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Thursday, February 18, 2010

Forced Stillness

Last night I spent several hours staring at my computer screen, trying to think funny. And I just wasn't feeling it. I'm still not feeling it. My whiny posts from last week (okay, okay... and this week) masked some other things going on in my life at the moment. Being stuck at home amid the snowy, unplowed streets, unable to distract myself, forced me to stop and be still.

Sometimes it's hard to be still.

(And the husband, the Tongginator and I are all okay.)

Some other things are not.

Yet another friend is moving away. Typically I handle that type of situation fairly well, for obvious reasons, but I've said goodbye to close friends way too often these past six years... to Anne, Organic Nerd, Georgia Peach and, of course, my next-door neighbor and friend Rosie, who moved on to heaven last fall. A couple of weeks ago, one of the neighborhood moms noticed how close Dory and I seem to be growing. Which is wonderful. Except she's a military wife. And my neighbor summed up the situation with this little gem: "boy, TM, you sure know how to pick 'em."

Why yes, I DO know how to pick 'em, thankyouverymuch. I have excellent taste in friends.

It just stinks that they always leave.

We're also dealing with something else that's pretty big. Something I can't really share in detail because it's not my story to tell. What I CAN say - have been given permission to say - is that one of the Tongginator's friends underwent testing for cancer (lymphoma) last weekend. She's six-years-old. And, thankfully, we discovered on Monday that it's NOT cancer, but it IS something. Not something life-threatening, Thank You Jesus, but it's not exactly good news either.

Which also stinks.

And then there's the wait. And what can I say about the wait except that we're... waiting. I know most of you understand what I mean when I say that. I know that I am not owed another child - any child, for that matter - but it's difficult to see my daughter with tears in her eyes as she sneaks glances at sisters cuddling or playing together. And it's hard to deal with all of the questions, from people who know the China-adoption process and from people who don't. If I hear "why haven't you switched to special needs?" one more time, I think I just might scream. And the judgment... oh, the judgment that comes with that question, from so many.

When did it become more spiritual to adopt a child with special needs rather than to wait on the Lord's timing? One is not more spiritual than the other... what is spiritual is following God's will for your life. And God? Actually wants some to wait. Waiting on the Lord, stepping into the world of special needs adoption... they BOTH take faith. And obedience.

The Husband and I continue to take our cues from God.

Even when we'd rather not.

So anyways, that's where I am right now. Which isn't an uplifting or pleasant place to be. Which means I'm gonna take a blogging break for a few days while I get my act together. It's not that I don't want to be real and raw with y'all... I think if you've read here for awhile, you know that... it's just that I only believe in transparency with a purpose. Whining and ranting about big stuff and little stuff that feels big because I'm ignoring the big stuff... well... that doesn't help anyone.

Especially me.


Andrea said...

TM - thank you for being real! Praying for you!

Sherri said...

Probably people who have asked why you haven't chosen SN adoption don't even realize how they sound. I know, it doesn't change the feelings that come when you are asked such a question. It goes along with questions such as "Wouldn't you rather have one of your OWN?" "Why adopt from China? There are so many American kids that need to be adopted." And so on.

I've done "healthy child" and "sn" adoption and I've been asked why I would choose to adopt an imperfect child.... You're right, TM, SN adoption is a calling on your life. And like everything else, this is an area where you don't want to be outside of God's will.

Where are you in the process? How long is the process these days?

Hang in there. I'll pray that God provide you with a friend that is staying around for a while.

Aus said...

Ya'll just rant to your hearts content! As a 'fellow' adoptive parent - ya'll just feel free to grow your family how you dang well please! (I feel better having said that - and can you tell that people commenting on adoption in general as a way to grow a family is a pet peeve? - didn't think so!)

Prayers for your friend and her child - and anytime one of your friends is moving - well - feel free to send them our way - always room for another member in the 'fold'! ;)

hugs - aus and co.

Sherri said...

I also want to add that healthy child adoption (or whatever they're calling it now) is also a calling on your life.

Wanda said...

Oh TM, I hear ya! The wait is really tough, especially on the waiting sibling. They don't understand - may even take it as a personal rejection (and oh, we need more of those now, don't we?). From a practical standpoint, I remember thinking near the end - if I move over to SN's now, will I mess up my turn? You are getting so close - hangin there. It WILL happen and TM will get her little sister - the one God has chosen for her.

Losing friends - moving away. Not easy and sad. I found out yesterday that good friend will be moving. Someone who I was hoping would share good times with the kids, as ours are similar ages and backgrounds. It stinks. That's all! I'm sorry you've had to say good-bye to so many these past 6 years.

