Thursday, September 30, 2010

Book Worms

We're raising a bunch of book worms and I love it!

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Hide and Seek . . . Denver style

These pictures make me laugh every time I look at them. The kids played hide and seek on and off throughtout the summer and Denver also started to get the hang of it . . . sort of.

One day I walked into the kitchen, and this is what I found. Seriously, does it get much cuter? The dark little hands and feet sticking out of the cupboard were enough to melt this mamma's heart!

Is it possible?

Have I forgotten how to blog???
Here are a few pictures from our summer.

Some backyard soccer:

Snack time:

Hard at work:

One of many puzzles worked on and completed this summer:

Daddy pile on:


Tuesday, September 14, 2010

July 13, 2010

I can’t believe it’s been two months since I’ve blogged. My word . . . where does the time go??? A few times I wanted to post some pics but I first wanted to post about July 13 and my thoughts on everything having to do with that day. So here goes . . .

July 13, 2010 came and went just like any other day . . . oh ya, that’s totally not true! As mentioned in a previous post, July 13 marked the one year anniversary of the day that our adoption agency officially announced bankruptcy. Wow, it still seems as though it’s not reality but I know it is if I think about everything we went through.

For some reason (and maybe I was na├»ve not to expect this) July 13 hit me hard this year. I mean REALLY hard. I couldn’t believe it. From the minute I got up and realized what day it was, I couldn’t stop crying. It was crazy. I was completely emotional about everything. Friends on the yahoo board, some of whom I’ve met and some of whom I haven’t, were all posting pictures of the kids we’ve brought home since the bankruptcy. It was a great way to celebrate how far we’ve come and to not focus on the negative on a day that brought back a lot of painful memories. But every time new photos were posted, I cried. When I looked at Denver and my other kids, I cried. When I thought about last July, I cried. Seriously, a lot of tears were shed.

A wise friend of mine came up with a possible explanation for my emotions. She said that last year when the bankruptcy happened we just went into “get Denver home” mode. Nothing else mattered and we were focused on doing whatever we had to in order to get our son home to Canada where he belonged. It was scary and sad and frustrating but I didn’t have time to process my emotions at that time. Even when I came home, I was in baby mode. I was so happy to be home with all my kids and hubby and we spent the time focusing on Denver’s (and the other kids’) adjustment. Again, I didn’t have time to really process any of it.

And I didn’t have time to grieve. I truly believe that we suffered a lot of losses that we needed to deal with and in a sense grieve these losses. The main thing was that nothing ended up going how it was supposed to go. Now granted, international adoption is a roller coaster ride with many ups and downs and there are a lot of surprises thrown in along the way and we knew this when we signed up for the journey – both times. However, none of these surprises can be compared to the surprise of your adoption agency going bankrupt. Suddenly everything is wrong. Mike and I were supposed to travel to Ethiopia together (along with Samara). We were supposed to be there together when Denver was handed over and placed in our arms forever. Mike was supposed to be there for all of our first moments together. We were supposed to experience Ethiopia – the country, the people, the culture – together. It wasn’t supposed to be such a stressful trip. Our visa was supposed to be issued before we travelled. We weren’t supposed to have to worry the entire time whether our visa would arrive in time for me and Denver to go home. The possibility of me and Denver staying in Ethiopia for nine or more weeks away from the rest of the family wasn’t supposed to be in our minds. We were supposed to have agency support when we were in Ethiopia. We weren’t supposed to have to find our own way around and try to squeeze in some sightseeing between paperwork and visits to the Embassy. And it goes on . . . and on . . . and on . . .

Having said all that, I do know that we are truly blessed and our family has been truly blessed with Denver and the other children. I know that all the events surrounding Denver’s journey home happened for a reason. I know that God’s hand was on me and Denver and Mike and the kids during our time apart. Yes, it was hard but the end of the story turned out exactly how it was supposed to. Denver came home to Canada and is part of our family.

And that brings me to the matter of forgiveness. I absolutely do not want to sound like I’m preaching or that I am “holier than thou” but I can honestly say that I do not feel any anger or bitterness towards the woman responsible for the fall of the agency – S. H. Yes, she made some really bad decisions and caused a lot of pain for a lot of people. But (contrary to popular opinion) I truly feel sorry for her. I believe her heart was in the right place when she started the adoption agency and I know she showed love and compassion to a lot of people – particularly in Ethiopia. I don’t think the hurt she caused was premeditated. I believe that something, probably greed, got the best of her and caused her to fall into temptation. It got worse and worse until she was drowning and there was no way out. I do really feel sorry for her. There are so many people holding onto their anger and bitterness and living with it every single day. Even families that have come home with their child(ren) since the bankruptcy – there are so many bitter people. I just want to say – let it go. Forgive. Move on. I know it’s not easy but you’re only hurting yourself and your loved ones. I mean, honestly who can say they are better than her? Are we not all sinful people? Do we not all fall short? What makes my sin any less than hers? It says in the Bible that all sin is equal. And the Bible also teaches us to forgive. We’re all human and need forgiveness – no matter how great or small our sin. God is willing to forgive all of us – S. H. included – how awesome is that?

Okay so that’s it. That’s what I’ve wanted to post for two months but knew it wouldn’t be short or quick. Feels good to get it out. Now maybe I can post some pictures and lighter posts!