the grace of twilight

a thousand years

This adoption process has me reduced to finding solace in “Twilight” quotes. Okay, it’s not quite that bad. It’s actually from a song written for one of the Twilight movies. I didn’t know that though when I first heard it. When I sat there and felt like someone had seen into my soul. Maudlin much? Picture me doing a Kristen Stewart type lip tremble here but with more facial expression.

I’m ashamed to admit this but way back when, shortly after we heard the first child we were matched with was dying, I wondered why our adoption journey had to be so hard. So painful and soul-rending. I wasn’t expecting a rose petal covered path but I was hoping that some almighty power would at least keep the thorny brambles cleared off of it.

But here’s the thing: if there was any fairness in this world my children would never have needed me in the first place. And there is something quite horrific about the arrogance of believing that God would make this easy on me when it wasn’t easy for my children’s other parents. Or for my children. He could easily keep every child from becoming parentless. He could stop death, war, and everything else that leaves babies vulnerable and alone. But He doesn’t.

So who am I to think that I would be spared pain and setbacks? Where was that part of the deal?

Comparison is an ugly thing. Always. Unless you’re comparing yourself to characters from trashy reality television. In which case comparison is one of the cheapest forms of therapy because compared to most of them my life totally and utterly rocks and I am a completely normal and sane person. But that aside, comparison in the adoption world can make you crazy. Because there’s always someone who gets a form faster than you. Who accepted a referral after you and got their baby home before you. Who seems to be getting the easy path.

And there’s a temptation to believe that it all means something. That it somehow has something to do with your worthiness and specialness and iamsogreatness. Or your unworthiness.

For the record I don’t think it does. I don’t think mountains that move are indications of an Almighty Power saying that I deserve something and the ones that don’t move aren’t indicating the opposite either. Because if I did, if I did believe that then what does that say about my belief towards my children’s other parents? Where was the mountain-moving when they needed it?

Theologians have been debating what is God’s will and what is man’s choice since the dawn of time. They’ll probably be debating it in the afterlife. Maybe there will be a whole section of heaven set up for it. It will be like the internet in physical (metaphysical?) form for all eternity. And some days I get caught up in that. I wonder why some are given so much and some are given so little, and the injustice of it all makes me want to resign from the human race and volunteer for a deep space mission to Mars. With apes.

But on the rest of the days I resign myself to the not knowing and I come back to this belief that I carry in my soul: Each of us were put on this earth for a reason, we were each entrusted with love and grace that is ours to hoard or to give away. And that’s all I’m doing, it’s all I know how to do. I’m just holding out the love I have and saying  – here, I have some extra – who can use it? Knowing that others have given me love and grace when I was the one needing it. And somehow I have to believe that all that love and grace melts together and oozes something beautiful. Not something that makes up for the ugliness of a broken word, but something beautiful none the less.

So yeah, I’m quoting Twilight today. Or it’s theme song. Or whatever. And thinking deep theological thoughts that can’t all be shared. And somewhere deep inside I’m holding thoughts of a little boy who I desperately wish will be in my arms sooner or later. Who I hope beyond words grows up in a family. Who I’ll love until the day I die. Who might someday read these words and curl up in a teenage ball of embarrassment. Sorry kiddo. Maybe use it as emotional blackmail to get me to buy you that new phone or laptop you’ve been bugging us for. Or, you know, a hovercar.

3 replies »

  1. I know I’ve said this before, and I’ll probably say it again, but I absolutely love and admire the way you completely * GET * adoption. The empathy you have for the pain and loss suffered by birth families, as well as our children, is an amazing example for anyone connected to adoption.

    And your writing is lovely too – even if you did quote the Twilight soundtrack.

  2. Oh, my…I love your sweet heart for adoption. It’s a topic close to our family’s heart these days, as my son and his wife await on matching child from India. Come visit! Nice to “meet” you!

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