Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom.
1 Corinthians 3:17

Monday, January 4, 2010

I started out the brand new year

without the usual fanfare and excitement; without my annual To-Do list perched by my side; no countdowns, celebrations, or even a midnight kiss from the mister.

No, my date was more the porcelain variety.


Not pretty.  Definitely not fun.

I suppose my night of terror wasn't really that big a deal; rather, it was the all-nighters I'd been pulling with each child leading up to it.  It was strange- each kid had his, then her, own horrible night and subsequent horrible day, and then it was all over.  One right after the other.  All week long.  I'm not sure if it was worse that it was vacation week, or if it was actually a blessing in disguise.  Regardless, it seemed like a really long week.

But we are back to relative good health today.  The sun is almost shining, which would be a wonderful gift after nearly 4 days of gray, snow-stormy days, and Isabelle Kate and I have already survived the likes of the grocery store, tidied up a bit, and played outside.  And it isn't even lunch time.  Oh, I think I'm making a comeback afterall!

Be forewarned: there may be disconnected, not-fully-thought-through ramblings if you keep scroll down for a cute pic if you're not in the mood.  :)

I was thinking just the other day that I never mentioned how Christmas Eve holds an extra-special significance for our family.  June 24, 2008 was the day we loaded up and moved down to Guatemala to be with our baby girl, for what we thought would be a 2-3 week stay in the country.  So many things happened there, things that I feel I have yet to fully recover from but I won't allow myself the proper time and space to reflect...well, anyway, we didn't even realize until Christmas Eve last year that it was our 6-month anniversary of being together with our Isabelle.  I think that's pretty special!  And this year, yesterday actually, marked that magical aoption landmark of having more time together than having had apart.

When I look back on our year-and-a-half together, I'm amazed, humbled, and mostly in awe that it feels like she has been with us forever.  Yet the truth is that she spent just as much time with her beloved foster family.  I know God brought us to each other and it is He who has smoothed out the bumps along the way.  I know He meant for us to be her parents just as she was born to be our precious daughter.  Still amazes me.  Leaves me...speechless, if you will, though certainly not for long.  Ha

In reflecting on these things I can't help but feel unworthy.  I am not a perfect Mom.  I lose my cool, battle with self-doubt, insecurity, and other energy-draining issues.  I do not choose peace every time, and I certainly don't feel joy in my everyday life, not the way I long to.  There are many days when I wonder if my daughter would have been better off with another mother; if my boys would be better off with a more giving, fun, easy-going Mom.

Hmmmm.  That's sounding more meolodramatic than I'd intended, but yes, it's still truthful.  I make so many mistakes!  And I'm all too aware of the damage that gets done, even without intention.  Yikes, that's almost unbearable!  Yet I know, I believe, and I have found out for myself, that God does keep his promise about using our pain for good.  He alone gives us the freedom to live, love, and forgive fully, so I think I'll meditate on those promises this week while I now have the chance to think ahead to the promises and hope of a brand new year.

This cutie has always had such a keen sense of style-
this was his response to putting on a warm play shirt and some longer socks for outdoor play
See my point?????
hee hee hee hee -how I LOVE that boy!!!!
Happy Belated New Year!



Kristine said...

He is adorable as are all of your children.

I am so sorry you rang in the New Year that way. We had it here too...only a couple escaped the awefulness of it. But I just know it is lurking and waiting for the right time to grab them too. :(

Iwould love to hear your adoption story sometime..I may need to search in your old posts...

Happy New Year to YOU!


Jenny said...

Oh I am so sorry to hear that you have been sick! I hate that kind of sickness. We have managed to avoid that awful bug so far, but it seems to be going around!!!

Happy new year!

jenn said...

i hope you are feeling better!

and do't worry momma--we all feel self doubt as moms! you are doing a great job!

Julie said...

Being sick stinks during the Holidays. I'm glad your feeling better.

Bethany, you are such an amazing person. Non of us are perfect parents, we all make mistakes along the way. We all lose our tempers or choose to skip "learning" moments just to get things done. Although I haven't seen you for awhile, I know you are, and always have been such an amazing person and you have so much love in your heart to carry all you beautiful children through life.

Terri Anne said...

Bethany, I'm so delighted to hear you celebrated your crossover day... I had that day marked on my calendar for a long time. So sorry to hear you had the bug the rest of the family had. No fun.

I totally relate to everything you said about feelings of unworthiness as a Mom. I've had all of them (some of them daily). It seems as if my girl tests her boundaries constantly, and I pray for wisdom in wrangling her free spirit while not crushing it, and it's a daily struggle.

Pam Thomas said...

Bethany, I can't believe how Isabelle has grown! She is such a cutie.
Have you heard from Darling lately? It has been quite sometime since I have received an e-mail from her or am instant message.
Glad to see all is going well with you. :)

Danielle @ Transforming Home said...

Glad you are feeling better!
And don't be so hard on yourself - no one is a perfect mom. NO ONE. That person just doesn't exist. We all have our issues, and that's just the way it is. It seems to me like you are a lovely, caring, kind person and mother who loves her children dearly - and that is what matters most! Give yourself a pat on the back Bethany!
By the way, where do you live? I haven't seen leaves on trees for months...


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