Take your break - see ya when you get back.

Deb said...

TM....I feel so for you! As you know we have BTDT....and it is tough! I have to say that it makes the referral even sweeter this time around once it finally arrives! I am thinking about you along with so many others who just wait and wait!

Blessings to you all during this hard time!


Dawn said...

I'm so sorry, TM, that you're at this point in life - especially that so many things have seemed to converge at once. I completely understand the pain to friends moving except that I am usually the one who moves. It's tough. And I won't patronize you with statements like, "That just means God has new friends for your life" because, while I know it's true, it really doesn't help to hear right now. I know.

Take a break and regroup. I'll be praying for you!

bbmomof2boys said...

Military friends...yeah, we live in a military town and have seen many friends move away. Its hard...

One thing about SN adoption. Like you said BOTH types of adoption is truly a huge step in Faith. All you can do is pray and listen to what he is telling you. If that is to wait then that's what you do. I know its hard. I think I would have truly driven everyone nuts by now if we were still waiting. But God spoke to us and then showed us how his hands were on our adoption from the very start. The.very.start!

You are so right...in HIS time!

Many hugs chick


Amie said...

Praying for the T's little friend. And for her family. and for you.

Hugs, friend.

autumnesf said...

LOTS of heavy stuff! Hugs to you friend.

And as one of those military wives.... thank you for being willing to be a friend. It's downright sick how many women will walk away and not want to be friends when they find out. Far, far more than will step up and be a friend anyways. I could write a whole book on this subject.

BAD FORM! To all those women that aren't willing to expend time and energy on those that need them the most!!!

pattykake said...

'I will set my face to seek the LORD! Give my full attention to my God. I will listen for HIS voice.'

Annie said...

Will be thinking about you TM!!!

Dorsey said...

First and foremost, take care of YOU! I can understand not feeling inspired or funny..that very thing have me taking several months off from blogging. You'll be back to yourself soon enough, and we'll all be here when you are.

And I happen to agree that you are AWESOME at picking friends! hehe

L said...

Hang in there TM, you have to do what is best for you and your family. We had a SN file in our hot little hands a couple of weeks ago, after much prayer and discussion we decided against this sweet little one. It just wasn't right. I know we could have loved her and been a great family for her, but it did not feel like God's plan for us right now. I have had regret and sorrow over this but am still confident it was the right decision.

Out time will come, take the time now to take good care of your self. Thanks for being so open and honest, I know it helps me to hear others struggling with the same issues. Thanks Deb for the encouragment about how sweet it is to finally recieve that referral.

Janet said...

TM, I'm thinking of you and praying for you. The valleys can be pretty low, can't they? May the peace that passes all understanding abide in your heart through Christ Jesus our Lord.


Donna said...

It all makes perfect sense to me. And I totally agree with you on the SN vs NSN thing. I'm sorry people got self-righteous on you about that. As far as I'm concerned, it's like the old "why didn't you adopt a kid from the USA" remark. As if one kind of child is better or worse than another? I admire the heck out of you for being able to wait. I know my limitations (and I'm getting OLD!) so a much quicker SN adoption made perfect sense to me. But that's the beautiful thing about choice -- we all get to exercise it individually.

I hope the snow melts and the sun comes out and warms your heart and spirit. It sounds like you could use that. Plus a hug.


Our Blog: Double Happiness!

Super Mommy said...

Aww, hugs to you Tonggu Mom...when it rains it pours, doesn't it. I'm sure being stuck in the house is not helping the situations at all either.

I can't even imagine waiting like you have. I'm hearing the wait now is 8 years...yes, E I G H T...I'm sure it feels like 8 years to you.

I imagine you make friends easily...you have such a great personality. I love that the Internet can keep ppl closer now, FB, email, blogging...I know it's not the same as seeing your friends, but it's still contact.

Hope you are feeling back to your fun-loving self soon!!

Patty O. said...

Wow, you really are dealing with a lot right now, and you are not whining at all. Though I do appreciate your effort to not whine and rant "about big stuff and little stuff that feels big because I'm ignoring the big stuff." I can really relate to that!

I so wish you didn't have to deal with any of this--losing a friend is so hard, even if it is due to moving. I think it gets harder and harder to find really good close friends the older we get, so it sure isn't easy when one moves away.

And the wait? Well, heck, I pretty much think you have the patience of a SAINT for how long you have had to wait. And you don't whine about it. I know I would!

I admire your faithfulness and your reliance on the Lord. I need to do that so much more.

Good luck!

Carla said...

{HUG} I so know what you mean about picking friends who end up not being local after all.

