The Lord Bless and Keep

The cottage had the comfortable feeling of a large family home.  Bookcases loaded with books, shelves piled with games, and comfortable furniture, all felt familiar to me.  Dimples’ room was much larger than I had expected and my worry that we had packed too much for her was quickly replaced with the wish that we had brought more familiar things from home. I wondered if at one time children had shared rooms, so that now, with only one child per room, the space was large.

Her bed was made with a colorful quilt, a fleece blanket folded at the foot.  I had packed Dimples’ pillow and special fleece blankets from home, so I asked that we leave hers rather than the ones they provided.  Her weighted blanket was folded on a shelf for times when she wants it.

We unpacked her clothes, labeling things before putting them in her dresser or on closet shelves.  The books and art supplies I had packed looked minimal on the empty shelves. All valuable or potentially harmful things (colored pencils, craft supplies) were placed in her special drawer in the counselors’ office.  Samuel had loaded her mp3 player with music she likes (and we like), and it was also safely stowed there for her to use when permitted. A large bulletin board running the length of a wall was empty, waiting for drawings, photos, letters, and other things Dimples would choose to display.

Soon Dimples arrived with her therapist. We looked at her room together, took a little tour of the cottage, and then it was time to say goodbye.  Russ and I embraced Dimples between us and prayed for her.  Russ began, but quickly became too choked up to speak, so then I prayed – I asked Jesus to watch over and protect her, to be the mighty healer who can heal our deep hurts and heal our minds, and I ended with the blessing, “The Lord bless you and keep you, the Lord make his face shine upon you, and give you peace.”  It wasn’t enough, not nearly enough, but in the moment, it was all I could say.

We hugged her and kissed the top of her head (she refused a kiss on the cheek), and then she walked away.  She left to return to the classroom with her therapist and we prepared for the long drive home.

As we said goodbye to Dimples’ case manager and headed out the door, Russ got choked up and I kissed him hard on the cheek, whispering, “It’s okay. We’re okay.” Holding hands, we walked to the car, where we sat for a few moments before finally driving away.  The sadness was deep, the heartbreak that it had all come to this was crushing, yet intermingled with those feelings was a sense of peace.  God had brought us to this moment, and this place, and we had to trust him.

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. Mary (Owlhaven)
    January 17, 2013

    God's got her in the palm of his hand…
    Love and prayers
    Mary

    Reply
  2. Cindy
    January 17, 2013

    Bless you. Bless you for sharing. Bless you for giving. Bless you for telling.

    Love and prayers,
    Cindy Mc

    Reply
  3. deborah
    January 17, 2013

    My heart breaks for your pain & swells for your courage. Praying for you all daily.

    Reply
  4. Lori
    January 17, 2013

    Thank you for sharing what I know must be very difficult to relive. You are all consistently in our prayers. Our God is sovereign, loving and good.

    Isaiah 43:1-3 But now thus says the Lord, he who created you, O Jacob, he who formed you, O Israel:
    “Fear not, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by name, you are mine. When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and through the rivers, they shall not overwhelm you; when you walk through fire you shall not be burned, and the flame shall not consume you. For I am the Lord your God, the Holy One of Israel, your Savior.

    Reply
  5. susan
    January 17, 2013

    Prayers for all of you….and wishes for healing, peace and grace.

    Reply
  6. SleepyKnitter
    January 17, 2013

    Praying with you as you write out your story, praying with understanding and love.

    Reply
  7. Jessie Gunderson
    January 17, 2013

    Oh beautiful, painful story. I'm praying for your family and for Dimples. Don't our prayers sometimes seem so small but the God we serve is so please with them and SO big compared to our thinking. Thank you for sharing this.

    Reply
  8. Laila
    January 17, 2013

    Praying for you today. Once we left our kiddo, it was a weird feeling like I was leaving my heart there. I soon realize a difference in my other child. She looked like the weight of the world had been lifted off of her and she was ready. even overly ready for my attention, to be filled up emotional by Mom. I had to push myself as my heart was broken but I had to remember I have 2 kiddos. Such tough times. praying

    Reply
  9. Jole
    January 17, 2013

    May the strength of His hand uphold your heavy hearts.

    Reply
  10. Jolene
    January 17, 2013

    I am just so thankful for your honesty. Your blog has been a source of ecouragement and strength in some of my hardest days with my two sons. (Both of whom are adopted from Ethiopia.) Continue the honest dialogue. I don't keep up with my blog and we have adopted another son since I wrote on it however you once left me a comment reagarding one of my posts and I give you the same comment back.

