our family brought home our son and brother after two years of waiting. he is the center of our family, not because he created that place, but because it is where God placed him. adoption is a living choice to love, for us to love him, and then, for him to love us. love is often messy, but it’s true, the most messy things become beautiful. below is writing that i am working through to document our story.
he sat there wanting to know love, to feel it for himself. his dark eyes looked deep into my soul begging me to know him. big fat tears dripped off his cheek onto my crossed legs sitting right next to his. i looked back into those sad eyes and with my own asked him to keep looking instead of the usual breaking of contact.
i still remember the way those eyes looked, all those years ago, the day i met him in Cazale, Haiti. not sad. i studied them. his eyes seemed to smile all on their own. standing before me in a misbuttoned blue shirt was this little boy who seemed happy, those sparkly eyes said so. a year earlier he was sick enough to be thought of as dying, some time before that he watched his own mother die, then also his father and brother, and now he had been abandoned by relatives at a Rescue Center. that day i studied him long enough to see that beautiful smile turn when challenged. how could it not.
i was scared to commit to him. i wanted to love him fully. i wanted to only remember the way his eyes lit up an already sunny day. i had to ask the questions. i worried he was too wounded to let me love him. it was a true to life fear. i had read so many others stories saying so. i wanted to pretend i didn't know his story, i especially wanted to forget how very connected i felt to it. in my own self love i wanted to run from this situation that could potentially be hard, or even terrible, maybe even life damaging.
no good is in me. none. still something compelled me to not turn away. this child needed a family and i was part of a family. this boy needed a mama to love him and, of course, i happened to be a mama. as much as i could picture my own feet kicking the dust as i ran far away, i couldn't.
some days are hard for my child who is risking everything to love. i wish, oh how i wish, i could make everything right that has been wronged. i can't. i can sit with him when hurt overflows. i can ask him to keep looking in me, through my eyes, to see my love. on more common, lighter days, i can giggle with him about silly stories. i can cheer him on at soccer games. i can dream for him. i can teach him to dream.
if i could only tell you one thing about adoption this would be it. nothing has taught my family the gospel of Christ more than this. it’s in the giving of love when it was never asked for, with the fear of it never coming back. it’s grace and loving another more than yourself. it’s running hard in the direction that requires more of you, maybe all of you.