A Letter to My First Kids

Dear Landyn and Asher,

I can't even type your names without tears.  You are precious to me beyond words.  Being your mom for the past 8 (and 5) years has been my favorite job ever...And I will always remember the days when it was just the 4 of us.  I know that the last 6 weeks have been the hardest days of our lives, and there's a part of me that wants to say that I am so very sorry for that.  I'm sorry that everything that defined your home and your family and your life has been turned completely upside down.  It breaks my heart to watch you struggle through every day trying to figure out what life is supposed to look like now.

Through this whole process, you both have been so brave.  When we told you what God had in store for our family, you never questioned it or complained.  You embraced the idea with open arms and prayed sweet prayers for your someday siblings.  And now that "someday" is today, I've watched you try and try again to connect with these little strangers with little success.  I've watched with an aching heart as you've been rejected time and time and time again.  And I've watched you get back up and do it all over.  And I've also watched as you've given in to the grief in your own hearts...grief for the loss of life as you knew it...grief over the loss of your peace and your place and your space.  And I grieve with you...every time.  

I know that the job we are asking you to take on is huge.  We are asking you to share your parents and your rooms and your hearts and your space and your things and your time and your lives with 3 people who are completely unable to understand or appreciate the sacrifices that you have made for them...the sacrifices you are continuing to make each day.  We are asking you to be a brother and a sister to 3 people who don't yet know how to even begin to be true siblings to you.  We are asking you to show tremendous love to 3 people who don't know how to give the same love back in return.  We are asking you to rejoice in the good that is happening to the 3 people who have stolen our time and attention from you.  It's so much to ask of you...but they desperately need you to be the sweet, caring, compassionate, Jesus-loving kids that you were before we brought them home.  They need you to teach them what it looks like to be in our family.  You are more vital to this process than you can comprehend right now.  

During the past week, I have had very hard moments where I've asked myself, "What have we done to your lives?"  You were so happy and carefree and well-adjusted.  Right now, you are anxious and frustrated and uncertain.  It doesn't seem fair or right.  But we are on this journey because God led us here.  He opened doors that we were told would never be open for us.  He, without a doubt, led us to these 3 kids.  Please don't ever forget the story He has written for us already.  And even though right now, in this stage of transition, you might not be able to see or feel what He is doing, know that He is doing something amazing.  Because the God we serve is faithful.  He wouldn't bring us this far to leave us on our own.  He makes beautiful things out of garbage.  He will bring peace to our chaos.  He will replace our sorrow with joy again.  He makes broken things whole.  He's not going to leave us hanging.  He's faithful to finish what He starts.  So there's a part of me that can't feel sorry for this because I know that God is going to use it to make you into the people that He created you to be.  Romans 8:18 "For I consider the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed to us."  You get to be part of an amazing redemption story.  Someday, you will be able to look back on this and see evidence of God's power and His glory everywhere.  Just hang on a little longer.  It won't always be like this.

As you sleep tonight, I am praying peace and grace over you.  Please don't stop fighting for what you know to be right and good and true.  Please don't forget who you are.  Now that we're seven, so much is different, but there is one thing that will never change: You will always be our first kids.  Nothing can change that. You're my LandynO and my AsherBoy.  Never forget it.  And when you feel like there's nothing left of our old comfortable life to hang onto, it's ok to let it go.  And it's ok to be sad.  We will walk beside you every step of the way.  We won't leave you to navigate this uncertain path alone.

We love you so much...

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