    "He makes Beauty from ashes. . ."
    "To grant those who mourn in Zion, Giving them a garland instead of ashes, The oil of gladness instead of mourning, The mantle of praise instead of a spirit of fainting. So they will be called oaks of righteousness, The planting of the LORD, that He may be glorified."
    Isaiah 61:3
    That He may be Glorified.

    Reply
  11. Hannah Jasmine
    January 17, 2013

    Prayers for so much grace to flood over all of you.

    Reply
  12. Paula
    January 17, 2013

    Lisa, my heart gets so heavy reading these posts… I can't imagine how you must feel. I keep thinking that your generous sharing has helped me so much with my challenging child; and thinking that it could be us going through this. I am so sad for you, but hopeful that some beautiful healing might take place as well. Hugs and prayers for you, my friend.

    Reply
  13. calledout7@aol.com
    January 17, 2013

    This is a beautiful story. While full of pain, it is the pursuit of healing…which is a beautiful thing. Thank you for sharing your heart so vulnerably!

    Reply
  14. erika
    January 17, 2013

    Praying and believing with you.

    Reply
  15. Kerri
    January 17, 2013

    We're praying for your family.

    Reply
  16. Angela
    January 17, 2013

    Thanks so much for sharing this!! God doesn't ever promise that the road will be easy!

    Reply
  17. Deborah
    January 17, 2013

    I have been reading your posts outloud each day to my BFF – stopping frequently to choke back tears as your posts bring back the crushing memory of our (mine and my husband's) walk through a strikingly similar experience.

    The best thing I can possibly say to you right now is this: we are approximately 10 months further along the path and look back with utter thankfulness to God for providing the solution that is bringing amazing healing to our daughter, and comforting healing to those of us who were affected by her broken-ness. There are not enough words to express how thankful we are. God's grace and perfect provision are stunning. Know that there will be very hard days – but know that you will look back some day and be so thankful for the healing and the strength it took to get all of you to it.

    Reply
  18. Lauren L
    January 17, 2013

    I offer my deep and abiding belief that this is the right course for you and yours; that for Dimples it will offer the path to peace and growth.

    Reply
  19. Dawn Wright
    January 17, 2013

    Thank you for being so bold as to share this immensely deep hurt. PRAYING desperately for your family- for healing, for peace, for strength on all sides!!!! Dimples is God's child…..and HE CAN HEAL!!!

    Reply
  20. kristine
    January 17, 2013

    Praying for your family. My thoughts are with you.

    Reply
  21. laurajonesjournal
    January 17, 2013

    a thousand thanks for sharing so perfectly, just enough to help us and just enough to be appropriate. I'm so thankful.
    praying right now for dimples and her mom.

    Reply
  22. barbershoppe
    January 17, 2013

    Praying for you throughout the days. May the Lord bless and keep all of you Qualls.
    Love, Anna

    Reply
  23. kimmie
    January 18, 2013

    When we are weak, then He is strong (His strength is made perfect in our weakness) . The power of confessing our weakness opens the door to releasing His Power into our lives.
    You are showing His strength by all the super hard things you are doing.
    God bless you, may the windows of heaven be open over your lives. I pray He gives you the keys needed to unlock Dimples heart.
    My family has found the deep hurts in our children make them unable (at times) to receive from us (love) and they battle to control. Often this manifests itself by their refusal to come under our authority. We know ultimately it is due to their lack of understanding of *sonship* (belonging to God and that He is good and loves them) . I found a man on youtube Leif Hetland. Who teaches on it…check him out…maybe its a key for you???
    Kimmie
    Mama to 8
    One homemade and 7 adopted

    Reply
  24. Rayia
    January 18, 2013

    I wanted to share this song with you in hopes that the words may be of some comfort. It was written by a family on their adoption journey.

    May the Lord bless you all!!!
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embed

    Reply
  25. Sadee
    January 18, 2013

    Praying.

    Reply
  26. Wendy
    January 18, 2013

    Every entry brings me to tears. Truly, the Lord will bless and keep you all. One thing I sense from your entries on this process is that perhaps you feel that Dimples placement isn't the best for her and your family, or that it's due to some failure on your part. God knew, Lisa. He knew that He was placing her with parents who would fight for her with every ounce of their being, so that when it came time for this step, you could walk in confidence and peace. So that rather that being trapped in a mindset of "it has come to this," as if this were a failure or 2nd best, it is part of God's redeeming plan for her life. Stay strong in your hope and confidence that God is weaving a miraculous redemption story, and know that where she is now is part of the story planned long ago before you even entered it! Hugs and prayers for you!

    Reply

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