Blessings In Journeys

Most of the time my brain stays at a level of busy that makes a squirrel doing her spring cleaning look relaxed and very un-moving.  It causes Hubs to raise one eyebrow at me and just ask, “Is it difficult to be you?  I mean, with that constant spinning of your gray matter, like it’s a carnival ride on crack, and all?”

He.  Has.  No.  Idea.

I think it’s because Hubs and I perfectly fit a comparison that I heard once.  Now, this is not MY original Waffle-and-Spaghetti theory, because it’s just too brilliant for anything I would ever be able to dream up and write a college thesis on, but when I read about it, I thought, “Yes!  That is me and also Hubs, and JUST WOW!”  Because it’s a spot-on word of the truth, people.

The theory stated that the male brain is a lot like a waffle.  Each waffle square is a single thought, and men can only be in one waffle square at a time.  And sometimes those little squares on the breakfast-bread-goodness are just empty, so when a man is in THAT PARTICULAR SECTION O’ THE WAFFLE, he’s actually not thinking about anything at all.  Since the waffle squares are so compartmentalized, it makes it nearly impossible for a fellow to be in two squares at once, which means he never has two thoughts at once, and NO WONDER THEY FALL ASLEEP SO EASILY AT NIGHT and can completely forget that you JUST HAPPENED TO MENTION a nice bouquet of flowers might look nice on your kitchen counter.

Then, this article went on to say that a woman’s mind is more like a plate of spaghetti.  The noodles are all swirled together, interlapping and intertwining and inter-everything, and then the spaghetti sauce is poured over the entire plate, and it runs onto every single noodle and fills in the spaces in between, so everything is all just a messy heap of ALL OVER.  Clearly, this implies that we can think about sixteen-and-eleven-million things at once, and that spaghetti sauce train of thought keeps all of our ideas connected somehow.

Ultimately, this means that I have A WHOLE BIG GOB of thoughts in my head at any one given time, and not all of them are goofy.

Some of them are just downright serious, because the estrogen makes it that way.

Which is why I have a story for y’all tonight, which is more serious than not, because it’s one of the spaghetti noodles that wasn’t dolled up with humor.

Anyway.

If I ramble much longer on spaghetti and waffles, I’m going to lose you, so just know that we are, as of this very moment, DONE discussing food.  I will now just cut to the chase and speak a word.

(Or type a word, as the case may be, what with me not really doing any out-loud talking right now.)

My thought for tonight is that SOMETIMES the blessing comes in the journey, and not in the destination.

(And I really don’t know why, but all of a sudden I just decided that THAT sounded like a “Deep Thought By Jack Handey.”)

If you’ve been around our blog much at all, you know that Hubs and I have two boys.  Our older one was brought about in the usual fashion, with a C-section where the spinal FAILED, and I managed to feel nearly all of the cutting, and I REALLY DON’T WANT THE BABY OUT ANY LONGER!  PLEASE!  LEAVE HIM INSIDE!  I WILL BE PREGNANT FOR THE REST OF MY LIFE, BECAUSE THIS HURTS WORSE THAN ANYONE’S NATURAL CHILDBIRTH OF EVER, AND I WIN THE PAIN AWARD, AND WHERE ARE THE DRUGS?!  Our second son came about through an adoption, which Jesus orchestrated in a brilliant and loving way.

(Our entire adoption story can be found at the top of our blog page, if you have no idea what I’m talking about.)

Even though… in the early years… before we even had a single child… I had always thought that I wanted three or four kids running around our house, spilling milk on our hardwood floors and drawing smiley faces on our walls and smacking THERE FOR THE REST OF ETERNITY stickers onto good, wood furniture and my GENUINE LEATHER CHECKBOOK COVER… I somehow experienced this perfect, peaceful contentment after Thing 2 arrived.

Hubs and I had TWO BOYS!  We were so blessed!  We were so content!  It never occurred to us that maybe we would have another child some day, because DOUBLY BLESSED!  And happy!  And head-over-the-heels satisfied with being a little family of four.

Oh, my!  We love our boys, and we are happy with the two of them.

And then our darling friend and attorney, Deb, called us last week.  I was very busy boiling noodles for macaroni and cheese, because our summer lunches are incredibly fancy, when I answered her call.

Deb rocked our world by exclaiming, “Would you like to be considered for another baby?”

Do you know the SHOCK that this question brought?  Because it was THE.  VERY.  LAST.  thought that Hubs and I were thinking.  It caught us off guard… it made our eyeballs open wide… and WHAT DO WE SAY?

Deb told me over the phone that B had a friend who needed to find a home for her unborn baby.  B is Thing 2’s birth mom.  Hubs and I met B numerous times before Thing 2 arrived, and we knew that she loved us.  She has kept in contact with Deb, who, in turn, has just let us know occasionally that B was very happy with her decision to give us Thing 2.