As far as going SN or not, I'm sorry you have gotten those kinds of comments in those kind of voices. You know could go SN, and at this point I believe that everyone waiting NSN is well aware of that and they have made a choice to stay there for a reason...a reason I (or anyone else) needs to know.

LucisMomma said...

Hugs, TM. I am one of those military brats who moved a lot...and so, I've shut down just about any shred of "friend-making" that I had within me. It's just too painful, combined with my own growing up experience, I just want to hide out. Cyber-friendships are just about the only kind of friendship I'm halfway good at. Thank God for you reaching out to make friends with those who need them.

Prayers for you all, and for T's friend and family. You go on and take care of your family, as you ought to. :) Come back when you feel right about it.

Elouise82 said...

So sorry for this hard time ... sometimes it feels like everything comes crashing in at once, doesn't it? Hopefully this time of quietness and rest will bring you a measure of peace.

thegypsymama said...

Your willingness to wait is a spiritual testimony like none other. And the good-byes, oh the good-byes. I feel that one all the way down to my pinkie toe. It's 2 years this month since I was last home. It hurts everywhere. People aren't meant to be separated from one another. Unity in flesh and spirit is where it's at.

Take your time - we hear you.

And heart you.


prechrswife said...

(((((Hugs))))) and prayers...

Half Gaelic, Half Garlic! said...

I am sorry you are in a funky place right now...... I feel your pain my friend!!!

I know the last few weeks have been especially rough on you......thinking of you and your sweet friend's little girl.

Enjoy your break..... you will feel better when you come back!



Aunt LoLo said...

Have you read "Oh the Places You'll Go" recently?

This post sounds like that book...only de-Seussified. *grin*

I'm always here if you want to vent...and American Idol is coming! Are you "in" this year for our Game? LOL

Lisa said...

Oh, sending some thoughts & prayers your way ~ for all of you, for the daughter that you have yet to meet & for that sweetpea (friend of TG's) battling something serious.

I hope a bit "sunshine" winds its way to you.......


CC said...

Hugs! May this wait be short and pass by sooooo quickly. And no more moves. Unless you are moving here of course!

Briana's Mom said...

Just know I'm thinking of you. This wait is so grueling. I was a basket case waiting 19 months. I can't even imagine what it feels like now.

Switching to special needs - that is a HUGE decision. A life changing one. It is wonderful when people choose that path, but it is certainly not for everyone. And there is absolutely nothing wrong with not choosing it. You know what is right for you and your family.

Stay strong...

Raina said...

My sister and I were both NSN adoptions, don't know if they really did anything else back then (although I was an older child, but don't think that was even differentiated). All children deserve families. We went the SN route and she is perfect for us. Stay strong. A little darkness is good for the soul.

Flamingo Mama said...

blogging breaks rock! we will all still be waiting:)

i can understand your explaining pain of sn vs nsn. i felt this explaination guilt when my "SN" child ended up being "NSN" because we now know she has no SN's and I felt almost guilty about that...what? that's just dumb isn't it?

anyway...i think it takes way more faith to wait....so you are now in sainthood:)

The Drinkwaters said...


I've been reading your blog for a little while now. I always appreciate the links you provide to help me consider and be aware of different viewpoints.

We decided to adopt through the WC program, but I would never ask nor assume/tell another person how to form their family. I'm sorry you have had this question asked of you (possibly numerous times).

I hope you can find some peace and balance during your next few days "off".

Sharie said...

We all need to take a break sometimes to get perspective - it always seems to pile on at once.
I hope you've loaded some good songs on that iPod. A couple that will let you get a good cry in - then many that will get you dancing with the Tongginator...cause there really isn't anything like a good dance with your baby to shake the blues away:)

HubeiMama said...

Sorry you're feeling bummed out - for all the reasons you mentioned. And I selfishly hope your blogging break is short because I so enjoy your writing.

If you lived closer I'd take you out for a hot chocolate with lots of whipped cream and a long chat. Cookies, too.

I do feel your pain on the long wait vs. SN comments. I also feel that, at this time, we are supposed to wait. I try very hard to avoid NSN v. SN discussions because I have many concerns that some families are choosing the SN route because it's 'faster' and not because they are truly prepared for the reality. My goddaughter has an uncommon heart defect and it's been profoundly difficult to watch her and her parents go through some of the issues they have had to face. I KNOW that my family is not in a place to take that on right now or maybe not ever. So we wait, too...

Magi said...

These are some hard times. The wait just plain sucks. It has to have been one of the hardest times in my life. It truly is the not knowing that makes it so hard.

Feel free to vent away on YOUR blog. I know that when times got really tough for me it really helped to put it all out there.

