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One month ago I didn’t imagine that I would be writing this post. One day ago I didn’t know how I would write it.  If I were to wait a day or two, it could become a week or two, and then I might be tempted to word it too carefully, or spin it in a particular way.

Then it occurred to me that the best thing to do is what I’ve always done – share honestly from my heart.

This morning Russ and I are traveling with Dimples to Montana.  While we plan to go out for dinner and swim at the hotel, the truth is that this is a heartbreaking trip because when we travel back on Tuesday, Dimples will not be with us. A series of events over the last few weeks has brought us to this decision.

We believe the program is a good fit for our family and is in line with our beliefs about helping children heal.  We will be very involved in her care and treatment, and expect we will be traveling to Montana regularly.  Our goal is to bring her home when the necessary healing has taken place.

I’ve cried many tears over this decision, yet we see the Lord’s hand in every single step we’ve taken.  He has clearly led us on this path and we are trusting Him in every moment.

We’ll be home on Tuesday and I may put on my pajamas and curl up in a ball for a couple of days – or God may give me unexpected strength.  Either way, my life is not my own, it belongs to Jesus and I will worship him.

Take my will and make it Thine
It shall be no longer mine.
Take my heart it is Thine own
It shall be Thy royal throne.
Take my love, my Lord I pour
At Your feet it’s treasure store
Take myself and I will be
Ever, only, all for Thee.


  1. Emily (Reply) on Monday 7, 2013

    O LORD, have mercy. Straighten what is crooked and bind up the broken, we pray.

  2. knitwgrace (Reply) on Monday 7, 2013

    I'm so sorry to hear that your heart is hurting. Praying for healing for all of you. You are a strong mama.

  3. Luana (Reply) on Monday 7, 2013

    No condemnation, Lisa. No guilt either. Be strong and of good courage. The story is not over yet.

  4. Leese (Reply) on Monday 7, 2013

    Praying for all of you in this transition – for Dimples, for you and Russ, and for the rest of the kids.

  5. Sara (Reply) on Monday 7, 2013

    A thousand prayers. You are a brave and honest mother. May He hold you tenderly.

  6. Pam (Reply) on Monday 7, 2013

    I read this with such a sick feeling,…imagining the pain that it took to get to this point. It's so hard…and so comforting to know that none of what we go through with our kids from the hard places surprises God. He called us to this path, to this place, knowing all of it…so hard to keep trusting. For me anyways! Prayers that your family can catch your breath, relax, renew, and hope for the future during this time of intensity. Prayers that Dimples can find true and lasting healing and help and hope for herself…that someday soon she will be ready to come home…to stay. Hugs and prayers for you all….and to all of us riding this crazy journey of healing with you.

  7. Alyssa (Reply) on Monday 7, 2013

    I recently talked with another mom who's family is going through the same thing… I can't imagine how hard. Praying for miracles of healing for all.

  8. darci (Reply) on Monday 7, 2013

    I really don't have adequate words. I can only imagine your pain and my heart is aching for you. You inspire me and convict me and bless me so often thru your posts. I will be praying for a good trip, for His perfect peace over each of you, rest. Love darci

  9. Deborah (Reply) on Monday 7, 2013

    I am praying for you now, and I will be praying even harder on Tuesday. I know from experience how this next part goes. When we left our little girl (where she is now really REALLY healing and doing so very well – by the way) at the end of March it was so hard. As we pulled out of the driveway I remembered something else I needed to tell her new caregiver…… as we drove out of town I wanted to drive away FASTER – I wanted to run from the emotions that were consuming me…… we drove quietly and calmly for several hours and then stopped to sleep for the night. We tried to enjoy a nice meal, just the two of us – but it was hard to shake the oppresive feelings that were swirling around us both.

  10. Deborah (Reply) on Monday 7, 2013

    When we got back to the room we cried – hard and loud – and I questioned God and asked Him WHY he did this to our family. It was torturous. The next day we drove the many more hours home in calm and quiet. When we arrived home we set about to setting order back to where chaos had been living……. in a day breathing became easier….. in a week the change in the atmosphere of the house was STUNNING. We know NOW that we did the right thing….. healing was fast to the ones here who were being so damaged by her chaos. Healing was quick to us as well – and we were so broken by our helplessness to bring her healing. And healing is coming to her – day by day – in a way that makes us so very sure that this is EXACTLY what God had planned all along. You will survive and thrive – God's plan is perfect.

