Saturday, August 7, 2010

Coming to Peace...

I am slowly coming to peace with some choices we have had to make. From my viewpoint, we were presented with several options, none of which I liked. The only option I did actually like, is not an option. No go, off the table. Nothing I can do will make it an option at this point. So I sat down with my other options, and weighed out the pros and cons of each. The problem is, that most of the options I felt I could live with, had huge cons for myself and beloved husband. Probably the kind of cons that would have us checking into a double occupancy rubber room. The options that "worked" in any way for us and the family as a whole, seemed to not work for one of our especially challenging children. I have been circling, and researching, and filling out forms, and scratching my head. I have had endless emails and phone calls. Every night I have gone to bed discouraged and restless, but each morning I have awoken full of resolve to make the right choice, regardless of the cost.

The funny thing is this. Every time I would get going in a track, and would be getting excited about the possibilities, something would come to light regarding this challenging child. Something that would stop me in my tracks, and make me question the track I was currently on. Again and again it has happened, to the point that I am able to predict that if I get an energizing phone call or email, I will also get news of some wonky behavior within the hour. It might be new wonky behavior, or just old stuff coming to light. But invariably, the new awareness always seems to put the current proposed course of action in serious question.

The other morning we were dealing with wonky, and it just came over me, that we should not change anything at all. That we were to just stay the current course, even though it has all the earmarks of failure. That's the matter what we try, once the novelty has been wrung out of it, it always begins to look like failure. And like any parent, adoptive or otherwise, I start to put things under the microscope and look for alternatives. What am I doing wrong? What do I need to change? How can I rally the resources to make the needed change?

The other day I was visiting with a missionary friend, who is currently contemplating change, and had been really unsettled about what course she should take. She was so afraid that she would go her own way, and miss God's will, that she was actually propelling herself toward that which was hardest, and even most distasteful to her, in fear of shirking the difficult call. In a time of intense prayer, a friend told her they felt impressed by God to ask her, "What do you want to do?" This was so shocking to her system, that her reaction was actually physical.

I felt, the other morning, in the midst of chaos, that same impression. "What do you want to do?" I realized I didn't want to do anything at all. I wanted to stay the course we had begun, in spite of the fact that on many levels it appears to have failed. I realized that I was willing to make a change, even a change that would cost me dearly, but that my willingness was not confirmation that change should occur. I also realized that every bit of what appeared to be failure, had nothing to do with me or my choices. It had nothing to do with me shirking hard work, or my willingness to love or serve my daughter, or the rest of my family.

Most, if not all, of the failure results from my daughter's inability to make good choices for herself. It isn't even for me to try and sort out how much blame should sit on her shoulders, or how much of it she is led to by her traumatic history. I just know it doesn't rest on my shoulders. Not that I don't feel the weight of it. I do. And I am willing to continue helping to carry that weight, as any mother, adoptive or otherwise, would.

And anyhow, I'm getting used to this looking like failure gig. I realize that what looks like success in so many young people is just smoke and mirrors, and what looks like failure is often the building blocks for something real and good. I'm willing to bet on that, even though at times it's hard to believe in.


Lisa said...

You could be talking about school for us here. I have struggled with what to do with several (okay, 4) of my most challenged learners. Every year I struggle and question and pray and every year seems like another failure. What's best for them? What's best for our family? What's best for ME? Is what is best for them going to send me to a mandatory 72 hr. "vacation" and I will still end up feeling like I've failed them? I have gotten to the point where I KNOW that I'm working my hardest and that they need to do their part (definitely not seeing it happen), but they aren't doing it for me - so what then? I have researched schools ad nauseum and tried every option out there to some capacity. I have home schooled and will again this year and yet I keep thinking there has got to be something that will click, some program, something to make them love (or even like) learning. I never thought I'd want my kids in school this badly. I feel so selfish for wanting them gone during the day. The fallout from them if they are in another whole struggle. I'm sure peace will come (at some point), but I'm not quite there yet. Or I think I am, then it starts all over again. I hope your situation resolves soon - it's emotionally exhausting to not find the answers in your own time.

Lisa S. said...

Scraps your blogs are so touching. Would love to post this on our website (anonymous of course) - let me know.
Lisa S.