Hartley said...

It looks like you have many people that are thinking of you, but I wanted to leave you a comment too.

I can realte to so much of what you are saying, but mostly the feeling of sitting at the computer attempting to be in a better mood.

I posted twice today--what was on my mind--and some humor to remind me that the sun is shining and that no matter how much life is throwing at me right now, I will make it.

And you will too.

My thoughts and prayers are with you, your friends (wherever they may be), your daughter's friend, and of course, the child you are waiting for.


Michal said...

Listen TM, don't you let those crazy insensitive folks get you all riled up. I always say that just because we adopt our children does not mean that we have to save the world. We do what is right for our families. We go where our hearts tell us to go. I also think that people who think there is a huge difference between the SN program and NSN program are a bit naive. Every child deserves love and a home to call their own and a family that is theirs. That's the bottom line. God does work in mysterious ways.
I look at all of the little signs and signals that I have had along the way on both adoptions and I get how important it is to just listen and do what you know to be the right thing. Not the RIGHT THING, but the right thing FOR YOU AND YOUR FAMILY.
I have had a bad week myself, waiting. It sure can wear you down. I am suffering from a horrible cold and I know that I ended up with it because my body was so worn down from the stress and agony of waiting. The thing about waiting is, that someday, it's over. Someday we are there in that room and reaching for that little body. That child.
Hang in there.

a little leprechaun said...

Hey TM! Feelin' ya, feelin' ya. Stay strong and chin up. Appreciate your honesty. Please let me know if there is anything I can do. Perhaps you could use a road trip! Ever been to STL?? ;-)

(((BIG HUGS)))

Michelle said...

Saying a prayer for you and for T's friend. We won't be going anywhere, so enjoy your break!

Kristy said...

TM....always remember if HE brings you to it, HE will bring you through it!!! Keep looking UP!!

Love and blessings, Kristy

Mei Mei s and Mayhem said...

So sorry to hear about little T friend, how scary! Sorry you are having a hard time. {{HUGS}} and enjoy your break!!

discombobulated said...

Thinking of you. I'm sorry things are difficult and that the wait is so unfair. Hugs to you, TM, and TD.

alece said...

i heart you.

and i so appreciate your transparency in this post.

Meia said...

Barely relating to this post, but I'm really interested to see that you seem...please pardon me if this offends in its bluntness...very religious. From your fairly regular posts or comments relating to God/prayers, I've noticed this. I've been thinking about doing a blog post on religion and adoption...but I'm interested in asking around a bit first to get a sense of how religion and adoption might come together for you.
I am NOT religious at all, by the way. Maybe that's why I'm a little fascinated by the idea that the two topics seem to be somehow connected (or simply in my head...) I'd be interested in any thoughts you have on the topic, anyhow.

Keep up the writing, but on your own terms :)


wenjonggal said...

Briana's Mom said:
Switching to special needs - that is a HUGE decision. A life changing one.
and Michal said:
I also think that people who think there is a huge difference between the SN program and NSN program are a bit naive.

Hmmm, I hate to say, I am one who lately has asked (to a list, not necessarily a particular person, though it may amount to the same) if there are particular reasons why people are staying in NSN instead of considering what SN they would welcome... I guess I considered it a HUGE decision to adopt, period. I knew that it was a crapshoot. Genetics, prenatal, birth, early childhood, drugs, alcohol, etc etc... I had two adopted siblings as a kid and knew that things (in NSN adoptions) can just go all sorts of ways. When I heard what the wait would be like (my LID was Sept 2006) I switched pretty fast to SN after meeting a lot of SN kids adopted by people at my agency. I really couldn't tell them apart from the NSN ones, and so many of the NSN ones had as many or more issues (health, development, learning, emotional) as the SN ones. Funny, but I was more concerned about missing babyhood, and having a boy not a girl (I am a single mom) than if the kid was missing a finger or needed braces. So, I have probably been guilty of questioning people who are in obvious pain and distress waiting. Personally, I think I would have gone off the deep end waiting for 8 yrs (I was already 43 in 2006).

And now I can relate to the commenter above who says they feel almost guilty about having so few issues to deal with their SN kid... like I "jumped the line" and got this great kid who is healthy as a horse. He has to have speech therapy, and some work done on his cleft in a couple years, but didn't need so much as a checkup for the past two years.

Anyways, I suppose this is too long, but I recognized myself in your post. Sorry! But yeah, the WAIT, I totally sympathise with you. Hang in there. Glad you have your faith.

And so sorry to hear about the little girl with health issues. Thank god it isn't cancer, but many other things are just as bad. Take care.