Don’t let the title fool you, disciplining children is the least of my great attributes. I am a yeller, and I am horribly inconsistent and over think EVERY decision I make when it comes to discipline! This entry is more about self than anything. Hopefully my thoughts flow.
November is Adoption Awareness Month. Adoption has fascinated me as long as I can remember. It’s funny how I look back now and see it weaved throughout my life. All of the events and memories, people and places, little tidbits, that hindsight 20/20, I now know were all leading up to our story.
Yesterday I made my first post of the month. We just happened to recently have a visit with tummy mom, and I posted about that visit and how good it did my girl’s heart. I got a lot of feedback on my heart, and it’s hard to hear positive things about myself, (side note- it’s not that I am negative, I am WAY too conceited, it’s a Keller girl trait- we blame that on our grandma- she made sure we ALL knew we were the most beautiful and wonderful people on earth LOL), BUT, I never want for anyone to think I am extraordinary, or special or have some mom super powers on this foster care/adoption journey. I talked to my favorite small group last night in our bible study, they assured me it was okay, and that conversation led me to today. (second side note- get you a small group- they are life saving!!!)
My love for Dillon is the same as your love for your kids. It will carry me through any fire that comes our way. Just as you would lay down your life for yours, I lay down mine for her. In her story, that means that I have to die to me, and my selfish desires to be the apple of her eye, and allow someone to share that spot. When we started this journey, I knew I was called to not only do it, but to share it. It’s difficult to share it all, because the majority of that story is hers, and it’s theirs, and I would never want to steal or tarnish that for them. I do though, want to give enough insight that can share where my strength and love comes from, and how I cultivate that.
And that’s where the discipline comes in. I love Jesus more than anything and anyone. He teaches me that I am to LOVE above all, to love the hurting, the oppressed, the poor, the weak, the hard hearted, the widow, the NEIGHBOR, all the neighbors. So I do. Foster care is how He chose for me to live that out best in my life. Through that came an adoption, and He has given me so much grace, and hope and love to share. That’s the key though, it’s HIS through me. Because me, Jennifer, is hard hearted and hard headed and I want to scream some days and shake people. But instead I choose to pray, to listen, and to allow Him to work through me. And that requires discipline. A decision to wake every single day and talk to Him, to read His word and allow it to soak into my spirit. To breathe in a situation and allow the holy spirit to guide my next sentence or move. I am silent a lot in my older age, and it’s because I have learned, through discipline, to be still and wait on His direction. I fail at this daily, just so you know, but I still try again at the next time. When I allow Him to work in and through me, I have a softer heart. I am able to feel with the love He has for His people and it grows my love.
My picture attached to this blog came from my girl’s parents. It is one of my most treasured ornaments. Dillon needs to know she is loved, and she needs to know that she is loved by everyone that should love her. Through open adoption, I am able to allow her to see that love, to feel that love. In turn, I have a love for two families that I would have never likely crossed paths with, and they love us too. Love makes the world good. If we could all love one another despite, think of what a wonderful place it would be.
So in case your foster/adopt heart is stirring, I wanted you to know that I am still me. Just Jennifer, I am judgemental and hateful and have to keep myself in check every second of every minute. I am not a super mom, I am not an adoption queen or foster care goddess. I just listen when I am spoken to, and I grasp to the strings of my Father’s robe all day every day.