  11. jan ranger (Reply) on Monday 7, 2013

    i read this mom's post tonight (they too had to send a daughter for healing outside their home) and i thought it was spot-on. you are so not alone…..

  12. Eileen (Reply) on Monday 7, 2013

    So sorry for the pain you're feeling. I've admired your strength and honesty during this journey. I know this was a path you've tried everything to avoid. But I can also hear in your words that there is still love and hope. With that, I'm sure there will still be progress. I'm so thankful that Dimples came to a family that would fight so diligently and prayerfully for her healing.

  13. Sharon (Reply) on Monday 7, 2013

    Praying for all of you. I cannot imagine all that you are going through and processing and praying over.

  14. Leese (Reply) on Monday 7, 2013

    I'm behind on Jesus Calling, this was yesterday's and was timely for me and thought you might be encouraged by it so I'm posting again (sorry!):

    Jesus Calling Daily Devotional – from January 6th

    I am able to do far beyond all that you ask or imagine. Come to Me with positive expectations, knowing that there is no limit to what I can accomplish. Ask My Spirit to control your mind, so that you can think great thoughts of Me. Do not be discouraged by the fact that many of your prayers are yet unanswered. Time is a trainer, teaching you to wait upon Me, to trust Me in the dark. The more extreme your circumstances, the more likely you are to see My Power and Glory at work in the situation. Instead of letting difficulties draw you into worrying, try to view them as setting the scene for My glorious intervention. Keep your eyes and your mind wide open to all that I am doing in your life.

    Ephesians 3:20-21 " Now all glory to God, who is able, through his mighty power at work within us, to accomplish infinitely more than we might ask or think. Glory to him in the church and in Christ Jesus through all generations forever and ever! Amen."

    Romans 8:6 "So letting your sinful nature control your mind leads to death. But letting the Spirit control your mind leads to life and peace."

    Isaiah 40:30-31 "Even youths will become weak and tired, and young men will fall in exhaustion. But those who trust in the Lordwill find new strength.They will soar high on wings like eagles.They will run and not grow weary. They will walk and not faint."

    Revelation 5:13 "And then I heard every creature in heaven and on earth and under the earth and in the sea. They sang:

    “Blessing and honor and glory and power

    belong to the one sitting on the throne

    and to the Lamb forever and ever.”

  15. Nancy (Reply) on Monday 7, 2013

    I'm not sure what to say. But sure that saying nothing isn't any help at all.
    I'll pray for your sweet girl and healing and peace in her heart. And yours too.

  16. Mary (Owlhaven) (Reply) on Monday 7, 2013

    Praying, Lisa.

  17. janeh1037 (Reply) on Monday 7, 2013

    I have known pain in my life, but not this pain and so I don't pretend to know what this is like. But I do know that we can pray for the Lord to come alongside you and to bring you great peace and that is what I will do. I pray healing for all involved and I pray discernment and wisdom for all those that make decisions with your precious daughter and that you and your husband would know exactly which decisions are from the Lord and which are not. God bless you and give you rest and peace. I love the name Dimples and she surely has earned it with her dimples…what a beautiful child.

  18. kristine (Reply) on Monday 7, 2013

    I'm so sorry. I'm praying for Dimples and you and your family. This may end up being the beginning of something truly wonderful for Dimples. A place to heal outside of the day to day responsibilities of her home life. I pray that it is. I pray that a year from now you are looking back in wonder at the beauty of this coming year. Peace.

  19. Leslie (Reply) on Monday 7, 2013

    Praying for all of you today and always. God is writing a story of redemption and healing, even in the hard uncertain parts, Praying you feel His presence and love for you and for Dimples in this transition. We love you guys.

  20. ahhodgman (Reply) on Monday 7, 2013

    Depending on the new school's policy about communications, your family may find it healing and fun to think of new ways to write Dimples. Round-robin letters and stories; a family competition where Dimples can be the judge of, say, "The Most Embarrassing Thing That Happened to Me This Week;" interviews with the family pets; valentines two weeks early ("because we couldn't wait") . . .

