We are amazed in the progress of Zano. Came home as slow as a turtle, no one and nothing could make that boy move faster...ate at his own pace, moved at his own pace...despite "thats just the way he is..." we took the challenge head on and found out...not so...it was instead a bit of manipulation and control. We found a leverage pretty quickly and he moved on to a faster pace.
From blank stares and trances and checking out when he didn't feel like handling it anymore to literally that being part of the distant past. From attitude and grouchiness like no other to being a very contented happy-go-lucky child. From fake wails and laments over very little to learning when and how (seems silly..but yes...how...) to cry. We now cry over pain and hurt feeling and sadness. From peeing on the floor daily and Mama being a necessity when any thing more than pee was done...to being very self sufficient in the bathroom. From yelling "PEE" or "POO" and unheard of decibels ... regardless of the folk that made up the within-ear-shot-audience...to telling me quietly "I have to go potty". We've come a long way mr. Chazano bazano. (our challenge today is learning how to stop sucking on his tongue...yes his tongue...little tougher than stopping the thumb sucking ... said from experience...)
We've seen a quiet, submissive, fearful, do-whatever-you-say at whatever-the-cost Zunduka come out of his shell and kind of not knowing his way around outside of it. To finding out there ARE indeed consequences for actions and disobedience truly hurts. From learning he is in complete control over the night time bed wetting and as soon as we said that wasn't ok...serious progress was made. To then seeing how getting up and taking the diaper off so he would be rewarded for dry-diaper but being too lazy to go potty...and sitting in bed and peeing...would not make you further ahead but indeed...in a worse perdicament. We've learned that lying is the ultimate offense and the punishment is always double when a lie was in there. Learning that even though this American way is so different and worthy of staring at...we can't necessarily do that. It's been a big learning curve for mr. Zunduka but the good news is he clearly feels safe to come out of the shell and we are here to guide his way and show him the straight and narrow path to follow.
Ahhhh it's been a journey. And the ultimate journey is the journey of the heart for a certain Mama of 6. I wish this blog could still be public b/c we truly want the world to know that adoption isn't a good idea...it's not for 'some people'...it's not "nice and super humanitarian of some to do'...it's not just for the 'called'....it's a command.It's the ultimate true...pure...undefiled religion. To care for the widows and fatherless. It is near...super near...to the heart of God. He knows all the pains of adoption....because He adopted me. It's not a natural love...it's a chosen love. I love you...because I do. Because I have chosen you. I don't need you I want you. I love you.
If you have read this blog and thought "wow so glad Africa is behind them and they can start their picture perfect life together at home...all complete" than you are no different than I. But boy was I wrong.
You have no idea how many times ... in my frustration...in my anger...in my desperation...I have come before God...and in all my pleading and questioning...there was a soft still voice. Started in a low voice...slowly...softly...almost chilling ... it's familiar...it's really familiar...Janice...though the world sees and soon forgets...we will not forget who You are and what You've done for us.....what You've done for us...."
Africa....was only the beginning.
Like Labor...is only the beginning. Of a lifetime of ups and downs and learning and training and disciplining and pain and love and joy and ..... Labor...is only the beginnning... Africa...was only the beginning.
Adoption has been... like being an eye witness to my own open heart surgery. Sitting back and watching the surgeon slice me open and take my heart out...and then before my very eyes...start cutting it. Opening it up. And showing me all the ugliness within. Here I am...seeing it...myself. That is what adoption has been for me. Exposed me to the deepest layer. I don't have an anger problem. Oh yes you do, Janice. I don't have a problem emotionally connecting. Oh yes you do, Janice. I don't have a problem loving and giving and loving and giving when I get nothing in return. Oh yes you do, Janice.
I heard recently that the problem with being a 'living sacrifice' as we are told to offer ourselves to God as a living sacrifice in the Bible...is that we are alive...so we daily hop off the alter and walk away. How true. Today I totally surrender and tomorrow I'm in the same predicament ... huh? How did that happen?
So ... it is. A daily surrender. And the days I fight my own way...end up much worse. Daily surrender. I'm not super woman. Super mom. Super wife. I'm human. I simply took to heart that God said...we are to care for the orphans and as soon as we did...it was unreal how God opened doors and showed the way. There is ZERO...Z.E.R.O doubt in my mind...absolutely zero...it never wavers...that this was 100% God's will for us. Zero. That...has been a solid foundation in all the ups and downs of the 'aftermath'.
So why would we want people to know that? So you know it's not all easy. It's NOT a bed of roses. It's not just amazing day in and day out. It's work. It's work to love and give and do it again and again without the natural bond of a biological child. Since we know that bond...the contrast is great. Would we do it again? In. A. Heartbeat. Do we believe we will have that bond? Absolutely. I truly believe you do the action and the feelings come much later. We would want you to know we are no different than you. We have thought all the same thoughts "I could never love another child as my own..." "If I couldn't have children...then...I would..." "If I was loaded and had nothing more to fill my time with..." "if....."
You know several people weren't impressed that in the middle of raising a large family...close together...we would adopt twins. Oh...our idea was when our children were grown. When it was convenient for us. When WE were ready. When ... when.... see.... it wasn't about us. I think one of the keys to living a life of tremendous meaning is when you realize... it is simply not. about. you. It's not about you. Um....yah...we work 2 full time business...have 4 kids...want more....now is NOT the time for us to adopt. It's interesting God doesn't say "when you have tons of extra resources, and time and energy...and ... and .... then....care for the orphans." No. That's simply not there. We knew it would take sacrifice. And energy. And effort. And...honestly..it would take a lot more than it would give. That's the point. Our reward is in Heaven.
We are often stopped by christians...and told "good for you! I could never do that ... but GOOD FOR YOU!" ..... ? We need to think a lot about that. We are no different than you.
The title of the blog. My new fave song by Santus Reale. Youtube search it and sit and listen. And listen again. I don't think there is one family that this won't speak to. It breaks me no matter what state my heart is in....the first verse is husband and wife...the second...is father (mother) and children. The third...a cry for help to be able to do it...this is my cry to my Dad. Lead me.