Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Smiles and Tears: Adoption Joys and Grief

(Bear with the junky picture quality as it's easier to grab my iphone w/a newborn in hand than it is to grab my Nikon.)

When people ask how it's going over here, it's difficult to know what to say.  We're experiencing such a mixture of joy and sorrow all wrapped into one.

There is deep joy as I stare into Titus' dark brown eyes, amazed that he is really here, really with us after years of praying for him.  There are smiles as I hear Addie Beth talking to her little brother ("Titus, will you tackle me when you're a big boy?  Yes, I bet you will!") and smiles as I watch the three big kids fight over who can hold the baby next.  There is incredible rejoicing over this baby's life and the gift of having him in our family.

But do you know what else there is?  There is sorrow and there are tears because adoption isn't just beautiful-it is loss.  The very first thing that happened in my son's life was loss-he lost the only voice and presence he'd known for nine months.  Each day as I hold him and watch him grow, I am so aware that his birthmom is not holding him and not watching him grow.  It is heartbreaking to imagine her loss.

There is such joy in snuggling my sweet boy and kissing his soft skin and marveling at all that God did to bring him into our family.  There is joy in holding him close and loving him with such a depth that only God can orchestrate.

But there are also many tears as we grieve losing the twins.  Please understand, Titus is not "second best" to us or anything like that at all.  Titus is fiercely loved and we would not trade him for any child or children in the world.  But we still grieve the lives of the little boys we thought would be our sons.  When we were matched with the twins, we saw them as our children.  We planned and dreamed and imagined what life would be like once they came-much like we did with each pregnancy I had.  So not having them enter our family is like a death to us and it is certainly not erased by the joy of having Titus.

I wear my sweet boy throughout the day, holding him close and whispering to him, "We have always wanted you.  We have always loved you.  God has a plan for your life, Titus."  Sometimes I say it through tears as I think of the twins and their birthmom and wonder how she's doing.  Sometimes I say it as I smile and remember meeting him for the first time a little over five weeks ago.  Sometimes I say it as I cry for Titus' birthmom and wonder what she's feeling and thinking.  Sometimes I say it as I wonder what he will think years from now as he tries to make sense of out his adoption.

We have a lot of smiles going on over here and that's for sure.  But there is a lot of sorrow that accompanies the joys of adoption, too.  My comfort is knowing that God, the Author of adoption, understands and He relates.  His adoption of us into His family cost Him the very life of His Son.  That is a grief and sorrow unimaginable.  God understands that adoption hurts because it hurt Him, too.  He is my comfort and I pray that He will be Titus' comfort one day as well.

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1 Comment

One Response to “Smiles and Tears: Adoption Joys and Grief”

  1. Beautiful, Katie. And amen. Love you!