    Just having lots of you sit around the table working on mail to her can be a healing experience, and one that may allow for those helpful stray comments that show how her siblings are processing the experience. It also helps translate feelings of failure and despair into "I'm doing something to reach out"–useful for all ages.

    Once I sent my family an email list of noteworthy sounds in the house that day. The point is to transmit good feelings of home without implying that you're desolate OR better off without her there.

  21. Erin Fish (Reply) on Monday 7, 2013

    I'm so sorry. Thanks so much for your honesty, it's refreshing. I pray that God will show you Himself more than ever before. That his nearness would hold you up, and that healing would come from the great Healer Himself.

  22. FosterCareQandA (Reply) on Monday 7, 2013

    Oh, I'm so sorry for all of you to be put in the place of making this difficult decision. But it sounds like you've faced the facts and made the decision you had to make. Best of luck to all of you!

  23. shannoncl (Reply) on Monday 7, 2013

    I wish our ache could alleviate some for you. Praying. Rest in him.

  24. Mary (Reply) on Monday 7, 2013

    Sara Groves has a great line in her song, it's gonna be alright: "when some time has past us and the story can be told. It will mirror the strength and courage of your soul . . . "
    While we wait for time to pass, we are praying, praying with you and crying too and praying for that sweet girl whose journey is long behind her and long ahead and in the loving presence of God.

  25. Flora (Reply) on Monday 7, 2013

    You have helped me a great deal over the last year and a half since bringing our daughter home. I am praying for your family and dimples.

  26. Heidi (Reply) on Monday 7, 2013

    You are on my mind, in my heart, and in my prayers. Much love to you.

  27. The Busters (Reply) on Monday 7, 2013

    I am so sorry. Prayers for peace and comfort for all of you.

  28. Angela (Reply) on Monday 7, 2013

    Thanks again for your honesty, the hard, truthful, honest!!! I feel for you and your family so much and truthfully can not imagine, but after only a little over one year with our 7 year old from Ethiopia, I feel I can enter in by some small measure because of the issues we are dealing with as well (and what you have shared)….. Do take care and my thoughts are with you and your family at such a difficult time!

  29. Melodie (Reply) on Monday 7, 2013

    So many prayers of strength, grace and HOPE are being lifted for you and your precious family. KNOW that you are not alone…that God makes everything beautiful in HIS TIME. Oh that we wish HIS time would be swift.

  30. Nancy (Reply) on Monday 7, 2013

    It has been a couple days since I read this post. I wanted to come back. I'm still praying for you all. That you all find your peace and feel the Lord's hand upon you.

  31. Maple Walnut Mama (Reply) on Monday 7, 2013

    My warmest prayers & healing wishes to you and your loved ones.

  32. Kohana (Reply) on Monday 7, 2013

    Massive hugs, even though we're strangers. I will be praying for you and your whole family.

  33. Mary Thornton (Reply) on Monday 7, 2013

    Hi Lisa, I've just recently found you. And I have added prayers for you and your family to my daily prayers. I love your heart…the heart you show in your writing. We are a family with three college-age biological children and two younger children that we adopted from the foster care system who have been hurt and scared in their lives. They both come with some significant challenges. Our daily life is a dance….one step forward, two steps back, two steps forward, one step back. And no one we know is doing any better than us. In fact, the stories get scarier as the children get older. Please understand that we are not giving up. These are our children, and they deserve our best until our last breath. Like you, I have hope in God's grace and healing power, but it would help so much if I could find just one 'success' story. Do you know a family who has come through it all and the family is whole and happy and their traumatized children are really thriving, the way we want our children to thrive?

  34. Debbie (Reply) on Monday 7, 2013

    I believe this is where my friend's daughter is unless there is more than one place in Montana. Her daughter was not adopted, but has had many issues, culminating in attempted suicide. The place did help her and then she moved on to a boarding school for adolescents with mental health issues where she still resides.

    I don't know what you went through with Dimples, but it seems she was crying out for help that was not possible to give in a normal family situation. Thank God there are places where these children can go to heal. Thank God there are parents willing to get them the help they need. Hang in there!