter, because they knew instantaneously that YOU were their child.

2. Before you joined the family, your parents were praying for you.  Every single day, every step of the way, they were praying for you.  They may have been praying for years and years about you before they physically were able to hold you.  Before you even knew that they existed, your family was praying. 

While they waited for you, your parents were praying. . .

  • that you would know, without question, how much you were loved and wanted.
  • that somehow you would know they were coming as soon as they could.
  • that God would protect your body and your heart when they physically couldn't.   

3. Your siblings asked about you constantly before you came home.  They hadn't even met you yet, but that didn't matter.  In their eyes, you were already a part of the family.  They wondered about your personality, which toys you would want, and if you would like them.  They made posters and wrote letters to give to you the minute they met you.  It didn't take bloodlines to make you family, it just took love.

4. Your parents moved mountains to get to you.  They filled out hours and hours of paperwork, made phone call after phone call, and did whatever they had to in order to get to you as quickly as they could. They made t-shirts, held garage sales, baked cookies, ran marathons, and hand-crafted Christmas ornaments to raise the funds to fly across the ocean or the country to hold you.  They would have learned how to fly a plane themselves if it meant they would be one day closer to bringing you home forever.

5. If they could, your parents would take away all the pain and hurt and loneliness you had ever felt.  They would do anything to get back the years that they were not with you.  They wish that every single birthday, holiday, and milestone had been spent with you.  Your parents wanted to be the ones who kissed every boo-boo, dried every tear, and hugged you when you hurt.  Those times you felt a little smothered with all the attention were just your mom and dad trying to make up for lost opportunities. 

6. Your parents remember.  They remember the years of waiting and hoping.  They longed to hold you as the months ticked away, aching as they looked at your picture.  They can recall waiting for "the" phone call, the one that changed the course of their lives.  Not one day with you has ever been taken for granted, dear one, because they remember the journey to get there.  And you were so worth the wait. 

7. Your parents are going to mess up.  If they haven't already, they will.  They are not always going to have the right answer to your questions. There will be messy moments, hurtful words, and unmet expectations. At some point, they are going to let you down. Take comfort in the knowledge that each decision, whether it was the right one or not, was made was out of love.  Every day they strive to know you more deeply.  They believe that you were meant for great things.  If you don't yet believe that for yourself, they won't give up until you do.

8. Your parents will never, ever stop loving you.  Nothing you have done or will do can ever change that. You are their child, your hearts now intricately woven together. You are wanted, you are chosen, and you are immensely loved.

1 comment:

  1. This brought tears to my eyes especially as I grieve the loss of the daughter that I had to give up after being matched. I don't understand how God has done this especially when I thought he knew how much motherhood meant to me. I just have to believe that I would have made a good mama. Thank you for sharing such a wonderful letter.