Isaiah is a Rockstar

I’m heading home this morning from Refresh; what an amazing event! The highlight for me was speaking with Isaiah. He stole the show with his very transparent thoughts about being a sibling of children from “hard places”.  What a joy it was to hear him speak and then watch the crowd respond with a standing ovation.  My heart was full.

Next year Isaiah can be the main speaker and then say, “Now I’ll have my Mom come up and speak for seven minutes.”  Pretty certain everyone will love it.

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. Acceptance with Joy
    February 10, 2013

    I don't know what exactly he said obviously, as I was not there…. but I can guess. My girls have been incredible and have grown and learned so much and been a blessing and have appreciated the journey with the twins in ways that amaze me! When they speak their heart on the matter it makes EVERYTHING worth it all. I would love it if you could share what he said.

    Reply
    1. Lisa Qualls
      February 10, 2013

      Wouldn't it be great to gather our kids' thoughts sometime? His talk will be up in a week or so on the Refresh website.

      Reply
  2. Erin
    February 10, 2013

    Where can we hear his talk?

    Reply
    1. Lisa Qualls
      February 10, 2013

      Coming soon on the Refresh website. Thanks, Erin.

      Reply
  3. Mary (Owlhaven)
    February 10, 2013

    That's awesome– I would have loved to hear him!

    Mary, momma to many

    Reply
    1. Lisa Qualls
      February 10, 2013

      Mary, he'll make you cry – and I'm sure it will hit home for you too.

      Reply
  4. Paula
    February 10, 2013

    How great!

    Reply
  5. jatimmer
    February 10, 2013

    Thank you so much for sharing, Isaiah! It was so powerful. I want to say so much more but I don't know how to put into words how precious it was to hear you give God glory for the suffering He has called you and your family to walk through. Thank you for being so transparent.

    Reply
    1. Lisa Qualls
      February 10, 2013

      I'll be sure he sees your comment. Thank you.

      Reply
  6. Natalie
    February 10, 2013

    He was incredible! I wanted to ask him to come to Olympia every know and then to mentor my bio boys 🙂 Thanks for taking the time to even chat with a few of us!

    Reply
    1. Lisa Qualls
      February 10, 2013

      Thanks, Natalie. It was great visiting with you. Next year we'll do it again!

      Reply
  7. Amy D
    February 10, 2013

    Would love to hear a summary of his thoughts! Because I worry about the siblings in our family.

    Reply
    1. Lisa Qualls
      February 10, 2013

      I hear you, Amy. You can hear his talk soon, on the Refresh website.

      Reply
  8. Laura
    February 10, 2013

    Isaiah was wonderful and brutally honest. Your talk was also wonderful and I was so proud of you and what you shared. You are truly an amazing woman and sister.

    Reply
    1. Lisa Qualls
      February 10, 2013

      Thank you, Laura, and thanks for coming to hear us. I loved having you there.

      Reply
  9. Rebecca
    February 10, 2013

    What an awesome young man with an incredible message!!! Thank you both for sharing your hearts! And thanks to your cousin, as well! That breakout session on connection was so helpful!!! My brother-in-law, a foster dad, said that session had the most helpful strategies he received all weekend! Clearly, we were richly blessed by your family!!!

    Reply
    1. Lisa Qualls
      February 10, 2013

      Rebecca, it was such a joy to see you. Thank you for the feedback and encouragement; I hope to see you in Denver soon.

      Reply
  10. Kara
    February 10, 2013

    I have attended "Created for Care", a similar retreat on the east coast and have thought that I.wished there was a camp for siblings of our kids. I get so much out of just being with other moms that share the same struggles. I know my children would too.

    Reply
    1. Lisa Qualls
      February 10, 2013

      Kara, I agree, our children need support, just like we do.

      Reply
  11. Jessica
    February 10, 2013

    We're also eager to hear his talk. I hope you'll post it soon. We'd planned to attend Refresh this year, but decided against it, as the month is already really busy for us. I'd like to catch some of the talks from the conference soon though.

    Reply
    1. Lisa Qualls
      February 10, 2013

      Jessica, I hope you can make it next year – it was such a wonderful conference. I'll be sure to let you all know when it is on the Refresh website.

      Reply
  12. Emily
    February 10, 2013

    I love Isaiah! love, em

    Reply
    1. Lisa Qualls
      February 10, 2013

      Me too, Emily.

      Reply
  13. Teresa Valluzzi
    February 10, 2013

    Isaiah was a rockstar indeed! He made my heart sink and I felt his Spirit floating around the room and touching all of our own sorrow. Being such a deep person at the age of 18 shows how much Isaiah has let God work within in his life, daily. Lisa, you both are rockstars. I so much enjoyed you as well for the first time in person, and coming to your workshop releaved me once more your kindness, wholeness and deep connection you have with God and every member of your family. At times, I wish I was your neighbour.

