Saturday, January 15, 2011

When the Fear Sets In

Posted by Mandy at 5:56 PM
I'm hiding sitting in the office, listening to the kids giggle in the playroom down the hall. All 6 of them. My nest is full, my heart is full, my body and mind are TIRED.

We have our two foster sons here, and Emily.. the girl we so much wish we could add to our family. Time will tell.

During the busyness of each day I have found myself constantly pushing back thoughts that are surfacing. Feelings that I don't want to feel. I don't want to admit what's happening to me... but yesterday.. I finally admitted it.

I am falling in love. And, I know it will be a love that in the end, will probably break my heart. Enter: The reason most will not do foster care.

As I sat and rocked my 19 month old "Little Brother" to sleep for bed last night, with him facing tummy to tummy with me, and his nose burried so deep into my neck, just as my own babies did... I sang the two songs to him that I sing each night, and he hummed along. He patted me with one hand, and held my shirt with the other. I held one hand on the back of his head, holding him close, and the other around his bottom, so he wouldn't slip. We sat there rocking, singing... and falling in love. I put him in his crib after a kiss on the forehead and he opened his eyes to see me one last time.. he needs that reassurance. For the first time I whispered, "Good night, baby... I love you."

He calls me Mama. He cries for me to hold him. He cries when I leave him for any reason. He delights in my presence when I enter a room... especially if I've been gone for a while.

Today, as I rocked him before his nap... I felt the love growing, and the fear gripping me. I kept thinking, "You cannot love him this much.. you just cannot do this to yourself!"

But, how do you stop love? Why would you if you could?

My mind wandered to how long the boys would stay here. Would it be one more month? One more year? Thoughts circled of saying goodbye to two boys that are becoming my sons. How do you say goodbye?

You know when you open your home to the homeless that this is what you are getting into. You do it anyway, and you trust God to heal your broken heart when it breaks. Because it will break. Daily at times. When the 6 year old that thinks everything you say is hilarious, and wants to show you what a big and smart boy he is later tells you about abuse he's suffered as if it's no big deal.. your heart breaks. When you see that he's learning how to be in a real family, and he's let go of his food control because he finally trusts that you will ALWAYS feed him again... and then you think of him going back to where he came from.. your heart breaks. When you think of their mother and all she's going through right now, your heart breaks. This is not glamorous. This is not for our glory. This is not what most think... it isn't what I thought.

Fears are constant in my mind. I don't want a broken heart. I don't want "my boys" to leave and grow up in an inadequate household... possibly wasting the potential they possess. But, then I am gently reminded.. it isn't about me. I say that to myself constantly when my selfishness sets in. "This is NOT about me." It isn't even about them. It's all about being obedient to God's word... to care for the orphans and widows... and God didn't put stipulations in the Bible about "when you feel you are strong enough for the heartache..." or "when it suits you.." or "IF it suits you."

God always calls us to do what we feel we cannot... how else would he receive the praise?

So tonight, as I gear up to rock "my" boy to sleep and read stories to his big brother as he snuggles with me on the couch... I will admit my love, my fears, and my doubts. I will tell God and I will pray for more peace. A peace that doesn't come from understanding...

These are the two songs I sing and pray over Big and Little Brother each night... and honestly.. over myself.
 Sons and Daughters - Poor and Powerless
Phil Wickham - Safe


Mom of 5 on Saturday, 15 January, 2011 said...

What the most wonderful woman I know (Christie) says, "if you love them so much, you can't bare the thought of letting them go, then you know that you have given those boys what they need". And I have tears right now, for you, for your boys, and for the children that have left my home. I have pictures of all 4 of our children that have left on our wall, a wall right outside our little boys room...I look at them every single day....and every single day, at some point I smile thinking about them, so glad I was able to be their mom, I hope they are doing well, and I still miss family still talks about them, just like they would another family member...they will forever be part of our family.

What a beautiful, and heart-felt post.

Neil, Amy and The Girls on Saturday, 15 January, 2011 said...

Beautiful post!

I fell hard for a little boy we fostered back in 2009. It was almost unbearable when he left. My friend (that fostered for years and years) told me that if my heart was broken when a child left that meant I did what I was suppose to do.

You family is beautiful! So happy to to find your blog :o)

Brandy on Saturday, 15 January, 2011 said...

Oh, the tears this wells up for me, too! I couldn't help but think of "my" sons, my sweet boys that I had to say goodbye to. You expressed this so well, Mandy!

Living Creatively on Saturday, 15 January, 2011 said...

Oh, girl. Oh I can barely stand it. For you. For them. And your friends above are so right, but it's so hard. I've read Beth Moore's story of her foster son, and it still breaks my heart again and again. But it is the love that heals them.
Girl, I just don't know the answer. I'm quite sure that if I ever get my wish to work in an orphanage, I'll never leave. Or leave with armloads of children.
I admire you so much.

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