Doing my Best to Tell it Well

Thank you so much for your gentle patience as I try to continue on with my story and Tell it Well.  I left you at the moment I received the most amazing email of my life, “Is this for real? I’m your son.”  You might think that the rest of the story is so happy that it would be nearly effortless to write, but that is not the case.  The email from my son (whom I dearly love) was the beginning of a long downward spiral for me.  The reunion I had dreamed of did not happen and I was quickly thrown into the midst of the most trying time of my faith.

It has been over 16 years, but it is still raw.  Conversations come back to me in snippets, I can see emails as they appeared on my screen and letters that came in the mail. I remember the faces of new friends who helped me through many hard days.  In the midst of the turmoil, I was also struggling with a severe health crisis with an autoimmune disorder while trying to care for five young children.

I look back on those years in Colorado and it is a murky blur.  As I attempted to write yesterday, I had to email my friend, Emily, to ask her about a detail I couldn’t recall. I find myself wanting to call old friends, and last night I needed to talk through some of it with Russ.

Yet in all of the struggle and confusion, Jesus was there.  He never stopped loving me, loving Nick, or being a good and sovereign God.  I look back and I know that He had a purpose in my son and I finding each other when we did and in the way we did -but wow, I still struggle.  I can’t fold my hands, put a smile on my face and tell you in a sweet voice that I just trusted Jesus and everything turned out just right.  It was brutal.

Please bear with me a little longer.  This is a story that I want to tell well, to the glory of God – whom I love so much.

On a lighter note, we are having a crazy snowstorm here in north Idaho.  Wednesday night, it rained on top of the snow and then froze again making our front yard look like an ice rink.  Classes were canceled at the university yesterday, which didn’t help Russ much since he doesn’t teach on Tuesday or Thursday.  Isaiah was happy not to have his two dual-enrolled classes at the high school.  Honeybee and Dimples had school, which was a good thing for Dimples since unstructured days are one of her worst triggers.

I’ve been working harder at being a fun mom, so I put on Russ’ snow clothes and went out to play with Sunshine, Eby, and Little Man.  Sledding is fun and climbing back up the hill in deep snow is a good workout!  We had a great time and I took a few unflattering, but happy photos.

If you are anywhere near the Northwest, I hope you will try to make it to the Refresh Conference.  There will be great speakers and adoptive/foster parents gathered to encourage one another.  I hope this is the first year of an annual event.

#671 – 680 giving thanks

Refresh Conference in one week

a tractor with a snowplow blade

a husband who likes to plow snow

audio books to listen to while plowing

sore muscles from playing hard with the kids

electricity while many in our town have none

Honeybee’s happy face when she learned that school is closed today

pumpkin muffins

our niece getting married tomorrow

wool socks

Have a great Friday.

Lisa

 

 

 

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Let me introduce myself. Russ and I are the parents of twelve children by birth and adoption, and sometimes more through foster care. I'm the creator of One Thankful Mom which has been as much of a gift to me as to my readers. In 2011 I became a TBRI® Pracitioner* and have lived and breathed connected parenting ever since. I'm deeply honored to be the co-author, together with the late Dr. Karyn Purvis, of The Connected Parent; it is her final written work. I love speaking at events for adoptive and foster parents. I'm also the co-founder of The Adoption Connection, a podcast and resource site for adoptive moms. I mentor and encourage adoptive moms so you can find courage and hope in your journeys of loving your children well.

0 Comments

  1. adoptingmama
    January 20, 2012

    I will be at the Refresh Conference and very much look forward to a time of sweet renewal. I hope to get a chance in person to tell that your blog is so very helpful. It helps me realize that I am not alone and it gives validity to the notion that this adoptive road while awesome is very hard at times too. Thank you for that!

    Reply
    1. Lisa Qualls
      January 20, 2012

      That's great! Be sure to introduce yourself – I look forward to meeting you.

      Reply
  2. Mama Ds Dozen
    January 20, 2012

    Oh my! I've never heard about the conference. I would love to go. I would love to see you. I am going to definitely try to work this out.

    On a funny note … I was reading the list of breakout sessions to Jim and my teens and my 18 year old son asked, "Is there a session on 'How to fix holes in the wall?'" Yes. Little Miss put two holes in the wall yesterday. "Accidentally", of course.

    Laurel

    Reply
    1. Lisa Qualls
      January 20, 2012

      I hope you can make it, Laurel! Please spread the word.

      Reply
  3. Heidi
    January 20, 2012

    Oh Lisa, I just wanted to write that I am Starbucks right now and will say a special prayer for you as share this dear part of your journey. I think I speak for everyone when I say, please do not feel pressured share your story at a rate you are not comfortable with. You are so special and I look forward to learning from you, whenever it is you are ready to "tell it well." 🙂

    Reply
  4. charity
    January 20, 2012

    it is one of my greatest trials to cope with the difference between how a situation plays out and how i EXPECT that situation to unfold, i'm sure there is a level of trust i need to reach there with god…

    Reply
  5. Kelli
    January 20, 2012

    I love the pictures of you playing in the snow with your children. I know these will be great memories for them to treasure 🙂 I, too, tend to be a "responsible" mom before being a "fun" mom, but I'm working on it too. Thankful for those moments when God gives me ideas & fun & joy beyond my normal self. Thanks for being honest about your life & struggles — both the big & the small are an encouragement to me. Hope you have a great weekend!

    Reply
  6. Melissa Yoder
    January 20, 2012

    I just spent about 15 minutes trying to articulate why the Tell It Well series is so special to me, but I don't think I can. In short, my son was born when I was 17. Granted, it was 1997, when teenage pregnancy was more of an epidemic than a rarity, but I think the fear, worry and love that a pregnant teen feels is pretty timeless. Basically … thank you.

    Reply
  7. Lori
    January 21, 2012

    Just wanted to say to you that I admire your patience in wanting to tell your story well and not just spitting it all out without very much thought. You are wise in taking your time and letting the Holy Spirit guide your words and not being driven only by your memories and emotions. Anyway, just wanted to encourage you! Have a great weekend.

    Reply
    1. Lisa Qualls
      January 21, 2012

      Thank you, Lori. For some reason, this is getting harder – not easier! Hopefully this weekend….

      Reply
  8. Robin
    January 21, 2012

    Dear Lisa,
    I have just read all the posts in your Tell It Well series. I am so grateful for your honesty in sharing such a personal story. I know the Lord is being glorified in your sharing. Praying for you today as you work through the best way to tell the rest if the story. Psalm 34:22 "The LORD redeems the life of his servants; none of those who take refuge in him will be condemned." Have a great weekend, Robin

    Reply
    1. Lisa Qualls
      January 21, 2012

      Robin, thank you for the beautiful and encouraging scripture.

      Reply
  9. Sara
    January 23, 2012

    We were one of those Northwest families that went without power for several days. Ours just came back on this morning. I have been so blessed to be able to benefit from the telling of your story. I remain so, so grateful to you for telling it, telling it well, and telling it in the right time. Thank you for that. Thank you, also, for mentioning the Refresh conference. This was the first I had heard of it. I just submitted my registration this evening. I'm so excited to be able to be a part of it! I'd love to be able to say hello.

    Reply
  10. Nicholas
    January 23, 2012

    Tell it the way you feel you should. No regrets, just honesty. I love you.

    Reply
  11. learningpatience
    February 18, 2012

    Unflattering – no way! Those pics of you and your kids are gorgeous! Your smiles – awesome!

    I'm slowly but surely finding my way back to some "down" time, and I have so enjoyed reading your Tell It Well posts. Thank you for sharing your story.

    Reply

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