How to Heal a Fractured Family
How to Heal a Fractured Family. The short, simple answer is trust in Jesus. Yet, sometimes, that is hard for me. Our family has been fractured for a long time. There have been cracks here and there, but this year, it is different. I’m not going to lie, it has been a struggle since about 2014, but even before then due to some extenuating circumstances. I don’t want to discourage anyone from adoption, but there is so much more I know now than I did almost 14 years ago.
What You Need to Know
When people are in the process of adopting a child or children, it is an exciting thing. We do all the things that are required. Background checks, money in the bank, fundraisers, fingerprints (if international), and so on. We work hard on those dossiers. Our homes are spotless for our home study. We eagerly anticipate our referral or a picture. There are so many support groups where we get on and talk about our discouragement of NOT getting a referral quick enough.
What We DON’T Realize
Is that we are, quite literally, waiting for a family to fail in some way. If it is foster care, we are waiting for a family to abuse, neglect, or hurt, a child or children so they will be placed in the system. Then we jump through all the hoops for the next 17 out of 23 mths and wait for the termination of parental rights.
Or, if it is a newborn, we are waiting for a sweet birth mom to make the most difficult decision of her life. For her life to be altered…forever…by choosing the blessing of adoption. If international, we are waiting for a birth parent who may be dying, or the child is starving, or some other tragedy that places them in an orphanage.
When you are adopting a family member’s child, you are waiting for drugs, alcohol, abuse, neglect, or abandonment to happen. There are other circumstances, as well, but that was my circumstance for my son. You start looking at YOUR sister and think…she is my son’s aunt? Grandmother? Both?
The Dark Side
We are walking into the blackest chapter of our children’s lives. Our greatest joy and what we worked so hard for, comes at our children’s greatest loss. Whether they are an infant or an older child, that loss will forever be embedded in their brain and heart. They are the only ones who have heard their mother’s heartbeat from the inside out and your heart is just not the same.
My heart literally aches because, in a perfect world, my kids would still be with their birth families. Succeeding, thriving, living, loving…yet because of certain things, they are not there…they are with me. I am grateful. Indebted. Forever changed because they grew in my heart and not under it!
Yet…they will always wonder what it would have been like to have been raised by their birth parents or in their birth country. Try explaining all of the things when they are older. It’s super fun aka traumatic.
Getting It Straight
I do not regret any of my children. None of them. They are my joy and I’m so thankful to God that He wove my family together in such a beautiful and intricate way.
Trauma is a bitch. Plain and simple. It is a straight-up bitch. Talk to ANY adoptive parents and they will tell you the same thing. Trauma can come in all shapes and sizes. It can come with a list of diagnoses…then there is “traumaversary” That leads to sabotage of all good things, behavior issues, confabulations, deceit, manipulation, and so much more.
My Family is No Different
We have, and continue to have, all of the above things and the “so much more” times a million. What started as one child exhibiting out of control behaviors due to FASD, PTSD, RAD, blah blah blah trickled down to other children. Another child exhibiting similar, yet different behaviors. Then, a third child going above and beyond. Lastly, the fourth child struggles with anxiety and more.
It has wreaked havoc on my person, my husband, other children, even my pets will lose hair when life is escalated in my home. This usually occurs November-March and then in July-October…which as I look at that typed out, it is from October-July. That gives us 2 mths trauma-free.
All the Things We Have Tried
We have done the things. Doctors, specialists, therapists, counselors, pastors, family, medication, routines, no routines, homeschool, private, public…All. The. Things. One child, nothing has worked for that child. Another child, we hope is in the process of healing. The third child is amped up right now. The fourth child, we just deal with it day by day.
I am exhausted. My husband is exhausted. Honestly, even the kids are exhausted. Mix all this crap in with a pandemic and being in this house and you have Funville. My underwear drawer no longer holds underwear. It is stocked FULL of candy. I wake up, in the morning, with a bag of snickers under my arm and wrappers everywhere.
There is a newfound love of Limeade Slushes. My teeth are going to rot out of my head. I have become a human GPS because I take LONG drives on roads I have never heard of. My favorite past time is driving to my neighbors and seeing if their pig is in the front yard. I cry…a lot.
Sadly, I feel like my family is falling apart. That Scripture of satan lurking around the corner to devour my family, it is happening! Honestly, at warp speed. I have so many words and so much has happened that my fingers will not move as fast as my brain.
Praying that this pandemic ends. I am praying for healing for my medically fragile children. Salvation for two of my kids. Wisdom with all of them. Healthy delivery for one (gonna be a granny!) A healthy relationship for two kids. School to open for one. One to come home safely. Another to stop making REALLY poor and dangerous choices.
I want my family to heal. To be whole. For God to intervene and DO SOMETHING. Honestly, I am just ready for Jesus to come riding down on His white horse and take us all home. Home…where there is no sadness, no darkness, and no pain. Just glory.
God is Bigger
I just have to trust in that…right? Right. Yes, trust. The hardest thing for me to do is trust Him with my family. Maybe that, alone, needs to be my prayer. Lord, let me trust in You that You have plans to prosper and not harm my family. Help me to realize that You and only You, can heal the fractures.