“If not me, then who?” This is a strong motivator for me, not despite the inadequacy I feel, but because of it. The mirroring of others’ emotions and the trust that we are all the same, gives me courage to rise above my fear. 

A fellow adoptive mom asked me about a post adoption support group. The pandemic made it pretty clear that nobody meets in person. Her question gave me the impulse to start the Second Mothers book club. And it is FANTASTIC. Four mothers, two hours, every other week. We have in common adoption and faith. The best gift within this group is the inspiration to see my own kids with appreciative eyes. Because we share motherhood, their love and patience inspires me. And I see their kids through their eyes and I love them too. And this love that flows through my being gives me hope and joy. 

Oh, we all need sounding boards. The social distancing has robbed us of meaningful steady connections, and the joy of community. But it’s within our reach to grab a virtual arm and walk together this journey.  

We need structure, and this book club has provided this for me, to feel it propelled and rich and meaningful beyond bantering. 

This is why my Thursday Isaiah class has been so rich. It challenged me to do more than show up on time. To simmer God’s word. Gently guided by questions. 

As the year draws to a close, I realize in essence our lives have not been too different. On the contrary, in many ways they have been enriched with the online connections, church services across the world, sharing similar limitations. 

I have struggled with mild post adoption depression. My writing has been scattered much like my brain. I have redirected all my energy into keeping up with the mundane responsibilities, meals, online school, soothing aches and pain, doctor visits, emotional baggage, separation anxiety from my youngest, financial insecurity, all this in a context of pandemic. 

Be still my heart. 

I listened to a series of podcasts, Instrumental by JJ Heller. And it moved me. People’s stories, so diverse, so moving, so human… Something a visual artist said at a turning point in his life gave me the words to pray, as I lay my head on the pillow and my thoughts race. 

I put my life on the altar. You’ve chiseled it beautiful so far. It is the art of your hands. It does not belong to me. I don’t know what to do with it. I give it all to you God. Do as you wish with it. I lay my life at your feet. I will serve your wholeheartedly and do what needs to be done right now. Trim finger nails, give baths, wipe the bathroom floor, cut bangs, listen to nonsense, cook favorite meals, fight the good fight of setting boundaries out of love. These are the best years of my life and I gift them to my family. Learning, practicing, growing… someday these seeds planted will sprout and the dots will connect. 

The girls are thriving. And I get a glimpse of blessed we are. Both daughters are coming into their own and I foresee a season of reaping the ripe fruit of time and love invested. Parenting comes in seasons, of despair or exhaustion intertwined with awe and gratitude. And delight. November was tense. December came in smooth and gentle and connected. 

Not holding my breath for 2021. But we pray that God will walk with us.