And now B had this pregnant friend, who was NOT keeping her baby, and B wanted to know if HUBS AND I would like to be considered as an adoptive couple by her friend, and Deb was relaying the message, and OH, MY WORD!!

OH!!  MY!!  WORD!!!!!!

Which is exactly how I came to spend a frantic afternoon, making up another profile binder, which is ultimately a little book full of pictures and written paragraphs about your family, which a birth mom can look at and read and sort of get to know you by.

Hubs and I decided that SURE!  WE’LL DO ANOTHER BABY!  If Jesus wanted us to have another baby, then who were we to argue with Him?  We decided to whip up another profile, give it to Deb, who would give it to B’s friend, and we would wait and see what happened.

And this is the thing, people…. this is the most honest truth of all…

Hubs and I WANTED that baby… but we were also VERY CONTENT with our two boys.  We were so content, in fact, that it made us question whether we had done the right thing by agreeing to be considered by this girl as parents for her child.  We agreed that, if she chose us, we would take that baby, and we knew that we would love that baby to our dying day with our last dying breaths, every bit as much as we love our two boys, but we both knew that if it didn’t work out, neither of us would cry.

(Does that even make sense?)

And so I went through the next couple of days filled with complete peace.

“And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”  (Philippians 4:7)

I’m not sure that I had EVER… ever in my entire life… experienced this real peace that transcends all of our understanding, but I had it while Hubs and I waited for this little gal to look at numerous profiles and decide which family, or families, she would like to meet with in person and interview.

Now here’s the kicker.

If you’ve read our adoption story online, you probably know that I had two (!!!) full-blown panic attacks in the time between the day we knew B was looking at our profile and the day we met her in person.  I had never, ever, EV-AH had a panic attack before (and I haven’t had one since), and when the first one hit, I can honestly say that I thought I was dying of a heart attack, and GET ME TO A HOSPITAL NOW, BECAUSE I NEED THE PADDLES!

That is what sheer stress can do to a body.

I wanted B’s baby.  When Deb first called us about her… when the miracle was first set into motion… when it was just beginning… I wanted that baby so badly, that I knew I would need GRIEF COUNSELING if we were not chosen by B to become her baby’s mommy and daddy.

Ultimately, I was praying nonstop and ’round the clock to Jesus, TELLING Him to just work this out how I wanted it to work out, which is kind of like asking Jesus to just get into the backseat of your car while you do the driving.  I wanted Jesus back there to make some suggestions, but I wanted to turn the steering wheel and control the speed MYSELF, because WHAT IF JESUS SAYS NO?

I wasn’t open to Jesus saying NO.

I wanted to control the situation.

I wanted to control B’s decision.

I wanted to control how things went.

And I had ABSOLUTELY NO CONTROL OVER ANY OF IT.  Because that was unacceptable to me… because I was very busy driving a vehicle with Jesus in the backseat and trying to control everything that I had NO CONTROL OVER… I created a level of stress inside of me that was equal to an F-5 tornado, and my brain was circling the drain.

And THAT is what triggered two separate panic attacks, y’all.

Have you ever had a panic attack?  You don’t want one.  Go catch your arm in a wood chipper; it’s less painful, I think.

With B’s friend last week… I didn’t try to control anything.  Hubs and I prayed that THE BABY WOULD WIN.  We prayed that this baby would win by going to a safe, loving, nurturing home, where he or she would grow up spoiled by love and family and immersed smack in the middle of a solid, Christian home.  Hubs and I knew that we would be EXACTLY THIS FAMILY… but we know that Jesus has made a lot of other good families, too, and we just prayed that the baby would win.

We prayed that the baby would go exactly where he or she needed to go.

I felt like SUCH A GROWNUP praying that!  I felt like one of the MENTOR WOMEN in church, by praying such a thing!

(#prayerpride)

(#getridofthatnow)

(#istillneedwork)

This was different than my prayers for Thing 2, because I insisted to God then, one million times, that THE APOCALYPSE WOULD HAPPEN IF I DIDN’T GET THIS BABY IN THE END FROM B.

Jesus gave us Thing 2 in the end, but it wasn’t due to the fact that I was the one controlling the situation.

(#truth)

So one night, while we were still waiting in limbo, wondering if B’s friend would like our profile and ask to meet us in person, I was rocking Thing 2 to sleep, and I was talking to Jesus.  And I told Him, “I feel so much better about how things are right now, than I did last time.”  I told Him that I couldn’t believe I wasn’t a basket case, like I was while we waited for B to make a decision.  Because… MAKE NO DOUBT… I REALLY DID want that baby…

But I suddenly realized that I wanted what Jesus wanted.

