I can’t even tell you how many blog posts have been started and stopped and then restarted again in my mind over the last 9 months. There are pictures and stories…hopes and losses…dreams and disappointments…beauty and ashes sprinkled all throughout the lives surrounding me. And I’ve lived it all. And written about it none. And that’s ok.
I’ve missed taking pictures with my good camera. I’ve missed telling our story. I’ve grimaced and rolled my eyes as iPhone photos and Instagram posts have replaced this small space. But I also haven’t done anything to make it different. Until now.
I’d like to think that my laptop crashing was the cause of this whole silence. But deep inside…I know it wasn’t.
Being tired was.
I have been so, so tired.
I have a Sophomore son. He’s brilliant and talented beyond belief. He’s kind. And I’m tired.
I have a 13 year old son. He’s the most creative and gracious person I’ve ever known. I’m tired.
I have an 11 year old daughter who just started Jr. High. She is pure happiness on fire. But I’m tired.
I have a 6 year old pudding cup, flicka baby who is my huckleberry girl. She looks like me. She acts like me. She feels like me. I’m tired.
The adoption of our youngest daughter was final in June. She is a spitfire…a live wire… she’s joy erupting out of the mucky mire. She is awesome. I am tired.
You can imagine what life is like with 5 kids. Some of you know…because you are living it. The car rides…the activities…the homework…the meals…the LAUNDRY! It’s enough to make a person crazy.
So…people may wonder.
Who is the little black baby in the facebook pictures? Surely they haven’t taken in another human! Surely they don’t have SIX kids!! She stays home!! He’s in ministry!! What about college??? What about food and clothes and weddings and cars????!!!! How could they possibly give these kids what they need…if they take in these “extras?”
It’s a fair question.
And all I can tell you is…
Because God told us to.
That’s the answer.
When God tells you to do something…and in this case…when He tells your family to do something…
You don’t tell Him no.
This baby needed a home. This baby needed a mom and a dad to take care of him. And for now…we are that mom and dad. Our kids have been called to be his brothers and sisters. And this is a role…that I am so proud to say…they take seriously. They know that it may not be forever. But they know that it is for today. And not a one of us doubt that it’s what God wanted us to do.
We sat down with our oldest son this morning and we told him how important his feelings and opinions are to this family. We told him that we valued his thoughts about whether or not we should agree to take in this child as a long term placement. We told him that whatever he was thinking and feeling was ok. We told him that we understood if he thought he may feel ashamed or embarrassed if we walked into a basketball game with a baby on our hips…so obviously not traditionally born into our family. We understood the feeling of…”Oh my gosh! My friends are gonna think…there are the crazy people with a bazillion kids!”
But that kid. That kid looked me in the eyes. He looked at me straight into the heart and said…
“I would be proud to call him my brother.”
When God calls a family to do something for him…
You don’t say no.
So here’s the amazing thing about this whole thing. I tuck my kids in bed at night. I rock some of them. I give some of them a bottle or a sippy cup of milk. I kiss their cheeks or their foreheads. I read to them. I sing to them. I pray with them. I wink at them…or I just touch their shoulder and tell them to sleep well when they are feeling too old for anything else.
And I sleep.
I sleep…because we said Yes.