Tuesday Topic: How Have You Been Changed by Adoption?

Yesterday I wrote the post, How Have Adoption and Foster Care Changed You as a Mother? If you haven’t read it, I hope you will.

I am a very different woman/mother/wife than when we began the adoption process more than ten years ago.

He called us to adopt our children from Ethiopia – it was clear and powerful. We said, “Yes.”

My life completely changed. I changed.

I have so much I want to share about this, but first:

I want to hear from you.

How have you been changed by Adoption/Fostering:

As a mother?

As a woman?

As a wife?

As a person of faith?

Let’s be honest with one another – the good, bad, wonderful, hard, joyful, all of it!

You don’t need to share your name in the comments, but please share your thoughts and your heart. This is a safe place for all of us.

Your words may be an encouragement to a mom somewhere else in the world who reads them and says, “Me too. I didn’t know anyone else who felt that way.”

We haven’t done a Tuesday Topic in a long time and I’m ready to revive it. We have some incredible conversations in the archives I need to organize for you.

I’m ready for more Tuesday Topic questions!

It can be as simple as needing a tip about food or birthday parties, or as complicated as a deep therapeutic need.

If you have a Tuesday Topic you would like me to post, email it to me at lisa@onethankfulmom.com   Please put “Tuesday Topic” in the subject line; it will help me stay organized.

I hope to hear from you today.

encourage one another,


[Reminder: Today is the last day to enter the giveaway for a custom Mother’s Day Necklace! Details in this post.]

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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.


  1. Beth
    April 18, 2017

    I’m currently reading a soon to be released book about cancer and the author’s journey through it but a passage struck me as relevant to more than just cancer. The author discusses Jesus feeding the 5000 and how he had the disciples gather the crumbs left behind so that they “would not so easily forget an extravagant, abundantly providing God.” We were left to pick up the crumbs left behind in the wake of a case manager bent on destroying us at all costs. Again, as the author describes, it’s in the bending low, the scooping up of the pieces, that we are reminded of “a God who cares about drops, leftovers, and broken fragments.” As we piece our lives back together, as we begin to heal and our recently adopted daughter blossoms before our eyes, we remember. With each crumb gathered at the end of our family’s miracle, I remember the God of abundance that was working, in the midst of a great storm, for our good.

    1. Lisa Qualls
      April 19, 2017

      Very beautiful, powerful words. Thank you, Beth.

  2. Kara
    April 19, 2017

    I have learned to let go. Let go of the things that used to take pieces of me: what size jeans I wore, if my floorboards were vaccumed, whether the neighbors heard us yelling. I have learned that God DOES actually give you more than you can handle; in doing so helping me learn how I am totally reliant on His grace and mercy. I have learned that love sometimes is not enough, but that His steadfastness and promises are.

    1. Lisa Qualls
      April 19, 2017

      So many good things here, Kara. Thank you.

  3. amy
    April 19, 2017

    I am learning that I need more compassion and less judgement, both towards myself and others. I’m learning what a hard journey it is being human. I’m surprised at the resiliency and the pesky difficulties of childhood. I’m amazed that small people have so much kindness, compassion, sweetness, and terror, anger, and cruelty all smashed together in a heap of person. I’m learning that “neurotypical” shouldn’t mean “normal” and that although the world isn’t built for persons who don’t fit the mold – these people have so much good stuff to share. And so much more.

    1. Lisa Qualls
      April 20, 2017

      Amy, so true, it is a hard journey to be human, especially for some of our little people. And yes – I’ve learned so much from people who don’t fit the mold – I would have missed out. Thank you for your thoughts.

  4. KHill
    April 19, 2017

    Adoption has helped me understand I am not who I thought I was…I don’t have it all together…I don’t have all the answers…I can’t heal my children…I can’t be all to everyone. God has and is clearly showing me..HE is the one in charge, HE has the answers, HE is the healer. While I am a “fixer” at heart, it’s hard to step back and keep my “self” from getting in HIS way. It’s not an easy road, but clearly HE has a plan and beautiful, wonderful things have happened amidst the hard, difficult and painful. Adoption is painful, God allowed HIS Son to suffer greatly for my adoption into HIS family. Why would I expect earthly adoption to be any less painful? Praise God for HIS willingness to adopt me when He knew I could and would be stubborn, headstrong, disobedient, and opinionated. Praise God for His never ending love, compassion, and tender mercies. May I always strive to follow HIS way and trust HIS plan.

  5. Rachel
    April 20, 2017

    How have I not changed since adoption, that is the real question. 🙂 I probably shouldn’t be commenting as we are in the trenches of a very, very difficult adoption. We adopted 2 children (ages 5 and 9 at the time) from Ethiopia 5 1/2 years ago. They are 10 and 14 now. We also have a 20 year old and 12 year old. The last 5 years have been harder than I ever could have imagined. The youngest had very violent rages (think as dark as your mind can go and then some) so he had to be removed from our home as the other children were not safe. The 14 year old is equally as bad, just not violent. So all that to say that every aspect of our lives have changed. However, the ONE constant is our heavenly father. I truly do not know how families make it without Him. He has paved some very difficult paths for us where we knew it could only had been paved with His holy hands. He is still good even when circumstances are not.

  6. Melissa
    May 7, 2017

    We must have been on similar wavelengths in April. Here are some reflections on how I’ve changed.


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