By Tisha at Deutschland.
“Don’t be hard on yourself, it takes time to acclimate.” That’s what a friend told me soon after we returned home with our two children.
Desperately I wanted to believe her words. Caught in the grip of a downward spiral which included a cycle of shock and guilt that was ushered in with the entrance to Our New Life, I was unsure if they would ever be true.
I wondered what I had done to myself, to my family, to my husband (this was my big idea after all!) to our kids. I grieved the end of life as we knew it, the way things once were, when it was all so much easier, when I felt like a mother to all of my children.
I longed for the days that I loved being a mom. Our home felt pretty strong and secure. Perhaps we had something good we might offer, we thought. We could reach out to little ones who needed a home, welcome them. I was moved with compassion every time the precious faces of those orphaned children flashed across my computer screen.
It became clear after the arrival of our kids, that time was suddenly gone. Everything was so much harder than I expected. The books and classes and preparation hadn’t mentioned it would be like this, did they? If so, it didn’t register in my mind.
We flailed. Uncertain of what to do with all those moments in each day, how to begin to communicate, to teach, to guide and instruct and comfort and heal, we trudged through the hours. I grieved. The caregiver who once thought she had so much to give, became quite needy.
There were times that if someone had offered me a ‘take back’ I may have run with it.
This was my shameful secret.
Then, slowly, gradually, it all began to turn around. The simple things moms do for their kids started to feel normal. Our new family dynamic wasn’t so strange anymore.
I began taking time for myself to fill my reserves.
I knew I could do this. We would be ok.
One day, I realized, there was no way I would accept a take back. I would fight for them. These were my children. I am their mother, and not just because a piece of paper says so, but because my heart grew and enveloped my Ethiopian treasures.
I used to think I knew about love. I now know I didn’t.
My children are teaching me. And, it is a lesson I’m only beginning to learn.
My friend was right; for some of us, it takes time to acclimate.
Thank you Lord for time, sweet time.
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