And right smack there… right there in my squeaky, squawky rocking chair… while Thing 2 was snuggled in my arms, drifting off to sleep, I heard it in my heart, plain as day.

OBEDIENCE TO GOD GIVES COMPLETE FREEDOM.

I didn’t have to drive.

I didn’t have to worry about the outcome of B’s friend’s decision.

I didn’t have to worry about anything, because this time, Jesus was driving, and I was HIS passenger in the car, which is… you know… HOW WE’RE SUPPOSED TO DO THINGS.

And I heard it again that night:

OBEDIENCE TO GOD GIVES COMPLETE FREEDOM.

I don’t think anything has ever been more real to me than those thoughts that night.  By being obedient to what God wanted, I was free.  There would be no panic attacks.  I was free to go about my day and not worry about a thing.

I was free.  To not worry.  I was free.  To not stress out.

And that is when I knew that we weren’t going to get this baby.  Honest to goodness, I knew that the blessing had come in the journey, and that it wasn’t going to come in the destination.

I knew that I had just learned what God wanted me to learn, and I knew that someone else was going to get this baby.

I did.

And then Deb called us and announced that B’s friend and her boyfriend wanted to meet us, and I was all, “Really?”  Because I wasn’t expecting that, because WASN’T THE BLESSING IN THE JOURNEY?  AND HOW CAN THIS BE?  DID I UNDERSTAND THINGS WRONG?

And then I started to get all worked up, because WHAT SHOULD I WEAR?  What should I wear that made me look like I was THE ONE that this little pregnant girl should choose to mother her tiny baby?

Hubs and I drove to Rival Town, and we met with this girl and her boyfriend.  We got to see B in person again.  I hugged her neck, and we both cried a little, and she told me that she just loved us, and that she was SO THANKFUL that Jesus had pointed out to her that WE were the right family for Thing 2.  She told us that she has NO REGRETS… she told us that she no longer felt like he was even her child… and that she loved the pictures we send twice a year through Deb… and she thanked me twelve times for always including a note on what milestones Thing 2 has reached… and she said, “My friend will be completely blessed if she picks you to take her baby.”

The baby was a girl!

A GIRL!!

(*insert squeal*)

Suddenly, I had visions of PINK PINK PINK!!  And we would name her Amelia, because OF COURSE WE WOULD.  Both of our boys would have been called Amelia, had they been girls.  Even though it’s old-fashioned, I love it, and so does Hubs.

This little gal was pregnant, yes.  She had already placed TWO babies up for adoption.  She had kept ONE baby.  This was her fourth pregnancy, at the age of twenty-one, and she and her boyfriend just couldn’t afford this baby girl at all…

Our interview with them went well.

We came back home.

I actually looked online at Ralph Lauren’s little baby girl clothes FOR THE VERY FIRST TIME IN MY LIFE!!

The following morning, Deb called us and let us know that this couple had chosen another family, but that they’d had a difficult time deciding between me and Hubs and a childless couple, after all of their interviews the previous day.  In the end, they picked the couple who were unable to have children of their own, and who had been ACTIVELY PURSUING ADOPTION FOR EIGHT ENTIRE YEARS!!

I won’t lie.

My heart was a touch sad, because YES!  I DID want that baby.  I did.

I.  DID.

BUT!!

I asked Deb, “Was the couple who were chosen just thrilled to hear the news today?”  And Deb replied, “She cried so hard, she couldn’t even talk.  She sobbed and sobbed, because it has been eight entire years of them waiting for this to happen.”

And that is how the story ends.

My blessing came in the journey, because Jesus let me know that the peace which transcends all understanding… which I had never been able to grasp before… which I even doubted existed before… EXISTS.  It exists when we are obedient to God.  And when we are obedient to God, we experience genuine freedom.

OBEDIENCE TO GOD GIVES COMPLETE FREEDOM.

And this other childless couple received the blessing at the end of the journey… or rather, they will… as a little baby girl is due to be born the very first week of September, and they are preparing a place for her in their VERY CHRISTIAN HOME.  (Deb assured me of that part!)

I cannot even put into words how happy I was for them this past week.  I was over the moon happy that a couple who has waited for eight years to have a birth mom choose them to raise her child had FINALLY heard the words YES, I PICK YOU.  I even cried for them, because I was so dadgum happy!  I trust Deb fully, and she assured us that this couple is one fabulous, Christian couple, and that they have ached for years for their own baby.

And the truth is… the ABSOLUTE HONEST TRUTH… is that Hubs and I are joyfully content with just our two boys.  Our hearts remain so full, they’re running over.

And that, people, is my very, VERY long-winded story.

Have a fantastic weekend.

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