Goodness gracious. The things we sign up for without fully understanding the commitment it takes. That is what adoption is for us right now. It’s not wonderful feelings of saving a life from poverty or becoming a forever family or even meeting the child you’ve been praying for for over a year. It’s just hard. And unless you’ve been there, you just can’t know.
Parenting Ruth is different than parenting Allen. With Allen, he started as a newborn: our newborn. The bond was instant (for him, at least). He had no opinions, just needs. When he was hungry, he was fed. When he was tired, he was held and put to sleep. He never wanted in his life- and never had a reason not to trust Shane and I completely.
Ruth has lived for three and a half years without us. She has endured abandonment from the only family she’s ever known, institutionalized living, and now she’s having to endure and adapt to another very different living situation. She has opinions of us, and sometimes they are not very favorable. She began her time in our family not wanting to be here, not trusting us. While I knew about these challenges before bringing her “home,” I just wasn’t prepared. Her rejection of us hurt me when it shouldn’t have. Her hesitancy to accept our love hardened me when it shouldn’t have. Her simultaneous neediness and demand for independence frustrated me when it shouldn’t have. All I know now about adoption is that it’s hard. And it will continue to be hard for a long time. But the love comes from choosing to continue, so even though we make mistakes, we’re committing to loving and accepting Ruth. She is a part of our family forever, and someday it will feel- for all of us- that this is how it was always meant to be.
This is almost seven weeks of being in Nigeria. Thankfully the Wilks family has joined us in the house so we’re no longer alone, but it is still SO HARD to be here. It’s hard to be isolated from family and friends. Home feels like so much more than just a couple flights away. But God is sustaining me. There’s no way I’d still be here if he weren’t.
There’s a chance that Ruth’s pre-screening will be complete next week. This would be amazing, and although I’m hesitant to get my hopes up because of the pain of being let down, I am praying for the end to be near. Please pray that Ruth’s pre-screening is done as quickly as possible and that we are shown mercy by getting an interview date very, very soon. God is able.
Continue praying for the Wilks family- that their needs would be met soon so their process is not held up a moment longer. They are just as frustrated, if not more so, than we have been. They also have two boys at home, one who has very serious medical needs, and they truly do need to be home to best care for him. They would greatly appreciate your prayers as well.