Hope for Adoptive Moms: Day Five
life after adoption
By Laura Zimmerman
Read Philippians 2:3-8
Our first adoption day felt very much like the day I graduated high school, or the day my husband and I got married. We led up to the day with great excitement and expectation, and could not wait to finally make things permanent. Our girls came to us through foster care, and were with us for almost two years by the time adoption rolled around. The morning of the adoption we woke up late. We were rushing through a house filled with boxes (because we had just moved) and I ended up yelling at one of the girls. It was muddy and I was stressed about them having dirty shoes and clothes in the adoption pictures. Once we got to the courthouse, it sank in. This was the day. It was the day everything changed.
Here’s the thing about adoption. It’s officially once and done, but the journey never ends. For example, Mother’s Day was the hardest for one of our girls. It was a reminder of a loss, but also a gain, and how does a little heart handle that? Mother’s Day couldn’t be about me. Philippians 2:4 tells us that, “Everyone should look out not only for his own interests, but also for the interests of others.” We began making cards for birth mom, buying gifts and taking them to the agency to be mailed to her. Every year we would revisit this. Some years no gifts or cards were given, some years there were extra. Allowing that process to occur brought healing.
Each child is going to process their adoption differently, so it’s important to be willing to become a student of your child. Also, be the one who begins the hard conversations. Create an atmosphere where your child knows it’s safe to ask questions. Don’t push them, but be available. Every once in awhile I’ll ask our kids if they’ve been thinking about their birth family, just to get it out there. It’s not always easy or comfortable but I’m reminded of the posture of Christ, who “emptied Himself by assuming the form of a servant…” (Phillipians 2:7).
Revel in the good times and celebrate every victory, no matter how small. Pour yourself out, but remember to fill yourself up. The God who called you to this will walk with you through this.
Scripture meditation: Colossians 3:12-17
What has been one of the unexpected blessings of your adoption journey? Thank God for that.
What is a difficult area you’re walking in right now, post adoption? Talk with a friend about it and share the burden. Take it to the Lord, also.
If you have not yet adopted, think through your expectations. Are they healthy? Do any of them need to be adjusted?