    Reply
    1. Lisa Qualls
      February 10, 2013

      Thank you, Teresa – it was a beautiful moment for so many of us.

      Reply
  14. Janine
    February 10, 2013

    I needed to hear what Isaiah had to say. 'I was derailed but God put me on a new track.' I watched as our loving our hurt and wounded son hurt my other son and husband deeply. They seem so far off track. Isaiah reminded me they are not farther than God can reach.

    Reply
    1. Lisa Qualls
      February 10, 2013

      He'll be so blessed to hear that, Janine.

      Reply
  15. courtneycassada
    February 10, 2013

    oh, how often i am overcome with fear for my children that are living through this. i can't wait to hear what he has to say!

    Reply
    1. Lisa Qualls
      February 10, 2013

      Courtney, I guarantee he will make you cry.

      Reply
  16. Angie
    February 10, 2013

    Wow. Been praying all weekend for you. God is so amazing the way he uses us when we will just be honest and transparent! I think then is when we can truly be his vessel without any of our own stuff clogging the vessel.

    Reply
  17. Lisa Qualls
    February 10, 2013

    Can't wait to meet you in person too, Angie. It was a fantastic conference and I'm looking forward to Spokane.

    Reply
  18. Linda
    February 10, 2013

    You and Isaiah were a highlight for me and my husband this weekend! Your honesty, wisdom and transparency are inspiring. Isaiah had me in tears – what a precious child of God!

    Reply
    1. Lisa Qualls
      February 11, 2013

      Thank you, Linda! I'm glad our talk was a blessing to you.

      Reply
  19. Sharon
    February 11, 2013

    Looking forward to hearing his talk. I need some encouragement for some siblings in my house.

    Reply
    1. Lisa Qualls
      February 11, 2013

      Sharon, you are not alone in that – I know how hard this can be for our kids whose worlds have been rocked by the addition of their siblings. It's all very complex to navigate.

      Reply
  20. Claudia
    February 11, 2013

    Isaiah was beyond amazing. And you were ok too Lisa 🙂 What a great time! So good to see you again!

    Reply
    1. Lisa Qualls
      February 11, 2013

      Glad to hear that I made the mark, Claudia! It was great having dinner with you and Bart – wish I could have come to your workshops, but I did have the pleasure of being across from Bart during the pray time as the conference closed. I loved hearing his calm voice saying, "The peace of Christ be with you," as he laid his hand on the shoulders of people as they passed. Hope to see you again soon.

      Reply
  21. Tiffany
    February 11, 2013

    Hi Lisa. I was at the conference, and had the chance to visit with Isaiah for a bit on Friday when he joined my dinner table while he was waiting for you. It was nice to hear more about his well projects, and a pleasure to sense how strongly God is working in his life. I was sorry that I didn't get to meet you as well. I greatly appreciated your talk in the general session and am hoping (smile) that you will post some of your breakout session material, as I wasn't able to attend it. Thanks for your contributions to the conference and for sharing your heart with all of us who attended. It's hard to express how much the community of that conference meant to me. I'm definitely refreshed (and refueled).

    Reply
    1. Lisa Qualls
      February 11, 2013

      Hi Tiffany, I'm glad you got to visit with Isaiah at dinner. Thanks for suggesting that I share some of our workshop materials, I hadn't thought of that. It's good to hear that you left refreshed – that is what we most want for everyone.

      Reply
  22. Linda
    February 11, 2013

    So wish I was able to make it, but maybe next year. 🙂 Then I'd be able to meet you in person!
    I'm so glad Isaiah was able to speak. I remember when one of my older bio kids told a friend that adopting the two littles was the hardest thing in his life, but the best thing too. I wasn't able to help my older kids through their teen and college years as much as I'd have wanted because of the two younger ones. But, like my husband pointed out to me yesterday, our older kids are strong and able to take care of themselves and their families. They had a chance to mature without my hovering mothering instincts. Yes, it was hard on them, but it was also good for them.

    Reply
    1. Lisa Qualls
      February 11, 2013

      Hard and good, that pretty much sums it up, Linda! The dates are set for next year and I plan to be there. Maybe we can meet then!

      Reply
  23. mary Andrews
    February 11, 2013

    We ar so proud of you and wish we could have heard you speak – but we did have a great time at lunch. Love you. Dad and Mom

    Reply
    1. Lisa Qualls
      February 11, 2013

      Thanks Mom and Dad. Lunch was great.

      Reply
  24. Shannon Danielson
    February 11, 2013

    Lisa thanks so much for sharing at Refresh. You did a great job speaking even though you're "just a mom" 😉 Isaiah is wise beyond his years and just from listening to him talk you could tell the pain your family has been though ( it brought tears to my eyes). Your family is in our thoughts and prayers.
    ~Shannon

    Reply
    1. Lisa Qualls
      February 11, 2013

      Thank you, Shannon. We are thankful for your prayers and hope that Refresh was a blessing to you.

      Reply

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