March 31, 2008

Spring Term

Today is the first day of spring term for my daughter and me. She's taking two classes at a local community college, determined to get through school without incurring debt. "You go, girl!"

I am taking a music class (voice) and a writing class. I am a background vocalist/worship leader, and I am a proofreader. I would love to excel in both things, but I don't know what my future is in either venue. Simply put, I will worship God and sing to Him, as the psalmist says, "as long as I have breath".

As for proofreading, I still entertain doubts as to how I will make it my business, therefore I am also taking a course from Kathy Ide, of The Christian PEN. It's title is, "Establishing Your Freelance Business". I know I need to pray and clarify my mission statement, so that I can stay on track, so I will get to that sometime in the next few days. (Probably not today, since I must play with my little grandson!)

I could start it like this: "The desire and drive of my life is to stay close to God. (insert scripture here) To help me do this I remind myself of His first commandment, which is to love Him! If I love Him, I will want to spend time with Him, to listen to Him, to obey Him, to walk with Him, to talk about Him. If I love Him, I will obey His second commandment, which is to love my neighbor as myself. (That means I must love myself!) If I love Him, I will love the people that He made, and doing that will show them His love for them. This will easily translate into the practical - starting with getting my husband's dinner tonight and praying for my children."

How's that for a start?


March 26, 2008

Welcome Home, "K"!

It is so good to have you back home, "K"! You have always brought blessing and joy to us, and I knew this visit would be no different.

We adopted you in our hearts just weeks after you came to stay with us five years ago. Remember that I told you my goal was to have our home be "your last foster home"? I could tell that you had a deeper level of peace in your soul after that. We proved that we were committed to being your family, and that's what we became. Though you left us twice, we never saw you damaged by the disruptions. Wow.

We love you, "K".

It's funny how I am actually happy that we get to share you with your birth family AND your current foster family. It would have been unheard of to me just a few years ago! I was so sure that adoption was the best plan for you, for EVERY child, but God changed my heart. Wow, again.

Thanks for coming home again.

_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _

March 18, 2008

Metamorphoses-from child, to adult, to what?

I'm sure I spelled that right: metamorphoses has to be the plural form of metamorphosis. A very dramatic change. Yup, that's what happened to me, again!

Anyway, my insight of the week is this, that my entire bodily chemistry changed me in many ways, if not in EVERY way, from a young girl into a grown woman. That was just a few years ago. Okay, it was actually about forty years ago! I'm at the tail-end of the Baby Boomer generation, but maybe none of the others would admit it...that this change is just as real!

Hit me across the head with a two-by-four! My goodness! OUCH! I am no longer a mother of young children, okay, I'll say it...."I'm no longer a young mother", period!

I'll even be more honest - "I'm no longer young". gulp!

I wanted to use all my years of experience, all the wisdom of my age, the strength of my conviction and my heart-felt love for these children. I didn't have what it took to mother them the way that they needed. I couldn't drum it up. I couldn't create it. My bucket was empty.

I had to admit that my "mother of young children" bucket was empty.

I had changed. It was real. It was physical, chemical, emotional, in every way REAL. It was just as real as when my bean-pole shape at puberty changed into a curvy shape (and all those other changes little girls just don't want to talk about).

When I was engaged to be married thirty-one years ago I wrote in my journal that I was about to become, as a married woman, a "whole new butterfly". Now that this metamorphosis has occurred, what am I?

I'm going to post a copy of a cartoon of a figure sitting in the doctor's office after an examination. The figure appears to be an attempted drawing of a twisted, erratic, screaming human. The doctor is studying his chart, and his remark is: "There's nothing wrong with you, you're a Picasso!" (picture removed from site)

It gives me great comfort to know that I'm not "wrong", I'm just different now. Thank you, Jesus!


March 10, 2008

Why Our Foster Children Left After Three Days

The sweet little girl, "A", and her darling brother, "J", presented with far more difficulties than I could manage last week. It was humbling to me, as a professional MOTHER, to call for help after having them in my home just a few hours. Wow!

I anticipated that "J" was going to be a physical and mental challenge. I fell in love with the little guy, and thought I might be able to help him. The reason I had to throw in the towel was because I could find no way to keep him from being violent against his sister. Whether his autism is a correct diagnosis or not, he just didn't process information the way any of the children I've dealt with in the past have processed. Nothing I tried worked. Wow, again!

I decided I could tolerate the chairs being knocked over and legos everywhere, for now. I could duck the toys flying at my head, because his facial expression didn't show anger or hostility. Perhaps I could help him think of more acceptable games, eventually.

And we would have moments of peace when I was in the middle of the play, but it didn't last. Kicking, hitting, and throwing toys and other objects at her was practically incessant. By the end of the first day I decided he was a terrorist, literally. Sister spent much of her time in contact with my leg, screaming in terror, "he's going to throw that at me!"

It wasn't fair to her to be saddled with a parent who couldn't protect her. So, because of love, I let them go.

I can't say I failed them. I told many of my friends last week that I would endure anything for three days, then I would re-assess my committment. Three days is the amount of time Jesus spent in the tomb before He rose again. The world was totally lost without the Son of God. Three days later the LIGHT OF THE WORLD appeared again!

Anyway, I called the caseworkers the next day and asked them to relocate the children, and they were moved the third day. In answer to my prayers, I was told later that they had gone to an experienced family who had dealt with autism and difficult behaviors before. Thank you, God!

It took days for me to recover. My whole family was "frayed". We gave it all we had, and it didn't appear that we had helped them. Then I realized, as I worshipped in church Sunday morning, that these kids now had a serious "pray-er" on their side! I was so comforted by this thought that I named all my "babies" in prayer - all the children I had ever cared for. Incidently, when I got to the name of the oldest one, a teenager from a totally different race and culture than we are, I remembered that I had dreamt of him the night before. In my dream he was giving me a big, special "mom" hug. I sure needed that...

Thank You for Your comfort, Lord.


March 5, 2008

The Children Left My Door on Wednesday

It was a rough three days, but I'll have to explain more later...