Yesterday we had the privilege of attending an Adoption/Foster Care conference (our third year to attend this great ministry). I truly love going to this once a year... it is the shot in the arm you need each year to remind yourself of the family that God has called you into... not only do you get the reminder, but you learn about new techniques to help in the parenting process, new books exploring the life of an adoptive family/adoptee/race-trans racial adoption... many wonderful things to help you in this journey!
You might be asking yourself why do I need a reminder... "I mean look at your family photos all over your home, can't you see that you are clearly an adoptive family?!" No I don't forget how our family came together, what I do forget is where my children came from... I stop seeing them as children who've come from a hard place, I see them as my children... I see them as normal, our normal (which is not really normal for most people). This conference reminds me that my children didn't come from a loving womb, or where their first years were stable, safe, or secure... Instead I spend my days correcting behaviors, and lose sight of the child(ren).
I forget that I know why my children will act out in certain ways and need a certain response from us... and get angry with our extended family when we are criticized for how we do things... they don't understand... I forget that I should spend time educating them so that they can better support Daddio and me in our efforts and the boys for that matter.
I forget that 6 years really doesn't mean anything to healing the wounds of their past.
I forget to honor their birth parents for choosing life... even though I know about what they did that caused harm to my boys, at least they didn't abort my children! Praise GOD!
Because they rarely bring it up, I forget to ask them how they feel about their adoption, or their race, their birth parents/family... I forget that they may not have the words to ask, I forget that their silence may not be because they aren't interested but maybe because they don't know how or where to go with their thoughts.
I forget to thank God for our infertility... because I don't know if my boys would be my boys had we been able to conceive. And that is pretty painful to admit because for so long I carried MY infertility as such a burden, a punishment, even a curse... clearly our Heavenly Father knows better than I ever could.
So thank you Monroe Family for your adoption story, thank you God for calling them to start up the Tapestry Ministry, and for all the hard work in getting the conference up and running each year!
If you want to know more about the conference please check out these wonderful websites for resources, videoed sessions, and ministry/conference details: