Wednesday, September 24, 2003

infertility to hope

Infertility. That is something that happens to anonymous people out there, not to anyone I know, definitely not to me. Fortunately, I was wrong.

Fortunately? Don’t get me wrong, one of our deepest longings is still to have a baby . . . but God is so faithful. In His infinite wisdom, an amazing blessing has been born out of this pain.

Blessing . . . Last Thanksgiving, as mom and I were discussing yet another negative pregnancy test, she asked if we had ever thought about foster parenting. Not wanting to admit that we may never be able to conceive, I had been extremely defensive when anyone even mentioned adoption, but as I listened to mom tell me about a friend of hers who was a foster parent something just clicked. This is what we are meant to be doing . . . And I realized our family was going to look different.

Family. How I had always envisioned my family, and God’s vision for it were evidently two very different things. I had always thought of older people as being foster parents - probably because most are. (In our county we are probably the youngest foster parents they have.) I had never thought that I wouldn’t be able to have children, so I had always pictured a family of miniature Charles and Brookes - little redheaded, freckle faced babies with huge brown eyes. I had always pictured myself fat as can be for 9 months, loving every minute of it, (okay not every minute.) I had pictured my family probably how most of you pictured your families - beautiful, healthy babies that I would shield from everything bad in this world and always keep safe.

Safe. A word that our two precious foster children don’t know much of, but are daily learning more of. God’s picture of our family is beautiful, healthy, happy and safe. But it is for the children in our world whose parents don’t provide that for them. The children who haven’t been shielded from pain, but instead have known it everyday of their short lives. For children who will most likely be placed back into that same environment, while we hope they will find it safer than when they left.

Hope . . . A hard thing to hang onto when you know that in six months or a year they will be in a situation we cannot control. Hope comes in remembering that our sovereign, loving God is in control. He has a plan for these little lives. We hope that Damien will remember asking Jesus into his heart sitting on the bathroom floor, that Angel won’t forget the words to Jesus Loves Me. Hope that although they will probably never remember our faces, they will always feel our love and never forget this safe place.