Monday, August 19, 2013

Baby Steps: Begin Again









"We are never more alive to life than when it hurts--never more aware of  both our powerlessness to save ourselves and of the possibility of a power beyond ourselves to save us and heal us if we can only open ourselves up to it." -Frederick Buechner

I heard this quote at church on Sunday and felt the words resonate deep in my bones. I hadn't been back to our church since I came home from Jamaica at the end of April. The reason may seem odd, but odd as it seems I suppose I'll share anyway.

 I knew it would be difficult to view the steps that serve as an altar at the front of the sanctuary.

I'd spent quite a bit of time knelt on those steps praying for Alex before he came into our lives. I reminiced back on those steps many times as I held Alex in my arms and said prayers of thanksgiving while I was in Jamaica.

I wasn't sure how I would react to seeing those steps again after everything that transpired. I'll be honest and say that I didn't hear much of the message at church on Sunday. I sat and starred at those steps and had a heart to heart with God. I can honestly say that I've had many of those the last few months.

All that to say, Adam and I are doing well. We serve a mighty God who is redeeming in ALL things. As hard as it is for me to believe, God loves Alex more than we do and has a plan for his life. Our role in his life was a part of that plan I have no doubt. We will always play a role in his life in some way, even if it's perpetual prayer warriors storming the floodgates of heaven with prayers over Alex for provision, protection, nurture, and love.

I would be lying if I said that it hasn't been hard. It would be a complete untruth to say that there haven't been tears, anger, and emotions so raw I didn't even know I had the capacity to feel them.

I opted to stay silent online for awhile because I wanted to grieve in my own way privately. My silence was for that aforementioned reason, as well as the fact that I had no words. I've been a mute author.

A lot has happened since I wrote last.

 Adam and I got the unexpected  blessing to travel back to Jamaica in June and spend five days with Alex. Even now as I reflect on those days I feel nothing but overwhelming happiness and joy. We got the distinct privilege of parenting like there was no tomorrow. Those five days were perfect. We melted into the moments and savored every second.

We said goodbye to Alex together, and came back home. I think we personified bittersweet that day.

Adam and I also spent quality time with many friends and family over the summer. We are grateful for the blessing of healing laughter and the indescribable feeling of community.

We sought solace in the hill country sitting by the river hand in hand, just the two of us.

We promised each other that no matter how bad the searing pain of losing Alex got we wouldn't stop talking to God or to one another.

Our hearts are healing, and we're preparing for our next step.

Alex will undoubtedly be a part of our lives forever. I still think about him and pray for him every single day. I know I will always do that. He is a part of us and always will be.

Among the many many things I learned while living in Jamaica, I learned that Adam and I love being parents. As I mentioned in a blog I posted while I was on the island, being a mommy far exceeded my dreams and hopes for the experience.

We truly loved every minute of it. Some days were hard and uncertain, but every day also brought a sense of joy that I can't truly define.

Adam and I have spent a lot of time lately in prayer and in seeking wisdom from family, friends, and mentors. After careful consideration, it is with great excitement and joy that I announce that we are pursuing a domestic adoption with our agency here in Texas.

We're uncertain of a timeline, and we know that nothing in this life is without the risk of pain. We also know that when you love hard sometimes you hurt hard, but we also believe that God is good and that sentiment continues to reign above all else in our hearts and minds.

I will end this update with a petition for prayers and encouragement. I'm not sure where we'd be if it weren't for the outpouring of love and prayers from friends, family, and even strangers.

It would be a falsehood to claim no sense of vulnerability in this step, but we're moving forward in faith.

Towards the end of church on Sunday I approached those altar steps. I came forward not with a sense of anger, sadness, or guilt, but rather with a sense of humility, gratitude, and hope. I knelt down,  bowed my head, clenched Adam's hand, and silently thanked God for what is to come.