Monday, September 5

(adopted)

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well hello there, lovely readers.
i am emily...wifey to mr. anderson and mama to 5 little people running around, with another nugget on the way. i blog our daily adventures over at the anderson crew.
be warned. my kids are cute. very cute.

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when danielle asked me to write up a guest post on adoption, i honestly didn't know where to begin, or which aspect of adoption to write about. you see, everyday of this adoption process has been different for me. the feelings and emotions brought with it many tears, laughter, heartache, excitement, joy, frustration...the list goes on and on. now that our daughter is home with us, the entire process has become more real to me. when you are in the process of bringing a new little one into your home, it's exciting, and a bit scary...but mostly exciting. while waiting for elsa to come home, i experienced so much pain...for her. my heart broke for this little girl who was sitting in an orphanage, across the world. so many things were holding our case back, and it just didn't seem fair.

it wasn't until after my daughter got home, that i realized how painful and hard the process actually was. in march of 2011, we finally got to bring her home to us. and just 2 short weeks later, i found out that i was pregnant with a surprise baby. we were blown away, to say the least. i was laid up on the couch for the next 3 months as i battled with severe sickness. elsa became just "another person to take care of" in my eyes. as sad as that is, it's true. it was hard to take care of this little girl, who i hadn't had a chance to bond with yet. as i got friendly with my toilet (throwing up all day long) she was just there. waiting for a mom to love on her...probably not understanding what was happening to me, but i'm sure thinking "take me back to the orphanage...this sucks". thankfully, my husband and 4 other kids helped her adjust to our family. they taught her the ways of our home...and i am excited to say that she is doing great.

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unfortunately for me, i still struggle with loving this little girl...on a daily basis. i have to get up every morning and ask for strength from the Lord to help me to love this little girl as if she was my own biological child. hearing that statement, you would think she is this horrible child---but that couldn't be further from the truth. i'm telling ya, God knew we needed an easy adopted child, for the road ahead that we faced. and that is exactly what He gave us---an easy child. she obeys...eats all her food...does her chores...helps the family. the girl would clean the entire house if i asked her too, she is just that helpful. and she wants to be that helpful. i am so grateful for her personality and good attitude. and she's happy. it's just the love aspect of it all that i struggle with. i wrote a post on it a while back, adoption and love. i got so many good responses to it, and started to feel like maybe i wasn't alone in this struggle. that's a refreshing feeling. knowing that "yes, what i'm going through is hard BUT many people are feeling the same way...and YOU CAN get through this."

it is my desire to love this little girl with a mothers' heart. to be her mama bear. to protect her unconditionally and to squeeze her because i don't want her to leave my arms. i just know that it's a long and hard road to get there. that can be discouraging if i let it be, but if i make the choice to love her (even when i don't feel like it), my hope is that it will just come naturally to me one day. love is an action...not a feeling.
i have a few other mamas mentoring me and keeping me accountable in this process. i am thankful for them and the fact that they care enough about me and my daughter to go along side us in this process.
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i hope i haven't discouraged anyone from adopting. that is not my intention. i think adoption is a beautiful thing. a marvelous thing that we all should take part in, someway or another. it is a challenging thing too. and that's okay. what good would we be if we weren't put through challenges every once in a while? this life would be entirely too easy. i am thankful for elsa, and the little life she is. i am thankful that God placed her in our family. He knew what He was doing. He didn't help us raise $20,000 for the wrong child. He didn't move mountains to get the wrong child home to their forever family.
i cling to these reminders.
and to the reminder that God knows the desires of our hearts, and that He hears my desire to love her as my own.

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9 comments:

  1. thanks for the honest post. my hubs and i met on the mission field in china, doing orphan ministry. we are excited to adopt, yet knowing the journey is not easy.

    blessings to your family!

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  2. I read your original post about this topic on your blog. I'm sorry for the struggle you've had and I hope the Lord brings you to the place you want to be. Elsa looks like and sounds like such a sweet little girl. What a gift from the Lord.

    To be honest, I struggle a bit with how publicly you're handling what you're going through right now. I think your feelings/desires/emotions are perfectly normal. I don't object to what you're saying at all. What I have an issue with is that you are posting this little girl's name and face in front of thousands of eyes and telling everyone (not just your intimate friends, but everyone) that you struggle to love her.

    Will she read these posts someday? If so, how heartbreaking to her that you've put her in such a vulnerable position in front of the world. If she isn't going to read them, then how sad that such private details of her life were shared with others and she'll never know about how much was shared.

    I've read blog posts about marital struggles & desire to cultivate love between husband and wife again. Although there are some similarities between a situation like that and your situation, I think the marriage posts are in another category entirely. In the marriage situation, the issue is between two adults, both of whom have given the OK for the info to be shared publicly.

    I really struggled to write this comment. In fact, I struggled with whether to write this comment when you wrote the original post on your blog and I ended up never saying anything. Frankly, I think the perspective I'm sharing with you now would be much better received from a friend IRL: someone who you love and trust who can be honest with you on this level.

    I wish you all the very best today and in the future. I hope that the Lord pours out his blessings on your sweet daughter, on you, and on your entire family.

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  3. rita, i appreciate your comment. i have thought long and hard about how i will share with elsa one day. i am one of the most honest people out there (which can be good or bad) and i have every intention on sharing with her the details of her adoption...the good...the bad...the amazing...the scary. all of it. i wouldn't feel right keeping it from her.
    how i go about sharing everything is something that i'm still unsure of, but she will know that it may have been hard, but that she was worth all of it.
    i know not everyone will agree with my decision to share about my struggle and that's okay. people are allowed that thought. but ultimately, i feel (for us) that it's the right one. i prayed for a long time about whether or not i should bring to light my struggles with her and i really felt led too. my husband and i don't take it lightly and we are always very aware of what we are putting on the blog for people to read.
    thanks,
    emily

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  4. two blogs that I love so much on the same day!
    danielle, thanks for featuring emily anderson and her story. it's encouraging to hear a REAL element of adoption that isn't all perfect... so often when we dream to adopt we don't consider the hardships. not that it discourages us from adopting, but i'm certain it is preparing us more accurately.
    <3

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  5. thanks, emily, for sharing your heart. these thoughts and emotions are so honest and real. praying with you as you continue on this beautiful journey with your family! it's wonderful to see the lord working in your heart through this post. what a testimony and a gift to me today, thank you.
    xoxo

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  6. Emily: Thank you so much for sharing your heart! Your openness & honesty is refreshing & truly allows other to see that it is the LORD who is working through you!

    Danielle: I'm super pumped about this little series!

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  7. I am loving this adopted series :) so inspiring

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  8. Em, I appreciate your boldness in sharing your story with the world. I think there are enough people that keep their struggles hidden...honestly, we need more people willing to share how God is helping them and transforming their lives. People who have these same thoughts and struggles would otherwise feel alone. I'm glad you're using your voice. Love you. Proud your're my bestie.

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